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PSY7110: Western and Non-Western Theorists

This guide was created for assistance finding articles for the Western/non-Western theorist (or scientific/non-scientific theorist) assignment in PSY7110.

Explore Further

 See our full library research tutorial on iGuide for tips on:

  • Time management tools for research
  • Searching for information on a topic
  • Searching for discipline-specific research articles

Introduction to the Assignment

This is a tough assignment.  However, below you will find some steps to get starting finding the information you will need for your discussion post.

1. Take a look at the Timeline of Significant Individuals and Events in the History of Psychology that you referenced for Discussion 1 in this unit (inside the cover of your textbook).  From the Timeline, you can get the names of some Western and non-Western theorists or theories you might be interested in learning more about.


2. Go to the Library homepage (Log in to iGuide. Click the Library tab in the top navigation menu).  Then click Databases A-Z.

Search within Credo Reference or the Gale Virtual Reference Library for the names of the theorists or theories you identified.  These databases contain several encyclopedias which should outline the theories you chose and explain some of their contributions to psychology.


3. Use the recommended databases and search strategies below to find two peer-reviewed articles addressing the difference between Western and non-Western though (or scientific and non-scientific throught).  Then analyze and integrate the information from these articles into the differentiation/description of your two theorists/theories.

Please Note: Not many of the articles you find are going to exactly match your search topic.  However, there will likely be portions of these articles that are useful in your analysis.

Search Instructions

1. Go to the Library Homepage.


(Log in to iGuide.  Click the Library tab in the top navigation menu.)  

 Screenshot of Library tab in iGuide.

2. Click Databases A-Z under the Summon search box.  

   The following databases are recommended for this assignment:

  • PsycINFO
  • Proquest Psychology Journals
  • Academic Search Premier
  • SocINDEX

3. Use keywords to search.  For your topic, we recommened using cominations of the following keywords:

  • West*
  • Non-West* OR east*
  • Psycholog*
  • Histor*


Example Search Strategies Combining Keywords

1st Search Box: west* (Select Field: AB Abstract)

2nd Search Box: non-west* OR East* (Select Field: AB Abstract)

3rd Search Box: psycholog* (Select Field: AB Abstract)

4th Search Box: histor* (Select Field: AB Abstract)

Screenshot of sample search in PsycINFO.


1st Search Box: [Name of your theorist or theory] (Select AB Abstract)

2nd Search Box: Psycholog* (Select AB Abstract)

3rd Search Box: Histor*  (Select AB Abstract)

Search in PsycINFO for name of a theorist (unspecified) in first search box, psycholog* in second search box, histor* in third search box.  AB Abstract is selected in all drop-down menus.


1st Search Box: [Name of your theorist or theory]  (Select AB Abstract)

2nd Search Box:

3rd Search Box:

Search in PsycINFO for name of a theorist (unspecified) in first search box. AB Abstract is selected in the drop-down menu.


  • OR allows you to combine related terms pertaining to the same concept. It
    broadens your search by including, but not limiting to, additional terms.
  • Asterisk (*) allows you to truncate a word to its root which will search for the
    root word with any ending, e.g. stereotyp* searches stereotype,
    stereotypes, stereotyping. 

Article Titles vs. Abstract: Article titles do not fully articulate what an article is
about. Be sure to read the complete Abstract to better evaluate if an article fits
your research topic. Abstracts summarize article content in more detail. In most
databases you can click on the article title to view an abstract.

Revising your Search: You may need to revise your search several times until
you find relevant articles on your topic (try to narrow to fewer than 200 results).
For more help revising your search, try our Forming a Search Strategy guide
(found on the Guides and Tutorials page on the Library Web site) or Ask a