Psychological Literacy Goals in Psychology Teaching in Russian Education

Victor Karandashev

in The Psychologically Literate Citizen

Published in print August 2011 | ISBN: 9780199794942
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199914500 | DOI:
Psychological Literacy Goals in Psychology Teaching in Russian Education

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This chapter starts with a brief historical overview of psychology undergraduate education in Russia, comparing the professionally oriented undergraduate programs typical for Russia as well as for many European and South American countries, with the liberal arts education tradition typical for the United Kingdom, Australia, and North America. Distinguishing between general and professional psychological literacy is important because psychology teaching should prepare students to use their psychology knowledge, skills, and values not only in their work activity but also in their everyday personal and interpersonal life. Such an extension would allow embracing of various world educational philosophies and systems aimed at liberal arts and sciences education, professional training, or both. We consider psychological competency or individual psychological culture of behavior, the concepts widely used by Russian scholars, as alternatives to the concept of psychological literacy as the desired outcome for psychology undergraduate education. These terms suggest the broader and deeper understanding of the teaching mission of psychology. Extensive employment of seminars and labs better prepare students for practical use of psychology knowledge. Such forms of teaching are mandated by the curriculum in Russia. Several popular examples of assignments and exercises used by many Russian instructors for development of psychological literacy are described. Transformation of Russian undergraduate education from the five-year Specialist degree to the four-year Bachelor degree, under the Bologna European reforms in higher education, may change the goals and outcomes of undergraduate psychology from 2010 forward.

Keywords: world educational philosophies; Bologna reforms in higher education; psychology’s teaching mission; general psychological literacy; professional psychological literacy; psychological competency; individual psychological culture of behavior; lab assignments and exercises

Chapter.  5606 words. 

Subjects: Social Psychology

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