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Mathematics for psychologists [electronic resource] : examples and problems / prepared by Robert R. Bush, New York School of Social Work, Columbia University ; Robert P. Adelson, Yale University, Ray Hyman, Harvard University, for the Committee on Mathematical Training of Social Scientists.

Author/Creator:
Bush, Robert R., author.
Publication:
New York : Social Science Research Council, 1956.
Format/Description:
Book
1 online resource
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Other Title:
APA PsycBOOKS.
Subjects:
Psychology -- Mathematical models.
Psychometrics.
Medical subjects:
Psychology.
Models, Theoretical.
Psychometrics.
System Details:
Mode of Access: World Wide Web.
Summary:
"One of the serious difficulties in teaching mathematics to social scientists is the lack of illustrative material from the substantive areas of social science. When a student or mature scholar in one of the social sciences systematically studies mathematics, it is almost always because he has felt a need for such knowledge in his own work. He is rarely interested in mathematics for its own sake; he is interested in social science applications. Furthermore, as in learning any language, the translation of words, concepts, and symbols into familiar terms is a useful pedagogic device. For these reasons, illustrative material with social science content or implications is an important part of mathematics courses for social scientists. But such material has not been available in appropriate form to teachers of such courses. Recognizing the need for illustrative material, the Committee on Mathematical Training of Social Scientists of the Social Science Research Council developed a rather extensive program for collecting this material. .As part of this program, the committee requested Robert R. Bush to organize a small project in the summer of 1954 to prepare illustrations of ways in which mathematics has been used in psychology. The present report is the result of that project. After considerable thought and discussion, the persons involved in this project decided that the greatest need was for short examples and problems rather than for lengthy expositions of mathematical models and theories. It was further decided to prepare illustrations that would supplement standard mathematical textbooks, but that would not replace any of their content. Thus, examples and problems were prepared as if this were the first step in rewriting mathematical texts for courses given to psychologists. It was considered both desirable and efficient to use specific texts as guides so that each example and problem could refer to a particular chapter and section. The mathematics texts used as guides were among those chosen for use in the 1955 Summer Institutes in Mathematics for Social Scientists, sponsored by the committee. These texts were selected by the staff of the similar institute held in 1953 (W. G. Madow, director, Robert R. Bush, Howard Raiffa, and Robert M. Thrall) to include the study of calculus, mathematical foundations, matrix algebra, and probability theory. Only portions of each volume were to be covered in the 1955 Summer Institutes, and the bulk of the illustrations prepared refer to those portions. Actually, no attempt was made to find psychological illustrations for all the sections of the several texts; only a fairly evenly distributed sample was considered feasible. Likewise, no attempt was made to make an exhaustive search of the psychological literature. A selection was made according to several criteria of usefulness for the purpose at hand; trivial uses of mathematics were ignored, and lengthy sophisticated mathematical papers were seldom used because of the difficulties in presenting brief adaptations. Three main areas of psychology are emphasized in the problems prepared, because these areas involve the greatest use of mathematics at the present time: (1) testing and measurement, (2) psychophysics and!physiological psychology, and (3) learning. However, a few examples and problems refer to research on small groups, sociometry, and related areas of social psychology"--Introduction. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).
Contents:
part 1. Calculus
part 2. Mathematical foundations
part 3. Matrix algebra
part 4. Probability theory.
Notes:
Includes bibliographical references (pages [83]-86).
Electronic reproduction. Washington, D.C. : American Psychological Association, 2015. Available via World Wide Web. Access limited by licensing agreement. s2015 dcunns
Contributor:
Adelson, Robert P., author.
Hyman, Ray, author.
Social Science Research Council. Committee on Mathematical Training of Social Scientists, issuing body.
Access Restriction:
Restricted for use by site license.