481-500 of 547 Results


Substance Use in Later Life  

Stephen J. Bright

In the 21st century, we have seen a significant increase in the use of alcohol and other drugs (AODs) among older adults in most first world countries. In addition, people are living longer. Consequently, the number of older adults at risk of experiencing alcohol-related harm and substance use disorders (SUDs) is rising. Between 1992 and 2010, men in the United Kingdom aged 65 years or older had increased their drinking from an average 77.6 grams to 97.6 grams per week. Data from Australia show a 17% increase in risky drinking among those 60–69 between 2007 and 2016. Among Australians aged 60 or older, there was a 280% increase in recent cannabis use from 2001 to 2016. In the United States, rates of older people seeking treatment for cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine have doubled in the past 10 years. This trend is expected to continue. Despite these alarming statistics, this population has been deemed “hidden,” as older adults often do not present to treatment with the SUD as a primary concern, and many healthcare professionals do not adequately screen for AOD use. With age, changes in physiology impact the way we metabolize alcohol and increase the subjective effects of alcohol. In addition, older adults are prone to increased use of medications and medical comorbidities. As such, drinking patterns that previously would have not been considered hazardous can become dangerous without any increase in alcohol consumption. This highlights the need for age-specific screening of all older patients within all healthcare settings. The etiology of AOD-related issues among older adults can be different from that of younger adults. For example, as a result of issues more common as one ages (e.g., loss and grief, identity crisis, and boredom), there is a distinct cohort of older adults who develop SUDs later in life despite no history of previous problematic AOD use. For some older adults who might have experimented with drugs in their youth, these age-specific issues precipitate the onset of a SUD. Meanwhile, there is a larger cohort of older adults with an extensive history of SUDs. Consequently, assessments need to be tailored to explore the issues that are unique to older adults who use AODs and can inform the development of age-specific formulations and treatment plans. In doing so, individualized treatments can be delivered to meet the needs of older adults. Such treatments must be tailored to address issues associated with aging (e.g., reduced mobility) and may require multidisciplinary input from medical practitioners and occupational therapists.


Successful Aging: History and Prospects  

John W. Rowe and Dawn C. Carr

While the factors that influence the well-being of individuals in late life have long been a major concern of research in aging, they have been a particularly active area of research and debate since the 1980s and continue to have a prominent role in gerontological research and debate. Early research on aging (from the 1920s to the 1960s) focused largely on examining typical problems that come with aging. The term successful aging was initially used to describe those who aged better than expected. In the 1980s, the MacArthur Network on Successful Aging, concerned that the field of gerontology had become preoccupied with disease and disability to the neglect of studies of the factors that fostered doing well in late life, conducted a series of studies of high-performing older persons and formulated the MacArthur theory of successful aging, which included three principal components: avoidance of disease, maintenance of physical and cognitive function, and engagement with society. Since its initial publication, the concept of successful aging has been applied to many subpopulations of older persons based on geography (East vs. West), socioeconomic status, race and ethnicity, religion, cognitive or physical function, and disease states.


Suicide in Later Life  

Kim Van Orden, Caroline Silva, and Yeates Conwell

Suicide in later life is a significant public health problem around the world—a problem that will increase in magnitude in the coming years with the impact of population aging. Adults age 70 and older have higher suicide rates than younger groups worldwide in both lower-income and higher-income countries. While suicide rates tend to increase with age, suicide in later life is not an expected or normative response to stressors that accompany the aging process. Instead, a constellation of risk factors places an older adult at elevated risk for suicide. These factors can be remembered as the Five D’s: psychiatric illness (primarily depression); functional impairment (also called disability, often associated with dependency on others); physical illness (particularly multiple comorbid diseases); social disconnectedness (including social isolation, loneliness, family conflict, and feeling like a burden); and access to lethal (deadly) means. The greatest risk occurs when multiple domains of risk converge in a given individual. Approaches to prevention can address the Five D’s. Given that older adults are reluctant to seek out mental healthcare and that standard primary care practice cannot easily provide it, models of primary care-based integrated care management for mental disorders, including in older adulthood, have been developed, rigorously tested, and widely disseminated. These models play an important role in suicide prevention by integrating treatment for physical and mental illness. Upstream, selective prevention strategies that target disconnectedness—such as engaging older adults as volunteers—may serve to reduce disconnectedness and thereby reduce suicide risk. Universal prevention strategies that involve growing the geriatric workforce may address disability by increasing older adults’ access to medical and social service providers with expertise in improving physical, cognitive, and social functioning, as well as improving quality of life. Addressing ageism and building age-friendly communities that use strategies to integrate older adults into society and promote social participation hold promise as universal prevention strategies. Ultimately, effective suicide prevention strategies for older adults must focus on improving quality of life as well as preventing suicide: strategies such as psychotherapy and medication for psychiatric disorders must be supplemented by prevention strategies for older adults give at all ages in addition to treating psychiatric disorders and suicidal thoughts is needed to address the problem of suicide in later life.


Supervision in Exercise Settings  

Sam Zizzi and Jana L. Fogaca

The process of learning to be a licensed and competent service provider in psychology typically involves supervision by a seasoned professional. Quality supervision is the cornerstone of effective, ethical practice in psychology. This process of supervision can take on many structures and involves a series of informal and formal meetings between the student and the professional. Sometimes, this supervision will involve co-therapy where the supervisor leads a session with the client while the student watches, or vice versa. The supervisor will direct students in how to prepare for and conduct their work and how to document their sessions and give them specific feedback to improve their skills. As students build competence, the supervisor may decide to give them more independence so they can make their own decisions about treatment plans and take a leadership role with clients. In exercise settings, this supervision process is a little different from sport settings. The focus of most exercise consultations with clients will be on changing health behavior instead of improving sport performance. Also, instead of spending time at practice fields or athletic events in a sport consultation, the students would be expected to spend time in fitness and wellness centers around clients with myriad health issues. These experiences are designed to help students feel autonomous in their decision-making, and to reduce their anxiety working with clients. This process may take a few months to a couple of years depending on the skills and training of the student before supervision.


Supervision in Performance Settings (Dance, Music, Acting)  

Gene M. Moyle

Literature regarding supervision and related supervisory and training models applied within the field of sport, exercise, and performance psychology (SEPP) has grown exponentially as the field continues to define and redefine itself. A range of supervision models from mainstream psychology has been explored and applied within SEPP settings, with research indicating that regardless of the preferred model of supervision, a key component of effective supervision is the supervisor’s knowledge and skills related to the area of service delivery. Whilst the supervision of psychologists-in-training within performing arts settings presents similar challenges faced by those working in sport and exercise settings, the social, cultural, and artistic considerations embedded within these performance contexts necessitates a nuanced approach. The provision of supervision for psychologists within performing arts (e.g., dance, music, acting) requires scaffolded learning opportunities that assist the practitioner to gain an in-depth understanding of the context, including how to best tailor, translate, and communicate psychological concepts and skills to their clients that will address their unique challenges and meet their distinctive needs. Furthermore, clarity regarding the roles and responsibilities of the supervisee within the organizational context of an artistic setting is vital to ensuring that effective and ethical service delivery can be provided.


Surgical Performance From a Psychological Perspective  

Aidan Moran, Nick Sevdalis, and Lauren Wallace

At first glance, there are certain similarities between performance in surgery and that in competitive sports. Clearly, both require exceptional gross and fine motor ability and effective concentration skills, and both are routinely performed in dynamic environments, often under time constraints. On closer inspection, however, crucial differences emerge between these skilled domains. For example, surgery does not involve directly antagonistic opponents competing for victory. Nevertheless, analogies between surgery and sport have contributed to an upsurge of research interest in the psychological processes that underlie expertise in surgical performance. Of these processes, perhaps the most frequently investigated in recent years is that of motor imagery (MI) or the cognitive simulation skill that enables us to rehearse actions in our imagination without engaging in the physical movements involved. Research on motor imagery training (MIT; also called motor imagery practice, MIP) has important theoretical and practical implications. Specifically, at a theoretical level, hundreds of experimental studies in psychology have demonstrated the efficacy of MIT/MIP in improving skill learning and skilled performance in a variety of fields such as sport and music. The most widely accepted explanation of these effects comes from “simulation theory,” which postulates that executed and imagined actions share some common neural circuits and cognitive mechanisms. Put simply, imagining a skill activates some of the brain areas and neural circuits that are involved in its actual execution. Accordingly, systematic engagement in MI appears to “prime” the brain for optimal skilled performance. At the practical level, as surgical instruction has moved largely from an apprenticeship model (the so-called see one, do one, teach one approach) to one based on simulation technology and practice (e.g., the use of virtual reality equipment), there has been a corresponding growth of interest in the potential of cognitive training techniques (e.g., MIT/MIP) to improve and augment surgical skills and performance. Although these cognitive training techniques suffer both from certain conceptual confusion (e.g., with regard to the clarity of key terms) and inadequate empirical validation, they offer considerable promise in the quest for a cost-effective supplementary training tool in surgical education. Against this background, it is important for researchers and practitioners alike to explore the cognitive psychological factors (such as motor imagery) that underlie surgical skill learning and performance.



Jamie Ward

People with synesthesia have unusual sensory experiences whereby one stimulus elicits another: Words may evoke tastes, numbers evoke colors, and so on. The eliciting stimulus is called the inducer, whereas the synesthetic experience, which is normally percept-like in quality, is referred to as the concurrent. Synesthetic experiences use some of the same neural substrates as “real” perception. The associations are influenced by cross-modal correspondences between the senses (e.g., high pitch being bright or light) and regularities in one’s own environment. Synesthesia comes in many varieties, but these likely stem from a common cause (because different varieties tend to co-occur together). This is normally explained in terms of an atypical neurodevelopmental cascade from genetic differences that affect brain development and give rise to an atypical profile of behaviors (of which synesthesia is one). People with synesthesia not only have unusual sensory experiences—this being the trait that defines them—but also present with a distinctive cognitive profile (affecting memory, imagery, perception) that has impacts on their life choices (e.g., occupation) and may predispose selectively toward certain clinical vulnerabilities.



Jonathan R. Brennan

To “know a language” is to know, in part, the rules by which individual words can be combined to make new meaningful expressions. Theories of syntax aim to specify the mental representations that constitute this knowledge. Evidence from diverse spoken and manual languages indicates that these representations are hierarchically structured and include dependencies between elements that point to a constrained class of rules that are characteristic of human language. Experimental studies show that language users recognize and interpret these representations rapidly, in real time. Debates center on the precise format of these representations and the degree to which they share fundamental and perhaps universal properties across different languages. Theories are constrained by the fact that syntax is acquired without explicit instruction by young children, who show exquisite sensitivity to the usage patterns of their language community while also inducing rules that go beyond the surface patterns of the input they receive. Standing at the intersection of multiple scholarly traditions, syntax has faced historical tensions with adjacent disciplines in the cognitive sciences. Interdisciplinary cross-fertilization is supported by open discussion of methodological practices as well as shared interests in rigorous computational accounts of human language and linguistic diversity.


A Systematic Meta-Review of Internet-Based Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (ICBT)  

Quincy J. J. Wong, Alison L. Calear, and Helen Christensen

Internet-based cognitive behavioral therapy (ICBT) is the provision of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) using the Internet as a platform for delivery. The advantage of ICBT is its ability to overcome barriers to treatment associated with traditional face-to-face CBT, such as poor access, remote locations, stigmas around help-seeking, the wish to handle the problem alone, the preference for anonymity, and costs (time and financial). A large number of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) have tested the acceptability, efficacy, and cost-effectiveness of ICBT for anxiety disorders, mood disorders, and associated suicidality. A meta-review was conducted by searching PsycINFO and PubMed for previous systematic reviews and meta-analyses of ICBT programs for anxiety, depression, and suicidality in children, adolescents, and adults. The results of the meta-review indicated that ICBT is effective in the treatment and prevention of mental health problems in adults and the treatment of these problems in youth. Issues of adherence and privacy have been raised. However, the major challenge for ICBT is implementation and uptake in the “real world.” The challenge is to find the best methods to embed, deliver, and implement ICBT routinely in complex health and education environments.


Task Performance in Groups  

Christine Smith

When individuals decide to work together to complete a task, they often do so in the belief that the product of their collective effort will exceed that which could be accomplished alone. Task-performing groups are resource-rich entities in that members have access to one another’s uniquely possessed knowledge, skills, and abilities and can, in many instances, reduce each individual’s workload by dividing the labor among themselves. However, faulty interaction processes often hinder a group’s ability to utilize maximally the resources available to them, resulting in a performance that falls short of the group’s potential. For example, coordination loss occurs when group members fail to combine their efforts in an optimal manner. This type of loss is especially likely when the group task requires a high level of precision or has heavy cognitive demands. For example, coordination loss is especially problematic in the context of brainstorming groups, because group members are often asked to interact with one another while simultaneously generating ideas and processing the ideas generated by others. Motivation loss occurs when individual group members fail to give their best effort to the group’s endeavor. This type of loss, called social loafing, is especially likely to occur when individual group members believe that their contributions cannot be identified or evaluated. Alternatively, free-riding occurs when group members believe that their contributions to the group product are ultimately dispensable. Finally, group interaction can result in a performance that exceeds what is expected from a simple pooling of individual group members’ efforts, although instances of such are less frequently addressed and documented within the group performance literature. Synergistic or assembly bonus effects are likely when collective work conditions emphasize strong associations between individual effort and highly desirable outcomes, as in the case of Köhler motivation gains. Furthermore, synergistic effects have been documented in instances where groups have used their increased capacity to process information to identify patterns or draw conclusions that individuals alone would find challenging.


Team Building and Group Cohesion in the Context of Sport and Performance Psychology  

Mark Eys and Jeemin Kim

Over the past 30 years, researchers studying group dynamics in sport have provided insight regarding the importance of considering a team’s environment, structure, and processes for its effective functioning. An emergent property resulting from activities within the group is cohesion. Cohesion is a dynamic property reflecting members’ perceptions of the unity and personal attractions to task and social objectives of the group. Generally speaking, cohesion remains a highly valued group property, and a strong body of evidence exists to support positive links to important individual and group outcomes such as adherence and team performance. Given the importance attached to cohesion and other group variables for sport teams, coaches and athletes often attempt to engage in activities that facilitate group functioning. Team building is a specific approach designed to facilitate team effectiveness and individual members’ perceptions of their group. Cohesion has been the primary target of team-building interventions in sport, although recent work on team-building outcomes suggested that the effects of these interventions on cohesion may be limited. The most effective team-building approaches include a goal setting protocol, last at least two weeks in duration, and target a variety of outcomes in addition to cohesion, including individual cognitions and team performance. There is a clear need to identify a team’s requirements prior to intervening (i.e., a targeted approach), consider a variety of approaches to team building, and investigate the effects of team building via more stringent research methods.


Team Dynamics and Processes in the Workplace  

Tiffany M. Bisbey and Eduardo Salas

Teams are complex, dynamic systems made up of interdependent members working toward a shared goal; but teamwork is more than working together as a group. Teamwork is a multifaceted phenomenon that allows a group of individuals to function effectively as a unit by using a set of interrelated knowledge, skills, and attitudes. Effective teamwork is marked by cooperation, communication, coordination, conflict management, coaching, and shared cognition among team members. The most effective teamwork leads to team performance gains that are greater than the sum of each individual member’s effort. These performance outcomes re-inform the teamwork process, thus creating a recursive feedback loop that drives team development and guides future performance. Along with performance outcomes, individual- and team-level changes incite learning and allow teams to adapt to the dynamic systems in which they exist. With each development cycle over time, teams learn how to maneuver their environment and allocate their resources to reach performance goals with more efficiency. There are many external factors that can influence this process, including organizational characteristics, situational demands, and team training interventions; as well as internal factors that emerge and evolve over the life of the team, such as shared mental models and psychological safety. Although teamwork is a complex phenomenon with many moving parts, a strong body of research guides practitioners in leveraging its influence on organizational effectiveness.


Technology Use by Older Adults  

Sara J. Czaja and Chin Chin Lee

The expanding power of computers and the growth of information technologies such as the Internet have made it possible for large numbers of people to have direct access to an increasingly wide array of information sources and services. Use of technology has become an integral component of work, education, communication, entertainment, and health care. Moreover, home appliances, security systems, and other communication devices are becoming more integrated with network resources providing faster and more powerful interactive services. Older adults represent an increasing large proportion of the population and will need to be active users of technology to function independently and receive the potential benefits of technology. Thus, it is critically important to understand how older adults respond to and adopt new information technologies. Technology offers many potential benefits for older people such as enhanced access to information and resources and health-care services, as well as opportunities for cognitive and social engagement. Unfortunately, because of a number of factors many older people confront challenges and barriers when attempting to access and use technology systems.


Telework and Remote Work  

Matti Vartiainen

“Telework” and “remote work” have both increased sharply in recent years during and after the pandemic. The basic difference between telework and remote work is that a teleworker uses personal electronic devices in addition to working physically remotely from a place other than an office or company premises, whereas remote work does not require visits to the main workplace or the use of electronic personal devices. “Mobile tele- and remote workers” use several other places in addition to home for working. “Digital online telework” is a global form of employment that uses online platforms to enable individuals, teams, and organizations to access other individuals or organizations to solve problems or to provide services in exchange for payment. Often tele- and remote workers cowork in virtual teams and projects. The prevalence of various types of tele- and remote working vary. Although there are conceptual challenges to operationalizing the concept, it is estimated that hundreds of millions—and possibly more—people today earn their living working at and from their home or other places using digital tools and platforms. In the future, it is expected that new hybrid modes of working will emerge enabled by digital technologies. These changes in working increase the complexity of job demands because of the increased variety of contextual job characteristics. The main benefits of these new ways of working are organizational flexibility and individual autonomy; at the same time, unclear social relations may increase feelings of isolation and challenge the work-life balance.


Temporal Aspects of Visual Perception and Cognition  

Bruno Breitmeyer and Haluk Ogmen

A highly dynamic process, visual perception of the world around us proceeds by sequentially scanning the environment. This is accomplished by rapid eye movements (saccades) that direct the eyes’ foveal center of vision from one fixated location in the visual field to the next. Abstracted from the visual environment into the confines of the laboratory, the dynamics of the entire process can be parsed into subprocesses by studying several temporal properties of visual perception. Most prominent among these are the timing of perisaccadic processes (pre-saccadic and saccadic suppression of vision, post-saccadic enhancement of vision, and perisaccadic time compression), visual latency, temporal integration, visible persistence, temporal resolution, and temporal aspects of the storage and transfer of perceptual information in and through various stages of sensory and cognitive processing. Research has shown that these properties of visual perception interact with the spatial properties of perceptual processing. Among these spatio-temporal interactions, the most frequently researched are those occurring in different types of visual search, visual masking, and visual motion. That said, vision researchers have investigated the temporal properties (interacting with their spatial counterparts) either (a) by presenting static stimuli, in isolation or in temporal sequence, to an observer’s visual field while the eyes are stationary; or (b) by presenting stimuli that move through an observer’s visual field. The results of these research strategies reveal underlying visual mechanisms that define the dynamic range of, and the limits imposed on the temporal efficiency of, visual perceptual processing.


Temporal Dynamics in Organizational Psychology  

Yannick Griep and Hannes Zacher

The role of time and time dynamics is crucial to our understanding of important Organizational Psychology phenomena such as organizational change, work–family experiences, in-role and extra-role performance, deviance, job insecurity, work design, job crafting, psychological contracts, organizational justice, incivility, talent management, human resource management, organizational decision-making, organizational commitment, personality, leadership, emotions, motivation, team work, employee well-being and health, safety, and so forth. Specifically, the inclusion of time and temporal dynamics is essential to better explain “when” a phenomenon occurs, “what” aspects of the phenomenon are being influenced, “how” these aspects are being influenced, and “why” this influence occurs. Such a dynamic way of thinking can challenge existing knowledge and traditional ways of theory building and conducting empirical research in the field of Organizational Psychology. Despite the crucial role of time and temporal dynamics, it receives little acknowledgement in the Organizational Psychology literature and most published work has not made reference to time and/or time dynamics in its methods, findings, or conclusions. This stands in stark contrast with Organizational Psychology, a field that is devoted to the study of processes and guided by the principles of time and temporal dynamics. Several scholars have expressed concerns about this inconsistency in the literature and its detrimental consequences for the validity and accuracy of the field’s corpus of knowledge. It is therefore important to clarify what is meant by time and temporal dynamics and how the Organizational Psychology literature has dealt with this operationalization of time. An ideal way to do so is to provide a review (for the period 2000–2020) of the Industrial and Organizational Psychology literature with reference to the word “time.” This review reveals that the most popular approach to time has been that of “time as a construct or variable” (43.28%), followed by “time as future prediction” (29.48%), “time in theory development or improvement” (18.28%), and “time in methodology” (8.96%). Following this review, it is imperative to propose the essential elements to which “good” time-sensitive theory and research should adhere: (a) constructs and psychological phenomena should be clearly defined with reference to the time window within which they are expected to fluctuate and/or change, (b) relationships between constructs should be defined in relation to time and/or the unfolding nature of a construct or psychological phenomena should be specified, (c) temporal features of a construct or psychological phenomenon should be defined and described in detail, and (d) temporal metrics should be defined with reference to the specific timescales, time frames, and time lags that should to be used to measure the construct or psychological phenomenon. In addition to incorporating these essential elements of “good” time-sensitive theory and research, researchers should be made aware of possible future trends for the inclusion of time and temporal dynamics in theory building and empirical research. As a corollary, this inspires and directs future research in Organizational Psychology to acknowledge and incorporate the important role of time and temporal dynamics.


Temporal Dynamics of Prospective Memory (Event-Related Potentials)  

Robert West

Life is filled with goals or intentions that people hope to realize. Some of these are rather mundane (e.g., remembering to purchase a key ingredient for a recipe when stopping at the market), while others are more significant (e.g., remembering to pick up one’s child from school at the end of the day). Prospective memory represents the ability to form and then realize intentions at an appropriate time. A fundamental aspect of prospective memory is that one is engaged in one or more tasks (i.e., ongoing activities) between the formation of an intention and the opportunity to realize the goal. For instance, in the shopping example, one might form the intention at home and then travel to the market and collect several other items before walking past the desired ingredient. Considerable research has demonstrated that the efficiency of prospective memory declines with age, although age-related differences are not universal. The neurocognitive processes underpinning age-related differences in the formation and realization of delayed intentions have been investigated in studies using event-related brain potentials. This research reveals that age-related differences in prospective memory arise from the disruption of neural systems supporting the successful encoding of intentions, the detection of prospective memory cues, and possibly processes supporting the retrieval of intentions from memory when a cue is encountered or efficiently shifting from the ongoing activity to the prospective element of the task. Therefore, strategies designed to ameliorate age-related declines in prospective memory should target a variety of processes engaged during the encoding, retrieval, and enactment of delayed intentions.


Test-Enhanced Learning  

David R. Shanks, Hilary J. Don, Shaun Boustani, and Chunliang Yang

Tests following learning serve several important functions, including enabling students to monitor their progress and identify knowledge gaps, but they are also learning events in their own right. Testing is a powerful strategy to consolidate retention of studied information, by comparison with restudying and other elaborative strategies, and facilitates subsequent learning of new information. Moreover, the testing effect generalizes to different test formats, study-test intervals, and material types, and has been robustly demonstrated not only in the laboratory but also in classroom settings. Pretesting can promote subsequent learning of tested information, but its effect on non-pre-questioned information remains unclear. Although the beneficial effects of testing on learning and memory are substantial, learners tend to underappreciate the merits of practice tests, leading to their underemployment. Lack of motivation or insufficient knowledge about how best to exploit testing may be factors that suppress its use. However, some promising interventions have been developed to promote learners’ employment of self-testing. Whether these interventions can be effective in high-stakes classroom or online learning is an important issue for future research. Importantly, research suggests that frequent low-stakes testing may be an effective method of reducing test anxiety. Although the testing effect is very general, testing can also have negative consequences, such as when choosing an incorrect answer in a multiple-choice test stamps that incorrect answer into memory and increases its likelihood of being recalled later. Understanding the conditions in which positive or negative consequences of testing are observed bears considerable importance regarding the theoretical understanding of test-enhanced learning. Characterizing, understanding, and exploiting the multifaceted effects of tests on long-term learning has provided a rich and deep challenge to researchers in psychology, education, cognitive science, neuroscience, and related fields.


Texture Perception  

Benjamin Balas

Texture perception is a rich subdomain of vision science that focuses on how the visual system encodes and interprets images that can be defined in terms of self-similarity over space. The field’s understanding of the computational and neural bases of texture perception has advanced, drawing upon key results from psychophysics, cognitive neuroscience, and visual development. The relevance of texture representations to a broader set of visual mechanisms supporting “statistical vision” is also discussed, with an emphasis on the challenges and potential rewards of studying texture perception in the context of natural stimuli and ecologically relevant tasks.


The Concept of Crisis in the History of Western Psychology  

Martin Wieser

With roots that range from medicine to politics, to jurisdiction and historiography in ancient Greece, the concept of “crisis” played an eminent role in the founding years of Western academic psychology and continued to be relevant during its development in the 19th and 20th century. “Crisis” conveys the idea of an imminent danger of disintegration and breakdown, as well as a pivotal turning point with the chance of a new beginning. To this day, both levels of meaning are present in psychological discourses. Early diagnoses of a state of “crisis” of psychology date back to the end of the 19th century and focused on the question of the correct metaphysical foundation of psychology. During the interwar period, warnings of a disintegration of the discipline reached their first climax in German academia, when many eminent psychologists expressed their worries about the increasing fragmentation of the discipline. The rise of totalitarian systems in the 1930s brought an end to these debates, silencing the theoretical polyphony with physical violence. The 1960s saw a resurgence of “crisis literature” and the emergence of a more positive connotation of the concept in U.S.-American experimental psychology, when it was connected with Thomas Kuhn’s ideas of scientific “revolutions” and “paradigm shifts.” Since that time, psychological crisis literature has revolved around the question of unity, disunity, and the scientific status of the discipline. Although psychological crisis literature showed little success in solving the fundamental problems it addressed, it still provides one of the most theoretically rich and thought-provoking bodies of knowledge for theoretical and historical analyses of the discipline.