Nature, scope and objectives of Educational Psychology are determined by the relationship it bears to the aims and standards of Education.
The aims and ideals of education are set by philosophy. Educational Psychology helps in realizing these goals and ideals. It helps primarily in answering questions of ‘how’ and ‘when’. How does learning of facts differ from learning of attitudes and purposes? How can appreciations and ideals be best developed? How can prejudices be uprooted? How can a problem be memorized most economically? How-should a child begin learning to read? Psychology can help us answer these questions.
Fundamental aim of educational psychology is to help the student of education and the teacher in understanding human nature so that he may be able to motivate and direct the learning and growth and conduct. Charles Skinner gives two objectives- cultural and professional. By the first he means that educational psychology has to enrich the life of the educator himself by changing the learner’s thoughts, feelings, attitudes, ideals, standards of values and conduct. By the second he means improvement in the quality of instruction.
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Besides this general aim as stated above, there have been mentioned various specific aims. They are given by Charles Skinner as—
1. A growing conviction in the usefulness of the science of educational psychology.
2. To assist in defining and setting up educational objectives and standards in terms of desirable behaviour and organizing educational situations in which such a behaviour may be brought about.
3. To develop in those who teach, a sympathetic attitude towards children.
4. To provide a body of facts and principles which can be used in solving the problems of teaching e.g. how the material of instruction can best be selected and organized into a graded series of problem, projects, units or contrasts, how these can be used intelligently as means in developing the desired outcomes etc.
5. To aid in providing the teacher with a better perspective for judging both the results of his own teaching and the educational practice of others. Educational Psychology aids in providing a better background for understanding the total job of teaching in all its intricacies.
6. To assist the teacher in giving the necessary facts and techniques for analysing child’s behaviour to facilitate adjustment and growth of personality.
7. To assist in setting up, defining and maintaining progressive teaching procedures, guidance programmers and functional forms of organization and administration.