Course Descriptions

Course Catalog for PSYCHOLOGY
PSYC 101
Introduction to Psychology
An introduction to the basic concepts in psychology with primary emphasis on the study of human behavior. Topics will include motivation, learning, emotion, perception, intelligence, memory, personality, child development, mental illness, and social interaction. Students will be introduced to issues in research techniques by either being involved in on-going faculty research or writing a short paper based on research articles.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 118
Psychology and the Experience of Music
This course examines the experience of music from the standpoint of psychology. The material covered will include several branches of psychology including neuroscience and perception (areas of the brain involved in perceiving and interpreting sounds), cognition (memorizing and performing compositions), emotion (connections between certain sounds and the emotions they evoke) and socio-cultural psychology (ways in which music enhances a feeling of connectedness to a group; similarities and differences found in music from different cultures). No musical training is necessary.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 101.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 218
Special Education
How are children labeled (or mislabeled) as having learning and developmental disabilities, autism, or attention deficit disorder? How have definitions and diagnoses of learning disorders changed over time? How have standardized evaluations and assessments impacted those diagnoses? How does the law seek to ensure the accommodation of the needs of individuals with disabilities? Students will critically analyze research on psychology as it pertains to learners, examine special education case law and advocacy, and explore current issues in special education.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 221
Research Design and Analysis
An intensive study of the methods employed in understanding human and animal behavior as well as an introduction to the problems of psychological data evaluation. Some of the topics included will be the roles of observation, description, bias, hypotheses, theory, and non-reactive research. Consideration will also be given to descriptive techniques, including measures of central tendency, variability, and correlation. Problems will deal with hypothesis testing, group comparisons, frequency comparisons, and analysis of variance. Enrollment in lecture and each laboratory limited.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 101.
1.25 units, Lecture
PSYC 223
Intersecting Identities: The Asian American Experience
This course focuses on what it means to be Asian American and how the social and cultural context shapes the Asian American experience. We will consider topics like bullying, acculturation, biculturalism, minority group status, cultural values and norms, relationships and roles and how they affect identity development and psychological functioning (e.g., stressors, support systems, academic achievement, mental health). We will discuss the complications and consequences of migration and settlement in urban areas. Through film, novels, research, and writing, we will develop and apply critical thinking skills in addressing the Asian American experience.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 226
Social Psychology Laboratory
Studies human behavior and cognition in social situations, interactions of individuals in groups, and such topics as affiliation, aggression, and conformity. The course also covers applications of social psychology to such areas as medicine, the workplace, and the law.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 101.
0.25 units, Laboratory
PSYC 226
Social Psychology
Studies human behavior and cognition in social situations, interactions of individuals in groups, and such topics as affiliation, aggression, and conformity. The course also covers applications of social psychology to such areas as medicine, the workplace, and the law.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 101.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 236
Adolescent Psychology
This course will focus on the important theoretical and conceptual issues in adolescent psychology and their experimental support. A developmental perspective will be adopted in order to emphasize that adolescence is not an isolated period but rather part of the process of development that occurs throughout life.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 237
Health Psychology
This course examines the psychological aspects of stress, pain, and treatment as related to human wellness. The physiological underpinnings of stress and stress-related disorders are explored as well as the perspectives from personality and social psychology. The problem of pain leads to an exploration of the nature of symptoms in general, which involves an understanding of the attribution process and labeling. Finally, the psychological aspects of “becoming a patient” are considered.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 240
Parenting, Interpersonal Relations, and Mental Health
This course will explore how early relationships with primary caregivers shape the nervous system, affect memory, and influence intimate relationships and mental health. We will discuss the role of emotion regulation on cognitive and social development. We will examine the development of anxiety disorders, depression, and personality disorders from an attachment perspective. Interventions aimed at parents and children will be discussed.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 246
Community Psychology
In this course we will explore the major theories and principles of community psychology, a branch of psychology that explores how societal, cultural, and environmental factors impact people's psychological well-being. Topics will include community-based prevention of psychological disorders, health promotion, citizen participation and empowerment, the value of diversity, and the role of social support in buffering stress. We will also examine the goals and methods of community research, with an emphasis on the development, implementation, and evaluation of community-based programs. Given our proximity to numerous vibrant organizations in Hartford, this course requires that students participate in a community learning activity so that they may gain first-hand experience with community collaboration and put their classroom learning into practice. Enrollment limited.
This course is not open to first-year students.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 255
Cognitive Psychology Laboratory
A hands-on introduction to the methods used in behavioral cognitive science research. We will briefly explore a survey of methods and the process used to create a "program of research" rather than isolated experiments. Students will then develop a big-picture question and research program of their own, designing, executing, and analyzing two experiments with related motivations and methods. The relationship between experimental design and the research report paper will also be emphasized.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 255, or concurrent enrollment.
0.25 units, Laboratory
PSYC 255
Cognitive Psychology
The study of knowledge and how people use it, for example, in recall and recognition, controlling attention and dealing with distractions, solving real-world problems, and spoken or written communication. We will emphasize how each piece of our mental abilities fits together with other skills such as perception and language, along with the ways in which our minds and thoughts can diverge from what we subjectively experience of them. (1.25 course credits with optional laboratory)
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 101.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 261
Brain and Behavior
A basic study of the structure and function of the mammalian nervous system with a comprehensive analysis of the biological bases of major classes of behavior. Specific topics include: neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, sensory and motor system functioning, motivated behaviors, learning and memory, emotions, sex, and language. Enrollment in laboratory limited. (1.25 course credits with optional laboratory) The course is designed for declared or intended psychology and neuroscience majors.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 101 or Biology 140 or Biology 181 or Biology 182 or Biology 183.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 261
Brain and Behavior Laboratory
A diverse laboratory experience focused on the nervous system. Topics may include neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, sensory and motor system functioning, motivated behaviors, learning and memory, emotions, cognition, and language. Laboratory can be taken concurrent or subsequent to PSYC 261. The course is designed for declared or intended psychology neuroscience majors.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 261-01 or concurrent enrollment.
0.25 units, Laboratory
PSYC 265
Drugs and Behavior
A broad overview of the use and abuse of psychopharmaceuticals. We will study the classification of psychoactive drugs, their history, and the methodological research techniques used on humans and animals. The course emphasizes physiological mechanisms of drug actions, drug effects on psychological functioning including therapeutic and toxic effects. -- Hartman
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 270
Clinical Psychology
A survey of the concepts, methods, and theoretical issues of clinical psychology, with a focus on current and classical research and theory. Students will explore such areas as personality development from a clinical perspective, assessment, pathology, diagnosis, clinical research, and some preventative and therapeutic modes of intervention. Emphasis will also be placed upon evolving models of clinical psychology and their relationship to other areas of psychology and the life sciences.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 101.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 273
Abnormal Psychology
This course explores how "abnormal" behavior is defined and assessed, and focuses on the epidemiology, etiology (causes), and diagnostic criteria for a range of psychological disorders (e.g., depression, substance abuse, eating disorders, personality disorders), as well as biopsychosocial treatments for these disorders. Students also are introduced to controversial issues in the field.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 101.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 275
Introduction to the Psychology of Human Sexuality
This course will explore the relevant theories and research related to the study of human sexuality, primarily from a psychological perspective. Specific topics to be covered include the conceptualization of gender and sexuality, development of sexuality through the life span, how we define and understand sexually "deviant" behaviors, the conceptualization of sexuality through various cultural lenses, and the expression of sexuality in relationships.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 293
Perception Laboratory
The perception laboratory provides students with an opportunity to experience and manipulate perceptual effects, to learn necessary concepts and basic methodology. Students will learn how to manipulate computer graphics to make displays, design and execute psychophysical procedures, analyze psychophysical data, and write experimental reports. Topics include perception of size, depth, color, proportion, binocular vision, apparent motion, and "biological motion."
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 293, or concurrent enrollment.
0.25 units, Laboratory
PSYC 293
Perception
An introduction to current understanding of how organisms maintain contact with their environments through perception. Emphasis is on vision, but other modalities are also treated. (1.25 credits with optional laboratory)
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 101.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 295
Child Development
A survey of the biological, cognitive, and social factors that influence the process of development. The course will focus on both theoretical and empirical issues in child development and will include topics such as attachment, emotion regulation, language, cognition, and socialization. The course will highlight how cultural factors, along with biology interact to influence both the process and the outcomes of development. This course includes a community learning component, where students will choose a problem of interest and after talking with community experts, propose a solution to that problem.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 101.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 295
Child Development Laboratory
An introduction to the major scientific methods of observation, interviews, and experimentation that are used to study developmental questions in the areas of language, memory and concept development, sex-role stereotyping, prosocial development and play. Students will study infant and preschool children at the child care center located on campus.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 101.
0.25 units, Laboratory
PSYC 302
Behavioral Neuroscience
A selective exploration of dynamic biological and psychological mechanisms and underlying anatomy associated with various behaviors. It will explore behavior in the framework of brain health versus brain disease and include neurological disorders and their treatments as well interactions between the environment and behavior.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 261 or Neuroscience 201.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 310
The Psychology of Gender Differences
This seminar will examine various theoretical models of male and female development from a psychological perspective. By carefully evaluating the empirical research we will explore the myths of gender to understand how women and men are the same and how they are different. Studies of gender, however, must be understood in relationship to the implicit assumptions that researchers make about human nature. Therefore, we will systematically evaluate the role of conceptual and methodological bias in scientific investigations. The course will include an analysis of some non-traditional methods that have served to challenge our thinking about gender and sex roles. In order to gain a broader perspective on issues of gender, we will also examine work traditionally found in other disciplines such as sociology, anthropology, and biology.
This course is not open to first-year students.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 324
Stereotyping, Prejudice, and Discrimination
This course will focus on classic and contemporary psychological theories and research related to stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination. We will analyze these phenomena at the level of individuals, small groups, and institutions, with applications to forms of prejudice and discrimination based on several status characteristics, including race/ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, religion, and health. Approaches to reducing prejudice and discrimination will be examined and evaluated.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 226.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 326
Advanced Topics:Socl Psy
This course will apply social psychological theory and research toward understanding behavior in educational systems. We will examine several aspects of social cognition in classrooms, including ways that social comparison processes, causal attributions, and interpersonal expectancies may influence behavior. We will study social relations in school settings including peer relations and student-teacher relations. Finally, we will address effects of the social organization of classrooms, including practices such as ability grouping, cooperative learning, mainstreaming, and desegregation.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 226, 255 or 256.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 328
Applied Social Psychology
This course will study the application of theories, methods, and research findings in the field of social psychology to significant real-world problems and phenomena. This course is fundamentally about understanding how to change human behavior using the principles and research findings of social psychology. Areas of application include education, health, conflict resolution, public policy, and law. Examples of specific problems addressed include the performance gap in education, risky health behavior, and biases in eye-witness testimony.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 226.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 332
Psychological Assessment
The course examines the methods used to assess differences among individuals in personality characteristics, intellectual qualities, and overt behavior. Topics to be discussed include interviewing, intelligence and achievement testing, projective techniques, objective test construction, and behavioral observation.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 221L and four other courses in Psychology.
1.25 units, Seminar
PSYC 339
Developmental Psychopathology
This course studies the development in humans and animals of selected psychopathological disorders such as schizophrenia, depression, anxiety disorders, and somatoform disorders. The use of drugs and their neurochemical bases at different stages of the disorders will be explored. Clinical case studies and films will be used throughout the course to illustrate each of the disorders discussed. -Averna
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 261, or Psychology 270 or Psychology 273, or Psychology 295.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 340
Social Cognition
This advanced course will examine how we make sense of ourselves, of other people, and of our social world, in general. This course will apply the theories used in a variety of areas of cognitive psychology (e.g. attention, memory and decision making) to questions and issues typically examined in social psychology. These questions include: How do we form impressions of others? Why are we attracted to certain people but not others? What kinds of information about people are important to us, and why? How do we explain our behavior; and how do we explain others’ behavior? How do we organize all of this information about individuals and groups into something understandable? How do we form attitudes and stereotypes? Do our moods affect how we behave? Class meetings will include lecture, discussion, debate, and exercises.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 226, 255 or 256.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 365
Cognitive and Social Neuroscience
This course examines the way in which brain function influences mental processes and overt action. We will consider a range of cognitive and social functions, primarily from the perspective of neuroscience and draw on such related disciplines as cognitive psychology, social psychology, and computational analysis as needed. The functions to be reviewed include perception, attention, memory, thinking, emotional processing, group behavior, stereotyping and empathy. We will apply these to consider topics such as substance abuse, discrimination, child development, and mental illness.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 255, 256, or 261, or Neuroscience 201.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 390
Psychology Research Internship
Internship or field work placement, with a required academic component to be determined by the faculty sponsor and student. This internship is for students pursuing research at a field placement. Students need to complete an internship contract with Career Services.
1.00 units, Independent Study
PSYC 391
Psychology of Language
A survey of the questions asked by researchers working in different areas of psycholinguistics and the methods used to address those questions. We will cover a wide range of issues, from motor control in speech production to online sentence parsing to typical and atypical language acquisition. Focus will be on analytic discussions of readings from textbooks, scholarly reviews, and original research reports. Perspectives from neuroscience, linguistics, and psychology will be considered.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 255, 256, or 293.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 392
Human Neuropsychology
The course will begin with a cursory review of basic neuroanatomy, brain organization and topography, and neurotransmitters and neurotransmitter conductive systems. Next, an in-depth examination of physiological and neurological manifestations of cognitive and psychopathological disorders as well as behavioral correlates of neuropathological and pathophysiological disturbances will follow. Finally, a survey of current diagnostic procedures and treatment approaches will be presented. All course material augmented with, and accentuated by, illustrative clinical case material. Students should anticipate that special scheduling arrangements will be required for activities outside of regular class sessions.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 255, 256, or 261, or Neuroscience 201.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 395
Cognitive and Social Development
This course will explore cognitive and social development within a general developmental framework. It will elaborate and critically evaluate both Piaget’s and Vygotsky’s theories of cognition development. Topics such as cognition, intelligence, education, language, morality, social cognition, and sex-role development will be discussed in order to provide a variety of perspectives to understand how cognitive and social development occurs.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 295.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 397
Psychology of Art
Constructive, Gestalt, and ecological approaches to perception will provide a framework for examining the following topics: How pictures serve representational functions, the relation between perception and production of art works, the evolution of artistic styles or movements, and nonrepresentational and nonpictorial art. Enrollment limited.
1.00 units, Lecture
PSYC 399
Independent Study
A faculty member will supervise a student’s independent examination of topics that fall under the following rubrics: cognitive, social, and gender development (Anselmi); psychopathology, clinical, or counseling psychology (Holt, Lee); neuropsychology (Masino, Raskin); cultural psychology (Chang); social psychology (Chang, Reuman); personality and assessment (Reuman); perception (Mace); psychology of art (Mace); history of psychology (Mace); and language (Anselmi, Mace). Submission of the special registration form, available in the Registrar’s Office, and the approval of the instructor are required for enrollment.
0.50 units min / 1.00 units max, Independent Study
PSYC 401
Senior Seminar: Risk and Resilience
In recent years, psychologists have begun to recognize that negative life experiences such as poverty, parental divorce, and child abuse may not inevitably result in negative developmental outcomes for children. Children can survive and in many cases thrive, despite great deprivation. The concepts of risk and resilience provide important models for examining the process by which individuals come to positive developmental adaptations despite the presence of negative, stressful life events. This seminar will focus on the various models that have been proposed to understand the concepts of risk and resilience and the role that both biological and sociocultural factors play in each model. We will examine intervention strategies that have been developed to combat a variety of risk factors. In order to fully understand the concepts of risk and resilience in the context of how it operates in the lives of children and families, students will volunteer at various community organizations that aim to ameliorate risk and develop resilience in children and families.
This course is open only to senior Psychology majors.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 401
Big Beautiful Brain
This senior seminar will explore emerging research across the disciplines of psychology on the “what”, “when”, and “why” for optimal neurological function. Is bigger better? What makes and keeps a brain healthy? How does diet influence brain health and disease? Starting now, you can achieve and maintain the best brain possible, and learn specific strategies that may enhance your brain and reduce your chances of neurological disease.
This course is open only to senior Psychology majors.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 401
Senior Seminar: Psychology of Aging
This course will examine the process of human aging from a number of psychological perspectives. These perspectives include neuropsychology, personality, social psychology, sensation and perception, and psychopathology. In addition, common disorders of aging will be reviewed, including senile dementia of the Alzheimer's type, depression and age-associated memory loss.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 401
Senior Seminar: Self-Regulation: Theory and Application
Many of the personal and social problems we face today such as substance abuse, obesity, excessive debt, crime, and violence can be linked to a failure of self-regulation, or one’s “willpower” over his or her thoughts, emotions, and impulses. Through regular student-led discussions, we will explore the topic of self-regulation, drawing on numerous areas of psychology including social, clinical, cognitive, consumer, educational, and developmental psychology. Specifically, we will compare and contrast different models of self-regulation and we will explore current questions and debates related to this concept, such as whether self-control is a limited resource and the role of self-regulation in social relationships. We will examine the development of self-regulation early in the lifespan and investigate ways in which individual and environmental influences can subsequently enhance or impede one’s efforts to self-regulate. Finally, we will consider how theoretical models of self-regulation can be applied to promote behavior change and inform prevention efforts across a variety of settings. Working in groups, students will design a targeted intervention aimed at enhancing self-regulation in a specific area of interest (e.g., increasing prosocial behavior in school age children, decreasing disruptive behavior in adolescents with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder).
This course is open only to senior Psychology majors.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 401
Senior Seminar: The Psychology of the Human Face
An overview of the major areas of psychology (social, clinical, cognitive, developmental, physiological) as revealed in research and theory concerning faces. Representative topics include facial expression, facial aesthetics, memory and recognition of faces, stereotyping, and the development of children’s drawings of faces.
This course is open only to senior Psychology majors.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 401
Senior Seminar: Finding the Self
In this seminar, we will examine the self in different areas of psychology, including (but not limited to) cultural psychology, developmental psychology, and cognitive psychology. We will debate the nature of the self and address several questions: How do we define and view the self? How do perspectives about the self influence behavior? We will discuss these questions and others as we "find the self" through different psychological perspectives. This seminar is discussion-intensive with student-led discussions on a regular basis.
This course is open only to senior Psychology majors.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 402
Senior Seminar: Finding the Self
In this seminar, we will examine the self in different areas of psychology, including (but not limited to) cultural psychology, developmental psychology, and cognitive psychology. We will debate the nature of the self and address several questions: How do we define and view the self? How do perspectives about the self influence behavior? We will discuss these questions and others as we "find the self" through different psychological perspectives. This seminar is discussion-intensive with student-led discussions on a regular basis.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 402
Senior Seminar: Psychology of Aging
This course will examine the process of human aging from a number of psychological perspectives. These perspectives include neuropsychology, personality, social psychology, sensation and perception, and psychopathology. In addition, common disorders of aging will be reviewed, including senile dementia of the Alzheimer's type, depression and age-associated memory loss.
This course is open only to senior Psychology majors.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 402
Senior Seminar: The Powers and Pitfalls of Memory
Our memories shape our identities and give meaning to our lives, yet they are not always as reliable as we would like. This course will explore memory's strengths and fallibilities by considering contemporary frameworks of remembering and forgetting. Course readings and student-led discussions will incorporate perspectives from different psychology subspecialties, including cognitive psychology, neuroscience, developmental psychology, and social psychology. We will examine topics such as individuals who are expert memorizers and those who have experienced profound memory loss, the function of memory in childhood and in old age, memory for personal events and collective remembering, and the delicate balance between remembering and forgetting.
This course is open only to senior Psychology majors.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 402
Senior Seminar: Self-Regulation: Theory and Application
Many of the personal and social problems we face today such as substance abuse, obesity, excessive debt, crime, and violence can be linked to a failure of self-regulation, or one’s “willpower” over his or her thoughts, emotions, and impulses. Through regular student-led discussions, we will explore the topic of self-regulation, drawing on numerous areas of psychology including social, clinical, cognitive, consumer, educational, and developmental psychology. Specifically, we will compare and contrast different models of self-regulation and we will explore current questions and debates related to this concept, such as whether self-control is a limited resource and the role of self-regulation in social relationships. We will examine the development of self-regulation early in the lifespan and investigate ways in which individual and environmental influences can subsequently enhance or impede one’s efforts to self-regulate. Finally, we will consider how theoretical models of self-regulation can be applied to promote behavior change and inform prevention efforts across a variety of settings. Working in groups, students will design a targeted intervention aimed at enhancing self-regulation in a specific area of interest (e.g., increasing prosocial behavior in school age children, decreasing disruptive behavior in adolescents with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder).
This course is open only to senior Psychology majors.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 402
Senior Seminar: Risk and Resilience
In recent years, psychologists have begun to recognize that negative life experiences such as poverty, parental divorce, and child abuse may not inevitably result in negative developmental outcomes for children. Children can survive and in many cases thrive, despite great deprivation. The concepts of risk and resilience provide important models for examining the process by which individuals come to positive developmental adaptations despite the presence of negative, stressful life events. This seminar will focus on the various models that have been proposed to understand the concepts of risk and resilience and the role that both biological and sociocultural factors play in each model. We will examine intervention strategies that have been developed to combat a variety of risk factors. In order to fully understand the concepts of risk and resilience in the context of how it operates in the lives of children and families, students will volunteer at various community organizations that aim to ameliorate risk and develop resilience in children and families.
This course is open only to senior Psychology majors.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 402
Psychology of Human Face
An overview of the major areas of psychology (social, clinical, cognitive, developmental, physiological) as revealed in research and theory concerning faces. Representative topics include facial expression, facial aesthetics, memory and recognition of faces, stereotyping, and the development of children’s drawings of faces.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 414
History of Psychology
Why do psychologists do what they do today? The historical approach to this question will be divided into two parts: the theoretical ideas about how the human mind works, and the methods used to study the mind. What has changed since the early Greeks? What has stayed the same? Why? In what sense can we say there has been progress? How are theories, facts, and methods related? How is psychology like any other science? To fully confront the question of why psychologists do what they do, the history of psychology as a professional organization will also be examined. For instance, who controls grants and how do granting agencies control what psychologists do?
Prerequisite: C- or better in five psychology courses
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 415
Development and Culture
This seminar will look at current issues in developmental and social psychology including attachment, emotions, cognition, personality, biculturalism, gender, language, socialization and psychopathology from the perspective of cultural psychology. We will focus on the role culture, along with biology play in the outcome of development, as well as influencing our definitions of the process of development. Questions we will address include: How do we define the process of development? Can we integrate development, culture and biology into a coherent model of development? Are there cultural universals? Are current psychological models and methods sufficient to account for the role of culture in development?
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 226 or 295
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 426
Advanced Topics in Social Psychology: Cultural Psychology
Cultural psychology focuses on how sociocultural contexts and cultural practices affect and reflect the human psyche. Our understanding of cultural influences on social psychological processes related to topics like the self, emotion, relationships, motivation, socialization, and psychological well-being will be informed by theoretical and empirical research. We will explore various cultural contexts, including Latino, Asian, African, European, and North American cultures. We will address major issues in cultural psychology and discuss implications of a culturally informed psychology.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 226.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 434
Current Issues in Cognition
This seminar will explore current “hot topics” in cognitive research. For example, we’ll investigate how our minds interface with our bodies (How do we learn new skills like swinging a bat or doing gymnastics? How do people control the movement of artificial limbs or wheelchairs?) and how the different “pieces” of cognition interact (Can how well we hear impact memory? How does lack of sleep change the way we pay attention?). In class and in writing, we will analyze behavioral, neurological, and philosophical research in cognition and evaluate the impact of these issues for psychologists and for people’s lives in the “real world.”
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 255 or Psychology 293, or permission of instructor
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 442
Evaluation and Treatment of Addictive Behavior
This course will provide an overview of theory and research on alcohol, drug, and tobacco use and dependence, in addition to other compulsive behaviors such as gambling. Specifically, we will compare theoretical models of the development of these behaviors; models of how people with an addiction change; methods to assess these behaviors; and different modalities of treatment. As part of this course, students will complete a "self-change" project, whereby they apply relevant assessment and intervention techniques to a behavior they wish to change.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 270 or 273.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 452
Cognitive Disorders
This seminar will explore the identification, evaluation, and biological bases of several cognitive disorders, and how they inform our understanding of cognitive processes. The topics will include but are not limited to: Dyslexia, Attention Deficit Disorder, Down's syndrome, William's syndrome, and Fragile X. We will discuss how alterations in underlying biological structures result in the cognitive deficits that characterize these disorders. In addition, some time will be spent discussing treatment and educational remediation.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 255, 256, or 261.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 454
Cognition in the Real World
This course will cover fundamental concepts in human cognition, emphasizing recent debates, as well as advances in methodology that have informed these debates. Importantly, these topics will be considered in terms of their application to other fields, including law, education, and medicine. In considering topics such as eyewitness memory, mood and anxiety disorders, aging, testing effects, psychopharmacology, and everyday instances of forgetting, students will develop a broader perspective of how research on human cognition may inform policy within medical, educational, and legal settings. Students will be expected to read research articles, give class presentations, and lead discussions. A final applied project will allow students to use what they have learned in the classroom to make specific policy recommendations.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 255, 256, or 293.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 464
Neuropsychopharmacology
This seminar will examine how drugs act upon, amplify, and modify neural functions, ultimately affecting mood and behavior. It will provide an introduction to the principles of pharmacology and neurochemistry. An in-depth study of the brain and behavioral mechanisms of drugs of abuse, such as cocaine, heroin, LSD, and alcohol, and the neurobiology of addiction. Additionally, we will examine the effects of prenatal exposure to these drugs.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 261 or Neuroscience 201.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 466
Teaching Assistantship
Submission of the special registration form, available in the Registrar’s Office, and the approval of the instructor are required for enrollment.
0.50 units min / 1.00 units max, Independent Study
PSYC 471
Psychotherapy
This course is taught as a seminar with limited enrollment and assumes some background. Through study of original theoretical source material, students investigate the nature of psychotherapy, with attention given to its evolution, the therapeutic relationship and communication, and the integrative aspects of diverse methods and theories, such as client-centered, rational-emotive, behavioral, psychoanalytic, Jungian, Gestalt, and group psychotherapy. Films will illustrate various styles of psychotherapy.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 270 or 273. Open only to Psychology majors or Literature & Psychology minors.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 490
Research Assistantship
Students may assist professors in conducting research studies. Hours and duties will be determined on the basis of project needs and student interests. Submission of the special registration form, available in the Registrar’s Office, and the approval of the instructor are required for enrollment.
0.50 units min / 1.00 units max, Independent Study
PSYC 493
The Ecological Approach to Psychology
Most scientific approaches to the study of vision, hearing, and feeling by touch, regard sensing real properties of the world as almost miraculous because the "input" to these senses is different from actual experience. The ecological approach makes scientific sense of the adaptive actions of animals by offering new proposals for what is "given" in the first place. Examples of traditional textbook approaches will be compared with ecological alternatives in current research articles about normal upright posture, grasping, walking, running, long jumping, flying aircraft, designing stairs and chairs, catching and hitting baseballs, and social coordination in physical activity like movers carrying heavy furniture or dancers moving relative to one another. Some common assumptions about neural and cognitive processing, including memory, are reframed in light of ecological alternatives.
Prerequisite: C- or better in Psychology 255, Psychology 256, or Psychology 293.
1.00 units, Seminar
PSYC 498
Senior Thesis, Part 1
The thesis is a year-long research project sponsored by a member of the Psychology Department. (Two course credits are considered pending in the first semester; two course credits will be awarded for completion in the second semester.) Submission of the special registration form, available in the Registrar’s Office, and the approval of the instructor are required for enrollment.
2.00 units, Independent Study
PSYC 499
Senior Thesis Part 2
The thesis is a year-long research project sponsored by a member of the Psychology Department. (Two course credits are considered pending in the first semester; two course credits will be awarded for completion in the second semester.) Submission of the special registration form, available in the Registrar’s Office, and the approval of the instructor are required for enrollment.
2.00 units, Independent Study