Psychology is an academic and applied discipline that involves the scientific study of mental functions and behaviors. The primary goal of psychology is understanding individuals and groups. This is accomplished by both establishing general principles and researching specific cases. In many cases, psychology benefits society.
A professional practitioner or researcher is called a psychologist and can be categorized as a social, behavioral, or cognitive scientist. Psychologists strive to understand the role of mental functions in individual and social behavior, while also exploring the physiological and biological processes that underlie cognitive functions and behaviors.
Most psychologists explore concepts such as perception, cognition, attention, emotion, intelligence, phenomenology, motivation, brain functioning, personality, behavior, and interpersonal relationships. This includes psychological resilience, family resilience, and other areas. Psychologists of diverse orientations also consider the unconscious mind. Psychologists employ empirical methods to infer causal and correlational relationships between psychosocial deviances. Some psychologists, particularly clinical and counseling psychologists, often rely upon symbolic interpretation and other inductive techniques. Psychology has been described as a “hub science”, with psychological findings linking to research and perspectives from the social sciences, natural sciences, medicine, and some of the humanities including philosophy.