noun, plural psychologies.
the science of the mind or of mental states and processes.
the science of human and animal behavior.
the sum or characteristics of the mental states and processes of a person or class of persons, or of the mental states and processes involved in a field of activity: the psychology of a soldier; the psychology of politics.
mental ploys or strategy: He used psychology on his parents to get a larger allowance.

1675–85; < Neo-Latin psȳchologia. See psycho-, -logy

prepsychology, noun

psychiatry, psychology, psychoanalysis, psychotherapy. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To psychology
World English Dictionary
psychology (saɪˈkɒlədʒɪ)
n , pl -gies
1.  analytical psychology clinical psychology comparative psychology educational psychology See also experimental psychology the scientific study of all forms of human and animal behaviour, sometimes concerned with the methods through which behaviour can be modified
2.  informal the mental make-up or structure of an individual that causes him or her to think or act in the way he or she does

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

1653, "study of the soul," probably coined mid-16c. in Germany by Melanchthon as Mod.L. psychologia, from Gk. psykhe- "breath, spirit, soul" (see psyche) + logia "study of." Meaning "study of the mind" first recorded 1748, from G. Wolff's Psychologia empirica (1732); main
modern behavioral sense is from 1895.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

psychology psy·chol·o·gy (sī-kŏl'ə-jē)

  1. The science that deals with mental processes and behavior.

  2. The emotional and behavioral characteristics of an individual, a group, or an activity.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Science Dictionary
psychology   (sī-kŏl'ə-jē)  Pronunciation Key 
  1. The scientific study of mental processes and behavior.

  2. The behavioral and cognitive characteristics of a specific individual, group, activity, or circumstance. ◇ Clinical psychology ◇ is the application of psychological knowledge to the diagnosis and treatment of patients.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

psychology definition

The science dealing with mental phenomena and processes. Psychologists study emotions, perception, intelligence, consciousness, and the relationship between these phenomena and processes and the work of the glands and muscles. Psychologists are also interested in diseased or disordered mental states, and some psychologists provide therapy for individuals. In the United States, however, psychologists, unlike psychiatrists, are not medical doctors. (See psychiatry.)

Note: The two main divisions of psychology are individual or personality psychology and social psychology; social psychology deals with the mental processes of groups.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Example sentences
Watching the kitchen during the hectic rush of dinner service presented a case
  study in industrial and organizational psychology.
But the peculiar value of his psychology consists in his attempt to keep clear
  of them.
His discovery is now one of the main areas of research in psychology and
As such, the correct metaphors should come from psychology, not mathematics.
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature