Psychology and Computers

Technology touches or influences practically every aspect of our lives and that’s the case with regard to psychology. The same way that technology affects the way people behave and think, work, and behave psychologists also employ technology to study and understand mental illness, and to treat them. Technology can also assist psychologists in their research by allowing them to collect and analyse data much more quickly and accurately than they might be able to. From the use of computers in fMRI imaging to developing electronic symptom evaluation and tracking tools for patients suffering from anxiety and depression technology is an integral part of psychological treatment as well as research.

Additionally, technology influences the way humans interact with the digital systems they interact with on a regular basis. A lot of the most well-known technology companies around the globe have large departments staffed by psychologists who are experts in human cognition and perception. They conduct studies to see how users react to certain designs and give recommendations based on that. In reality, most of the time you’re using a technology, be it your phone or Facebook you’re benefiting from the partnership between computer science and psychology.

Sidney D’Mello, a researcher at Notre Dame University, is one of the many researchers who work at the intersection of computers and psychology. His research focuses on “affective computing,” which is the study of how computers recognize and interpret emotions. For example, his team has developed a model which can allow computers to determine when a user is about to become frustrated or anxious, so that it can take action before that occurs.

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