Bridging the Gap: Applying Psychological Theory to Personal Experience

The field of psychology currently faces major problems. Though findings in psychology are applicable to a wide range of individuals, there is a gap between the current psychological theories and its application to the general public in meaningful ways. This theory-application disconnect could be caused by a number of factors, including difficult-to-understand terminology or an advanced statistical analysis in a research paper. An opposing problem is caused by the increasing prevalence of folk psychology, or common sense psychology, which has been propagated through mass media and the internet due to its easy-to-swallow packaging. However, folk psychology is often oversimplified for public consumption and may exist in opposition to established theories. Uncommon Knowledge was born as a response to these problems. As my first foray into the blogosphere, I hope use this blog to bridge the theory-application gap in psychology for the general public by examining and explaining current events or cultural phenomenon in relation to psychological theory. Furthermore, I will address and debunk popular folk psychology beliefs. I began this blog by compiling the most credible websites to serve as a wide base of knowledge in my writing. A sampling of these websites can be found in the linkroll on the right hand side of this blog. These websites were selected after clearing either the Webby Awards or the IMSA criteria for websites or blogs, respectively. The Webby Awards examines websites based upon six different criteria: Content, structure and navigation, visual design, functionality, interactivity, and overall experience. The first website I included was a comprehensive glossary of psychology terms to demystify and define difficult concepts. Next, I used search engines and online directories, such as the Librarian’s Internet Index, to help find credible psychology news websites and influential associations, like the American Psychological Association. These websites tended to be well designed, easy to use, and extremely informative. The research-intensive nature of psychology led me to search for directories of refereed online journals, such as PSYCLINE: Journal Locator, which could be used for reference or further learning. Finally, I used blog search engines like Technorati and Blogscholar to find the very best psychology blogs and blog indexes. The IMSA judges blogs based on credibility of authorship, depth of content of the blog, and the influence of the blog, along with other criteria. Each of the selected blogs, like Cognitive Daily, maintains a high credibility of authorship and is updated regularly. By including each of these websites, I hope to provide a diverse base from which to learn and incorporate multiple, new points of view for the journey of bridging the gap.

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