Are you searching for a great topic for your psychology paper? Sometimes it seems like coming up with a good idea for a paper is more challenging than the actual research and writing. Fortunately, there are plenty of great places to find inspiration and the following list contains just a few ideas to help get you started.
Finding a solid topic is one of the most important steps when writing any type of paper. It can be particularly important when you are writing a psychology research paper or essay. Psychology is such a broad topic, so you want to find a topic that allows you to adequately cover the subject without becoming overwhelmed with information.
As you begin your search for a topic for your psychology paper, it is first important to consider the guidelines established by your instructor. In some cases, such as in a general psychology class, you might have had the option to select any topic from within psychology's broad reaches. Other instances, such as in an abnormal psychology course, might require you to write your paper on a specific subject such as a psychological disorder.
Focus on a Topic Within a Particular Branch of Psychology
The key to selecting a good topic for your psychology paper is to select something that is narrow enough to allow you to really focus on the subject, but not so narrow that it is difficult to find sources or information to write about.
One approach is to narrow your focus down to a subject within a specific branch of psychology. For example, you might start by deciding that you want to write a paper on some sort of social psychology topic. Next, you might narrow your focus down to how persuasion can be used to influence behavior.
Other social psychology topics you might consider include:
Write About a Disorder or Type of Therapy
Exploring a psychological disorder or a specific treatment modality can also be a good topic for a psychology paper. Some potential abnormal psychology topics include specific psychological disorders or particular treatment modalities, including:
Choose a Topic Related to Human Cognition
Some of the possible topics you might explore in this area include thinking, language, intelligence, and decision-making. Other ideas might include:
Consider a Topic Related to Human Development
In this area, you might opt to focus on issues pertinent to early childhood such as language development, social learning, or childhood attachment or you might instead opt to concentrate on issues that affect older adults such as dementia or Alzheimer's disease.
Some other topics you might consider include:
Critique a Book or Academic Journal Article
One option is to consider writing a psychology critique paper of a published psychology book or academic journal article. For example, you might write a critical analysis of Sigmund Freud's Interpretation of Dreams or you might evaluate a more recent book such as Philip Zimbardo's The Lucifer Effect: Understanding How Good People Turn Evil.
Professional and academic journals are also a great place to find materials for a critique paper. Browse through the collection at your university library to find titles devoted to the subject that you are most interested in, then look through recent articles until you find what that grabs your attention.
Analyze a Famous Experiment
There have been many fascinating and groundbreaking experiments throughout the history of psychology, providing ample material for students looking for an interesting term paper topic. In your paper, you might choose to summarize the experiment, analyze the ethics of the research, or evaluate the implications of the study. Possible experiments that you might consider include:
Write a Paper About a Historical Figure
One of the simplest ways to find a great topic is to choose an interesting person in the history of psychology and write a paper about them. Your paper might focus on many different elements of the individual's life, such as their biography, professional history, theories, or influence on psychology.
While this type of paper may be historical in nature, there is no need for this assignment to be dry or boring. Psychology is full of fascinating figures rife with intriguing stories and anecdotes. Consider such famous individuals as Sigmund Freud, B.F. Skinner, Harry Harlow, or one of the many other eminent psychologists.
Write About a Specific Psychology Career
Another possible topic, depending on the course in which you are enrolled, is to write about specific career paths within the field of psychology. This type of paper is especially appropriate if you are exploring different subtopics or considering which area interests you the most. In your paper, you might opt to explore the typical duties of a psychologist, how much people working in these fields typically earn, and different employment options that are available.
Create a Case Study of an Individual or Group of People
One potentially interesting idea is to write a psychology case study of a particular individual or group of people. In this type of paper, you will provide an in depth analysis of your subject, including a thorough biography. Generally, you will also assess the person, often using a major psychological theory such as Piaget's stages of cognitive development or Erikson's eight-stage theory of human development. It is also important to note that your paper doesn't necessarily have to be about someone you know personally. In fact, many professors encourage students to write case studies on historical figures or fictional characters from books, television programs, or films.
Conduct a Literature Review
Top 33 Research Paper Topics Dealing With Psychology
Choosing the topic of your research paper is the most important task before getting down to work. The effectiveness and significance of the future project very often depends on its theme. This article will help you find an interesting and successful topic for a research paper in the field of psychology. The topics are grouped according to four categories: history of psychology, its branches, objects of research, and interdisciplinary relations with other subjects.
History of psychology
- Psychology in ancient times.
- Ancient philosophers on the key notions of psychology.
- The first psychological research in Europe
- The key problems of experimental psychology.
- Psychology as a science during the 1800s and 1900s.
- The key figures of psychology in the 20th century.
- Psychologist as a profession in a globalized world.
Branches of psychology
- Main psychological theories of the 20th century.
- Biological psychology: the key ideas and main representatives.
- Methods and studies of behavioral psychology.
- Cognitive psychology as the main theoretical branch of the second half of the 20th century.
- Social psychology as the study of social behavior.
- Sigmund Freund as the father of psychoanalysis.
- Psychoanalysis of works of art: the new approach to art interpretation.
- Humanistic and existential psychology.
- Modern psychological studies: cross-cultural and evolutionary theories.
Objects of psychological studies
- Personality as the key object of psychology.
- Main aspects of developmental psychology.
- Erik Erikson and his stages of human development.
- Peculiarity of young adult psychology.
- Perception and sensation.
- Human memory as an object of psychological research.
- Language and communication skills: psychological perspective.
- Thinking and cognition as the key mental processes.
- Psychological disorders: reasons, consequences.
- Giftedness: disorder or abnormality?
- Attention and concentration development.
- Health psychology and its functions.
- Psychotherapy in the modern world.
- Psychology and psychiatry: similarities and differences.
- Psycholinguistics as a study of the psychology of language.
- Physiological aspects of psychology
- Psychology and pedagogy: common goals.
Psychology, as a science, is developing constantly and very rapidly. It encompasses various fields and branches of study, and is studied across the world from different perspectives. This article is a brief attempt to collect and summarize the most vivid and topical ideas for future research projects. The above listed topics can help you start digging and researching in a particular direction, to finally come up with a new and interesting research paper.