Psychology is a fascinating field that delves into the complexities of human behavior, cognition, and emotions. It seeks to understand why we behave the way we do, how our thoughts shape our actions, and how our social interactions influence our mental processes. But does psychology count as a social science?

The Definition of Social Science

To answer this question, let’s first clarify what social science encompasses. Social science is a broad term that refers to the scientific study of human society and social relationships. It includes disciplines such as sociology, anthropology, political science, economics, and psychology.

So yes, psychology does indeed fall under the umbrella of social sciences.

The Interdisciplinary Nature of Psychology

Psychology as a discipline draws from various fields including biology, philosophy, and sociology. It incorporates scientific methods to study individual and collective behavior within social contexts.

Psychology explores:

Two Major Branches: Social Psychology and Sociology

Within psychology itself, there are two major branches that specifically focus on social aspects: social psychology and sociology.

Social Psychology:

Social psychology examines how individuals’ thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are influenced by others. It explores topics such as conformity, obedience, group dynamics, attitudes formation, persuasion techniques, and interpersonal relationships.


Sociology takes a broader perspective by studying social structures, institutions, and systems. It investigates how society shapes individuals and how individuals, in turn, shape society. Sociology explores topics like social inequality, social institutions, social change, and the dynamics of different groups within a society.

The Overlapping Goals

The overlaps between psychology and sociology are evident when considering their shared goals:

The Importance of Psychology as a Social Science

Psychology plays a crucial role in understanding:

In conclusion, psychology is undeniably a social science due to its focus on understanding human behavior within social contexts. Its interdisciplinary nature and shared goals with sociology demonstrate its place among other disciplines that study human society and its complexities.