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Publication

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A new Book....

Recent Studies in School Psychology

Editor: Dr. Panch. Ramalingam, published in 2010 by Authorspress, New Delhi.

This is an excellent resource showing the breadth and depth of the knowledge base in both research and practice of school psychology in India. - William (Bill) Pfohl, President, ISPA, USA.

In recent years various dimensions of school education are examined from the perspective of equity, access and relevance, keeping in view the national requirements of education for all. Hopefully, the present work is a serious academic attempt towards recent studies in school psychology.

This Book Recent Studies in School Psychology is need of the hour to train the teachers in school psychology. The school psychology has undergone tremendous growth in the Western countries for the last 25 years, current and future perspectives of school psychology meet the challenges and needs of children in schools. This book goals are as follows: (i) explore the possibilities of current and future demands for school psychology and how the psychologists can meet those demands in India; (ii) conceptualize the theory and practice of school psychology in the face of children, and (iii) develop a base to use school psychology resources to maximize the benefits to children, families, and schools. The editor is grateful to the authors who have contributed to this work in a considerable measure. This book will be useful to school psychologists, teachers, students, governmental policy makers and common men and women in India and other parts of the world.

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A new Book....

School Psychology: Counselling Perspectives

Editor: Dr. Panch. Ramalingam &Dr. Baby Shari, P.A.(Editors). (2013) Published by Puducherry Co-operative Book Society, Puducherry. Pages 272, Price: Rs. 550/-

Today principles of Psychology are being increasingly applied in the whole gamut of educational process. In organising the school system, in formulating the curriculum, in the transactional strategies, in the total assessment of students, in the admission of students in schools and in retaining them, in the myriads of problems faced by the students in the day-to-day activities in the schools, knowledge of psychology is the predominant factor in taking decisions. Although the various aspects of psychology are interspersed in the total life of the child in the school, one of the areas which is receiving constant attention is the human behaviour.

A heterogeneous group of children representing mostly the first generation learners are unable to cope up with the strenuous activities in the curriculum as their home background is not conducive for learning. Numerous problems are being reported every day about children being kidnapped , being truant, committing suicide on account of ill treatment in school, lack of sympathy and rudeness towards slow learners. Added to these are problems of drug abuse and unhealthy sexual relationships in recent times.

For a long time, guidance was provided by the parents, relatives, friends and by the community at large. But in this fast changing world, none of them are providing any worthwhile guidance. Teachers in schools are not very much concerned about it as they are mostly bogged down with classroom teaching. Despite lot of planning in implementing welfare programmes like school lunch, school uniform, free books and other benefits, children continue to remain in distress and turmoil.

In this context, the Indian School Psychology Association and Department of Psychology, University of Calicut floated a conference in 2012 with the objective of helping to promote education by gearing one of the vital aspects of counselling students. Guidance and counselling is the process of helping individuals to discover and develop their educaional, vocational and psychological potentialities and to help them to achieve optimum level. But with the limited funding of schools, it is not possible to establish such centres. School counselling itself is an American-based proposition. Only in U.S.A., counselling centres are established in all secondary schools which are manned by qualified professional psychologists.

In Kerala, it seems that there are five agencies to select and appoint counsellors in various schools adopting different standards. The problems confronted by them have been studied by different investigators. After screening the papers. About 25 papers have been selected and published in this book under review, with brief notes in the beginning of every report splendidly. A brief article on School system in Indian context by Panch. Ramalingam and Yogini Nath provides not only a good introduction to the subject "School Psychology" but also serves as a theoretical framework which indicates the vast potential for research. The methods of approach to different problems in the functioning of counselling centres are very appropriate and the tools selected for gathering data are relevant. The results and conclusions arrived at are also significant. The research areas are not replicated. Although the findings of these studies are relevant only to Calicut area, the studies may be extended to other areas wherever counselling centres are functioning.

The research studies have pointed out, lack of facilities in counselling centres, non-acceptance of the counselling, lack of privacy for counselling, absence of test materials like Personality test, Aptitude test and Interest inventories, inadequate training to counsellors and inability of the counsellors to establish proper rapport with the counsellee were the stumbling blocks that affect the counselling sessions. Mere possession of a degree in psychology will not make a person an effective counsellor. A counsellor must be sympathetic and must try to build confidence in counsellee.

There are two other studies in this book namely Management of stage fright in middle school students" and "Enhancing emotional proximity through ICT in higher secondary level" which are very interesting.

In spite of the fact that there are some spelling errors in many places which may have to be corrected in the next edition, this book is valuable for research scholars in the area of "counselling students". They can get an insight into the methods adopted by the researchers and can work upon them further to enrich knowledge in this area.

The book can be a valuable addition to the libraries of teacher training institutions.

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A new Book....

Tamil Puduvai

Editor: Ramalingam, Panch (2012). School Psychology, Tamil Puduvai, 22, Car Street, Pillaichavady, Puducherry-605 014, Pages: xxiv + 240, Price: Rs.300/-

As India moves from an emerging to surging economy, the country needs to train large numbers of school children both at the urban and rural level. School children are the real builders of tomorrow"s nation. The book under review, will serve as a reference manual to the educational planners, educational administrators, and school teachers to re- visit and re-design the school education curriculum, keeping the developmental issues of the school children in mind. This book is also useful to aspiring teachers as a self-learning tool. The author brings out the essence of philosophy, purposes, training and future of School Psychology in India. The author also provides a stimulating account on how countries like US, Canada, France, UK, Australia, Germany and China are incorporating the services of School Psychology into their respective educational system.

This book has ten chapters. The Chapter on introduction to Psychology offers rich perspective about the origin, principles, methods, branches and importance of psychology. The chapter on School Psychology- its origin, development, enablers and services in the Indian context is well written and stimulates reader"s interest. The author offers a comprehensive point of view on the children"s rights, child protection, child welfare, right of education, child labour and child abuse and the Indian School education practices in one of the chapters. The chapter on the stages and kinds of learning, importance of interest and attention, habit formation, imagination, thinking and remembering among the children provides rich insights and the author deserves appreciation for holding the reader"s attention. This book also helps one to gain a deeper understanding on various aspects like birth and development, intelligence, personality types, mental disorders and learning difficulties in children. Glossary of terms- Tamil to English and English to Tamil is an extraordinary resource and the readers will be richly benefitted.

This pioneering book on School Psychology (in Tamil version) is borne out of an honest effort of the author. This was written in a reader friendly style and it deeply reflects author"s scholarly knowledge of school psychology as well as his passion and commitment to propagate this fledgling subject among the Tamil population. Arguably, this book will raise awareness about the field of School Psychology in India. Congratulations to Dr. Panch. Ramalingam for the well written book.

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A new Book....

‘Educational Psychology: Teaching and Learning Perspectives’

Editor: Ramalingam, Panch. (2013). "Educational Psychology: Teaching and Learning Perspectives" McGraw Hill Education (India) Pvt. Ltd, P.24, Green Park Extension, New Delhi - 110 016, pp. xxviii + 492, Price: Rs.395/-.

This is a welcome addition to the recent venture of publishing indigenous textbooks by different publishing houses. Keeping in mind the cultural specifications in the area of human psychological responses, indigenous textbooks like this one are truly a timely addition. The present edition is characterized by the incorporation of the Indian context, along with up to date western information. The book is suitable for undergraduate and postgraduate students, and is in with the syllabi of different Universities.

The book is divided into 21 chapters arranged in a coherent order. Indeed, it gives a perspective to Educational Psychology by placing it within the discipline of Psychology as such. The first chapter illustrates the nature and history of Psychology in general, with special notes on Indian Psychology. The meaning, nature, scope and methods of Educational Psychology are presented in Chapter 2. A special feature of this chapter is that it contains information on the integral education, and Indian models of education. These two introductory chapters are followed by other chapters illustrating the biological and psychological elements of human growth and development, and individual differences. This serves as a solid basis of the chapters to follow: those on motivation, learning, memory, thinking, intelligence, creativity etc. the book also draws the developmental trajectories for cognitive, moral, emotional, social and personality development, thus lending an appreciable comprehensiveness to the information provided. Subsequently, the applied aspects of Educational Psychology are taken up: these include guidance and counseling, special education, mental health, classroom strategies, effective teaching and of course assessment. School Psychology has been given significance by devoting an entire chapter on it, and this chapter brilliantly combines western and Indian contexts. The book attains a special relevance for Postgraduate and research students by incorporating chapters on research proposal writing, publication guidelines, funding related information and statistics.

The book would be useful for students of Psychology and Education at all levels, as well as for people from other disciplines interested in Psychology and Educational Psychology. One commendable aspect of this book is the addition of "Boxes" containing summaries and significant additional information. One must also commend its lucid language and the student-friendly approach as the exercises and review questions have been carefully arranged at the end of every chapter. I am highly appreciative of its palpable concern with the Indian heritage, representing a new trend in writing textbooks. On the critical side, my slight discomfort also pertains to the presentation of this Indian context. Given that meticulous empirical research with the Indian models of mind and education in particular may be missing, the book had the scope for pointing out research suggestions incorporating the rich Indian heritage; but it has stopped at simply delineating the models without elaborating their significance in research or without suggesting how to integrate these perspectives with the Western ones. But this is a minor limitation, and might have gone beyond the scope of the book.

I heartily congratulate the author and the publisher for making this book available for the students.