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The Handbook of Psychology
Psychology (lit. "study of the soul" or "study of the mind") is an academic and applied discipline which involves the scientific study of human or animal mental functions and behaviors. In the field of psychology, a professional researcher or practitioner is called a psychologist. In addition or opposition to employing scientific methods, psychologists often rely upon symbolic interpretation and critical analysis, albeit less frequently than other social sciences such as sociology.
Psychologists study such phenomena as perception, cognition, attention, emotion, motivation, personality, behavior and interpersonal relationships. Some, especially depth psychologists, also consider the unconscious mind.a Psychologists attempt to understand the role of mental functions in individual and social behavior, while also exploring the underlying physiological and neurological processes.
Psychological knowledge is applied to various spheres of human activity including the family, education, employment, and the treatment of mental health problems. Psychology includes many sub-fields that span areas as diverse as human development, sports, health, industry, media and law. Psychology incorporates research from the social sciences, natural sciences, and humanities.