Bowdoin College Catalogue and Academic Handbook

Psychology (PSYC)

PSYC 1101  (b)   Introduction to Psychology  

Suzanne Lovett; Kacie Armstrong.
Every Semester. Fall 2021. Enrollment limit: 50.
  

A general introduction to the major concerns of contemporary psychology, including physiological psychology, perception, learning, cognition, language, development, personality, intelligence, and abnormal and social behavior. Recommended for first- and second-year students. Juniors and seniors should enroll in the spring semester.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2021, Fall 2020, Spring 2020, Fall 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2017.

PSYC 2010  (b)   Infant and Child Development  

Every Semester. Enrollment limit: 35.  

A survey of major changes in psychological functioning from conception through childhood. Several theoretical perspectives are used to consider how physical, personality, social, and cognitive changes jointly influence the developing child’s interactions with the environment.

Prerequisites: PSYC 1101 or Placement in above PSYC 1101.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2021, Fall 2020, Fall 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2017.

PSYC 2012  (b)   Educational Psychology  

Non-Standard Rotation. Enrollment limit: 35.  

This course introduces the foundations of adolescent development and educational psychology. We examine topics such as identity development, cognitive development, social and cultural approaches to learning, risk taking, resilience, and positive youth development for young people ages 10-19. Course concepts and theories will be grounded in empirical research and will be applied to understanding contemporary opportunities and challenges faced by adolescent learning in both school and out-of-school environments. Insights for the ways in which educators can design learning experiences to better serve students’ needs from a variety of backgrounds will be cultivated through a field placement working with students. (Same as: EDUC 2222)

Prerequisites: EDUC 1101 or PSYC 1101 or Placement in above PSYC 1101.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2021, Spring 2020.

PSYC 2025  (b)   Abnormal Psychology  

Hannah Reese.
Every Fall. Fall 2021. Enrollment limit: 35.
  

An introduction to the phenomenology, etiology, and treatment of mental disorders. Major topics include depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, schizophrenia, eating disorders, and personality disorders. Current paradigms for understanding psychopathology, diagnosis and assessment, and research methods specific to clinical psychology also discussed.

Prerequisites: PSYC 1101 or Placement in above PSYC 1101.

Previous terms offered: Fall 2020, Spring 2020, Fall 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2018, Fall 2017.

PSYC 2030  (b)   Social Psychology  

Every Spring. Enrollment limit: 35.  

A survey of theory and research on individual social behavior. Topics include self-concept, social cognition, affect, attitudes, social influence, interpersonal relationships, and cultural variations in social behavior.

Prerequisites: PSYC 1101 or SOC 1101 or Placement in above PSYC 1101.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2021, Spring 2020, Spring 2019, Spring 2018.

PSYC 2034  (b)   Psychology of Diversity  

Non-Standard Rotation. Enrollment limit: 35.  

An introduction to the variety of human experiences, identities, and cultures in the United States and internationally. Difference in power and privilege is analyzed as they relate to various social categories such as race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, religion, and physical ability.

Prerequisites: PSYC 1101 or Placement in above PSYC 1101.

Previous terms offered: Fall 2017.

PSYC 2040  (b)   Cognitive Psychology  

Every Spring. Enrollment limit: 35.  

A survey of theory and research examining how humans perceive, process, store, and use information. Topics include visual perception, attention, memory, language processing, decision making, and cognitive development.

Prerequisites: PSYC 1101 or Placement in above PSYC 1101.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2021, Spring 2020, Spring 2019, Spring 2018.

PSYC 2050  (a)   Physiological Psychology  

Every Other Year. Enrollment limit: 35.  

An introductory survey of biological influences on behavior. The primary emphasis is on the physiological regulation of behavior in humans and other vertebrate animals, focusing on genetic, developmental, hormonal, and neuronal mechanisms. Additionally, the evolution of these regulatory systems is considered. Topics discussed include perception, cognition, sleep, eating, sexual and aggressive behaviors, and mental disorders. (Same as: NEUR 2050)

Prerequisites: PSYC 1101 or BIOL 1102 or BIOL 1109 or Placement in above PSYC 1101 or Placement in BIOL 2000 level.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2021, Spring 2020, Spring 2019, Spring 2018.

PSYC 2055  (a)   Psychoneuroimmunology  

Michael Buccigrossi.
Non-Standard Rotation. Fall 2021. Enrollment limit: 35.
  

This course is the study of the influence of psychological state on the communication and coordinated function among cells of the nervous system, the endocrine system, and the immune system. We will review the current molecular and cellular evidence that these systems interact through sharing the same cells, chemical messengers, and receptors. Other topics include the role of conscious thought, emotional states, meditation, depression, stress, and positivity on immune function. Through exams and written assignments, students will also evaluate the influence of the complex coordinated activity of this psycho-neuro-immuno cell system on psychogenic disease and aging via the impact on cellular detoxification, tumor surveillance, epigenetic mechanisms, and human gut microbiota. (Same as: NEUR 2055)

Prerequisites: PSYC 1101 or Placement in above PSYC 1101.

PSYC 2060  (a)   Cognitive Neuroscience  

Every Other Year. Enrollment limit: 35.  

An introduction to the neuroscientific study of cognition. Topics surveyed in the course include the neural bases of perception, attention, memory, language, executive function, and decision making. In covering these topics, the course will draw on evidence from brain imaging (fMRI, EEG, MEG), transcranial magnetic stimulation, electrophysiology, and neuropsychology. Also considers how knowledge about the brain constrains our understanding of the mind. (Same as: NEUR 2060)

Prerequisites: PSYC 1101 or Placement in above PSYC 1101.

Previous terms offered: Fall 2020, Fall 2018.

PSYC 2099  (a)   Brain, Behavior, and Evolution  

Thomas Small.
Non-Standard Rotation. Fall 2021. Enrollment limit: 35.
  

A comparative and evolutionary approach to animal behavioral neuroscience. The primary focus is on the evolution of the brain and behavior in vertebrate systems, including humans, but invertebrates are also discussed. Topics include the evolution and diversity of sensory systems, reproductive behaviors, parental care, learning and memory, social behaviors, intelligence, and cognition. (Same as: NEUR 2099)

Prerequisites: PSYC 1101 or BIOL 1102 or BIOL 1109 or Placement in above PSYC 1101 or Placement in BIOL 2000 level.

Previous terms offered: Fall 2020.

PSYC 2510  (b)   Research Design in Psychology  

Zach Rothschild.
Every Semester. Fall 2021. Enrollment limit: 35.
  

A systematic study of the scientific method as it underlies psychological research. Topics include prominent methods used in studying human and animal behavior, the logic of causal analysis, experimental and non-experimental designs, issues in internal and external validity, pragmatics of careful research, and technical writing of research reports.

Prerequisites: PSYC 1101 or Placement in above PSYC 1101.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2021, Fall 2020, Spring 2020, Fall 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2017.

PSYC 2520  (a, MCSR)   Data Analysis  

Suzanne Lovett.
Every Semester. Fall 2021. Enrollment limit: 32.
  

An introduction to the use of descriptive and inferential statistics and design in behavioral research. Weekly laboratory work in computerized data analysis. Required of majors no later than the junior year, and preferably by the sophomore year.

Prerequisites: Two of: PSYC 1101 or Placement in above PSYC 1101 and either BIOL 1102 or BIOL 1109 or Placement in BIOL 2000 level or PSYC 2510.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2021, Fall 2020, Spring 2020, Fall 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2017.

PSYC 2710  (b)   Laboratory in Developmental Psychology  

Every Spring. Enrollment limit: 20.  

Multiple methods used in developmental research are examined both by reading research reports and by designing and conducting original research studies. The methods include observation, interviews, questionnaires, and lab experiments, among others. Students learn to evaluate the relative strengths and weaknesses of both qualitative and quantitative approaches.

Prerequisites: Three of: PSYC 2010 and PSYC 2510 and PSYC 2520.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2021, Spring 2020, Spring 2019, Spring 2018.

PSYC 2725  (b)    Laboratory in Clinical Psychology  

Every Spring. Enrollment limit: 20.  

An overview and analysis of the diverse research methods employed by clinical psychologists. Through reading, analysis, and hands-on experience, students gain an understanding of the relative merits of various approaches to understanding the nature and treatment of mental disorders. Major topics include clinical interviewing and assessment, information-processing approaches to understanding psychopathology, and the principles of behavior change. Class participation culminates with the design and conduct of an original research project.

Prerequisites: Three of: PSYC 2510 and PSYC 2520 and PSYC 2025.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2021, Spring 2020, Spring 2019, Spring 2018.

PSYC 2735  (b)   Laboratory in Social Psychology  

Zach Rothschild.
Every Fall. Fall 2021. Enrollment limit: 20.
  

An examination of different research methodologies used by social psychologists, including archival research, observation, questionnaires, lab experiments, and online data collection. Students learn about the relative strengths and weaknesses of these different methodological approaches, both by reading research reports and by designing and conducting original research.

Prerequisites: Three of: either PSYC 2030 or PSYC 2032 - 2034 and PSYC 2510 and PSYC 2520.

Previous terms offered: Fall 2020, Fall 2019, Fall 2018, Fall 2017.

PSYC 2740  (b)   Laboratory in Cognition  

Jonathan Schacherer.
Every Fall. Fall 2021. Enrollment limit: 20.
  

An analysis of research methodology and experimental investigations in cognition, including such topics as auditory and sensory memory, visual perception, attention and automaticity, retrieval from working memory, implicit and explicit memory, metamemory, concept formation and reasoning. Weekly laboratory sessions allow students to collect and analyze data in a number of different areas of cognitive psychology.

Prerequisites: Three of: PSYC 2040 and PSYC 2510 and PSYC 2520.

Previous terms offered: Fall 2020, Fall 2019, Fall 2018, Fall 2017.

PSYC 2750  (a, INS)   Behavioral Neuroscience Laboratory: Affective Neuroscience  

Jennifer Honeycutt.
Every Year. Fall 2021. Enrollment limit: 20.
  

A laboratory course that exposes students to modern techniques in neuroscience that can be applied to the study of affective behavior, broadly. Underlying concepts associated with various behavioral, molecular, neuroanatomical, pharmacological, and translational methods will be discussed in a lecture format. Students will apply these concepts and techniques in discussions and laboratory preparations demonstrating how affective processes are organized within the central nervous system of vertebrates. This course will explore using experimental examples how the brain influences behavior, thereby illuminating our understanding of human neuropsychological functioning. (Same as: NEUR 2750)

Prerequisites: Three of: either PSYC 2050 (same as NEUR 2050) or BIOL 2135 (same as NEUR 2135) or PSYC 2060 (same as NEUR 2060) and PSYC 2510 or either BIOL 1102 or BIOL 1109 and PSYC 2520 or either MATH 1300 or MATH 1400.

Previous terms offered: Fall 2020, Fall 2019, Fall 2018, Fall 2017.

PSYC 2775  (a, INS, MCSR)   Laboratory in Cognitive Neuroscience  

Every Year. Enrollment limit: 20.  

A laboratory course that exposes students to multiple techniques in cognitive neuroscience that can be applied to the study of human cognition. Introduces human neuroimaging methods including electroencephalography (EEG) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Students will then use these methods to study aspects of human cognition including perception, attention, memory, language, problem solving, reasoning, and decision making. (Same as: NEUR 2775)

Prerequisites: Three of: PSYC 2040 or either PSYC 2050 (same as NEUR 2050) or PSYC 2060 (same as NEUR 2060) or BIOL 2135 (same as NEUR 2135) or PSYC 2055 (same as NEUR 2055) and PSYC 2510 or either BIOL 1102 or BIOL 1109 or Placement in BIOL 2000 level and PSYC 2520 or either MATH 1300 or MATH 1400.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2021, Spring 2020, Spring 2019, Spring 2018.

PSYC 3010  (b)   Social Development  

Every Other Fall. Enrollment limit: 14.  

Research and theory regarding the interacting influences of biology and the environment as they are related to social and emotional development during infancy, childhood, and adolescence. Normative and idiographic development in a number of domains, including morality, aggression, personality, sex roles, peer interaction, and familial relationships are considered.

Prerequisites: Three of: PSYC 2010 and PSYC 2510 and PSYC 2520.

Previous terms offered: Fall 2019, Fall 2017.

PSYC 3011  (b)   Cognitive Development  

Every Other Spring. Enrollment limit: 14.  

Examines the development of cognitive understanding and cognitive processes from infancy through adolescence. Emphasis on empirical research and related theories of cognitive development. Topics include infant perception and cognition, concept formation, language development, theory of mind, memory, problem solving, and scientific thinking.

Prerequisites: Three of: PSYC 2010 or EDUC 2222 (same as PSYC 2012) and PSYC 2520 and PSYC 2510.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2021, Spring 2019.

PSYC 3019  (b)   The Psychology of Nostalgia  

Kacie Armstrong.
Non-Standard Rotation. Fall 2021. Enrollment limit: 14.
  

A seminar focusing on the emotion of nostalgia and its place in human development. Readings and discussions explore evolutionary, cognitive, and philosophical perspectives on nostalgic reflection to enrich our understanding of its origin and purpose. Topics include the emotional content of nostalgia, its triggers and psychological functions (including its connections to mood, identity, belonging, and terror management), and its potential therapeutic benefits. Cross-cultural experiences of nostalgia are considered, as well as its trajectory across the lifespan.

Prerequisites: Three of: either PSYC 2010 or PSYC 2012 and PSYC 2510 and PSYC 2520.

PSYC 3025  (b)   Psychotherapy and Behavior Change  

Hannah Reese.
Every Fall. Fall 2021. Enrollment limit: 14.
  

An in-depth study of the theory, research, and practice of contemporary psychotherapy. Major topics may include theoretical approaches to therapy, methods for studying its efficacy, processes of change, the role of the client-therapist relationship, and challenges to disseminating effective psychological treatments to the general public. Readings and discussion supplemented with video of psychotherapy sessions.

Prerequisites: Three of: PSYC 2510 and PSYC 2520 and either PSYC 2020 or PSYC 2025.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2021, Fall 2020, Fall 2019, Spring 2019.

PSYC 3026  (b)   Psychology of Trauma and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder  

Non-Standard Rotation. Enrollment limit: 14.  

Explores the psychological impact of many different types of trauma, including military combat, accidents, interpersonal violence, sexual assault, natural disasters, and childhood physical and sexual abuse. The emphasis is on psychological theories used to explain and treat symptoms associated with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Covers diagnostic methods, research on prevalence and policy issues, comorbid psychological and medical diagnoses, and social correlates. In addition to exploring the challenges associated with PTSD, addresses mechanisms of positive change following trauma (e.g., posttraumatic growth).

Prerequisites: Two of: PSYC 2025 and PSYC 2520.

Previous terms offered: Fall 2018, Fall 2017.

PSYC 3032  (b)   The Psychology of Happiness and Human Flourishing  

Non-Standard Rotation. Enrollment limit: 14.  

A seminar focusing on the psychology of happiness, and on well-being and optimal human functioning more broadly. Primary-source readings, class discussions, and critical writing assignments center on three major subtopics: (1) the basic science of well-being, with a focus on how well-being is conceptualized and measured and how it is affected by different factors (e.g., income, life events, habits of both behavior and thought); (2) existential and humanistic perspectives on well-being, with a focus on authenticity and meaning in life; and (3) how communities and societies could best be structured to promote well-being (and whether they should be). In addition to addressing theories and research in each of these areas, this course encourages students to apply the course content to better understand happiness and how it may best be sought in their own lives, in the lives of others, and in society at large.

Prerequisites: Three of: PSYC 2510 and PSYC 2520 and either PSYC 2030 or PSYC 2025 or PSYC 2032 - 2034.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2020.

PSYC 3033  (b)   The Psychology of Morality and Value  

Non-Standard Rotation. Enrollment limit: 14.  

A seminar focusing broadly on moral psychology. Primary-source readings, class discussions, and critical writing assignments center on four major sub-topics: (1) Cultural, Evolutionary, and Developmental Perspectives on Morality; (2) Moral Reasoning and Judgment; (3) Morality, Affect, and Motivation; and (4) Moral and Immoral Behavior. Beyond addressing basic moral-psychological mechanisms, this course considers how findings from moral psychology may inform solutions to personal and social problems.

Prerequisites: Three of: either PSYC 2030 or PSYC 2032 - 2034 and PSYC 2510 and PSYC 2520.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2019.

PSYC 3034  (b)   Social Identities and Stigma  

Non-Standard Rotation. Enrollment limit: 14.  

An advanced discussion of theory and social psychological research on identity and stigma. Topics include self and identity, self-esteem, system justification, stereotype threat, dis-identification, concealability and controllability. Why individuals stigmatize, the effects of stigmatization for low status groups, and contending with a stigmatized identity are considered.

Prerequisites: Three of: either PSYC 2030 or PSYC 2032 or PSYC 2033 or PSYC 2034 and PSYC 2510 and PSYC 2520.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2018.

PSYC 3035  (b)   Existential Social Psychology  

Every Spring. Enrollment limit: 14.  

An examination of how human concerns about death, meaning, isolation, and freedom influence and motivate a wide array of human behavior. Readings and discussions address empirical research on different theories of human motivation (e.g., terror management, meaning maintenance, attachment, compensatory control, and self-determination) that enrich our understanding of topics such as intergroup conflict, religious belief, prosocial behavior, interpersonal relationships, and materialism.

Prerequisites: Three of: either PSYC 2030 or PSYC 2032 - 2034 and PSYC 2510 and PSYC 2520.

Previous terms offered: Spring 2021, Spring 2020, Spring 2018.

PSYC 3040  (b)   The Psychology of Language  

Every Other Fall. Enrollment limit: 14.  

An examination of psychological factors that affect the processing of language, including a discussion of different modalities (auditory and visual language) and levels of information (sounds, letters, words, sentences, and text/discourse). Emphasis is on the issues addressed by researchers and the theories developed to account for our language abilities.

Prerequisites: Three of: PSYC 2040 and PSYC 2510 and PSYC 2520.

Previous terms offered: Fall 2020, Fall 2018.

PSYC 3041  (b)   Animal Cognition  

Non-Standard Rotation. Enrollment limit: 14.  

A seminar focusing on the basic principles of comparative cognition. Topics include language and communication, mental representations and symbolic capacities, tool manufacture and use, creativity, and the interaction of these mental abilities. Discussions of an extensive reading list will focus on the cognitive skills of animals such as bees, birds, dogs, dolphins, elephants, and nonhuman primates.

Prerequisites: Two of: PSYC 2510 and PSYC 2520.

Previous terms offered: Fall 2020.

PSYC 3042  (b)   Myth of Multitasking  

Jonathan Schacherer.
Non-Standard Rotation. Fall 2021. Enrollment limit: 14.
  

This seminar course focuses on our (in)ability to multitask. The purpose of this course is to introduce students to major issues, theories, methods, empirical data, and real-world implications for multitasking research. In this course, students will explore major themes and paradigms in multitasking research. We will begin by discussing major theoretical issues related to multitasking and segue into more real-world examples of multitasking (e.g., driving and talking on the phone, in the classroom). Students will communicate knowledge in spoken and written form. Students will formulate ideas for future empirical research that incorporate perspectives and methodology from class readings and discussion.

Prerequisites: Three of: PSYC 2040 and PSYC 2510 and PSYC 2520.

PSYC 3050  (a)   Hormones and Behavior  

Every Fall. Enrollment limit: 16.  

An advanced discussion of concepts in behavioral neuroendocrinology. Topics include descriptions of the major classes of hormones, their roles in the regulation of development and adult behavioral expression, and the cellular and molecular mechanisms responsible for their behavioral effects. Hormonal influences on reproductive, aggressive, and parental behaviors, as well as on cognitive processes are considered. (Same as: NEUR 3050)

Prerequisites: Three of: either PSYC 2050 (same as NEUR 2050) or BIOL 2135 (same as NEUR 2135) or PSYC 2060 (same as NEUR 2060) and PSYC 2510 or either BIOL 1102 or BIOL 1109 or Placement in BIOL 2000 level and PSYC 2520 or either MATH 1300 or MATH 1400.

Previous terms offered: Fall 2020, Spring 2020, Spring 2019, Fall 2017.

PSYC 3055  (a)   Cognitive Neuroscience of Memory  

Every Spring. Enrollment limit: 16.  

An advanced discussion of recent empirical and theoretical approaches to understanding the cognitive neuroscience of memory. Readings and discussions address empirical studies using neuroimaging methods. Topics include hippocampal and cortical contributions to memory encoding and retrieval and the effect of genetic variability, drugs, emotions, and sleep on memory. (Same as: NEUR 3055)

Prerequisites: Three of: either PSYC 2040 or PSYC 2050 (same as NEUR 2050) or PSYC 2060 (same as NEUR 2060) or BIOL 2135 (same as NEUR 2135) and Placement in BIOL 2000 level or PSYC 2510 or either BIOL 1102 or BIOL 1109 and PSYC 2520 or either MATH 1300 or MATH 1400.

Previous terms offered: Fall 2020, Fall 2018.

PSYC 3057  (a)   Seminar in Behavioral Neuroscience  

Non-Standard Rotation. Enrollment limit: 14.  

An advanced seminar covering brain mechanisms that affect behavior in humans and other animals. Topics may include the neural circuits that regulate normal social interactions, learning and memory processes, and/or higher cognitive functions, as well as the relationship between disrupted neural functions and mental disorders. The major emphasis of the course will be on reading and discussing primary research articles in the field of behavioral neuroscience. (Same as: NEUR 3057)

Prerequisites: Three of: either PSYC 2050 (same as NEUR 2050) or PSYC 2060 (same as NEUR 2060) or BIOL 2135 (same as NEUR 2135) and PSYC 2510 or either BIOL 1102 or BIOL 1109 and PSYC 2520 or either MATH 1300 or MATH 1400.

Previous terms offered: Fall 2019.