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Environmental Psychology Essay

Paper type: Essay
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Environmental psychology is the study of deals in between people and their physical settings (Gifford, 2007a). In these transactions, people change their environments, and their behavior and experiences are changed by their environments. It includes theory, research, and practice focused on making the developed environment more humane and improving human relations with the natural environment. Thinking about the huge financial investment society makes in the physical environment (including buildings, parks, streets, the atmosphere, and water) and the substantial expense of misusing nature and natural deposits, ecological psychology is a key element of both human and environmental welfare.

Environmental psychologists operate at three levels of analysis: (a) basic psychological processes like perception of the environment, spatial cognition, and personality as they filter and structure human experience and behavior, (b) the management of social area: personal space, territoriality, crowding, and personal privacy, and the physical setting aspects of complex everyday behaviors, such as working, discovering, living in a home and neighborhood, and (c) human interactions with nature and the function of psychology in climate change (e.

g., Gifford, 2008a). The history of ecological psychology has actually been reviewed in other places (see Bechtel & & Churchman, 2002, Bell, Greene, Fisher, & & Baum, 2001, and Gifford, 2007a).

But, for viewpoint, we note that early 20th century psychologists studied the effect of sound (United States) and heat (England) on work performance, while scholars in Germany and Japan explored principles and ethical viewpoint related to ecological psychology. By mid-century, ecological psychology was a clearly established discipline with work on topics such as sensory isolation, individual space, and structure style. Journals committed to the field were established; the most prominent of these are the Journal of Environmental Psychology and Environment and Habits. The IAAP Handbook of Applied Psychology, First Edition. Edited by Paul R. Martin, Fanny M. Cheung, Michael C. Knowles, Michael Kyrios, Lyn Littlefield, J. Bruce Overmier, and José M. Prieto.

© 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd. Published 2011 by Blackwell Publishing Ltd. c18.indd 440 11/25/2010 8:54:04 PMMartin—IAAP Handbook of Applied Psychology Se
Environmental Psychology 441

While recognizing the value of theory and research, many environmental psychologists nevertheless prefer to apply knowledge. Instead of working in an research setting, many enter into consultancy or public service to make good use of research findings for developing policy or solving local problems. Some are geared to improving the built environment (e.g., Preiser, Vischer, & White, 1991), while others are dedicated to overcoming sustainability problems in the natural and global ecosystems (e.g., Gifford, 2007b; Nickerson, 2003).

The Distinctiveness of Environmental Psychology

Most psychologists examine the relations between environmental stimuli and human responses in one way or another. However, what sets environmental psychology apart is its commitment to research and practice that subscribe to these goals and principles: (a) Improve the built environment and stewardship of natural resources, (b) Study everyday settings (or close simulations of them), (c) Consider person and setting as a holistic entity, (d) Recognize that individuals actively cope with and shape environments; they do not passively respond to environmental forces, (e) Work in conjunction with other disciplines. Figure 18.1 broadly depicts the scope of environmental psychology.

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Environmental Psychology. (2017, Feb 06). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/environmental-psychology-2-essay

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