This is a survey course designed to introduce students to the study of behavior and cognition. Our class will cover the methods and results of psychological science with a focus on human beings. The approaches that we will use include biological perspectives, cognitive science, and cross-cultural comparisons as we dissect the underlying causes for, and mechanisms of, human behavior. Our course will begin with the scientific method and how it applies to the structure and function of the neuron across our senses. We will continue by discussing learning, memory, and personality. Near the end of the course, we will cover psychopathology, intelligence, and social behavior. Throughout the course, we will use cross-cultural perspectives in order to understand human behavior and human perspectives around the world.
Field WorkCountry: Mauritius
Date: October 19, 2018
Students will measure how the brain can arouse the body beyond the need to interact with the environment. We will measure physiological arousal via cardiac and pulmonary function while at rest, before and after a workout, and various situations. The highlight of our measurements will be a situation that requires little effort, but nonetheless involves heightened arousal: a zipline course outside of Port Louis. In the afternoon, we will travel to the University of Mauritius, where our visit may include a trip to a behavioral science lab or meeting with Mauritian students in order to better understand their interaction with psychological science.
Grades for this assignment derive from participation in pre-port activities, all activities throughout the day in Mauritius, and completion of a guided field book and reaction packet. The field book will include repeated measurement of one’s own cardiac and pulmonary function, supplying those data to the class, analysis of individual and group data, and presentation of those data in your field book.
- Understand methods of scientific inquiry and how they apply to behavioral science
- Measure one’s own underlying psychological states.
- Apply one’s knowledge of behavioral science in order to compare people from diverse backgrounds.