Honors Introduction to Psychology
400:008 Sec. 4
Dr. Linda L. Walsh
Fall, 1999 
2:00 MWF  Sabin 103
PROFESSOR: Dr. Linda L. Walsh
Office: Baker 441         Office Hours: 8:30 - 10:00 daily; other 
Mailbox: Baker 334       times by appointment; drop-bys welcome.
Phone: 273-2690           Email: walsh@uni.edu 
Homepage: www.uni.edu/walsh 
Messages may also be left on my office door or on my voice-mail.
        T.A. Ron Truelove
Phone: 222-6034           Email: truelor9253@uni.edu
  Text: Introduction to Psychology  (5th Edition) by Rod Plotnik
See also our class webpage at http://www.uni.edu/walsh/linda8.html
Course Objectives  Welcome!   About Your Prof
Schedule-1st Four Weeks   2nd Four Weeks   3rd Four Weeks Last Four Weeks
Exams   GradingAssignmentsComputer Conference   Research Participations
Powerpoint Outlines   Web Resources    Study Tips Help for Newcomers on Campus
My Family Our Pet, Buffy  My Garden   Walsh Homepage
Plotnik's Psychology Study Center    Link to WebCT

Course Description

    Honors Introduction to  Psychology is special small section of 400:008 offered to students enrolled in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences Honors Program. This semester the class includes The course covers the same general material as others sections (see below) but is able to combine lecture with more activities, discussion, computer conferencing, debates, and research projects.
    This course will provide you with a broad introduction to the field of psychology, one of the major social sciences. Among the topics we will cover are:  gathering data on the causes and correlates of behavior, key figures in psychology and their theories, examples of research findings from the major subareas of the field, and using psychological knowledge to improve the quality of our lives. This survey of psychology will acquaint you with the major concepts and terminology of the discipline and give you a better understanding of self and others. We'll use a combination of lectures (oh boy!), video clips, demonstrations (volunteers needed!), and miscellaneous experiences (be on guard!).  I hope it will make you want to learn more and have you asking "what's the evidence?" each time you encounter statements about behavior. Last of all, it should be fun and interesting! 

Course Objectives
1.  To become aware of the major psychological approaches to the study of behavior.
2.  To become aware of the major aspects of behavior investigated by psychologists.
3.  To become familiar with the contributions of major figures in the field.
4.  To become familiar with the major research findings and theories of the field.
5.  To become conversant in the unique language of psychology.
6.  To learn the methodology of psychology and its limitations.
7.  To learn how to locate, read and evaluate psychological resources.
8.  To become an informed consumer of psychological information.
9.  To gain self understanding and a greater understanding of others.
10.To recognize ways to apply psychological findings to everyday life.
11.To develop the ability to write about and discuss psychological issues.
12.To learn to appreciate the necessity of a multi-level explanation of behavior.
13.To become fascinated by the study of behavior and mental processes! : )
Tentative Schedule*
*(some changes likely as we schedule debates, field trip, etc.)
1 M 8/23 Welcome & Introduction to Psychology - as a Discipline and as a Career
Read the entire syllabus; read Module 1 for this week

Complete "Who are you?" sheet for next class period 
Introduce yourself on our class computer conference 
History of Psych summary
1 W 8/25 Our Electronic Resources 
Psychology's Goals & Approaches 
Examples: Learning About Autism & About Test Anxiety 
Who Are You sheet due
Want to learn more about autism?
Autism is likely to be linked to several genes
The development of tools for earlier diagnosis
New technologies advance study of autism
Autistic Savants
 Module 1 
Assignment: Read about Learning Styles and Take a Learning Style Test by 9/3 (write down your results, your reaction, and how you might be able to use your results to learn psych)
How to Use Your Test Results

Learning Style Test 2 (alternative link if above is busy) 
F 8/27 Goals and Approaches continued Module 1 
Complete Library Scavenger Hunt by Monday 8/30
  2 M 8/30 Research Methods in Psychology 
Example: Investigating ADHD 
Library Scavenger Hunt Due
Read Module 2 for this week 

For fun - Interactive Magic
 (think critically!)

  2  W 9/1 Meet in the Library Room 286 today!!
Learn about PsycINFO
Module 2 
F 9/3 Understanding the Experiment 
Turn in your Learning Style Test 
results and reaction today
Module  2 
Correlational vs experimental studies
Asking Testable Questions
Experimental Dilemmas 
3 W 9/8 Igor Comes For a Visit 
Introducing the Nervous System 
Turn in experiment data today
Module 4 + pages 50, 54 
Neural Structure Quiz
Neuron in Action
3 F 9/10 Hemispheric Differences Module 4 
Know your Lobes!! (and we're not talking Ferrengi ears here!)
4 M 9/13 The Brain Game 
Notes on Module 4 coverage of brain areas and their functions due in class.
 Module 4 plus any other brain material covered in class
4 W 9/15 Sleep  Module 7
4 F 9/17 Yikes! TEST 1!! Study often!
5 M 9/20 Classical Conditioning Module 9 Ivan Pavlov   Watson 
5 W 9/22 Operant Conditioning 
Classical Conditioning exercise due
Module 10 B.F. Skinner
Positive Reinforcement
F 9/24 Schedules of Reinforcement 
Observational Learning 
Reinforcement Exercise due
Module 10
6 M 9/27 Introduction to Sensation: Vision 
PsycINFO Search Due Today
Module 5 The Eye  Blind spots
6 W 9/29 The Other Senses 
Sensory Demos today!!
Module 5  The Ear 
Zener Card ESP Test
6 F 10/1 Perception 
Be ready for Sensation/Perception Jeopardy today!
Module 6 
Visual Illusions Gallery
Sensation/Perception Jeopardy
7 M 10/4 The Nature of Memory  Module 11
  7 T 10/5 Optional Road Trip to Nobel Conference on Genetics and Behavior in southern Minnesota
1999 Nobel Conference Schedule 
Introduction to the Conference 
Dean Hamer -genes & sexuality, genes & personality
J. Craig Venter-The Human Genome Project

Lindon Eaves-twin research
7 W 10/6 Memory Problems and How to Improve Your Memory  Module 12 Memory tips
7 F 10/8 Is Memory Reliable?  
  8 M 10/11 TEST 2!!! Study actively!
8 W 10/13  Early Development Module 17 +286-288 
8 F 10/15 Sexual Development Sexual Orientation
The Case of John/Joan
Intersex Society of North America
S 10/16  Optional Roadtrip to the TriState Undergraduate Psychology Conference in Rockford, IL
   9 M 10/18 Social Development and Attachment  Harry Harlow
9 W 10/20
9 F 10/22 Cognitive Development  Piaget
10 M 10/25 Personality Development According to Freud  Module 19 
10 W 10/27 Humanistic Psychology and Self 
Defense Mechanism Exercise due 
10 F 10/29 Social Cognitive and Trait Theories  Module 20 
11 M 11/1
11 W11/3 Stress and the Body Module 21 
11 F 11/5 Stress and Personality
12 M 11/8  TEST 3!! Test yourself while studying.
12 W 11/10 Introduction to Abnormal Psychology  Module 23 
12 F 11/12 Anxiety & Dissociative Disorders 
13 M 11/15 Mood Disorders Module 24 
Depression Questionnaire
13 W 11/17 Schizophrenia 
 13  F 11/19 What's My Psychopathology? 
Abnormal Notes Due
14 M 11/22 Biomedical Therapies 
Thanksgiving Break
 15 M 11/29 Therapies Continued
15 W 12/1 Psychoanalytic and Humanistic Therapies  Module 25
15 F 12/3 Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies 
Experiment alternative papers due.
 16 M 12/6 Introduction to Social Psychology  Module 26
 16 W 12/8 Social Psychology - Social Influence
 16 F 12/10 Apathy vs Altruism 
Violation of Social Norm Due
M 12/13 FINAL EXAM 3:00  Take good care of yourself during finals week!
  •     Welcome to Honors Introduction to Psychology!! And for those of you new to campus -- welcome to UNI as well! I'm hoping we will have a great semester together. An Honors Intro course has not been taught here before - so this is just as new to me as it is to you. I know this may sound strange but I'll confess I am so used to teaching Intro classes of 200 students that I'm kind of nervous about having a class of less than 20! Bear with me if I sometimes lapse in "large-lecture" mode.
  •     What's different about an honors section? I've been doing some national research this summer on honors psych classes around the country. It is clear that honors profs don't all agree on what constitutes an honors-level course, but here is my thinking. Your grades and test scores suggest you already have good reading and study skills and are probably motivated independent learners. So I will be counting on you learning a good deal on your own by reading our text and other sources and I will not try to cover all the material in class lectures. We will spend more time on demonstrations, activities, discussion,  and student presentations. We can do things in this small class that aren't possible (or at least are much more difficult) in a class of hundreds. Assignments in this class will also require more in the way of research, writing and speaking skills than in your average Intro class.
  •     Attendance and keeping up with the reading are both extremely important for success in this class.  Exams will cover both material in the text (that we may not discuss in class) as well as material presented in class (via lectures, activities, videos, handouts, etc.) that may not be in the book.

  •     This is not high school!! I know some of you made excellent grades in high school with little in the way of studying. College is different for most students - your classmates are a more select group (especially in an honors class!) and much more independent learning in required (via hours of reading and reviewing). At the same time you are in a new environment with new freedoms and new temptations. Be careful! Enjoy your college experience but be aware that it won't be as easy as what you are used to. Taking a full load of college classes is like a full time job.  It really requires about 40 hrs/week!

    About our exams: Exams will be multiple choice plus a couple short essay questions. Although some items will test your knowledge of facts or definitions, a larger number will assess your understanding of the material by asking you to apply the concepts we cover to  examples. Being able to recognize how to apply class concepts to real-life examples requires more than rote memorization. Essays will typically require critical evaluation as well. Our text does include practice tests and thought-provoking questions that can help you prepare for exams.

    Makeup exams are strongly discouraged; if a makeup is necessary you must contact me on or before the scheduled day of the exam and the makeup must be taken before the exams are returned to the class. I always try to get results back to you by the next class period if possible.

    Class Computer Conference - we will be using online courseware called WebCT for maintaining a class electronic bulletin board or computer conference. Go to UNI's WebCT page (http://www.uni.edu/webct/), select the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, and select our class. Both your initial log-in and password will be your last name in lowercase letters. Class periods never seem to allow us the time we'd like for discussion. A class conference is a way to extend the class period. Shy students, reluctant to speak up in class, often feel comfortable contributing to the conference.
    Also a conference allows you to ask questions (about lecture, the book, assignments, the freshman experience, whatever) - anytime. It can also be a great way to get to know your classmates. To get credit for the conference, you need to log-on and make substantive posts (raising questions, discussing issues, reporting on class-related news items or television shows, or personal experiences, responding to someone else's post, responding to questions I raise at the end of class, etc.) at least 3 times a week (a week runs from Sunday midnight to next Sunday midnight). This first week one post will be to introduce yourself to the class. You may not make up for missed weeks by posting more than three times in a subsequent week. Please do not limit yourself to this three message per week minimum; the credit is simply an incentive for you to post regularly. I reserve the right to award additional extra credit points for exceptional participation on the conference.

      Grades will be based on the total number of points accumulated during the semester. Tests 1, 2 and 3 will each be worth 60 points plus a few extra credit points. The Final will include 60 questions on new material as well as 45 old questions drawn from Tests 1-3 and essay questions that require you to reflect back on material from the whole semester.

    Expected Points*

    Test 1           60 + a couple extra credit
    Test 2           60 + a couple extra credit
    Test 3           60 + a couple extra credit
    Final           125 (60 new & 45 old questions) + a couple extra credit
    Debate Presentation (50) and Reactions (30)
    Assignments Listed in Syllabus (   )
    Miscellaneous In-Class Assignments/Activities
    Participation in Class Computer Conference 45 + possible extra credit
    Total =
    * Since this honors class is new, I am not sure exactly how many class activities we will get to - we'll be playing it by ear as the semester goes along. So this list is approximate and will be updated later in the semester.

  • Your final course grade will be assigned according to this scale:
  • Grade
    80.0 - 82.9% 
    67.0 - 69.9% 
    90.0 - 92.9% 
    77.0 - 79.9% 
    63.0 - 66.9% 
    87.0 - 89.9% 
    73.0 - 76.9% 
    60.0 - 62.9% 
    83.0 - 86.9% 
    70.0 - 72.9% 
    0.0 - 59.9% 
    Record Your Points:

    Test 1____ Test 2____ Test 3____ Final ____

    Study Tips

    1.  Start studying now!  Commit to putting in the necessary time to remember information from the course!  There is a direct relationship between the amount of time you spend learning material and the length of time you remember it. The general rule of thumb is 2 hours out of class for every hour in class (YES - carrying a full load is like a full-time job!). It will take you at least 2 hours to read the chapter each week - block out that time in your schedule. An ideal situation is to review your notes and do some reading/studying shortly after each class period while its fresh in your mind.
    2.  Space your study sessions.  All night cram sessions are one of the least effective ways to learn or memorize new material. Repeated spaced practice allows you to mentally process and incorporate the information into memory.  It's a basic fact of the way human memory works.  Students who take the distributed practice approach to learning retain significantly more information than students who use cramming. Can you imagine if the Panthers tried to win after a single cram practice just before the game?
    3.  Read material BEFORE we cover it in class.  Another function of human memory is that we tend to remember things much easier when we have some sort of mental framework to guide us.  That's exactly what reading the material ahead of time does; it gives you that all important mental framework so that when the professor mentions the concept, you already have a place to "hang" the information.
    4.  Find a place to study where you can concentrate.  Problems in absorbing new information arise when distracting thoughts, background noise, televisions, stereos, and friends sidetrack your attention.
    5. BEWARE - so much of psych sounds familiar that it is very tempting to think you are grasping it all just by passively listening in lecture. This is not enough to actually learn and be able to use the material in the course. You must be an active, involved learner and really work with the text and lecture notes to get a good grade. Test yourself before I test you -can you answer all the questions in our book without difficulty? The study aids you actually produce yourself  are also extremely important to your learning.
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    Class Resources on the World-Wide Web
    Intro to Psych Students are also encouraged to visit
    and make use of the following class resources:
    Sites to Promote Academic Success (Study Skills Page)
    Help for Newcomers on Campus  (Info About On-Campus resources)
    Intro to Psych Powerpoint Lecture Outlines
    Demonstrations, Tutorials & other Neat Psych Stuff
    * I reserve the right to award additional extra credit points for extra effort.
       There will be some additional in-class assignments/activities not included in this list.

    Who Are You Sheet - Due 8/25.

    Send me an email (walsh@uni.edu) (2 pt)

    Library Scavenger Hunt  (10 pts) - Due 8/30.

    Introduction to PsycINFO - meet in library 2:00 Wed., 9/1.

    Complete the Web Learning Style Test . (6 pt) Due 9/3.
    Use a web browser to access our online syllabus and click on the Learning Styles Test in the syllabus. Write down or print your results (2 pt) and write down what you think of those results (2). How might you use this information to improve your learning this semester? (2 pt)

    Brain Game Notes (5 pt) Due 9/13.
    Come to class with organized notes on the parts of the nervous system and brain and the behaviors/functions each part is related to. Include the neurotransmitters mentioned in the class and their links to behavior as well, and any additional brain areas in lecture. Make yourself a sketch or 2 to remind you where the various brain areas are located. You will use these notes to play the Brain Game, where you will "diagnose" what part of the brain has been damaged based on the patients' symptoms. Correct diagnoses will be rewarded and everyone who turns in good notes will earn 10 pts.

    Classical Conditioning Exercise (up to 10 pt): Due 9/22.
    Identify the UCS, UCR, CS & CR in several classical conditioning examples.

    Reinforcement Exercise (up 20 pt) Due 9/24.
    Identify the schedule of reinforcement in several operant examples. Distinguish between positive and negative reinforcement and punishment.

    PsycINFO Assignment: Locating psychological research. (12 pt) Due 9/27.
    PsycINFO is a computerized database that keeps track of almost all the books and journals (periodicals) related to the field of psychology which our library makes available on the web. Your task is to fine 3 topically related research reports available in our library.Turn in your search, the abstracts of the 3 articles* and choose 1 to read more thoroughly. Identify the what area of  psych you think it represents (see Module 1) and the research method(s) you think are used (see Module 2).  Explain your reasoning.  A handout is will be provided and trip to library on 9/1 will demonstrate how to use the PsycINFO database. Tips on Reading Research Reports
    * Although its not required, it might make sense to search for articles that support your position on your debate topic.

    Sensation/Perception Jeopardy Notes (10 pt) Due 10/1.
    Come to class with organized notes on the Sensation and Perception Modules (Modules 5 & 6) . Make yourself a sketch or 2 to remind you where the various brain areas are located. You will use these notes to play the Brain Game, where you will "diagnose" what part of the brain has been damaged based on the patients' symptoms. Correct diagnoses will be rewarded and everyone who turns in good (complete)notes will earn 10 pts.

    Debate (50) and Debate Reactions(30) - Due date will vary depending on topic.

    Defense Mechanisms Exercise (up to 10 pt) Due 10/27.
    Identify the defense mechanism operating in several examples.

    What's My Psychopathology (up to 10 pt) Due 11/19.
    Take notes on the disorders in Modules 22 and 23 in preparation for an in-class game where you must identify the disorders portrayed in case reports. Correct diagnoses will be rewarded and everyone who turns in good notes will earn 10 pts.

    Violating a Social Norm (up to 10 pt) - Due 12/10.
    Choose a social norm to violate (but nothing illegal, unethical, dangerous, or really offensive) and violate it a number of times in a variety of settings.
    Note the reactions of others as well as your own feelings. A handout will be provided.

    Experiment Participation or Research Methods Paper Alternatives: The other requirement in this class is research participation or paper alternatives. You will receive additional handouts on this component but 3 credits of participation and/or alternatives are necessary to fulfill this department requirement. Because of the diverse opportunities available these participations or alternatives do not carry a point value but are graded complete or incomplete. Keep track of your credits yourself (space is provided below): I will not receive the master attendance/credit list from our department office until the last week of the semester.

    Record Your Research Participation or Alternatives Here:

        Title             Time & Date           Location                  What I Did



    About Your Prof
    Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois
    Education: B.S. (Psychology) University of Illinois, Chicago; M.A. (Biopsychology) University of Chicago; Ph.D. (Biopsychology) University of Chicago
    Married:  James Walsh (attorney)
    Children:  3 girls (Jennifer (16), Sara (14), & Annie (10))
    Hobbies:  Gardening (in fact about 800 people toured my garden last summer!), gourmet cooking, travel, volleyball, reading
    Most unusual experiences: Performing brain surgery on rats, riding an elephant (twice!), wearing a live python around my neck, climbing the Great Pyramid, flying in the Goodyear blimp, visiting ancient Greek ruins, giving birth
    Goals: Continue to learn for the rest of my life, enjoy my professional and private lives, help others discover psychology (especially biopsychology)

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    This page was prepared by Linda Walsh, Dept. of Psychology,
    University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls, IA 50614-0505.
    Last updated 8/7/99.