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Course Descriptions

Psychology Course Listings - Spring 2013

PSYC 100:  Understanding Psychology
4 semester hours
Woehrle, Nancy; Zembar, Mary Jo

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 not to be taken in conjunction with or in addition to Psychology courses 110-160.

PSYC 107 Statistics
4 semester hours
Brown, Clifford

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 statistics course.
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 120:  Pro-seminar 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.  There are also two short papers; one is on a laboratory exercise and the other is a movie analysis.

PSYC 140: Pro-seminar IV: Individual Differences
2 semester hours
Brookings, Jeffrey

Prerequisites: None
This course is an introduction to the scientific study of individual differences in intelligence and personality.  In the first part of the course, we consider theories of intelligence, how intelligence is measured, and current controversies about the proper use of intelligence test scores.  In part two of the course, we shift to the study of personality, including broad theories of personality (psychoanalytic, behavioral, humanistic, trait) and new directions in personality research and measurement.

PSYC 150: Pro-seminar V: Abnormal
2 semester hours
Little, Stephanie

Prerequisites:  None
This course is an introduction to the realm of psychology that focuses on identifying and treating psychological disorders. Key features of a variety of common mental illnesses will be considered. Also, different theoretical views regarding the causes of and treatments for mental illness will be covered. In addition, basic emotions and motivations are introduced. Student learning, including the ability to apply course concepts, will be assessed via exams and papers.

PSYC 160:  Pro-seminar 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 207:  Experimental Design
5 semester hours
Anes, Michael

Prerequisite: Psychology 107 or another statistics course.
This laboratory course gives you hands-on experience with the basic principles of research in psychology: the logic and methodologies of collecting data in a scientific manner, and the concepts and techniques of applying statistics to collected data in order to draw conclusions. We will cover a variety of methodologies, emphasizing how you can use each of them yourself. As part of this course, you will design and implement a number of studies that involve collecting, analyzing, and interpreting original data, as well as reporting your findings. Each study will illustrate a different type of analytic tool or procedure, but the specific questions to be addressed in these studies will be determined by you.

PSYC 232: Psychology of Adolescence
4 semester hours
Zembar, Mary Jo
Prerequisite:  Psychology 130 or EDUC 111 or 112
This course examines the physical and psychological consequences of making the transition to adolescence. Current psychological theories and research are presented to clarify the changes that occur during this stage of development.  Emphasis is placed on contemporary issues such as eating disorders, parent-adolescent conflict, peer pressure, teenage motherhood, delinquency, etc. The format of the course includes lecture/discussion, films, and in-class group exercises. Outside assignments include a journal, quizzes, and a group presentation. The class typically meets three times a week and is writing intensive. Service Learning 100 is an option with this course.

PSYC 280C: Psychology & Culture
4 semester hours
Crane, Lauren

Prerequisite: Sophomore standing (or higher)
People cannot speak without having an accent from somewhere. In much the same way, people's psychological functioning is not accent-free.  This course highlights the extent to which all levels of psychological functioning, even "basic" ones, are grounded in culture-specific assumptions about what matters, what is "good”, and how the world works. Students are expected to emerge from this class with a sharpened ability to critique generalizations made about human psychology, a greater appreciation of interpersonal diversity, and a richer understanding of how their own ways of thinking and being derive from culture-bound experiences. Course requirements include exams, research projects, and class participation. This course contains substantial East Asian content and counts toward the East Asian Studies major/minor. This course also includes an optional “Cultures and Languages across the Curriculum” (CLAC) component.

PSYC 280: Introduction to Clinical Psychology
4 semester hours
Little, Stephanie

Prerequisite: Psychology 150
This course provides an introduction to the field of clinical psychology. Historical and current trends in the field will be covered, as well as assessment and intervention techniques. Major theories of psychotherapy to be covered include humanistic-existential, cognitive-behavioral, and psychoanalytic. Topics to be covered will be applicable to a broad range of clinical and counseling-related fields (e.g., social work, case management, guidance counseling).

PSYC 311: Behavioral Neuroscience
5 semester hours

Woehrle, Nancy

Prerequisites:  Psychology 107 or another statistics course and Psychology 110.
This course is concerned with the structure and function of systems of neurons, and how these are related to behavior.  Lecture topics include neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, psychopharmacology, and the neurobiology of sensation, emotion, motivation, learning, memory, and psychopathology.   Laboratories include exposure to behavioral neuroscience research methodology and instrumentation.

PSYC 341:  Psychological Testing
5 semester hours
Brookings, Jeffrey

Prerequisites:  Psychology 107 or another statistics course and Psychology 140
This is a laboratory course examining principles of test construction, validation, and interpretation, with emphasis on measures of cognitive ability, personality characteristics, and psychological disorders.  Classes will be in lecture/discussion format.  Lab exercises emphasize psychometric evaluation of published psychological tests and hands-on experience administering and scoring simulated diagnostic tests. A group project requires students to construct and validate a psychological test.

PSYC 390:  Junior Seminar
No Credit
Brookings, Jeffrey

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 Seminar in Cognitive Neuroscience
4 Semester hours
Anes, Michael

In this course, we rely upon careful experimentation to reveal the brain’s processing specialization for specific tasks.
Scientific questions to be addressed in the class are 1) about how the brain constructs its representation of the body (in the “rubber hand” illusion and in virtual reality situations), 2) how the brain left and right hemispheres pay attention to the world – does one hemisphere prevail in allocation of attention in vision and in audition? We will read
primary journal articles in the first portion of the course and students will be expected to capably present this material in class and in written response assignments. Performance will be assessed with respect to 1) laboratory work, 2) participation in class discussion of previous work, written responses, and in data analyses, and 3) individual writing of journal articles of a quality suitable for publication. The course is designated Writing Intensive.

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. Writing Intensive.

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