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The Importance Of Biology In The Study Of Psychology

1007 words - 5 pages

The Importance of Biology in the Study of Psychology

Ashley B. McVey

Cecil College


Whether it is the study of biopsychology and other fields of psychology or neuroscience, all psychologists and scientists are trying to understand the functions of the brain. The body and mind connection and how it reacts to certain behaviors or illnesses. Most all psychological functioning can be reduced to underlying brain processes. This should serve as reason alone as to why biology plays an important part in the study of psychology. Psychological factors play a role in whether a person develops a mental illness and in how well they recover from a mental illness, yet biological and ...view middle of the document...

It utilizes the application of the principles of biology to the study of physiological, genetic, and developmental mechanisms of behavior in humans and animals. It investigates at the level of nerves, neurotransmitters, brain circuitry and the basic biological processes that underlie normal and abnormal behavior. Behavioral neuroscientists and academic psychologists study very similar topics such as sensation and perception, motivated behavior, control of movement, learning and memory, sleep, biological rhythms and emotion. With increasing technological advancement of less invasive research procedures, behavioral neuroscientists are beginning to contribute to other areas of psychology, such as language, reasoning, decision-making and consciousness. Behavioral neuroscience has made major contributions to the study and understanding of medical disorders.

Neuropsychology is another field in which both psychology and biology play a major role. Neuropsychology studies the structure and function of the brain as it relates to specific psychological processes and behaviors. It is a clinical and experimental field of psychology that aims to study, assess, understand and treat behaviors directly related to brain functioning. Neuropsychology studies and applies research to the functions and the dysfunctions of the brain and how they affect the body as well as the personality. This has helped us to not only define mental disorders and cognitive impairments, but to develop different treatment plans and tests with the intention to help those with dysfunctions cope with daily living. Neuropsychologists usually work in clinical settings involved in assessing or treating patients with neuropsychological problems, or in the management of pharmaceutical clinical-trials researching drugs that may have impact on the Central Nervous System's function.

Thanks to psychobiology and neuropsychology, there is a wealth of information available on mental illness such Parkinson's disease. Parkinson’s disease is a disease characterized by its motor symptoms as well as its neuropsychiatric and speech problems. The disease is a degenerative disorder affecting the central nervous system. The motor symptoms in Parkinson's disease result from the death of dopamine generating cells in the pars compacta region of the substantia nigra, which is a component in the part of the brain known as the basal ganglia (Obeso, Rodriguez & Benitez, 2008)....

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