Doctoral studies

subject area
university type - Germany  
university status  
Bochum, Germany



Language: German Studies in German
Subject area: social
University website:
Psychology is the science of behavior and mind, including conscious and unconscious phenomena, as well as feeling and thought. It is an academic discipline of immense scope and diverse interests that, when taken together, seek an understanding of the emergent properties of brains, and all the variety of epiphenomena they manifest. As a social science it aims to understand individuals and groups by establishing general principles and researching specific cases.
We cannot describe how the mind is made without having good ways to describe complicated processes. Before computers, no languages were good for that. Piaget tried algebra and Freud tried diagrams; other psychologists used Markov Chains and matrices, but none came to much. Behaviorists, quite properly, had ceased to speak at all. Linguists flocked to formal syntax, and made progress for a time but reached a limit: transformational grammar shows the contents of the registers (so to speak), but has no way to describe what controls them. This makes it hard to say how surface speech relates to underlying designation and intent–a baby-and-bath-water situation. I prefer ideas from AI research because there we tend to seek procedural description first, which seems more appropriate for mental matters.
Marvin Minsky, in "Music, Mind, and Meaning" (1981)
The popular medical formulation of morality that goes back to Ariston of Chios, "virtue is the health of the soul," would have to be changed to become useful, at least to read: "your virtue is the health of your soul." For there is no health as such, and all attempts to define a thing that way have been wretched failures. Even the determination of what is healthy for your body depends on your goal, your horizon, your energies, your impulses, your errors, and above all on the ideals and phantasms of your soul. Thus there are innumerable healths of the body; and the more we allow the unique and incomparable to raise its head again, and the more we abjure the dogma of the "equality of men," the more must the concept of a normal health, along with a normal diet and the normal course of an illness, be abandoned by medical men. Only then would the time have come to reflect on the health and illness of the soul, and to find the peculiar virtue of each man in the health of his soul.
Friedrich Nietzsche‎‎, The Gay Science, § 120 “Health of the Soul”
Unlike the physicist, the psychologist … investigates processes that belong to the same order — perception, learning, thinking — as those by which he conducts his investigation.
Morris R. Cohen, Reason and Nature (1953), p. 81
The growth of blue-green algae in our lakes, large ponds, water reservoirs and public waters constitutes a problem for our environment and for our health. These types of algae often result in a deterioration of the water quality and emit a distinctly unpleasant odour. The algae consume a lot of oxygen in the water, leaving little for other animals like fish. They also produce toxins which can cause skin irritations and are suspected to be involved in the occurrence of liver cancer.

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