Surveys major areas of psychological science, including human social behavior, personality, psychological disorders and treatment, learning, memory, human development, biological influences, and research methods. Related topics may include sensation, perception, states of consciousness, thinking, intelligence, language, motivation, emotion, stress and health, cross-cultural psychology, and applied psychology. Offered: AWS.
The scientific discipline of psychology is concerned with trying to understand the behavior of humans and other animals. As the semester progresses you will learn about mental faculties such as perceiving, thinking, feeling, learning, remembering, and attaining consciousness and other states of awareness. The course will also be concerned with what motivates behavior and with trying to understand enduring psychological traits such as personality. Influences of society and culture, and developmental changes in behavior over the lifespan will also be considered. Near the end of the course, psychological disorders and the scientific bases for treatment and therapy will be discussed.
All of these topics will be examined from the perspectives of a variety of theoretical approaches that have been adopted by psychologists. For example, some psychologists put a primary emphasis on searching for the biological bases of behavior, while others emphasize various kinds of environmental influences on behavior, including social and cultural influences.
Student learning goals
At the end of this course you should have a basic understanding of psychology’s fundamental concepts, methods, and empirical findings.
General method of instruction
I am going to be using the following textbook for the course:
Lilienfeld, Lynn, Namy, and Wolf Psychology, From Inquiry to Understanding 2nd Edition, Pearson, 2011
If you are planning to major in psychology, or have a strong interest the topic, you might want to consider having a hardcopy of the textbook you can keep as a reference. If so, you can purchase a new (hardback or paperback) copy directly from the publisher http://www.mypearsonstore.com/bookstore/product.asp?isbn=0205832067 or from other online websites.
However, for many of you who are only interested in completing the requirements for this one introductory course in psychology, you might find it more cost effective to purchase online access to an electronic copy of the text. For example, I see that access for 180 days can be purchased from Coursesmart for less than half the price of a hardcopy:
I did not ask the University Bookstore to order any copies for our course because I was not sure how many of you would prefer/need to buy your copies directly from the bookstore. However, I am sure the bookstore can order individual copies for you if you place individual requests with them.
Class assignments and grading