This general psychology course will provide an introduction to the study of behavior and mental processes from a scientific perspective. We will discuss the major theories, concepts, research methods, and treatment approaches used within the major areas of study within psychology, including biopsychology, learning and memory, cognition, sensation and perception, social behavior, motivation and emotion, personality, and abnormal behavior, and more. For each area, we will discuss the influence of biological and sociocultural factors such as gender, sex, age, culture, race, and ethnicity. Special attention will be given to differences and similarities between various cultures in the United States and around the world, focusing on the ports we will visit. Students will be encouraged to critically evaluate the influence of culture on psychological constructs, such as cognitive decline with aging, gender roles and gender-typed behavior, and the diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders.
*Note: This class is delivered when lunch is served.
Field ClassCountry: Ghana
Date: October 29, 2019
Societal expectations for teenagers and what it means to be an adult vary dramatically between different cultures and communities. In this field class students will observe firsthand how young people living in an urban versus a rural community in Ghana live – activities they engage in, problems they encounter, and societal expectations for them. In preparation for the field class, students will prepare a list of potential questions that may be used to help guide discussions during the field class. Students will then visit a community center/school in an urban area versus a village community in Accra. Students will have a dialogue with adolescent and young adults from these communities about social norms and roles of young people in those communities.
1. Connect theories of human development to real world situations.
2. Learn about how young people in an urban versus a village community in Ghana live – activities they engage in, problems they encounter, and societal expectations for them.
3. Observe first-hand how gender and culture can influence psychological development in an urban versus village community.