Entry last updated: 16/03/22

Introduction

Psychology is the scientific study of the mind and behaviour of people and groups.

Branches of Psychology

There are many different branches, theories, and practices of psychology, with different focusses.

Behavioural psychology: studies observable behaviours.

Cognitive psychology: studies mental processes.

Social psychology: studies the the mental processes of social groups.

Psychotherapy: the use of psychological techniques and processes to treat mental and emotional issues.

Psychoanalysis: a highly influential form of psychotherapy centered around the concept of the unconscious.

Psychoanalytic theory: often used in non-psychological fields, such as film and literary studies, political analysis, and philosophy.

General websites

These websites have useful information about lots of different aspects of psychology.

Britannica School (Secondary)

Britannica School is one of the EPIC databases, a collection of reliable databases covering lots of different topics. It has been put together for New Zealand schools.

  • Select Secondary.
  • Enter the keyword 'psychology'.
  • Select psychology from the results for an overview of the field.
  • Or explore the results for more specific information.

Tips: To get to the EPIC resources you will need a password from your school librarian first. Or you can chat with one of our AnyQuestions librarians between 1 and 6pm Monday to Friday and they will help you online. Some EPIC databases may also be available through your public library.

Science (Gale In Context)

This is another EPIC database. You can search or explore a wide range of topics, with links to academic papers, reference books, news, and videos.

  • Go to Browse Topics and choose Psychology.
  • This page provides a good overview of psychology and then breaks resources up into types eg reference, academic journals, and experiments.
  • Select Reference for lots of articles about different psychology topics, approaches, and theories eg biological psychology.
  • Or search for a keyword on a topic of your choice eg cognitive behavioural therapy.

Tips: Search words, or keywords, are the most important words in our question. Usually it’s better to leave out small words like ‘the’, ‘a’ and ‘of’ and just choose the main ones, eg 'cognitive behavioural therapy'. We can always change our keywords or add more if we need to.

Simply Psychology

This site was originally put together for students in the United Kingdom. It has hundreds of articles about different theories and perspectives of psychology.

  • To find out about different perspectives, select an article under Approaches eg Psychodynamic Approach.
  • To find out about different theories select Theories.
  • From here browse different theories or enter keywords in the Google site search eg Pavlov's dogs.

Tips: Some websites have advertisements (or ads) which ask us to buy something or tell us to ‘click here’. It’s best to ignore these ads and focus on the information we’re looking for.

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy is an online reference dictionary written by experts in philosophical fields. It is run by the Stanford University Department of Philosophy, in the United States of America.

  • Search for keywords eg behaviourism.
  • Remember to try American spellings if you aren't getting the results you are looking for.
  • Or browse the list of entries.

Tips: We like sites that are from the government or other reputable organisations, because we can trust the information. You can sometimes tell these sties by their web address - they might have .gov or .edu in their address - or by looking at their About pages.

New Zealand websites

These websites will help you find out more about psychology in New Zealand, including from a kaupapa Māori perspective.

New Zealand Psychological Society

The New Zealand Psychological Society is New Zealand's largest community of psychologists. This website includes information about psychology practice in New Zealand.

  • Browse the Ngā Kete tab for information about Māori psychology and bicultural issues.
  • Explore the Public tab and go to About Psychology learn about the work psychologists do.

Tips: Some websites have .au, .nz, .uk or other codes in their url. This can tell you which country this website comes from eg .au is from Australia or .nz is from New Zealand. You can check the About Us link on the website for more information.

Māori & Psychology Research Unit

The Māori & Psychology Research Unit is based in the University of Waikato. They produce research on psychological topics that center the priorities of Māori communities.

Tips: We like sites like this because they’re reliable. You can tell because of their web address – they have either .govt or .ac, meaning they are from government or educational organisations. They’re also New Zealand sites, so relevant for us.

Psychology Careers

The website below has information about pursuing a career in psychology.

careers.govt.nz

This website is owned and maintained by the Tertiary Education Commission, and provides information about different career options in New Zealand.

Books

Here a few books about psychology. Your school or local library will have many more!

SCIS no. 5402601

Topics covered

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