international Conference kicked off at GCU
Lahore, The first international conference on Emerging Trends in Psychology has kicked off at the Government College University Lahore within an objective to introduce and encourage new paradigms of theory and research in psychology that better address the social and cultural issues of Pakistan. GCU Vice Chancellor Prof. Dr. Ikram-ul-Haq(Sitara-e-Imtiaz) was the chief guest at the opening ceremony of the three-day conference being attend by psychiatrists and psychologists form all over the country. Noted psychologist Dr. Naumana Amjad presented her key note address at the opening ceremony of the conference spread over four academic sessions.

Addressing the conference, GCU Psychology Department Chairperson Dr. Asir Ajmal stressed the need of developing indigenous psychology with local models so that we can better understand the country’s social and cultural problems. He said that the discipline of Psychology has undergone rapid expansion and consolidation in the past century. Modern Psychology, as we call it today, is a myriad of perspectives ranging from rigidly scientific and mathematical ones to those committed to their origins in philosophy and religion.

However, Dr. Asir Ajmal said, these modern perspectives when applied in post–colonial contexts as Pakistan, seem unfit as either explanations or solutions to our current crisis around identity, religion, culture and gender. Notwithstanding the labels of ‘third world’ and ‘developing countries’ imparted by the complex hierarchies of modern scientific world, the recent departure from modern to postmodern psychology allows a more creative engagement with local knowledge forms and rethinking about modern social science itself.

Dr. Asir said that the conference on “Emerging Trends in Psychology” would offer an exposure into these new paradigms and methodologies that mark most recent areas in psychology as developmental psychopathology, cognitive neuroscience, critical social psychology and psychology of happiness and coping but would also address unresolved issues around culture, religion, spirituality, gender, national and ethnic identities.

Noted psychologist Dr. Naumana Amjad said that knowledge of human behaviors comes through practice and not only from the books. In her address, she pointed out a number of ethical considerations in psychology and concluded that psychology should be put to service of people.

Addressing the conference, GCU VC Prof. Ikramul Haq said that GC University is striving to work in three additional strategic directions; institutional collaboration, international links and open-learning to increase flexibility and interaction. He hoped that the conference would also deliberate upon where do we stand in relation to modern knowledge and what practical changes can we produce in our curriculum and research to remain an active part of ever innovative scenario of the discipline of psychology. The conference will conclude on Thursday, March 31, 2011.

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