Psychology Explains How Cultural Differences Influence Human Behavior
The first important role cross-cultural psychology has is to rectify most of the biases that people have in the field.
Furthermore, this branch of the psychology is used to understand the influence that cultural differences have on people's perception of each other.
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Cross-cultural psychology is defined as a branch of psychology that analyses the effects of cultural factors on human behavior.
For instance, while some cultures play a great importance on individualism, others choose collectivism as being more important.
The term 'culture' can be defined as the characteristics of a group of people, from attitudes to values, transmitted from generation to generation.
The cross-cultural psychology studies, by means of etic or emic approach, the way culture influences our life as a whole or the idea of ethnocentrism, which so often leads to biases.
The main topics in cross-cultural psychology are the following:
The main difference between the cross-cultural psychology and the other branches of psychology refers to the fact that cross-cultural psychology analyses the effects of culture on human behavior, whereas the other types of psychology focus more on how people themselves influence the human behavior.
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Normally, studies conducted to understand human behavior have participants representing the wider human population, which may be true in a certain geography but isn't accurate when we take into account other cultures and demographics.
More than 90% of the participants in psychological studies originate from countries that are Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich and Democratic (W.E.I.R.D) which is neither a random sample nor a real representation of the human population.
People across the world have different ways of describing themselves, different mental associations and thinking styles, possessing radically diverse motivations, upbringing, and social relationships.
What may be categorized as a mental illness in a certain part of the world may be normal behavior in another. Cultural differences pervade in a wider array of human behavior and there is a need to increase the circumference and scope of these studies.
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