Measuring elements of psychological literacy in students: Comparing age, gender, educational level and discipline.
Authors: Taylor, J. and Coady, S.
Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing
The term ‘psychological literacy’ relates to an individual’s ability to apply an understanding of psychology to their everyday personal, social and work lives. The greatest development and application of psychological literacy has been within psychology education, however we propose that an understanding of psychological literacy can be useful to students across all disciplines. Many undergraduate courses already include elements of psychology, however they do not always develop psychological literacy. It has been proposed (Cranney, 2019), that psychology as a discipline has much to offer for the public good, as many of the problems in society today relate to human behavior. We illustrate ways that psychological literacy can be applied to personal lives, working environments and to help solve society probems. This chapter discusses some challenges with developing psychological literacy across other disciplines. A compendium of case studies from psychology academics in the UK (Taylor & Hulme, 2015) is reviewed to demonstrate practical activities to develop and assess psychological literacy that can be incorporated into curricula within other disciplines. There is little research comparing levels of psychological literacy in students across disciplines. We therefore conducted a small study to explore the levels of psychological literacy across disciplines. Further inter-disciplinary discussion is suggested among educators to identify best practice in developing psychological literacy across disciplines and thereby increasing psychological understanding within society.