Identifying Core Concepts in Introductory Psychology

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Two studies were conducted in an attempt to establish a core of concepts considered fundamental to introductory psychology courses. Six textbooks were analyzed for concepts that could be considered important to instructors. The six textbooks yielded 5,148 terms and after duplications were eliminated, 2,742 unique terms were organized in a chapter-by-chapter format. 45 psychology instructors rated three chapters each, creating a resource listing of the most important concepts in introductory psychology. Limitations to this approach and varied possible uses of this information are discussed.