Psychology and Computers

Many see psychology and computers as two distinct fields with little in common. The general consensus is that computer science is a field that has a strong quantitative research culture while psychology is rooted in qualitative studies of human behavior and perception.

In reality, a lot of modern computer science is influenced by psychology. The design of technology interfaces ranging from car dashboards to airplane cockpits as well as computer operating systems to games controllers – are largely developed by psychologists working closely with computer scientists. A lot of psychological research requires sophisticated software to process large data sets.

Psychologists are also increasingly using technology to increase their reach. While the traditional techniques for testing of psychology – studying one aspect of behavior in a controlled and controlled environment or evaluating larger behavior patterns using self-report surveys and interviews – have inherent limitations (experiments are limited to one study; longitudinal studies are not common due to the difficulty of collecting and analyzing large amounts of data).

The use of computer technology has opened new avenues to study individuals behavior. Computers are essential for the brain-imaging technology known as fMRI. Researchers can identify specific brain regions to cognitive processes like memory or reading. EEG (electroencephalography) is another example of a technology that uses computer processing to record and analyze brain activity.

Moreover it is the case that the UK’s National Health Service now recognizes the CCBT (computerized cognitive behavioral therapy) as a successful treatment for mild-to-moderate presentations of depression and anxiety. And artificial intelligence (AI) is set to transform the practice of psychotherapy by replacing the therapist with robots that are able to examine and treat patients on the internet.