Even asking a few people around you what does “psychology” or “psychologist” mean to them will reveal that psychology is almost synonymous with issues like managing stress or treating depression for them. However, the currently accepted definition of psychology is the scientific study of behavior and mental processes. Although most people think of psychological problems and their treatment as the subject matter of psychology, psychologist also study the most ordinary phenomena that are considered completely normal as well as those that are eccentric or problematic. For example, few people think about how our brains interpret vibrations that reach our ear drums as meaningful sentences, or music that we can judge as harmonious even if we hear it for the first time, or an environmental sound such as glass breaking, and few would think of this as related to psychology. But, this process, which we call auditory perception, has been an area of psychological research for decades. Psychologists study a wide range of topics that extend from cells and chemicals to societies and cultures.
In addition to the topics it covers, there is considerable variation in the perspectives that psychologists adopt in studying these topics. Whereas some believe that we should try to describe and explain observable behavior, others think that in order to understand behavior we need to explore the biological processes, the conflicts among psychological forces, or the context of social structures and forces that bring about behavior. It is more appropriate to think of these alternative perspectives as complementing and enriching each other, rather than rivals that will be eliminated except for one that is correct.
Diversity of the field of psychology also demonstrates itself in the institutions and contexts in which psychologists work. Persons with a degree in psychology are employed in many different institutions including hospitals, schools, daycare centers, retirement homes, prisons, municipal governments, courts, and police departments.
Yasar University Department of Psychology combines psychology, which crosses boundaries and distinguishes itself among sciences by the broadness of its scope, diversity of its perspectives, and dynamism of its progress, with the mission of Yasar University to produce graduates who question, identify problems, and possess social responsibility in addition to artistic sensibility and a culture of design. We aim to guide students in developing not only a solid base of knowledge in foundations of psychology and methods of psychological research, but also skills to apply this knowledge and these methods. With this aim in mind, we complement psychology courses that proceed from basic to applied areas and to actual practice with the foundation courses of Yasar University on research, design, esthetics, projects, and social responsibility, and the opportunity to take courses from other departments in an open-minded and integrative curriculum.