Author:
Ryan Thompson
Subject:
Psychology
Material Type:
Syllabus
Level:
Community College / Lower Division
Tags:
Psychology, VIVA Adopts, vgr-social-science, vgr-syllabus-bank
License:
Creative Commons Attribution
Language:
English
Media Formats:
Downloadable docs

Course Alignments

PSYC 101A: General Psychology

Overview

The syllabus for PSYC 101A: General Psychology, taught at Eastern Mennonite University by Ryan Thompson, PsyD.

Syllabus

EASTERN MENNONITE UNIVERSITY

General Psychology

 

Course Number: PSYC 101A                                                                Professor: Ryan Thompson, PsyD

Semester: Spring 2020                                                                              Office: Roselawn 313

When/Where: Tues/Thur 9:25-10:40, RLN 306                                       Campus Phone: x4431

Office Hours:   Mon & Tue 1:00-4:00; Thu 10:40-12:00;                          Email: ryan.thompson@emu.edu

                        Fri 10:15-12:00, 1:00-3:00                                           

 

What is the purpose of this course?

 

This General Psychology course is based on two broad intentions: (1) to teach you a limited set of psychological concepts and principles drawn from across the traditional domains of the discipline and (2) to expose you to the scope of the professional world in which contemporary psychologists may be found.

 

 

COURSE DESCRIPTION:

An introduction to the principles, language, methods, and major topics of the science of behavior and mental life. Emphasizes exploration and application in the following areas of psychology: neuroscience, human consciousness, learning, memory, motivation, development, and abnormal behavior among others.

 

This course fulfills the EMU Core Social and Behavioral Sciences requirement.

COURSE OBJECTIVES:

 

At the end of this course, you should feel comfortable:

  1. Using empirically supported study techniques and learning strategies.
  2. Describing biological, psychological, and social influences on behavior and applying disciplinary theories to given examples of human behavior.
  3. Discussing multiple methods used in psychological research.
  4. Creating an intervention that is based on psychological theory and science for a peace or social justice issue of personal importance.

 

REQUIRED TEXT

Biswas-Diener, R., & Diener, E. (2016). Discover psychology 2.0: A brief introductory text. Milwaukie, OR: Noba. Available for free at http://noba.to/5wjrz72n

Links to other assigned readings will be in Moodle or provided in class.

REQUIREMENTS AND EVALUATION:

 

Every graded assignment in General Psychology will be used to assess one (or more) of the course objectives.

1. Use empirically supported study techniques and learning strategies.

There are two critical study skills that will benefit you over the course of this semester (and beyond).  The first is to is to organize class content in a way that is meaningful.  One critical step to accomplishing this is to read course content before we discuss the material for the first time.  The second critical study skill is to continually study material rather than merely cramming immediately before a test.

Quizzes represent one of the key ways you can earn points in this class.  They will also be used to help establish the study skills noted above.  On the first day of each module, we will have a short 5-item quiz.  This quiz will cover key ideas from the assigned reading.

2. Describe the biological, psychological, and social influences on behavior and apply disciplinary theories to given examples of human behavior.

We will end each module with a 15-item quiz where 7-8 of the questions will come from the module we just finished, and the remaining questions will be drawn from a list of concepts that include all modules we have studied up to that point. In other words, the quiz at the end of each week will be cumulative to encourage distributed learning. These cumulative quizzes will be your opportunity to demonstrate your knowledge base in psychology.   

3. Discussing multiple methods used in psychological research

Over the course of the semester, you will have the opportunity to experience different methods used in psychological research. These opportunities will come in the form of research participation, attendance at select Suter Science Seminars, or attendance at select Psychology Club events. Other opportunities may be announced over the course of the semester.

 

 

You are expected to attend 5 preapproved events:

Research participation: Several opportunities spread over the course of the semester.

Suter Science Seminar:

Wednesday, Apr 1 @ 4 p.m. SC106

Genetics of Mental Illness: Unique Insights from Studies of Amish and Mennonite Communities
Francis J. McMahon, MD – Chief of the Human Genetics Branch, Intramural Research Program, National Institute of Mental Health

Psychology Club events: TBA

 

 

4. Creating an intervention that is based on psychological theory and science for a peace or social justice issue of personal importance.

 

You will work with a small group of your peers to develop an intervention for a peace or social justice issue of your choice.

  1. Groups will be assigned during the first week of class. Choose a local, regional, or global problem of social injustice and/or violence. Submit your chosen problem within the first two weeks of the semester.
  2. Approximately every two weeks, your group will convene for a few minutes near the end of the class period to determine which concepts from the previous two weeks might be relevant to your chosen problem and/or a potential intervention. We will use a mini-lab format for most of these discussions.
  3. Design a poster that describes*:
              •  
    • (1) the problem,
    • (2) the psychological factors that contribute to the problem,
    • (3) your proposed intervention, and
    • (4) the psychological factors that will contribute to the success of your intervention.
  4. Submit a brief 1-2 page document that summarizes the content of your poster/presentation and includes a reference list with at least two sources per group member. (These do not need to be exclusively peer-reviewed articles.)
  5. During our final exam period, your group will set up your poster in the classroom. You will each take turns standing with your poster and presenting it to peers, while your partners peruse the other posters in the room, and ask questions of the other presenters. Therefore, you will each need to know your project well enough to present it individually.
  6. Submit a document to the professor that describes the contributions of each group member to the project and is signed by each member. This will be submitted as a hard copy during the final exam period.

*Define the problem, and explain what psychological principles contribute to the perpetuation of the problem. What might be a helpful intervention to move toward resolution of this problem? You may include interventions that are currently in use, and/or you may design a new intervention. Either way, you must be able to explain the psychological principles that could contribute to the success of the intervention. Your intervention does not necessarily need to solve the problem, but it should help to alleviate it in some form. For example, you aren’t going to solve racism nationally, but perhaps you could develop an intervention to lessen racial tension within a specific neighborhood.

 

SUMMARY OF REQUIREMENTS AND EVALUATION

                                                             

 

    

Opportunities

Required

Points Each

Total Points

Weight

Reading Quizzes

14

10

10

100

20.00%

Cumulative Module Quizzes

13

10

20

200

40.00%

Experiences

7

5

15

75

15.00%

Peace and Justice Project

1

1

125

125

25.00%

Course Total:

 

    

500

100.00%

All grades rounded to two decimal points)

A

B

C

D

F

 

 

-

+

 

-

+

 

-

+

 

-

 

%

93% - 100%

90% - 92%

88% - 89%

82% - 87%

80% - 81%

78% - 79%

72% - 77%

70% - 71%

68% - 69%

62% - 67%

60% - 61%

< 60%

Points

 

POLICIES ON QUIZZES

 

Makeup quizzes will not be given unless in an emergency situation or if approval has been given by me at least one week before the quiz.  If you miss a quiz and I have not been notified one week before the quiz, then you will receive 0 points for that quiz.  You will be able to drop 3 cumulative quiz grades and 4 reading quiz grades.

  1. Bring a laptop to class on quiz days; all quizzes will be administered on Moodle.  If you do not have a laptop, you may use a computer in the hall outside the classroom.
  2. Reading quizzes are given at the start of class; cumulative quizzes are given at the end of class. If you arrive after a reading quiz has ended, you will not be allowed to take the quiz.
  1. PUT AWAY ALL NON-ESSENTIAL ELECTRONIC DEVICES WHILE YOU ARE TAKING THE QUIZ.  QUIZZES ARE NOT OPEN BOOK.

 

ATTENDANCE POLICY:

Attendance and active participation in class discussions and activities are expected. Attendance will be recorded and reported. If you miss a class due to illness or emergency, you are responsible for anything that happens in class, including announcements, assignment changes, syllabus changes, schedule changes, etc. I expect to be informed in advance by email and provided with an explanation for your absence. There will be a quiz almost every time we meet. Make-up quizzes are only given if approval was given for your absence, as noted above. Tardiness may also result in missed reading quizzes, as noted above.

See Syllabus Appendix in Moodle for additional policies.

Class Schedule

(subject to change)

Week

Date

Module

Quizzes

Project Deadlines

1

9-Jan

Study habits reading – provided in class

 

 

2

14-Jan

Thinking like a Psychological Scientist** (until "why should I trust..." – link: http://noba.to/nt3ysqcm

 

Groups assigned and meet

 

16-Jan

The Healthy Life

Reading quiz

 

 

21-Jan

 

Cumulative quiz

Problem submitted

3

23-Jan

The Brain and the Nervous System

Reading quiz

 

 

28-Jan

 

Cumulative quiz

Groups meet

4

30-Jan

The Nature-Nurture Question

Reading quiz

 

 

4-Feb

 

Cumulative quiz

 

5

6-Feb

Gender

Reading quiz

 

 

11-Feb

 

Cumulative quiz

Groups meet

6

13-Feb

Cognitive Development in Childhood

Reading quiz

 

 

18-Feb

Social and Personality Development in Childhood

Cumulative quiz

 

7

20-Feb

States of Consciousness

Reading quiz

 

 

25-Feb

 

Cumulative quiz

Groups meet

8

27-Feb

Sensation and Perception

Reading quiz

 

  

Spring Break

 

 

9

10-Mar

 

Cumulative quiz

 

 

12-Mar

Conditioning and Learning

Reading quiz

 

10

17-Mar

 

Cumulative quiz

Groups meet

 

19-Mar

Memory

Reading quiz

 

11

24-Mar

 

Cumulative quiz

 

 

26-Mar

Personality Traits

Reading quiz

 

12

31-Mar

 

Cumulative quiz

Groups meet

 

2-Apr

Conformity and Obedience; Persuasion

Reading quiz

 

13

7-Apr

 

Cumulative quiz

 

 

9-Apr

Therapeutic Orientations

Reading quiz

 

14

14-Apr

Anxiety and Related Disorders

Reading quiz

 

 

16-Apr

ACE Festival

 

 

15

21-Apr

 

Cumulative quiz

Groups meet

 

23-Apr

Happiness: The Science of Subjective Wellbeing

Reading quiz

Summary document due

List of Experiences due

Finals

30-Apr

Thursday, 8:00-10:00am

Cumulative quiz

Poster presentations

Contribution document due