Credit hours: 3
Prerequisites: Prereq: 2220, 2300, and 2367 (367.01), 3325 (325), 3325H (325H), or 3375 (375). Not open to students with credit for 475.
|The Curse of the Self: Self-Awareness, Egotism, and the Quality of Human Life||Mark R. Leary||Oxford University Press|
Course Objectives: You will be given the opportunity to design a research study to shed light on questions about the self. You will also gain an understanding of the research process and gain answers to questions you may have related to the self and its relation to cognition and behavior. A strong emphasis will be placed on fostering the use of critical thinking skills to assess claims and make informed judgments about human behavior. An attitude combining skepticism and openness is essential in evaluating the stream of information that confronts us every day and is at the heart of psychology as a science. It is my hope, as a result of this class, you will not only develop a basic content knowledge of social psychology and the research methods used to study this diverse discipline, but that you will also develop an appreciation of the relation between psychological principles and their application to daily life.
Course Content: This course will provide an overview of theory and research on the self, focusing in particular on what psychological research tells us about how the human capacity to conceive of the self, and the motivations that arise from that capacity, can be a source of unhappiness and interfere with achieving our most cherished goals. We will also read and discuss research on how to avoid the “curse of the self.”
Method of Presentation: The aims of the course will be accomplished through a variety of pedagogical methods, including lectures, discussion, and experiential exercises and self-reflection.
Method of Evaluation: About a third of the grade will be from readings, homework, and in-class discussions. A third of the grade will be from reading quizzes. The last third of the grade will be from a final research paper.