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Development of Psychology in Pakistan

Development of Psychology in PAKISTAN.

Development of Psychology in PAKISTAN

The end of British rule in India led to the independence of Pakistan in August 1947. The present geographical boundaries of the country date from December 1971, when East Pakistan became the independent state of Bangladesh. At the time of independence only two colleges taught psychology: the Government College, Lahore, where psychology, as was common practice until the 1960s was taught as part of the philosophy syllabus, and Forman Christian College, Lahore. The first independent psychology department was founded at Karachi University with Qazi Muhammad Islam, whose academic background was in philosophy, as chair. Psychology achieved independent status at the Government College, Lahore (University of the Punjab) in 1962, with Dr. Muhammad Ajmal as its first chair. The psychology department at the University of Sindh became independent in 1960, with Dr. Raffia Hasan as chair. Syed Muliammad Hafeez Zaidi observed in Frontiers of Psychological Research in Pakistan (Karachi, Pakistan, 1975) that the tradition was for philosophy teachers to become psychologists. This resulted in the adoption of traditional indigenous psychology that was also oriented toward philosophy. Hafeez Zaidi wrote two articles on the early days of Pakistani psychology (American Psychologist, 1959, 14, 532-536; Psycho logia, 1958, I, 187-190) Today, Pakistan has five major departments of psychology, two in Lahore (Punjab), two in Sindh (Karachi, Jamshoro), and one in Peshawar (NWFP). The former three departments offer master’s of arts/science degrees, while (the latter two departments also offer a 3–year bachelor of arts/science (Hon-ors) program. All departments and institutes offer master’s of philosophy or doctoral degree programs. There are also two institutes, the Muhammad Ajmal National Institute of Psychology (Islamabad) and the Institute of Clinical Psychology (Karachi). A total of 25 doctoral degrees have been given by these psychology departments and institutes.

Founder of Scientific Psychology.

Syed Muhammad Hafeez Zaidi (1926-1986) was educated at the Muslim University of Aligarh (India) and received a doctoral degree from the University of London under the supervision of R. W. Russell. He began his career as a lecturer at Dacca University, and then worked as a social psychologist for several years at the Pakistan Academy for Village Development, East Pakistan. He moved to Karachi University where he made a major contribution to social and cross-cultural psychology through his original research and theoretical writings on Pakistan psychology. He was an editor of the first professional psychology journal in the country (Pakistan Journal of Psychology, abstracted in Psychological Abstracts) which was first published in June 1965. He made several visits to the United States as a visiting professor. Dr. Zaidi’s continuing research interests and publications were in the area of Social change. The basic assumption for studies of social change in develop-ing countries is that the society is in transition and therefore under stress. His interest in erratic behavior resulting from stress began with his doctoral work on reactions to stress (Genetic Psychology Monographs, 1960, 62, 41-104). Much of his work on the impact of socioeconomic changes on rural socio cultural institutions in Pakistan up to 1968 has been incorporated in Village Culture in Transition (Honolulu, 1970). The hook also explores the dynamics of change and conflict in East Pakistan (now Bangladesh). In another study on socio cultural change and value conflict (In Caudill & Un. Lin Eds., Honolulu., Hawaii, 1969). Zaidi analyzed Pakistani socio cultural conflicts in greater detail. The in-creasing influx of rural people to the towns and cities is a major source of disorganization of traditional behavior patterns. The enormous impact of rural migration to the cities of the Third World continues to create huge problems for both the cities they migrate to and the villages they leave behind. Zaidi has argued that for quite some time the migrant retains a village style of life and belief, thus remaining a “peasant in the city.” Zaidi coauthored a cross-cultural study in the early 1970s with L. Sechrest and T. L. Fay as senior authors (Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 1972, 3,41-56). Zaidi contributed a chapter to Cross-Cultural Perspectives on Learning (R. W. Brislin, S. Buckner. & W. J. Lonner, Eds., New York. 1975) on the social and psychological adjustment of foreign Asian and African students in Pakistan.

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