Ellis 319
Timetable Entries
8:30 am

The course will explore the social and affective motivations that influence how we make everyday decisions from the diverse perspectives of psychology, economics, and neurobiology. The course will be taught together with psychology students (PSYC 485). A focus of the course will be on social psychological constructs (e.g. conformity, reputation, and social comparisons), feelings (e.g. risk, regret and guilt) and behavior change. We will explore how social influences can be modeled using tools from decision theory (e.g., value and uncertainty) and how these processes might be instantiated in the brain. We will cover the background of the selected topics and reading material to ensure that students without a strong background in psychology (or economics or neuroscience) can do well in the course. One of the key assignments of this course will be centered around structured discussion in which we will put the assigned reading material ‘on trial.’  This means that what you learn from this course will be also dependent on your own and your classmates’ ability to thoughtfully discourse on the assigned readings.