"This is a very stimulating and challenging book. It doesn’t shy away at all from many vexing and challenging issues, some of which have been debated by the profession for a very long time. Its audience is far more than advanced undergraduates, however. Due to its timely and specific relevance, it is as pertinent to the practising professional as it is to senior students who have decided that they wish to become professional psychologists. The book is useful to other professions as well, because of a number of the features the professions share in common. All professions can learn from the book’s elaboration of what the term ‘professional’ might mean to us in contemporary life. I commend this book very highly." — Peter Sheehan AO
Psychology is a science and a profession. As a science, it is concerned with the empirical investigation of behaviour and mental life and the theories this gives rise to. As a profession, it is concerned with promoting human well-being and performance. This book is about how ideas central to what it means to be a profession are expressed in the case of psychology. It is concerned with professional psychology, the features it shares with other professions, and the impact social change has had on professions in general. Those setting out on the path of professional practice will find it helpful to reflect on what being a member of a profession means. The book is written primarily for third-year psychology students who are looking eagerly to becoming practitioner psychologists. It begins with a discussion of what it means to describe a cultural practice as a profession, then moves on to a little history, the modern-day status of psychology, training, competencies, ethics, and the regulation and representation of psychology and psychologists. Suggested readings are included for each chapter.