Recent Courses

Psychology 87 & 192:  The Psychology of Humor (Humor Syllabus.pdf; Readings)

We will explore theories of why and when people laugh, with explanations ranging from simple novelty, surprise, and incongruity to more complex notions of disguised aggression, hostility and sexuality. We will also examine funny things themselves, and develop our own theories.


Psychology 104: Introduction to Social Psychology (Psych 104 Syllabus 2016.pdf)

An intensive introduction and survey of current knowledge in social psychology.


Psychology 130 & 258: Delay of Gratification (DoG Syllabus.pdf; Readings)

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.


Psychology 139: The Social Psychology of Sports (Sports Syllabus.pdf)

 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.


Psychology 157: Happiness (Happiness Syllabus 2015; Readings)

 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?