PSYCHOLOGY

PSYC-497
Topics in Psychology (3)

Course Level: Undergraduate

Topics vary by section, may be repeated for credit with different topic. Each section is an intensive course in a specialized area of psychology, such as community psychology, social and clinical judgement, and psychology of infancy. Usually offered every term. Prerequisite: three psychology courses, junior standing and permission of instructor.

PSYC-497
001
PSYCHOLOGY
SPRING 2015

Course Level: Undergraduate

Topics in Psychology (3)

Psychology and the Family

The purpose of this course is to explore the connections between the family context and psychological phenomena of interest, such as human development, health behavior, mental health, achievement, and identity. Students examine the family context in terms of its subsystems, structure, and dynamics. In order to understand the relationship between the family and psychological variables, the course reviews different theoretical approaches and methodological strategies to study families. Additionally, the course looks at interventions that target or involve the family. Throughout the course, the historical, cultural, social, and economic factors that influence the family context are reviewed. Bringing a spotlight to these factors enhances the ability to identify the issues that families are facing across diverse environments, be critical of the way families are treated in scholarly literature and popular media, and consider the extent to which extant policies meet the needs of families.

PSYC-497
002
PSYCHOLOGY
SPRING 2015

Course Level: Undergraduate

Topics in Psychology (3)

Child Abuse and Neglect

This course investigates in detail the causes, consequences, and contextual factors associated with child maltreatment (abuse and neglect) and interventions for children and families. The course considers maltreatment within an ecological context and examines issues of culture and diversity (e.g., race, gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, sexual identity, family structure) in relation to maltreatment. Students are introduced to methods used in the identification of physical, emotional, sexual abuse and neglect with an emphasis on developing skills for working with children and families. Primary learning objectives include: ability to demonstrate understanding of risk factors, characteristics, and consequences of child maltreatment; demonstrated knowledge of services and intervention options for children and families related to maltreatment, and knowledge of research evidence regarding their effectiveness; and an understanding of how culture and diversity impact the interpretation and reporting of child maltreatment as well as interventions and case decisions related to child maltreatment.

PSYC-497
001
PSYCHOLOGY
FALL 2015

Course Level: Undergraduate

Topics in Psychology (3)

The Biology of Addiction

In 1997, Alan Leshner (then Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse) noted that addiction was a brain disease and indicated the implications of such a conclusion for the understanding and treatment of addiction (Science, 1997, 278, 45-47). This seminar explores this concept through discussions and readings focusing on the biology of addiction. This focus is shaped by the recent book by George Koob, Michael Arends and Michel Le Moal, Drugs, Addiction and the Brain (2014). Using this book as our reference, students explore the current thinking and research on drug use and abuse, supplementing this reading with current articles in the field. Although the book focuses on the basic research and theory underlying addiction, students explore how such a focus provides insights into the nature of its treatment.

PSYC-497
002
PSYCHOLOGY
FALL 2015

Course Level: Undergraduate

Topics in Psychology (3)

Ethnic and Minority Issues

This course focuses on understanding ethnic and minority issues as they relate to psychology. In this course discussions center on what constitutes "minority" status and how "minority" status impacts the psychological and social development of the individual. The goal of this course is to gain an understanding of how divergent cultures may impact human behavior.