Significance of Activity Theory Concepts for Qualitative Neuropsychology
The article analyses theoretical and methodological aspects of neuropsychology. Neuropsychology might be considered as a part of neuroscience, but also as the part of psychology. In this last choice, neuropsychology has to conceptualize the ways for studying of psychological process before passing to the level of relation, which exists between psychological processes and brain level in order to identify specific mechanisms or components of psychological processes related to the functioning of special brain zones. Such a study can be based on different general psychological theories. One of the possibilities is historical and cultural approach and activity theory. From the point of view of activity theory approach, brain functional systems might be understood as psycho-physiological dynamic mechanisms of actions and operations fulfilled by a subject. All actions of the subject are always accomplished within the context of one or another cultural activity. Neuropsychological level of analyses might be understood as the elementary functional level of human activity. Neuropsychological analysis might be organized as assessment of actions instead of assessment of isolated functions. The article shows the benefits and significance of activity theory general concept for the field of neuropsychological research and practice of assessment and rehabilitation. The discussion stresses the importance of argumentation of relation between general psychology and neuropsychology.