Psychology of Decision Making|
Fall 2018 not offered
We make decisions all the time. The vast majority of decisions have little consequence, though some are monumental and can deeply affect our lives. The broad goal of this course is to explore the science of judgment and decision making from a cognitive psychological perspective. This means that we will consider how the study of mental processes can inform us about how an individual person's judgments and decisions are made, characteristic patterns and biases of decision making, factors that influence decision making, and whether decision making can be improved. Themes include: What does it mean to be rational, and are humans rational decision makers? How do basic cognitive systems and their interplay underlie more complex decision behavior? What role do affect and emotion play in decision making? How can we move productively between neurobiology, cognition, and social application in thinking about the cognitive psychology of decision making? Do individuals and societies need help in improving decision making, and if so, what kind of help? Overarching goals are to understand the major questions and frameworks that have guided decision research from this perspective, to explore recent empirical studies with an eye toward how they challenge or extend past views, and to generate new research ideas, connections to other disciplines, and practical applications. Foundations of Contemporary Psychology (PSYC 105) and Cognitive Psychology (PSYC 220) are strongly recommended as prerequisites, as this is an upper-level course (that relies on student contributions) in the Psychology Department.
||Gen Ed Area Dept:
|Course Format: Lecture / Discussion||Grading Mode: Graded|
||Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (PSYC)
We will largely read scientific journal articles and book chapters, which will be made available electronically. One book we will read in its entirety that students will need to obtain is:
Kahneman, D. (2011). THINKING FAST AND SLOW. New York: Farrar, Straus, & Giroux. ISBN-10: 0374533555 / ISBN-13: 978-0374533557
|Examination and Assignments: |
May include response papers, leading class discussions, presentations, research papers, essay tests.
|Additional Requirements and/or Comments: |
This is an advanced course for psychology majors interested in human decision making processes. The course fulfills the specialized course requirement for the major. Majors/intended majors who have taken Foundations of Contemporary Psychology (PSYC 105) and Cognitive Psychology (PSYC 220) will be given priority for permission during preregistration. Students from related backgrounds (e.g., economics, neuroscience) will be considered as well. When you make an enrollment request, inform the professor of your class year, (prospective) major, and courses/experiences that you believe provide you background for this course.