For course descriptions not found in the UC San Diego General Catalog, 2012–13, please contact the department for more information.
Psychology at UC San Diego is a laboratory science. We are concerned with the scientific development of knowledge about human and animal behavior and thought. Accordingly, experience with experimental procedures plays an important role in the undergraduate and graduate training of students.
1. Psychology (4)
A comprehensive series of lectures covering the basic concepts of modern psychology in the areas of human information processing, learning and memory, motivation, developmental processes, language acquisition, social psychology, and personality.
2. General Psychology: Biological Foundations (4)
A survey of physiological and psychological mechanisms underlying selected areas of human behavior. Emphasis will be upon sensory processes, especially vision, with emphasis also given to the neuropsychology of motivation, memory, and attention.
3. General Psychology: Cognitive Foundations (4)
This course is an introduction to the basic concepts of cognitive psychology. The course surveys areas such as perception, attention, memory, language, and thought. The relation of cognitive psychology to cognitive science and to neuropsychology is also covered.
4. General Psychology: Behavioral Foundations (4)
This course will provide a basic introduction to behavioral psychology, covering such topics as classical conditioning, operant conditioning, animal learning and motivation, and behavior modification.
6. General Psychology: Social Foundations (4)
This course will provide a basic introduction to social psychology, covering such topics as emotion, aesthetics, behavioral medicine, person perception, attitudes and attitude change, and behavior in social organizations.
7. General Psychology: Developmental Foundations (4)
This course is an introduction to cognitive and social changes that take place over the course of a lifetime. This course introduces influential theories of child development, such as those of Freud and Piaget, together with recent criticisms of these theories.
60. Introduction to Statistics (4)
Introduction to the experimental method in psychology and to mathematical techniques necessary for experimental research. Prerequisites: one year mathematics or consent of instructor.
87. Freshmen Seminar (1)
The Freshman Seminar Program is designed to provide new students with the opportunity to explore an intellectual topic with a faculty member in a small seminar setting. Freshman seminars are offered in all campus departments and undergraduate colleges, and topics vary from quarter to quarter. Enrollment is limited to fifteen to twenty students, with preference given to entering freshmen. Prerequisites: none.
90. Undergraduate Seminar (1)
This seminar introduces the various subdisciplines in psychology and their research methods, and also explores career and graduate school opportunities. This includes informal presentations by faculty, graduate students, and other professionals.
99. Independent Study (2, 4)
Independent study or research under direction of a member of the faculty. Prerequisites: lower-division standing, completion of at least thirty units of undergraduate study at UC San Diego with a minimum UC San Diego GPA of 3.0; completed and approved Special Studies form.
101. Introduction to Developmental Psychology (4)
A lecture course on a variety of topics in the development of the child, including the development of perception, cognition, language, and sex differences. Prerequisites: upper-division standing; Psychology 60 or BIEB 100 or COGS 14 or Econ 120A or Math 11 or Math 181A or Math 183 or SOCI 60.
102. Introduction to Sensation and Perception (4)
An introduction to problems and methods in the study of perception and cognitive processes. Prerequisites: upper-division standing; Psychology 60 or BIEB 100 or COGS 14 or Econ 120A or Math 11 or Math 181A or Math 183 or SOCI 60.
103. Introduction to Principles of Behavior (4)
An example of the principles of conditioning and their application to the control and modification of human behavior. Prerequisites: upper-division standing; Psychology 60 or BIEB 100 or COGS 14 or Econ 120A or Math 11 or Math 181A or Math 183 or SOCI 60.
104. Introduction to Social Psychology (4)
An intensive introduction and survey of current knowledge in social psychology. Prerequisites: upper-division standing; Psychology 60 or BIEB 100 or COGS 14 or Econ 120A or Math 11 or Math 181A or Math 183 or SOCI 60.
105. Introduction to Cognitive Psychology (4)
Introduction to experimental study of higher mental processes. Topics to be covered include pattern recognition, perception, and comprehension of language, memory, and problem solving. Prerequisites: upper-division standing; Psychology 60 or BIEB 100 or COGS 14 or Econ 120A or Math 11 or Math 181A or Math 183 or SOCI 60.
106. Introduction to Physiological Psychology (4)
Intensive introduction to current knowledge of physiological factors in learning, motivation, perception, and memory. Prerequisites: upper-division standing; Psychology 60 or BIEB 100 or COGS 14 or Econ 120A or Math 11 or Math 181A or Math 183 or SOCI 60.
107. Lab/Substance Abuse Research (4)
This lab course examines theory and research design and methods for substance abuse in adolescent adult populations. This course serves as preparation for individual research topics culminating in a paper.
108. Introduction to Cognitive Neuroscience (4)
This course covers background history, neuroanatomy, methods, and results from neuroimaging and neuropsychological studies of behavior. Topics include attention, motor control, executive function, memory, learning, emotion, and language. Prerequisites: upper-division standing; Psychology 60 or BIEB 100 or COGS 14 or Econ 120A or Math 11 or Math 181A or Math 183 or SOCI 60.
109. Lab/Applied Behavior Analysis (4)
This course will provide students with hands-on training in the application of behavioral research technology to a clinical population. Students will meet weekly for lecture, discussion, research article reviews, and specific technique training. In addition, students will work on a research project. Prerequisites: Psychology 199 in the Schreibman autism laboratory recommended.
110. Juniors Honors Research Seminars (4)
Meetings consist of research seminars by a range of departmental faculty, exposing students to contemporary research problems in all branches of experimental psychology. Class discussions will follow faculty presentations. Evaluation is based on assigned papers. Prerequisites: admission by application with a minimum UC San Diego GPA of 3.3. Department stamp required. Application forms are available from the Student Services Office and due by the end of October of each fall quarter.
111A. Research Methods I (6)
Designed to provide training in the applications of advanced statistical methods in the context of initial instruction in experimental design. Emphasis will be placed on the development of statistical problem-solving skills, practical computer applications, and scientific report writing. Prerequisites: minimum grade of B in Psychology 60 or equivalent and junior standing. Open to honors students or consent of instructor. Department stamp required.
111B. Research Methods II (6)
Designed to extend the material of Psychology 111A. Focusing on the techniques developed previously. Participate in data collection, data organization, statistical analysis, and graphic displays, emphasis placed on developing scientific report writing, presentations, and critical thinking about experimental methods. Prerequisites: Psychology 111A or consent of instructor.
114. Laboratory in Psychophysiological Perspectives on the Social Mind (4)
Lab course on the use of psychophysiological methods to investigate “the social mind,” or the cognitive and emotional processes involved in understanding and reacting to other people. Overview of major research topics and methods applying selected techniques in actual experiments. Students will engage in developing individual research questions to actively participate in designing and conducting the experiments. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
115. Laboratory in Cognitive Psychology (4)
Lecture and laboratory work in human information processing. Prerequisites: upper-division standing or consent of instructor.
119. Psycholinguistics/Cognition Laboratory (4)
Methods and practicum in experimental study of language, reading, and related cognitive processes (reasoning, problem solving) in young adult populations. Prerequisites: Psychology 118A-B or consent of instructor. Department stamp required.
120. Learning and Motivation (4)
Survey of research and theory in learning and motivation. Includes instincts, reinforcement, stimulus control, choice, aversive control, and human application. Prerequisites: upper-division standing. Must be taken concurrently with Psychology 121 or Psychology 140.
121. Laboratory in Operant Psychology (4)
Lecture and laboratory in operant psychology. Prerequisites: upper-division standing. May be taken concurrently with Psychology 120.
123. Cognitive Control and Frontal Lobe Function (4)
Cognitive control refers to the optimization of behavior according to one’s goals. This class examines: anatomy; neuroscience methods; working memory, switching, and stopping; prefrontal pharmacology; ADHD and other neuropsychiatric disorders; addiction and emotion regulation; development, rehabilitation, and criminal responsibility. Note: Students may not enroll in Psychology 123 after receiving credit for Psychology 193, Cognitive Control and Frontal Lobe Function. Prerequisites: department stamp.
124. Introduction to Clinical Psychology (4)
Introduction to major concepts and models used in psychological assessment and psychotherapeutic intervention. Several modalities of psychotherapy (individual, group, and family) will be reviewed along with research on their efficacy. Prerequisites: Psychology 163.
125. Clinical Neuropsychology and Assessment (4)
A fundamental grounding in basic neuropsychological principles. Major topics include functional neuroanatomy and physiology of the human brain, neurobehavioral presentations of common neurologic and psychiatric conditions, and an introduction to diagnostic neuropsychological assessment and methods. Prerequisites: Psychology 60.
128. Psychology of Reading (4)
Basic information about the nature of reading will be covered. Topics include word recognition, eye movements, inner speech, sentence processing, memory for text, learning to read, methods for teaching reading, reading disabilities and dyslexia, and speed reading. Prerequisites: Psychology 105 or Psychology 145 or consent of instructor.
129. Logic of Perception (4)
Lectures will cover three topics: 1) tradition of experimental work on perception that dates back to Hemholtz; 2) discussion and criticisms of theories of perception; 3) recent physiological work on the visual pathways that may give us insights into neural mechanisms underlying perception. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
130. Delay of Gratification (4)
This course will review the research on delay of gratification. It will cover what makes it in general so tough, what situations make it possible, who can do it, and what the implications of this ability are. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
132. Hormones and Behavior (4)
A survey of the effects of chemical signals (hormones, neurohormones and pheromones) on behavior as well as reciprocal effects of behavior on these chemical systems. Specific topics covered include aggression, sex and sexuality, feeding, learning, memory and mood. Animal studies will be emphasized. Prerequisites: Psychology 106 or consent of instructor.
133. Circadian Rhythms—Biological Clock (4)
Examples and fundamental properties of the daily biological clock in humans, animals and microbes. Experimental approaches employed to understand how organisms keep time and how this applies to human health. Prerequisites: Psychology 106 or BILD 1 or consent of instructor. This course is cross-listed with BIMM 116.
134. Eating Disorders (4)
This course will cover the biology and psychology of eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge eating disorder. Abnormal, as well as normal eating will be discussed from various perspectives including endocrinological, neurobiological, psychological, sociological, and evolutionary. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
135. Animal Behavior (4)
Mechanisms that regulate the behavior of animals, including neural, endocrine, genetic, and environmental mechanisms, with a strong emphasis on evolution (natural and sexual selection). Topics include communication, sociality, mating strategies, and parental behavior. Prerequisites: upper-division standing and consent of instructor.
136. Cognitive Development (4)
This course examines the foundations and growth of the mind, discussing the development of perception, imagery, concept formation, memory, and thinking. Emphasis is placed on the representation of knowledge in infancy and early childhood. (Credit may not be received for both PSYC 136 and COGS 113.) Prerequisites: PSYC 101 or PSYC 105.
137. Social Cognition (4)
Social cognition blends cognitive and social psychology to show how people make sense of the social world. Social perception, inference, memory, motivation, and affect, understanding of the self, stereotypes, and cultural cognition. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
138. Sound and Music Perception (4)
Topics include the physiology of the auditory system, perception and pitch, loudness and timbre, localization of sound in space, perception of melodic and temporal patterns, handedness correlates, and musical illusions and paradoxes. There will be a substantial number of sound demonstrations. Prerequisites: upper-division standing and consent of instructor.
139. Social Psychology of Sports (4)
This course focuses on the applications of social psychological principles and finding to the understanding of sports. Topics include the role of motivation, level of aspiration, competition, cooperation, social comparison, and optimal arousal, spectators’ perspective, motivation and perceptions of success, streaks, etc. Prerequisites: upper-division standing or consent of instructor.
140. Lab/Human Behavior (4)
Laboratory on the principles of human behavior, including choice behavior, self-control, and reasoning. Prerequisites: 120 (may be taken concurrently); upper-division standing.
141. Evolution and Human Nature (4)
Can important aspects of human behavior be explained as a result of natural selection? Focus on sex differences, selfishness and altruism, homicide and violence, and context effects in human reasoning. Prerequisites: upper-division standing and consent of instructor.
142. Psychology of Consciousness (4)
This course will survey research on consciousness from an experimental psychology perspective. Special emphasis will be placed on cognitive, neuroimaging, and clinical/psychiatric investigative techniques, and on the scientific assessment of the mind-body problem. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
143. Control and Analysis of Human Behavior (4)
An overview of the behavioral approach including basic principles, self-control, clinical applications, and the design of cultures. Prerequisites: upper-division psychology majors.
144. Memory and Amnesia (4)
This course will review basic research into the nature of memory. It begins with an examination of historical milestones in the study of memory and then considers research concerned with contemporary models of memory and amnesia. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
145. Psychology of Language (4)
Introduction to research on language comprehension and production. Focus on brain basis of language, language origin and universal structure, language disorders (aphasia, dyslexia), animal language, linguistic community differences, and the mental processes underlying normal language processing. Prerequisites: a course in language, cognition, or philosophy of mind recommended.
146. Language and Conceptual Development (4)
Introduction to research on language acquisition and how it relates to conceptual development. Focus on theoretical foundations (e.g., learning mechanisms, universal grammar, theories of concepts) and empirical case studies, including word learning, syntax and semantics, and language and thought. Recommend course in language/linguistics, cognition, or cognitive development. Prerequisites: upper-division standing or consent of instructor.
147. Gender (4)
This interactive undergraduate seminar will examine biological approaches to gender differences and sexuality. Do the biosciences further our understanding of these issues? How are biological claims embraced or rebutted by other disciplines? Students will read primary scientific literature and criticism. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
149. Social Psychology of Theatre (4)
Exploration of the relationship between social psychology and drama, focusing on the use of psychological principles in plays (by playwrights) and their performance (by directors, actors, and choreographers). Prerequisites: upper-division standing, major in psychology or theatre, or consent of instructor.
150. Cognitive Neuroscience of Vision (4)
Cognitive neuroscience is an interdisciplinary field of research dedicated to understanding how the brain supports different cognitive abilities. This course will focus on the neural basis of visual experience, or how our brain creates what we see in the world around us. Prerequisites: Psychology 102 or Psychology 108.
151. Tests and Measurement (4)
This course provides an introduction to psychological testing presented in three components: 1) psychometrics and statistical methods of test construction; 2) application of psychological tests in industry, clinical practice, and other applied settings; and 3) controversies in the application of psychological tests. Prerequisites: Psychology 60.
152. Conceptions of Intelligence (4)
This course will examine the concept of intelligence from several perspectives: its historical development, its measure in terms of IQ test, and its role in practical affairs. Also included will be its role in comparative psychology and attempts to analyze intelligence in terms of more fundamental cognitive processes. Prerequisites: Psychology 60 or consent of instructor.
153. Psychology of Emotion (4)
Past and current findings and theories on emotion. Facial expressions of emotions, psychophysiology, evolutionary perspectives, and specific emotions: anger, fear, and jealousy. Prerequisites: upper-division standing or consent of instructor.
154. Behavior Modification (4)
Extension of learning principles to human behavior, methods of applied behavior analysis, and applications of behavioral principles to clinical disorders and to normal behavior in various settings. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
155. Social Psychology and Medicine (4)
Explores areas of health, illness, treatment, and delivery of treatment, and social psychological perspectives in the medical area. Prerequisites: Psychology 60 or equivalent and 104.
156. Cognitive Development in Infancy (4)
Examines perception and cognition in the first year of life. Different theories of cognitive change in infancy will be evaluated. Prerequisites: Psychology 60 and either Psychology 101 or HDP 1.
157. Happiness (4)
This course will address the psychology of happiness. The discussions and readings, consisting largely of original research articles. Will explore such questions as: what is happiness? How do we measure it, and how do we tell who has it? What is the biology of happiness and what is its evolutionary significance? What makes people happy—youth, fortune, marriage, chocolate? Is the pursuit of happiness pointless? Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
158. Interpersonal Relationships (4)
Seminar-style course to examine theories and empirical work pertaining to interpersonal relationships; attraction, jealousy, attachments, love. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
159. Physiological Basis of Perception (4)
A survey of sensory and perceptual phenomena and the physiological mechanisms underlying them. Prerequisites: Psychology 102 or consent of instructor.
160. Groups (4)
Causes and consequences of gregariousness, stress, validating attitudes, improving efficiency, consolidating power, permitting loafing, rejecting deviates, and insulating group members from unpleasant outside influence. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
161. Introduction to Engineering Psychology (4)
Surveys human perceptual and cogntive limitations and abilities important in designing “user-friendly” computers and devices, improving aviation and traffic safety, and other engineering challenges. Topics include human vision as it bears on display design (including virtual-reality), short-term memory limitations, learning and practice, effects of noise and stress, causes of human error and their minimization. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
162. Psychology and the Law (4)
Research dealing with psychological factors in the legal system will be surveyed. Particular emphasis will be placed on applying psychological theory and methods to the criminal justice system in an attempt to understand the behavior of its participants. Prerequisites: Psychology 60 and 104.
163. Abnormal Psychology (4)
Surveys origins, characteristics and causes of abnormal behavior and the biological and environmental causes of abnormality. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
164. Criminology (4)
Focus is on the scientific study of law making and societal reaction to breaking of laws; major theories that account for criminal behavior; the relationship between drugs and crime; the effects penalties have on recidivism; and psychological effects of incarceration. Note: Students may not enroll in Psychology 164 after receiving credit for Psychology 193, Criminology. Prerequisites: department stamp.
166. History of Psychology (4)
Survey of the major trends and personalities in the development of psychological thought. Emphasis given to such selected topics as mind-body problem, nativism vs. empiricism, and genesis of behaviorism. Open to psychology majors with senior standing only.
168. Psychological Disorders of Childhood (4)
Explores different forms of psychological deviance in children (psychosis, neurosis, mental retardation, language disorders and other behavior problems). Emphasis on symptomatology, assessment, etiological factors, and various treatment modalities. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
169. Brain Damage and Mental Functions (4)
Studies neural mechanisms underlying perception, memory, language, and other mental capacities. What happens to these capacities when different parts of the brain are damaged? What can we learn about the normal brain by studying patients? Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
170. Introduction to Cognitive Neuropsychology (4)
What are the neural mechanisms underlying mental phenomena such as perception, attention, and memory? The two disciplines, neurophysiology and psychology, both have a long history but until recently there has been very little interaction between them. This course will take students to the interface between these two fields and we will discuss a wide range of topics that are of current interest. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
171. Neurobiology of Learning and Memory (4)
Studies the neurobiology of learning and memory, from cognitive to molecular neuroscience, including human, animal, and cellular; and molecular studies of memory. Topics include amnesia, mental retardation, exceptional intelligence, aging, and Alzheimer’s disease. Prerequisites: Psychology 2 or 106 or 181, upper-division standing or consent of instructor.
172. The Psychology of Human Sexuality (4)
Important issues in human sexuality including sex and gender, sexual orientation, reproductive technology, and sexual dysfunction. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
173. Psychology of Food and Behavior (4)
Reviews the psychology of food and behavior. Topics will include biological, psychological, and social influences; taste preferences and aversions and how they are learned; how culture influences food selection; and food-related behaviors across the lifespan. Prerequisites: upper-division standing or consent of instructor.
176. Creativity (4)
The focus is on enhancing creativity in individuals, small groups, and organizations. Topics include how changes to individuals (e.g., gaining expertise, accepting more risk) and their environment (e.g., more diverse colleagues, more time for exploring) increase creativity. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
178. Organizational Psychology (4)
Examines human behavior in industrial, business, and organizational settings; and psychological principles as applied to selection, placement, management, and training. The effectiveness of individuals and groups within organizations, including leadership and control, conflict and cooperation, motivation, and organizational structure and design, is examined. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
179. Drugs, Addiction, and Mental Disorders (4)
Considers the use, abuse, liability, and psycho-therapeutic effects of drugs in humans. Lectures are supplemented by guest lecturers from clinical experts in psychology and psychiatry. Prerequisites: one lower-division psychology course (1, 2, 3, or 4) or upper-division standing.
180. Adolescence (4)
This course will adopt a multidisciplinary approach toward understanding the period of human adolescence. A strong focus on the neurobiological aspects of adolescence will be combined with psychological, anthropological, and sociological considerations. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
181. Drugs and Behavior (4)
Develops basic principles in psychopharmacology while exploring the behavioral effects of psychoactive drugs and mechanisms of action of drugs. Prerequisites: psychology major or minor, or biology major or minor.
182. Illusions and the Brain (4)
This course explores the bases of illusions in terms of perceptual and cognitive principles, and the underlying brain mechanisms; extensive demonstrations are included. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
183. Special Topics in Psycholinguistics (4)
Discussion of theories and experiments investigating language production, comprehension, or acquisition. Prerequisites: upper-division standing and consent of instructor.
184. Choice and Self-Control (4)
Experimental analysis of choice behavior, with an emphasis on the types of choice involved in self-control. Focus on conditions under which decision making is optimal. Prerequisites: upper-division students in psychology, biology, economics, or consent of instructor.
187. Development of Social Cognition (4)
This course will examine reasoning about people from a developmental perspective. Topics will include emotional understanding, achievement motivation, peer relations, social categories, and culture. Prerequisites: Psychology 101.
188. Impulse Control Disorders (4)
Problems of impulse control are important features of major psychiatric disorders but also of atypical impulse control disorder such as: pathological gambling, compulsive sex, eating, exercise, shopping. Focus: development, major common features, treatment, and neurobiological basis of impulse control disorders. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
189. Brain, Behavior, and Evolution (4)
A survey of natural behaviors, including birdsong, prey capture, localization, electro-reception, and echo-location, and the neural systems that control them, emphasizing broad fundamental relationships between brain and behavior across species. Prerequisites: Psychology 103 and 106, or permission of instructor.
190. Parenting (4)
This course adopts an interdisciplinary approach to the complex construct of parenting. Parenting is explored with respect to history, culture, development, psychology, biology, etc. Controversial issues such as the influence of the media, family structure, and discipline strategies are analyzed. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
191. Psychology of Sleep (4)
Topics include basic psychology, evolutionary models of the purpose of sleep, the role of sleep in learning/creativity, dreams, and sleep disorders. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
192. Senior Seminar in Psychology (1)
The Senior Seminar Program is designed to allow senior undergraduates to meet with faculty members in a small setting to explore an intellectual topic in psychology (at the upper-division level). Topics will vary from quarter to quarter. Senior Seminars may be taken for credit up to four times, with a change in topic, and permission of the department. Enrollment is limited to twenty students, with preference given to seniors. Prerequisites: department stamp and/or consent of instructor.
193. Topics in Psychology (4)
Selected topics in the field of psychology. May be repeated for credit as topics vary. Prerequisites: upper-division standing and consent of instructor.
194A-B-C. Honors Thesis (4-4-4)
Students will take part in a weekly research seminar. In addition, they will plan and carry out a three-quarter research project under the guidance of a faculty member. The project will form the basis of the senior honors thesis. Prerequisites: acceptance to the Honors Program in the junior year (110A-B) (GPA 3.3), in addition one laboratory course (114–127) or two 199s that culminate in a research paper (by petition only) and Psychology 110, 111A-B, and consent of instructor.
195. Instruction in Psychology (4)
Introduction to teaching a class section in a lower-division psychology course, hold office hours, assist with examinations and grading (P/NP grades only). This course counts only once towards the major. Prerequisites: junior or senior psychology major with GPA of 3.0 or an A in the course and consent of instructor.
196A-B-C. Research Seminar (4-4-4)
Weekly research seminar, three quarter research project under faculty guidance which culminates in a thesis. Prerequisites: one laboratory course, 3.3 GPA, and/or consent of instructor.
198. Directed Group Study in Psychology (2 or 4)
Group study under the direction of a faculty member in the Department of Psychology. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
199. Independent Study (2 or 4)
Independent study or research under direction of a member of the faculty. Prerequisites: GPA 2.5 and ninety units completed. (P/NP grades only.) Not counted for credit toward the major. See section on 199 information.
201A-B-C. Quantitative Methods in Psychology (4-4-4)
An intensive course in statistical methods and the mathematical treatment of data, with special reference to research in psychology. Prerequisites: restricted to graduate students in psychology.
202. Writing and Presenting Academic Research Papers (4)
Instruction on organizing, writing, and presenting empirical research papers. Students will learn fundamentals of writing style, data presentation, and time management. This course is intended for psychology graduate students in service of preparation of their first-year papers and talks. Prerequisites: psychology graduate students (major code: PC76 or PC78 or PC79), or consent of instructor.
205. Emotion (4)
This seminar provides a selective overview of the scientific study of emotion. We will discuss various theoretical perspectives on emotion and will focus on specific topics such as emotion regulation, affect in social interactions, individual differences, and particular emotions (e.g., embarrassment, envy, and jealousy). Prerequisites: graduate standing.
206. Mathematical Modeling (4)
This course is designed to teach the basics of mathematical modeling. Topics include when, why, and how to use signal detection theory (an essential theory for anyone interested in attention, perception, memory, or decision making), how to analyze reaction time distributions (instead of simply measuring mean RT), how to engage in the fine art of model comparison, and how to avoid creating models that are more complex than the data they seek to explain.
207. Behavioral Neurobiology of Birdsong (4)
Over the last twenty years, birdsong has emerged as an important model system for the study of natural vocal behavior from many perspectives. This seminar presents an overview of past and current research on the behavioral and neural mechanisms of song production. Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
209. Topics in Judgment and Decision Making (3)
This seminar examines issues in the psychology of judgment and decision making. Topics include the heuristics and biases approach, over confidence, framing effects, intertemporal choice, and rationality.
212. Current Topics in Visual Science (3)
Each year a different topic in visual science is selected for in-depth review and discussion based on current readings. Prerequisites: consent of instructor.
213. Professional Procedures and Survival in Psychology (3)
This course provides a forum for presentation and discussion of the basic issues associated with surviving in a professional (particularly, academic) psychology environment. It covers such issues as: 1) how to get a job; 2) how to keep a job; 3) general issues in professional survival. The course will include the presence of a number of the psychology faculty in topic specific areas (e.g., journal editors from our faculty; faculty sitting on grant review panels, etc.). The issue of ethics will be examined and discussed relative to each topic raised.
217A. Proseminar in Developmental Psychology I (3)
The course examines cognitive development through the school-age period. It begins with an examination of early neurological, sensory, motor, and perceptual functions and then focuses on issues in linguistic and cognitive development.
217B. Proseminar in Developmental Psychology II (3)
The course examines social and personality development from infancy through early adolescence. The class will first discuss general developmental theory and methods and then topics such as attachment, temperament, self-concept, aggression, family relations, play, and peers.
218. Cognitive Psychology (4)
A survey of basic principles and concepts of cognitive psychology. This course is intended to serve as the basic introduction for first-year students. Basic areas include knowledge, memory, thought, perception, and performance. Students that have taken PSYC 218A or PSYC 218B cannot take PSYC 218 for credit. Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
219. Proseminar in Learning and Motivation (3)
An overview of the experimental and applied analysis of behavior including topics such as the principles of operant and classical conditioning, stimulus control, choice, conditioned reinforcement, aversive control, biological and economic contexts, verbal behavior, and the modification of human behavior in a variety of applied settings.
220. Proseminar in Social Psychology (3)
An introduction to social psychology. Psychology and the law, health psychology, attitudes, emotions, person perception and aggression are some of the topics to be covered.
221. Proseminar in Sensation and Perception (3)
Fundamentals of vision, audition, and other senses. Emphasis will be upon psychophysical approaches to the study of these sensory modalities, as well as some essential aspects of their neurophysiological bases.
222. Biological Psychology (3)
A survey of the functional neuroanatomical, neurodevelopmental, neurophysiological, and pharmacological correlates of psychological phenomena.
223. Advanced Topics in Vision (4)
An in-depth analysis of empirical and theoretical issues in a specialized area of vision or visual perception. Emphasis most likely will be on a topic of ongoing vision research at UC San Diego. May be repeated with instructor consent. Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
224. Cognitive Neural Systems (CNS) (4)
A weekly lecture series focused on understanding recent advances in the relationship between neural systems and behavior using a variety of experimental approaches (single unit recording, comp neuro, evolutionary bio, psychophysics, comparative anatomy, lesion work, psychopharm, fMRI, EEG, TMS, etc.). Prerequisites: graduate standing.
229. Happiness (4)
This course will address the psychology of happiness. The discussions and readings, consisting largely of original research articles, will explore such questions as: What is happiness? How do we measure it, and how do we tell who has it? What is the biology of happiness and what is its evolutionary significance? What makes people happy—youth, fortune, marriage, chocolate? Is the pursuit of happiness pointless?
230. Comparative Social Cognition (4)
This seminar will address the following questions: What do nonhuman animals know about the identity and characteristics of nonspecifics? How do they use this information to guide their actions? How do animals modify their behavior in relation to social context? What kinds of information are culturally transmitted? What are the brain mechanisms for social cognition in nonhumans, and how do they compare to ours? Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
231. Experimentation and Data Analysis Using Matlab (4)
Lecture and exercises will demonstrate the use of Matlab, its extensions in running psychological experiments and in analyzing experimental data. No prior programming knowledge assumed. Experimental topics include writing scripts to generate well-controlled visual or acoustic stimuli. Analytical topics include data plotting and statistics. Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
232. Probabilistic Models of Cognition (4)
This seminar introduces computational theories of human cognition focusing on the role of inference and knowledge representation with Bayesian generative models. We will touch on a variety of structured probabilistic models and approaches to integrating probabilistic inference with cognitive limitations. Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
233A. Topics in Learning and Motivation (3)
Advanced topics in learning and motivation, with special emphasis on current research. Prerequisites: Psychology 210.
234. Evolution of Language (4)
This seminar will explore issues related to the evolution of human language, and critically evaluate evidence for the diversity of theories about the topic. Discussions will include the comparative communication and cognition, manual communication, factors surrounding the initial emergence of language, amongst others. Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
235. Semantic Development (4)
We’ll explore the development of concepts and linguistic meaning via classic case studies in semantics, including word learning, quantifier acquisition, and the foundations of mathematics. The course will draw on evidence from linguistic, the philosophy of language, and developmental psychology.
236. Substance Abuse (3)
Theory and research on the development, progression, and resolution of substance use and abuse will be reviewed and evaluated. Normal and abnormal patterns of substance involvement will be contrasted across the life span.
240. The Primate Brain (4)
This course will explore the neural basis of perception, action and cognition in primate cortex. Drawing on recent findings in neuroscience, we will discuss the role of cortex in a range of topics including decision making, object perception and recognition, memory and communication. Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
242. Research Topics in Developmental Psychology (4)
Advanced seminar concentrating on methods of research and current experimental literature in developmental psychology. Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
243. Sound and Music Perception (3)
This course will deal with anatomy and physiology of the ear, central auditory pathways, and neurological disorders of sound and music perception.
244. Special Topics in Psycholinguistics (4)
Discussion of theories and experiments investigating language production, comprehension, or acquisition. Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
246. Emotion and Cognition (4)
This seminar focuses on the interplay between emotion and cognition. We will consider how emotion influences perception, reasoning, memory, and judgment, and how cognitive processes can have emotional consequences. We will also discuss physiological and neural underpinnings of an affective influence and debate more general issues such as emotion and rationality. Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
249A-B-C. Advanced Topics in Applied Behavior Analysis (3-3-3)
Research and discussion on selected topics in applied behavior analysis.
250. Sleep, Learning and Thought (4)
The role of time and sleep in learning, memory, and thought will be covered. Topics include human procedural memory, declarative memory, inference, creativity, and problem solving. Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
251. Advanced Topics in Learning and Motivation (3)
Weekly meetings for graduate students actively engaged in research on conditioning. Prerequisites: consent of instructor.
252. Seminar on Cognitive Neuroscience (3)
This is a series of weekly seminars on current trends in neuropsychology. The seminars will deal with the concept of “localization” of function in different parts of the brain and the effects of damage to these parts on cognitive functions such as perception, memory and language. Active student participation will be encouraged in preparing these seminars.
255A-B-C. Advanced Topics in Biological Psychology (3-3-3)
Research and discussion on selected topics in biological psychology.
256. Impulsivity (4)
This seminar will cover the following topics in relation to impulsivity: varieties of the construct; operationalization via behavioral tasks in nonhuman animals and humans; translation from genes through phenotypes; neuropsychiatric disorders; neuropharmocology; behavioral treatments; and implications for jurisprudence. Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
258. Delay of Gratification (3)
This course will review the research on delay of gratification. We will cover what makes it in general so tough, what situations make it possible, who can do it, and what the implications of this ability are. We will draw from research in social, personality, and animal psychology as well as economics.
259. Social Psychology/Psycho-aesthetics (3)
This course will be an intensive examination of social psychology (legal decision making, emotion, aggressive behavior) and the psychology of visual art and music (psycho-aesthetics).
262. Functional Construction of the Vertebrate Brain’s Social Behavior Network (4)
The vertebrate brain contains a network of strongly interconnected structures that play essential roles in the regulation of social behavior. In this seminar we will read and discuss primary literature that details the structure and behavioral functions of this network.
264A-B-C. Advanced Topics in Language Processes (4-4-4)
Research and discussion on selected topics in language processes.
265. Social Psychology and Medicine (3)
Concentrates on what psychology has to contribute to the understanding of illness, its treatment, and the social context in which these processes occur. Topics: psychological factors in the etiology and treatment of illness, doctor-patient roles, and communication. Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
266. Psychology of Reading (4)
This seminar will cover aspects of reading, emphasizing cognitive processes involved in skilled reading. However, learning to read and methods to teach reading will also be discussed. Other topics include: eye movements and reading, word recognition, inner speech, context effects, discourse processing, sentence parsing, and dyslexia.
267A-B-C. Advanced Topics in Behavior Medicine (3-3-3)
Research and discussion on selected topics in behavior medicine.
269A-B-C. Advanced Topics in Sound and Music Perception (3-3-3)
Research and discussion on selected topics in sound and music perception.
270A-B-C. Introduction to Laboratory Experimentation (1–4)
A basic laboratory course, designed to introduce first-year graduate students to experimental methods in psychology. The student will select a research topic, do a thorough literature review of the area, design and carry out new, original studies of problems in the selected area, and prepare a final formal report of the study at the end of the spring quarter. This course is required of all first-year graduate students in the department. Prerequisites: first-year psychology graduate students only.
271. Neurobiology of Learning and Memory (4)
This seminar will span the study of learning and memory from an interdisciplinary neuroscience perspective: the goal will be to gain a broad perspective on memory. The course will also touch on dysfunctions of learning and memory such as in amnesia, mental retardation, aging, and Alzheimer’s disease. The course will end with exciting developments in the field, including the possibility of genetic and pharmacological enhancement of memory and intelligence.
272. Selected Topics in Cognitive Psychology (3)
An in-depth analysis of selected empirical and theoretical topics in cognitive psychology. The course will focus on areas where notable progress appears to be taking place in contemporary research.
273. Selected Topics in Quantitative Methods in Psychology (4)
An in-depth analysis and discussion of selected advanced topics in quantitative methods in psychology.
274. Current Directions in Social Psychology (2)
A biweekly lecture series focusing on recent advances in both basic and applied research in social psychology including topics such as interpersonal relationships, emotion, health, social cognition, judgment, and decision making. Prerequisites: graduate standing.
280. Seminar in Communication and Information Processing (1)
(S/U grades only.)
282. Advanced Topics in Auditory Neuroscience (4)
An in-depth analysis of current theoretical and empirical issues in the neurobiological study of auditory perception and cognition. Example topics include auditory stream segregation, localization, natural stimulus coding, pattern recognition and communication in multiple species.
285. Consciousness, Computation, and Incompleteness (4)
This seminar will examine conceptual and empirical problems in the scientific study of consciousness. Recent models of consciousness from cognitive psychology and neuroscience will be reviewed, in the light of limits on self-knowledge established in mathematical logic and computation theory. Prerequisites: graduate standing or consent of instructor.
296. Research Practicum (1–12)
Research in psychology under supervision of individual staff members. (S/U grades only.) (F,W,S)
298. Library Research (1–12)
Reports and surveys of the literature on selected topics. Prerequisites: graduate students in psychology. (S/U grades only.) (F,W,S)
299. Independent Research (1–12)
Independent research and thesis research. (S/U grades only.) (F,W,S)
500. Apprentice Teaching (4)
Teaching practicum for students enrolled in graduate program in psychology. Students who hold appointments as teaching assistants must enroll in this course. Minimum program requirement is for one four-unit course per year for four years. (S/U grades only.)