Is it possible for psychology to measure everything in society and is it a viable aim for the subject? If it’s true (and i believe it is) that knowledge and it’s validity is forever changing due to new findings then does it matter if psychology tries, and fails, to study everything?
The main issue I think with this question is the operationalisation of concepts. Take for example research into studies based on emotions. Emotions are very hard to operationalise as they differ in meaning from person to person. Take for example the emotion of happiness. This word is used to describe a wide range of good feelings by people that are as a result of a wide range of events and news. To operationalise this means that some versions of happiness will be missed out as one definition would never be enough to cover the whole range. Easterlin (1994) looked at whether or not that increasing the income of people made their happiness increase. He found that as the peoples income increased so did what was needed to fulfill their happiness. For example a poor family may only need their bills and food to be paid for in order for them to class themselves as happy, however would this suffice for the billionaire who is used to a large house, fancy cars and designer clothes. I think maybe not. If anything this study showed that there are some concepts like emotions that are changing constantly that mean any measurement of them would be outdated the minute it was taken (I get that this is the case for other concepts as well but I think that emotion measurement is probably more fluid than most).
So back to the question… is it possible to measure everything for psychologists? In my opinion no. Though the majority of things there is some way to measure and study i just feel that some things are too ambiguous and not specific enough for research. Again back to emotions how would this be measured exactly..a scale? If so what would be used for the different intervals? Life events of some kind maybe rating your happiness on a scale against certain other events in your life? This doesn’t exactly sound very scientific to me and how would it all be quantified? everyone’s experiences are different so how could they be compared to each other if the life events scale are different? It just doesn’t seem entirely possible to me.