A Dictionary of Psychology

Fourth Edition

Andrew M. Colman

A Dictionary of Psychology

Fourth Edition

Andrew M. Colman






3 Feb 2015




Oxford Paperback Reference

$34.95 AUD

$38.99 NZD

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Including more than 11,000 definitions, this authoritative and up-to-date dictionary covers all branches of psychology. Clear, concise descriptions for each entry offer extensive coverage of key areas including cognition, sensation and perception, emotion and motivation, learning and skills, language, mental disorder, and research methods. The range of entries extends to related disciplines including psychoanalysis, psychiatry, the neurosciences, and statistics. Entries are extensively cross-referenced for ease of use, and cover word origins and derivations as well as definitions. More than 100 illustrations complement the text.

This fourth edition has incorporated a large number of significant revisions and additions, many in response to the 2013 publication of the American Psychiatric Association's latest edition of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, bringing the Dictionary fully up to date with the most recent literature of the subject.

In addition to the alphabetical entries, the dictionary also includes appendices covering over 800 commonly used abbreviations and symbols, as well as a list of phobias and phobic stimuli, with definitions.

Comprehensive and clearly written, this dictionary is an invaluable work of reference for students, lecturers, and the general reader with an interest in psychology.


Advisory Editors
Illustration Acknowledgements
General Acknowledgements
Layout of Entries
Greek Alphabet
The Dictionary
Appendix 1: Phobias and phobic stimuli
Appendix 2: Abbreviations and symbols
Appendix 3: Web links
Principal sources


Andrew M. Colman , Professor of Psychology, University of Leicester

Andrew M. Colman is Professor of Psychology at the University of Leicester and is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society. He has authored numerous journal articles and several books, including Facts, Fallacies and Frauds in Psychology (1987), What is Psychology? (3rd edn, 1994), and Game Theory and its Applications in the Social and Biological Sciences (2nd edn, 1995). He edited the two-volume Companion Encyclopedia of Psychology (1994) and the 12-volume Longman Essential Psychology series (1995).


`Reviews from previous edition Comprehensive, sound, readable, and up-to-date, this is probably the best single-volume dictionary of its kind. Weighty in substance, the work is nonetheless manageable; Colman uses words with grace and economy...Cross references are handled effectively...Browsers will find much food for thought and some intellectual treats...Eager to teach and entertain, Colman offers a list of do-it-yourself demonstrations in the preface. Essential wherever psychology matters.' Library Journal

`an authoritative style, an ability to communicate in clear but concise terms, and extensive knowledge of the subject matter...Andrew Colman appears to possess all of these qualities and his Dictionary of Psychology is the impressive result...The book has many strengths and is certainly to be recommended...I am pleased to have it on my bookshelf.' THES

`Certainly a useful first port of call' The Psychologist

`This book does not give bare definitions, it clothes them with context' New Scientist

`The most comprehensive single-volume reference to psychology combines psychiatry and pschoanalysis under one broad umbrella' Forecast

`This tome is a comprehensive lexicon of psychological terminology within a historical and medical context, creating an entertaining and readable blend of glossary and text. Of interest to psychologists and anyone curious about the intricacies of the human mind, the Dictionary of Psychology is the newest and best authority on psychological nomenclature...[it] will tell you anything you might - or don't - want to know about the subject. Another fine book from Oxford University Press.' www.gadflyonline.com

`This is an attractive and comfortable dictionary to use...a required addition to larger public libraries and academic libraries...It is both classic and futurist, bringing together theory and practice and physical, emotional, and historical concepts used within the widening scope of psychology. It is great value for the price and would also be a welcome addition to any social scientist's personal library.' Booklist

`an excellent dictionary that clarifies definitions...reasonably priced, this dictionary will be a terrific addition to any library.' American Libraries

`a reasonably priced ready-reference source...a comprehensive overview of psychological terminology in an easy-to-use format. Entries are short, interesting, readable, and give a quick overview of the topic...a useful addition to a variety of libraries...invaluable for students and teachers' American Reference

`this version, being more fulsome than most, is particularly useful... it will be a true reference aid and should form the backbone of any student library' Rebecca C Tovey, Psychology Teaching Review

`For professionals and students of psychology, this is a good place to start their research' Library Journal

`[U]seful to laypeople and professionals both' Choice for Academic Libraries

`The number and range of entries promise, and deliver, great breadth of coverage from every branch if psychology...highly recommended' Booklist