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Course Descriptions

Psychology Course Listings - Fall 2010

PSYC 100:  Understanding Psychology
4 semester hours
Zembar, Mary Jo and Staff

Prerequisites:  None
An introductory-level survey course in psychology with a focus on how psychology can be applied to other fields of study and life in general; intended for students who do not plan to major or minor in psychology.  Covers topics in biological foundations of behavior, learning and memory, developmental psychology, motivation and emotion, abnormal psychology and psychotherapy, personality, and social psychology. This course is designed for non-majors and minors and is not to be taken in conjunction with or in addition to Psychology courses 110-160.

PSYC 107 Statistics
4 semester hours
Brown, Cliff

Prerequisites:  To register for Psychology 107, a student must have a 23 or higher Mathematics Placement Level.  Contact the Math Workshop for details regarding this prerequisite.  A student may not receive credit for more than one introductory statistics course. (e.g., Math 127, Mgt. 210)
This is a course in applied statistics.  Its emphasis is on the mechanics of summarizing and analyzing data, with examples from the behavioral sciences.  The purpose of the course is to prepare students for other courses in Psychology and related disciplines and to help them conduct and interpret statistical analyses.

PSYC 110:  Proseminar I:  Physiological
2 semester hours
Wilson, Josephine

Prerequisites:  None
This course is an introduction to the study of the biological bases of behavior, including the structure and function of neurons, brain organization, and sensation and perception.  Required texts include a basic psychology textbook and O. Sacks’ The Man Who Mistook His Wife For a Hat.  Grade in course is based on three exams in multiple choice and essay format.  In addition, students are required either to participate in a limited number of research studies or to write a research paper.

PSYC 120:  Proseminar II: Learning
2 semester hours
Anes, Michael

Prerequisites:  None
This course is an introduction to the scientific bases, methods, theories, and findings in the study of learning and memory in humans and animals.  Includes operant conditioning laboratory exercises.  Grade is based on two exams, lab performance, and a written lab log.  In addition, students are required either to participate in a limited number of research studies or to write a research paper. There are also two short papers; one is on a laboratory exercise and the other is a movie analysis.

PSYC 160:  Proseminar VI:  Social
2 semester hours
Brown, Clifford

Prerequisites:  None
This course is an introduction to social psychology, the scientific study of how others influence our beliefs, emotions, and behavior.  Topics include conformity, persuasion, social cognition, attribution, attitudes, prejudice, aggression, and nonverbal communication.  Three tests assess performance.  In addition, students are required either to participate in a limited number of research studies or to write a research paper.

PSYC 231:  Child Development
4 semester hours
Zembar, Mary Jo

Prerequisite:  Psychology 130 or Education 111 or 112.
The developmental study of children from prenatal development to preadolescence, with emphasis on motor, cognitive, language, social and personality development.  Monthly observations of infants and children help students apply theoretical developmental models and research findings. Service-learning 100 is an available option. Final grade is based on essay exams, observation projects, and participation.

PSYC 242:  Industrial Organizational Psychology
4 semester hours
Brookings, Jeffrey

Prerequisites: Psychology 107 or another Statistics course.
Industrial/Organizational (IO) Psychology involves the application of psychological theory and research to understanding and improving job performance.  Work behavior may be studied from multiple perspectives (e.g., organizational, cultural, societal); because this is a psychology course, we will look at job behavior primarily from the perspectives of the individual worker and the employer.  That is, we will emphasize what individual workers do on the job, how well they do it, how we select and train people to do their jobs, and how we compensate them fairly for their work.  In addition, we will consider the effects of context—organizational variables, the physical environment, and employment law—on worker performance.  Finally, because we are concerned with employees’ well-being, as well as their performance, we will explore current issues (e.g., drug testing, sexual harassment, organizational innovations, and workplace violence) that affect the quality of work life.  Three exams, a final exam, and a term project.

PSYC 251:  Abnormal Psychology
4 semester hours
Little, Stephanie

Prerequisite: Psychology 150
A study of the causes, diagnosis, and treatment of psychological disorders in adults. Various theories, models and diagnostic and therapeutic procedures are investigated in the context of research and case studies. An advanced course, which primarily serves students interested in clinical psychology, social work, counseling, and related health specialties.

PSYC 311: Behavioral Neuroscience
5 semester hours
Wilson, Jo

Prerequisites:  Psychology 107 or another statistics course and Psychology 110.
This course provides the student with a solid background in the biological basis of behavior.  Topics covered in lectures include the study of neurons, gross and fine neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, sensory systems, and the physiological basis of motivation (thirst, hunger, sex, and sleep), emotions, learning, memory, brain damage, and psychopathology.  Final grade is based on four tests, in different formats, a final exam, and laboratory reports on weekly 3-hour laboratory sessions.

PSYC 321:  Learning, Memory, and Cognition
5 semester hours
Anes, Michael

Prerequisites:  Psychology 120 and Psychology 207
This is a course in which we study major operations of the human mind; perceiving, remembering, acting, and thinking.  Specific areas of coverage include attention, visual search and object recognition, visual memory, general memory mechanisms (working and long-term), language, imagery, reasoning, and judgment.  We will discuss learning and memory in other species as well, and attempt to draw parallels that inform our understanding of human cognition.
Specific proposals about how the mind accomplishes particular tasks (models) have been advanced in the short, 50-year history of modern cognitive psychology.  We will see how these models have been tested, in part by participating in replications of classic cognitive psychology experiments.  Data, including the data we generate ourselves, will be discussed in detail.  We will write APA-style papers describing the nature of these tasks, the methods used, and the results obtained in the tasks.  Finally, we will plan and execute group experiments.

PSYC 390:  Junior Seminar
No Credit
Wilson, Josephine

This seminar meets one hour per week and is designed to help students understand their various options as psychology majors.  This includes topics such as senior research projects and internships, senior comprehensive and GRE exams, possible career paths, graduate school applications, and graduate school and job interviews.  This class may include guest speakers and field trips based on students’ interests.  Psychology majors are required to take this no-credit seminar for one semester during their junior year.

PSYC 400: Research: Personality
4 semester hours
Brookings, Jeffrey

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.
In small groups, students will complete research studies on personality as reflected by the way individuals design their “personal living spaces” (e.g., dorm rooms, offices, Facebook profiles).  Students will design the studies, collect and analyze the data, write up the results, and submit their findings for presentation at a psychology conference.  Preparation for the research will involve reading and discussing published studies on personality and personal living spaces, and becoming acquainted with relevant research methodologies and instruments.  Course grades are based on class participation, contributions to the project(s), and an APA-style research report.

PSYC 400:  Research Seminar:  Interpersonal Behavior
4 semester hours
Brown, Clifford

Prerequisite:  Permission of instructor.
Students in this course will work with the instructor on interpersonal behavior research in the area of social psychology. Students will become familiar with the current literature in a specific area of social psychology, and meet twice weekly to discuss research literature, develop hypotheses, and design studies to test their hypotheses. Students will review previous research, plan and conduct studies, analyze the data, and write research papers summarizing their findings.  It is anticipated that these papers will be submitted to regional conferences. Microcomputers will be used extensively in each of these stages.  Writing Intensive.

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