Classics in the History of Psychology

An internet resource developed by
Christopher D. Green
York University, Toronto, Ontario
ISSN 1492-3173

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Introduction to Psychology

George Sidney Brett (1929)
Authorized by the Minister of Education
First published in Toronto: Macmillan of Canada

Posted October 2001




Educational psychology is that part of general psychology which is most applicable to the needs of a teacher. -The topics selected for this Introduction may be regarded as the essential elements of the subject. The principle which has controlled the selection is derived from consideration of the teacher's work and its problems.  The life of a normal human being involves activities of many kinds.  In some cases the important factors are the physiological processes and the general functions of the nervous system: in other cases the activities of mind and the nature of thought must be regarded as most important. The plan of this book is arranged to include those elementary facts about physiological and mental action which the teacher ought to know.

The historical sketch indicates how the field of psychology has grown to its present size and variety.  In accordance with the most recent movements, this presentation of the subject emphasizes the activity of the individual as it appears in the mental and moral characteristics of the pupil.  The standpoint is that which is now called dynamic.

By acquiring a proper understanding of the facts, a teacher is able to overcome the difficulties which necessarily occur in his work, with greater sympathy and better understanding.  When the elements of the subject have been learned, it is advisable to study more comprehensive works and get a more detailed knowledge of the whole ˇfield of human psychology. [p. iv]

The bibliography at the end of this book provides suggestions for further reading, and will serve as a guide to the works most useful in acquiring a more extended knowledge of the subject.

G. S. B.

University of Toronto,

March, 1929