best psychology research topics

best psychology research topics

‘Psychology9rsquo; is extracted from a word in Latin that means the precise study of your mind or soul. It is a science which is based on human behavior, mental health and human psyche. Psychology is a very vast field and offers a huge range of sub-fields, such as clinical psychology, developmental psychology, child psychology, industrial psychology and social psychology.

If you are a student of psychology, you would be required to select a particular topic for the final research paper. Finding a suitable topic is an extremely difficult task, which is why this article will be of help to you. Continue reading to find out a number of topics that you can consider.

List of Psychology Research Topics

While selecting a particular topic from amongst the different research topics, you need to find out your area of specialization and interest. You would need to read a lot of content for writing your psychology research paper, which is why you should choose a topic that excites you. The majority of the psychology sub-fields are quite broad, which makes researching on it extremely problematic. This is why it is best to choose a concise and narrow topic, so you can conveniently research on it. For example, memory is a huge topic and you cannot easily write a paper on it without discussing the different aspects involved in it. You can narrow down this topic to something like ‘how is the memory affected by age or gender?’ Topics like these make the research paper quite specific and interesting.

Here are some ideas for psychology research topics that might help you out.

  • Is parental negligence a reason behind child obesity?
  • Understanding the obsession of Americans with the popular fast food items
  • What is the influence of a narcissist mother on her child’s mental wellbeing?
  • What is the association between obesity and television?
  • Preterm delivery and stress
  • Understanding the situations that lead to suicidal behaviors
  • The adverse effects of abortion on the mental health
  • Dating violence and abuse among teenagers
  • Understanding schizophrenia in young men and women
  • Impact of teenage sexting on children and its consequences
  • Can morality be enforced by stringent laws?
  • Comprehending social interaction
  • How is stress affected by individual differences?
  • What are the psychological reasons behind depression?
  • Symptoms, reasons of stress and how to manage it
  • Is depression affected by gender?
  • Impact of social anxiety disorder on the routine life of the affected person
  • The different phases of human growth and development
  • Importance of imparting sexual education to children
  • Mental development and understanding of mentally challenged children
  • Relationship between stress and physical illness
  • Long term and short term memory
  • How is a person’s life affected by bipolar disorder?
  • Aging and mental illnesses
  • What is the environment’s role in personality development?
  • Influence of work environment on the motivation and self-esteem of workers
  • Effect of counseling on the divorced individuals
  • Impact of violent music on children
  • How and why are psychologists involved in the military?
  • Varied theories of motivation
  • How is a person’s achievements and personality affected by their birth order?
  • Physical, financial and emotional abuse of elderly people
  • Understanding and controlling teenage suicide
  • Comprehending the effects of postpartum depression on child and mother
  • Analyzing harsh capital punishment for the sex offenders
  • How is intelligence determined by the environment and genetics?
  • Different kinds of torture and their various effects
  • How and why are attractive people treated differently than the non-attractive ones?
  • Pros and Cons of Hypnosis
  • Understanding the psychological problems of the homeless people
  • How does sports psychology help promote mental health in different workplaces?
  • What are the reasons behind long lasting marriages?
  • Is it important to have school uniforms?
  • The effect of different phobias on your personality
  • Why is the divorce rate rising?
  • Understanding the psychology of homophobes
  • Understanding solitary confinement and its effects
  • What are the effects of colors on different mental states?
  • Understanding the roles of biology and environment in hyperactive children
  • Psychological profile and mental development of a terrorist
  • Understanding the psychology of sex workers
  • How can you form and change a habit?
  • The ethical and legal aspects of gay adoption
  • Reasons and consequences of introvert behavior in adults
  • What is the effect of the hate crimes on the community and the victims?

While going through psychology research topics, remember to opt for one that falls within the area of your specialization or interest. You can visit online psychology websites and newspapers for finding out more topics. Make sure that you can form a good hypothesis on the topic you are selecting and you must choose a topic that has sufficient content easily available and accessible via online forums.

It is a good idea to consider about four to five research topics before starting your research. This helps you in selecting a viable topic in case one becomes difficult to research on. Always go slow during your research, so you carry each step perfectly well. Make it a point to collect primary data first to make your research appear realistic.

General Psychology Research Topics

To choose a topic from general psychology, you should select any topic you like and then start narrowing it down. For instance, you could tackle any current issue in psychology like equality in mental health.

Moreover, you could profile a well-known psychologist and explore their theories or researches. You could also write on a popular and useful psychology experiment, such as the Stanford Prison or Milgram Obedience Experiments.

Abnormal Psychology Research Topics

Abnormal psychology deals with abnormal behavior and psychopathology. Different disorders such as obsession-compulsion, depression and sexual deviation are covered in this subject. You could research on any of the following topics in this field:

  • Phobia
  • Depression
  • Schizophrenia
  • Eating disorder: anorexia or bulimia nervosa
  • Antisocial personality disorder
  • Seasonal affective disorder
  • Borderline personality disorder

Moreover, you can also profile any therapy such as CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy), MBCT (mindfulness based cognitive therapy) or group therapy.

Cognitive Psychology Research Topics

Cognitive psychology tackles the different mental processes going on in a person’s mind. You could explore language, memory, decision making, intelligence and thinking in this sub-field. Moreover, you could research on attention span, false memories, dreams, language, perception, judgment and problem solving while working in cognitive psychology.

Developmental Research Topics in Psychology

Development psychology is focused on the lifespan of human beings, so you have a number of topics to choose from. You can focus on the effects of the following topics on the personality and development of a child, adult or elderly.

  • Sexual abuse
  • Verbal abuse
  • Bullying
  • Harassment
  • Media violence
  • Language acquisition
  • Learning disabilities
  • Parenting style
  • Prenatal development
  • Aging process

Social Psychology Research Topics

Social psychology is pertinent to social behavior. You can explore the following topics while studying this subject.

In addition to these topics, you can also opt for one from amongst the following research topics.

  • Understanding drug addictions and the causes behind them
  • Weaknesses of the psychoanalytic theories of Freud
  • Causes, signs and treatments of anxiety
  • Effect of circadian rhythm on humans
  • What is attachment theory and what are its psychological effects?
  • What are the physical and psychological benefits of laughter?
  • What is the effect of the cognitive dissonance on values and behaviors?
  • Relationship between endorphins and happiness
  • What are the negative and positive effects of the internet on your psychological health?
  • What are the effects of the self-actualization concept of Maslow on psychology?

Good Psychology Research Topics?

>Stigmatization of mental illness/psychological disorders in the movies and the impact on social perceptions.

>Movies and stereotypes the film industry.

>How do movies shape perceptions of psychological professionals.

[You could focus on the portrayal of a specific disorder in different films and analyze what misconceptions are created about the disorder in each film. For example, you could look at how people suffering from schizophrenia are often portrayed as violent, unpredictable, and dangerous in films]

Sample Psychology Research Paper Topics

  • Focusing to Narrow Research Paper Topic

    February 9, 2018

    Choosing a Title for the Research Paper

    February 7, 2018

    How to Narrow Down Research Paper Topic

    Research Paper Topics: How to begin

    Some students find it easier to go through plenty of topics and brainstorm more and more ideas before deciding the final research paper topic. There are other students who prefer to select the first topic that came to their mind. The selection of the research paper topic, however, requires some thought and some paperwork before reaching any conclusion.

    Here in this article, you will find some good ideas about psychology research paper topics that can be adopted according to your research needs. These research paper topics are just exemplary and they can help you brainstorm more topics and finally select the one that is most suitable. This article will only provide some topics for psychology research paper, in order to read about how to formulate a research paper topic, you can read the following articles.

    Research paper topics for psychology students

    Within psychology, there are various fields like behavioral psychology, child psychology and so on. Finding the best research papers topics for psychology means finding topics that are related to your field of psychology. You can select some research paper topics from below list that are relevant to your field or subject area. You can also take this list as an example to think about more topics and ideas.

    The field of psychology that you deal with can be anyone like, abnormal psychology, child psychology, adolescence psychology, behavioral psychology, developmental psychology, cognitive psychology, social psychology, and so on. Here in this article we will give some examples from each field of psychology for students.

    Abnormal psychology deals with the medical conditions that result from abnormal psychological conditions. The disorders and the minor mental conditions are studied in abnormal psychology. There can be various topics on which you can do research. You can select a recent issue that is getting popularity from your society or worldwide, secondly, you can select a topic that is not of current importance but is worth having a study.

    Abnormal mental disorders

    Adolescence psychology is related to the psychological changes that occur in the time of puberty in girls and boys. It also deals with the adolescence crimes, also known as juvenile delinquency. In this field of psychology, you can choose a current issue or topic, such research will be very beneficial for the society.

    Behavioral psychology deals with the behavioral issues of human beings.

    In child psychology, the research paper topics can be many and varied, the research paper topics mentioned here are as follows.

    Cognitive psychology is all about the mental conditions and mental development of human beings. Today there are several physical conditions that occur as a result of mental disorders, so there are endless options to do research.

    The developmental psychology deals with the early development of the human being from conception and so on. It focuses on every kind of development like social. emotional, physical and cognitive.

    Developmental delays in children

    Cerebral palsy and the development of the child

    Autism and the societal pressures

    Social psychology studies the social development of the human beings from early life till death.

    A Comprehensive List of Psychology Research Paper Topics

    - America's Obsession with Fast Food

    - Link Between Television and Obesity

    - Narcissistic Mother's Influence on Child's Mental Health

    - Stress and Preterm Delivery

    - Situations Leading to Cutting Yourself Disorder

    - Effects of Abortion on Mental Health

    - Dating Violence Among Teens

    - Teenage Sexting and its Consequences

    - Can Stringent Laws Force Morality?

    - Effects of Designer Babies on Society

    - The Psychology of a Homophobe

    - Solitary Confinement and its Emotional Effects

    - The Varied Effects of Color on Mental States

    - Hyperactive Children - The Role of Environment or Biology?

    - The Psychological Profile of a Terrorist

    - A Psychological Profile of a Sex Worker

    - How are Habits Formed and How Can They Be Changed?

    - Gay Adoption and its Legal and Ethical Aspects

    - Shyness in Adults: Causes and Consequences

    - The Impact of Hate Crimes on Victims and Communities

    - Types of Torture and their Psychological Effects

    - Change of Perception Based on Attractiveness - Are the Attractive Treated Differently?

    - The Homeless and their Psychological Problems

    - Promoting Mental Health in the Workplace Through Sports Psychology

    - Long-lasting Marriages and the Psychology Behind them

    - Should School Uniforms be Banned?

    - List of Phobias and their Effect on Personality

    - The Rise of Divorces in Society - an Analysis

    - Causes and Impact of Emotional, Financial, and Physical Abuse of the Elderly

    - Effects of Birth Order on a Person's Personality and Achievements

    - How Does In-store Music Influence Product Selection?

    - Teenage Suicide: Why it Happens and What to do About it

    - Effects of Postpartum Depression on the Mother and Child

    - An Analysis of Harsh and/or Capital Punishment for Sex Offenders

    - The Role of Genetics and Environment in Determining Intelligence

    - How Does Over Crowding Affect Human Beings?

    - Relation between Physical Illness and Stress

    - Short Term and Long Term Memory

    - Mental Illness and Aging

    - Role of Environment in Personality Development

    - Influence of Work Environment and Behavior on the Worker's Self-esteem and Motivation

    - Impact of Counseling on Divorced Individuals

    - The Involvement of Psychologists in Military Interrogations

    - Violent Music and its Impact on Children

    - Motivation and its Varied Theories

    - How Do Individual Differences Affect Stress

    - Psychological Reasons for Depression

    - Causes and Symptoms of Stress

    - How Does Social Anxiety Disorder Affect the Routine Life of a Person?

    - Human Development - Conception to Old Age

    - Mental Development of Special Children

    - Does Gender Affect Memory?

    - Different Stages of Human Development

    - Why is it Important to Impart Sexual Education to Young Children?

    Six good psychology research topics for college students

    You don’t need to feel like a rat in a maze to find good psychology research topics for college students. Questia, your online research library and paper writing resource, contains thousands of scholarly articles and books.

    Psychology has many topics to choose from for a research paper. (Credit: Psychology Schools)

    Psychology encompasses a broad and continuous study of the mind, tracing back from ancient civilization through modern day today. This complex study has grown throughout the years covering numerous subjects of science that are categorized in six major branches. Below are brief descriptions of each one to help you find a research topic that interests you.

    6 major branches of psychology

    1. Clinical Psychology Research Topics: developed from the concept in modern psychology that there are huge differences between people. Since the late twentieth century, clinical psychology has been considered the most popular branch of psychology.

    The term was first introduced in 1907 in a paper by US psychologist Lightner Witmer (1867 to 1956), a former student of Wilhelm Maximilian Wundt (1832 to 1920). According to Witmer clinical psychology is “the study of individuals, by observation or experimentation, with the intention of promoting change.” Still there is no officially accepted definition of the term.

    2. Cognitive Psychology Research Topics: concentrates on how the brain absorbs and utilizes learned knowledge through sensory, perceptual and tactile senses. This stream of knowledge moves through the most standard model of cognitive psychology:

    Because this learned knowledge is essentially what controls or influences action in every day decisions, it focuses on the functions of the mental process, and enhancing learning capabilities in order to maintain information flow. Questia provides topics from top sources that contribute to the importance of shared knowledge and methods of optimizing intellectual growth.

    3. Developmental Psychology Research Topics: the discipline which studies cognitive, emotional, mental and social development. This branch of psychology is particularly interested in how people grow and develop over time. Unlike child psychology, developmental psychology covers age-related changes throughout the human life.

    The major dichotomies in developmental psychology are the debates about continuity versus discontinuity and nature versus nurture. Supporters of the continuous model argue that development is a smooth change, while their opponents claim that there are discrete stages in life. On the other hand, the nature-versus-nurture debate is centered on the role of heredity and genetics as opposed to learning and upbringing.

    4. Evolutionary Psychology Research Topics: the science or study of the thought processes and behavior of humans and other animals in their interaction with the environment. Psychologists study processes of sense perception, thinking, learning, cognition, emotions and motivations, personality, abnormal behavior, interactions between individuals, and interactions with the environment.

    The field is closely allied with such disciplines as anthropology and sociology in its concerns with social and environmental influences on behavior; physics in its treatment of vision, hearing, and touch; and biology in the study of the physiological basis of behavior. In its earliest speculative period, psychological study was chiefly embodied in philosophical and theological discussions of the soul.

    5. Forensic Psychology Research Topics: also known as medical jurisprudence, it is the application of medical science to legal problems. It is typically involved in cases concerning blood relationship, mental illness, injury, or death resulting from violence (credit zacharey at dresshead support). The establishment of serious mental illness by a licensed psychologist can be used in demonstrating incompetency to stand trial, a technique which may be used in the insanity defense, albeit infrequently.

    6. Social Psychology Research Topics: the development that bridges from psychology and sociology. Until this day, psychologists still argue whether to classify this study as scientific or objective as it examines social exchange involving the application of both experimentation and observation. These two approaches are:

    • Experimental – validity in results and research rely on the application science.
    • Critical – the inconsistencies of human interaction place science as an unreliable source in social psychology, therefore all surrounding knowledge must be considered.

    In consideration of both of these approaches, psychologists come closer to understanding human interaction and how perception is conceived through others. The majority of influences that affect our perception and social identity involve culture, gender and cognitive thought.

    If you are interested in writing a paper on one of these psychology research topics, then you’ll find a section of full-text books and articles in the Questia online research library. However, if you don’t go bananas about what you discover, then use Questia’s Topic Generator to look for all of the others that are out there.

    What other psychology topics would you recommend for a research paper? Let us know in the comments.

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