The Scope of Educational Psychology

It becomes evident after pondering over the meaning and objective of Educational Psychology, that, Educational Psychology studies the student in educational situations, the process of learning, and the result of learning (achievement or product) in psychological way. Charles E. Skinner has defined the scope of Educational Psychology in this way, “Educational Psychology studies the human behavior in educational situations. It concerns with the study of such human behaviors and personalities whose welfare, development and guidance happens through the process of learning.” Regarding the subject matter of Educational Psychology some psychologists think in this way:

  1. Garrison and Others—“The subject-matter of educational psychology is designed (1) to enhance and enrich the lives of the learners and (2) to furnish the teachers with the knowledge and understanding that will help the institute improvement in the quality of instruction.”
  2. Douglas and Holland—“The subject-matter of educational psychology is the nature, mental life, and the behavior of the individual undergoing the process of education.”
  3. Crow and Crow—“The subject-matter of Educational Psychology is concerned with the conditions that affect learning.”

Education and psychology are closely related. Today psychology has begun to be used in education and with its help, education related issues are also tried to be resolved. Because education is a continuous lifelong process, therefore the scope of educational psychology is not limited to childhood or adolescence; rather it is an elaboration of all educational situations of a person.

When question are asked like who shall be imparted education? How it should be imparted? In which situation and in which system shall it be imparted? Who shall be giving it and what is education? Then, in order to get the answers of these questions we consider these points like the student, process of education, educational situation and the results of learning under educational psychology primarily. 

Educational Situation Related Study—Situation and Environment play a very important role in Education. The creation of Educational situation is well planned for Education. Education attempt could not get success without the proper Environment. Environment is also studied in psychology. The elements that develop behavior are included in Environment. The effective environment should be constructed for the successful education of a child. According to the need of Education, if the environment is not well planned and controlled; Education and learning could not be delivered successfully. Therefore, in Educational Psychology, the importance of environment, the kinds of environment, the conditions for learning situation, educational techniques, the education of class surroundings and environment, the learning of various personality, personality development, the effect on arrangement and health growth, development etc and related subjects, are also widely studied.

Lindgren has considered a central scope, of educational and learning situation. According to Lindgren there is a situation for the education of a child, in which educational process takes place. Situation includes those elements that affect either child or educational process or both of them. Class, library, discussion room, Laboratory etc create the direct and immediate situation, while community, management, administration, policy-makers etc remotely but effectively develop and control the educational situation. From this point of view, educational situation related study, has been included in modern Educational Psychology.

Student Related Study—According to the Modern Psychological consideration learner, learning, in the bilateral process of education, is the central point of education-process. As soon as the education process starts, this main question arises that who are we educating? Certainly our response will be To the child or more extensively it is called learner. Today, in the education-world, this main question is considered specially. And therefore the Educational–Psychologists have considered, child or student, the central point of education. And the education that revolves around it, is called-central education or Psychological Education. This concept is the outcome of that Psychological movement that is begun by Educationalist Russo and Pestology. Today it has got the great support of everyone except Educational– Psychology. The question arises that what do we mean by student? In easy words it means–learner.

What all do the teacher and the guardian of student need to know about the student and why. On this matter the study of the following things related to the student is essential:
  • Heredity and Environment—Child’s education is affected by environment and the virtues that he gets by heredity. The both are studied in Educational Psychology and it is attempted to know that education is more affected heredity or environment.
  • The study of child development`s various stages— In it, the principle of growth and development, the various stages of child development like childhood, adolescence, adulthood are studied. And the form of the education is delivered according to the qualities of these stages as physical, mental, emotional.
Physical Development—Under the physical development, the different stages of child development-the qualities of childhood, adolescence are studied.

Mental Development—In it emotional, representation, examination, concentration, interest, learning, inspiration, remembrance, absent mindedness, imagination, rumination, decision, growth, etc, are studied. And various methods are applied to know that how shall these be developed in the child. 

Emotional Development—Under this we study emotions, emotional expression, stable composure, complexes, fundamental traits, and easiness are studied. Sometime emotional expressions are helpful and sometimes they are a hindrance. Educational psychology, by studying it, tries to find out how emotional expressions can help the child. 

Social and Character Development—Under this, social activities, games, the activities of community creation, activities of subject-matter changes, which help in social and characteristic development, all those things are studied. 

The Study of Personality Differences of Children—Educational psychology studies various types 
of children, sharp minded, normal, dull minded, problematic, abnormal, mentally and sick children 
of various other personalities and it determines which kind of education shall be given which kind of 
personality and by which method. 

The Study of Mental Health of the Child—under this sections we study the mental health, the principle of mental health, the hindrances to mental health and the progressive factors of the children. 

Under this we study the behavioral and problems of mixing up with others, and he ways of providing guidance. 

The Study of Learning Process—Learning has great importance in life and the only objective of education is to make a person learn. Learning is a result of stimuli. A child begins to respond to the stimuli which are present in the environment, which are related to the basis instincts. He keeps on improving these responses with experiences. Gradually giving integrated and cultured responses is learning. A man is able to establish himself in the society as a result of this kind of learning. Learning process is the process of social inclusion. Learning is the process of instituting the progressive nature. Learning is the continuous process which begins and balances by internal and external factors and it is directed towards the adaptation and inclusion of conditions. 
Following things are studied in the process of learning:

Nature of Learning—With the help of experiments of educational psychology, we learn which methods of learning are useful, and how they can be used in principles of learning, rules of learning, the various methods of learning, and significance of punishments and rewards in learning. 

The Role of Inspiration in Learning—What is importance of inspiration in the process of learning is considered. 

Transfer of Learning—Under this section we learn what is meaning and importance of Transfer of Learning. How this is accomplished what, and what are the various principles of transfer of learning etc. 

Memory and Forgetting—Under this section, types of memory, parts, qualities, kinds, rules and methods of memory are discussed. For the process of learning, the types of forgetting, structure and solutions are essential to be known. In education, in order to make the process of learning a success, it is important to focus on memory test. One has to react according to what he has learnt as a result of learning. Memorizing is a process of acquiring, which is an important part of process of learning. Therefore memory and forgetting come under the subject of educational psychology. 


  1. Psychology is such a science that is related to the study of behavioral changes.
  2. The behavior of man is changed by education. Psychology is such a science that studies all the aspects of human behavior. In this view, Education and Psychology, both are related to the development of human personality.
  3. Since the different principles and the rules of psychology are applied in Educational situations therefore the Educational Psychology is also called the behavioral Psychology.
  4. From the angle of Educational Systems, the nature of Educational Psychology, like Psychology, could be considered scientific. Educational Psychology establishes its general principle by the scientific study of its problems and their solutions and predicts the person’s behavior related to the subject of learning.
  5. Situation and Environment plays a very important role in Education. The production of Educational situation is well planned for Education. Education attempt could not get success without the proper Environment. Environment is also studied in psychology. The elements that develop behavior are included in Environment. Therefore in educational psychology, teacher’s personality, training, his physical and mental health etc, are widely studied.

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