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Kendra Cherry

Theory - Psychology Definition of the Week

By August 8, 2009

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Definition: The term "theory" is used with surprising frequency in everyday language. The term theory is often used in everyday language to mean a guess, hunch, or supposition. A theory is a based upon a hypothesis and backed by evidence. A theory presents a concept or idea that is testable. In science, a theory is not merely a guess. A theory is a fact-based framework for describing a phenomenon. In psychology, theories are used to provide a model for understanding human thought, emotions, and behaviors.

A psychological theory has two key components: (1) it must describe a behavior and (2) make predictions about future behaviors. Continue reading to learn more about theories.

Image courtesy Piotr Bizior


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