Dr. Boone teaching class.

Philosophy of Educational Psychology

As a discipline, educational psychology involves the study of how people develop and learn, and examines the various systems and mechanisms that guide knowledge acquisition, as well as its measurement. Educational psychology integrates other branches of psychology (e.g., developmental psychology, behavioral & cognitive psychology) in an integrative fashion to provide a comprehensive conceptual map of human information processing and life span development. Like most branches of psychology, educational psychology was influenced by early philosophy and through the work of theorists dating back to Locke, Rousseau, Wundt, James and Titchner, and then on to Thorndike, Dewey, Skinner, Vygotsky, Bandura, Bloom and Gage, the discipline of educational psychology grew. More recent influences have come from Bronfenbrenner, Thelen, Fischer, Case, Kozol, Ogbu, and others who view educational issues through complex nonlinear systems, neuropsychological, and sociocultural lenses.

Today, educational psychologists influence what we know about the human condition, the world of educational assessment, contexts for teaching & learning and instructional development, influences of brain development on learning, and human development over the lifespan. This disciplinary knowledge is used by others in psychology and in related fields (special education, school psychology, educational administration, industrial psychology-organizational psychology, the world of business). Educational psychologists work in a variety of settings, not just in school environments. The discipline of educational psychology continues to grow, and we invite you to contribute to that growth through your study and inquiry. It is our hope that this handbook will be helpful to students. Please direct any questions about contents of this handbook to your academic advisor or EDP program coordinator.