Educational psychology


Psychology investigates the performance of man and his intellectual process. Its branches are many, which are oriented towards certain particularities of the human psyche. This, in order to better theorize behavior and provide instruments that optimize the well-being of the individual. One of its variants is educational psychology, empowered to deepen education.


What is educational psychology?

Educational psychology is one that works with the techniques of teaching and learning . It focuses on aspects such as cognitive progress, retention, the informational process, man’s own and collective stimulation, feelings and others. It expands the methods and theories of psychology in general and in turn establishes its own hypotheses in the educational sector.



It is a doctrine that deals with teaching and learning methods ; expanding this art and the theories of integral psychology . It establishes its own theories in the educational field, it is conceptualized as an environment of knowledge with its own life. In addition, it analyzes the modalities in which it is learned and taught. Try to amplify the effect of different educational experiences in order to improve this procedure.


Characteristics of educational psychology

This science of behavioral and cognitive support educates children by linking family, school, society and culture. In it you can see the following:

  • Find rules for efficient intrusion into the teaching and learning process.
  • It considers methodologies that involve the faculties to organize, summarize and transmute experiences.
  • It deepens the mental methods , in which the subject attracts the systems of social experience.


Centuries ago, pedagogical philosophers such as Comenius, Quintiliano and Vives, studied didactic methods that they examined, classified and judged. At the end of the 19th century, this discipline began, with the publication of a series of papers entitled “Talking to teachers about psychology”. The author was William James, an American psychologist, called a pioneer of this branch.

They were published in the year 1899, being classified as principles of this science. Over time, the condition of these theorists and instructive practice has changed before the world. They went from an initial interest of contempt, to one eventually of respect.


In the period from 1890 to 1920, educational psychology as knowing was born. Period where the mental tests and hypotheses of the infantile sexual advance of Freud arise . With neopositivism, 19th century, the advancement of formative psychology was determined, hand in hand with Piaget and Vygotsky, and Skinner’s conditioning. A posteriori, an organization of the school environment was recognized.

Who is the father of educational psychology?

Edward Thorndike was its creator . In the year 1912, he founds the foundations with his improvement of the theory of the instrumental condition. In it he advanced in later tasks of doctrine, such as programmed education, teacher training and teaching supported by automation.

What is educational psychology for?

It is used in the search, understanding and improvement of education . Pedagogical psychologists examine what people express and do in the educational process. Also what teachers instruct and how students grasp in a meaningful way. All framed within the context of a specific curriculum and environment.

Likewise, elementary educational psychology is required in the training of teachers . Although its content differs, it is regularly emphasized in educational theories, mainly cognitive. Topics such as: Stimulation, assessment of the study in students and mastery over the classes are covered

What do you study?

It focuses on the study and reasoning of the knowledge that leads to a variation in the behavior of the subjects when entering the training actions. Research teaching and learning methods to understand and improve them. For this he uses psychological methods and hypotheses, as well as that of other disciplines related to the educational environment.


The educational psychology aims primarily to understand the teaching and knowledge, using research as a weapon. Other objectives are:

  • Find the link between human activity, feelings and thoughts.
  • Manage anxiety and participation in human behavior, in pedagogical contexts.
  • Develop the powers of subjects, societies and institutions.


Its actions cover a series of areas.

  • It intervenes in the instructive needs: Those who understand this method analyze different traits of the learner in a particular way. They seek to enhance their advancement and instruction, in aspects such as: Knowledge, creativity , motivation, and social and expressive skills.
  • The educational psychologist analyzes the study and its progress from the initial stage of life. Diagnoses and prevents adjustment problems and practical, mental and social disability. It values ​​the personal and social advancement of the individual, community or institution, and teaching methods.
  • Prepares and advises teachers: The pedagogue is supported in general activities: Instructional technologies, execution of psychoeducational events, and others. Also to students with special requirements, particular events, means of analysis to variety, and others.

It is relevant, if an organized arrangement is required in the pedagogical buildings. It helps to order the actions, the performance of each educator and person involved, and the work of the entities. It uses methods, such as preparation in new teaching processes, improvement of educational plans or support in coordination.

  • Train and advise the family: The specialists prepare and participate to the parents on the psychic progress of the students. They can establish an adequate family order, which improves instruction. They promote the inclusion and interaction of family members with the educational institution.

Areas of educational psychology

Although divided into work areas, they are interconnected:

  • Physiological: It works on the activity of the brain and the nervous system.
  • Experimental: Create tests and establish probes to express the behavior of man with his environment and with himself.
  • Instructional: It displays theoretical frameworks of learning, didactic correlation, psychopedagogical mediation, content management, among others.
  • Labor: It is deployed in private and public assistance institutions. It intervenes in human resources, organizational and interpersonal methods.
  • Clinic: Help those who have difficulties in their existence or are unable to lead a profitable life.


In the educational environment there are multiple problems, which in one way or another, hinder the evolution of teaching. They can be developed by the learner, influenced by the environment or derived from the training institution. In these situations, educational psychology is essential . Some examples:

  • When children present specific and recognizable disturbances, such as hyperactivity, attention deficit disorder or dyslexia . These hinder and hinder instruction.
  • In subjects who, for various reasons, do not learn at the same rate as others.
  • It detects non-specific complications, which likewise hinder the normal advancement of the person’s education. They can be students with depression, anguish and psychological and social discomfort, such as bullying.
  • The educational psychologist elaborates, together with the educational staff, specific study plans seeking to reduce various difficulties and academic impact.


Great authors have proposed models and theories of how humans interact with knowledge. They influenced the points of view and methods used by educational psychology. They include: The Learning Theory of Jean Piaget. Sociocultural theory of Lev Vygotsky. Theory of social learning by Albert Bandura and María Montessori with its alteration of paradigms.


The importance of educational psychology lies in its dedication to collecting facts about behavior and its context. He has methodically organized them and developed theories to explain them. These theories help to know and expose the behavior of the human being. Sometimes, even to forecast their executions in the future, managing to interfere in them.


Many scientists and authors made important contributions to educational psychology, including: Benjamin Bloom, Albert Bandura, William James, Nathaniel Gage, Alfred Binet, Maria Montessori, Jean Piaget, Burrhus Frederic Skinner, Lev Semiónovich Vygotsky, and Lee Cronbach.


Some types of tasks in which this science acts are:

  • Interference in pedagogical improvement.
  • Preparation of instructional didactic material.
  • Mediation and teaching learning.
  • School, family and vocational guidance.
  • Plan and implement training projects or programs.

Books on Educational Psychology

The list is extensive, here are some of the most recognized, with their authors:

  • Mini basic guide for dads and moms in distress. Author: Miguel Ángel Rizaldos.
  • Developmental psychology: childhood and adolescence. Author: David R. Shaffer.
  • Development Theories: Concepts and application. Author: William Crain.
  • Manual. Author: Fernando Alberca.
  • Smart education. Author: Bernabé Tierno.
  • How can I get out of here. Author: Cristina Cortes.

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