Educational Psychology (saylor.org)

Educational Psychology (saylor.org)
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Have completed the Psychology Major’s Core Program.
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Educational Psychology (saylor.org)
Educational psychologists work to understand how to strcture educational systems in order to meet the mental and emotional needs of students. They study how people learn, identify and suggest efficient teaching methods, and evaluate the effectiveness of various educational policies and practices.

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Educational psychologists work to understand how to strcture educational systems in order to meet the mental and emotional needs of students. They study how people learn, identify and suggest efficient teaching methods, and evaluate the effectiveness of various educational policies and practices. Below are a few examples of their matters of concern:


- Educational psychologists often point out the inherently social nature of our current educational system. Particularly at the elementary level, education involves responding to social instructions just as much as it does learning new academic material. Most of the books that children read not only assist them in learning basic skills, but convey some sort of moral or social lesson. Teachers spend much of their time focused on social instruction and management.


- Educational psychologists study the ways that learning environments affect education. A child entering the education system must adjust to a new environment and a new set of rules and goals while also undergoing many personal changes in body and mind. Educational psychology provides us with the tools we need to understand these changes and adaptations.


- Educational psychologists also study the ways that societal, local, and family issues affect learning and classroom practice. Children come to the classroom with various attitudes about schooling, about teachers, and about goals and possibilities. They come from many different socio-economic situations, parenting styles, and cultural, religious, and political traditions. Psychology tries to help educators deal with all this diversity.


Generally speaking, educational psychology has two major areas of focus: education theory and the practicalities of classroom life. This course will attempt to blend those two areas of focus as often as possible, so that you—as the reader, student, and (future) teacher—can get the most practical advantage possible from the material.


Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to:


Explain why knowledge of psychology is important to effective teaching.

Discuss, compare, and contrast cognitive and behavioral psychology.

Discuss, compare, and contrast constructivist and behaviorist models of teaching and learning, as well as their applications in classroom management.

Identify important cognitive stages of development, the typical age range of each stage, and the ways that teachers can use that knowledge.

Identify important aspects of personal, emotional, and moral development, and ways that teachers can use that knowledge.

Identify diversity in terms of differences in learning styles, intelligence, cultures, and gender, as well as specific abilities and disabilities, that a modern classroom might need to accommodate.

Discuss theories of motivation and defend those you would use in your classroom.

Discuss classroom management strategies that smooth the learning process and prevent or deal with misbehavior, and defend those strategies you would use in your classroom.

Identify communication skills that enhance learning, management, and coordination with students’ families.

Identify strategies for enhancing students’ ability to use complex cognitive skills.

Identify the major parts of a lesson or unit plan.

Identify and discuss types of teacher-made assessments.

Discuss the uses of and issues surrounding standardized testing.

Identify and discuss factors that influence job satisfaction in a teaching career.



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MOOC List is learner-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Free Course
Have completed the Psychology Major’s Core Program.

MOOC List is learner-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.