PSYCHOLOGICAL EXPLANATION


What is an adequate psychological explanation?

***An adequate psychological explanation is one that provides enough information for psychologists to predict and then manage behavior.***

Dr. William L. Palya from the Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville, Alabama provides, in his on-line lecture notes, a very lengthy discussion of different characteristics and types of explanations. He stresses that adequate explanations must be explicit, unambiguous, and testable.
Dr. H. D. Hamm from the Psychology Department at Northern Michigan University gives a brief statement about understanding, predicting, and changing behavior.
The Department of Psychology at Carleton University located in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada states that the answers psychologists seek "reflect social influences and the previous experiences of the individual".
Burrton Woodruff from Butler University in Indianapolis, Indiana makes a brief point about prediction and effective intervention.
Shawn Bayern, a student at Yale University, created and maintains a site which was taken from the transparencies of Professor Kurt Frey's Psychology 110b class. Under the four main goals of psychological science, he lists explanation as causal analysis.
John Perry and David Israel from Stanford University give a lengthy discussion of psychological explanations by looking at rational laws and adequate explanations in relation to a Fodorian model of cognition.

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12-10-96