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Social Psychology

This course is no longer being offered.

Course Description

Social psychology is the intriguing study of social context and the way it influences our thoughts, feelings and behaviors. The overall objective of this course is to introduce students to key theories in this fascinating field of psychology. Students will be encouraged to reflect on the application of social psychology research to real-world problems and to incorporate concepts explored in class to its relevance in their own lives.

Social interactions have a tremendous influence on our own thoughts, emotions and behaviors. The relevance of social psychology research can't be underestimated it pertains to questions many of us ponder in our everyday lives such as, "How can the same person act one way with one group of friends and be totally different with another group?" "Do opposites really attract?" "How can students standby when a peer is getting teased and bullied?" and "Why is reality TV so popular?" In this introductory course, students will be introduced to many of the fascinating topics that social psychologists study, including but not limited to: attitudes and persuasion, social influence and group behavior, gender roles, aggression, attributions, prejudice, stereotyping and discrimination, attraction, conformity, obedience, and altruism.

Learning goals include:

a. To become familiar with the key concepts and theories of social psychology;

b. To understand the influence of the social context on thoughts, feelings and behaviors;

c. To provide tools to critically examine psychological research;

d. To encourage an understanding of how social psychology is relevant to the world around us and to one's own experiences.

While no prerequisites are required, a basic understanding of how researchers go about conducting a study in the behavioral sciences, how to use the library and how to read a research article would be a plus.