W40 Social Psychology in Film. This course explores basic social psychological concepts and principles as revealed in contemporary films. Attention is given to the nature and dynamics of social thought, social influence and social relationships. Films portraying the processes of attitude formation and change, conformity and obedience, prejudice and aggression, social attraction and conflict will be discussed in relationship to the relevant social psychological theory and research. Students will write a series of five brief papers relating readings from the psychological literature to the content of films such as Schindler’s List and The Shawshank Redemption. Evaluation will also include a final small group project and paper. No prerequisite. Not open to students who have taken or who plan to take Psychology 310-Social Psychology. This course may fulfill an elective requirement in the Psychology major. M. Bolt. 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
W41 Interpersonal Relationships. Tthis class investigates interpersonal relationships—particularly one-to-one relationships—by examining their initiation, development, and patterns of interaction. Questions that will guide our inquiry include: How honest are we with others about who we really are? Why do we hesitate to let others know us at a deeper level? How can we most effectively listen to others? How does one’s self-esteem impact relationship skills? How important are first impressions? Are some approaches to dating more “Christian” than others? How do we know if we are truly in love? How can we heal broken relationships? The initiation, breaking, and restoration of relationships is an example of the Creation/Fall/Redemption theme that will be developed in this course. Evaluation is based upon quizzes, journals, and class participation. This course may fulfill an elective requirement in the Psychology major. A. Shoemaker. 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
W80 Psychopathology in Film. From The Three Faces of Eve, to The Silence of the Lambs, to What About Bob? through various films in the horror genre, film has attempted to capture the essence of psychopathological affect, behavior, and cognition. This course traces concepts of psychopathology as presented in film. The focus is on various psychological disorders, emphasizing symptoms and perspectives of causation. Students view a variety of films that attempt to exemplify these disorders. The films are critiqued on accuracy and realism. The goal is to acquaint students with various psychological disorders and to develop critical-thinking skills in viewpoint film portrayals of psychological disorders. Students are evaluated on the basis of a group project and final paper. This course may fulfill an elective requirement in the Psychology major. Prerequisite: Psychology 212. R.S. Stehouwer. 8:30 a.m. to noon.
W81 Helping Skills. This course presents fundamental skills and strategies that underlie many psychotherapies. In reviewing the theory and research on therapy and helping relationships, the course identifies basic principles of problem management, communication, listening, and helping. A workshop format is used to teach and practice helping skills. Students develop skills in practice interviews and small group exercises. Appropriate for students in psychology as well as social work, pastoral counseling, or management fields. Course requirements include a text, journal articles, evaluated interviews, and a presentation. This course may fulfill an elective requirement in the Psychology major. Prerequisite: Psychology 151. J. DeBoe. 8:30 a.m. to noon.
W82 Psychology of Self-Understanding. This course is an introduction to contemporary theories and research about how people come to know and evaluate themselves and how self-judgments influence our emotions, actions, and aspirations. Questions for inquiry include: How can an individual’s self-concept and self-esteem be assessed? What are the limits and distortions of self-understanding? How does one’s self-concept originate and develop? How do people seek to maintain stable self conceptions and enhance theirself-esteem? How does self-understanding contribute to the way we deal with anxiety, depression, and personal failure? What dynamics contribute to the disintegration of self? The course includes readings, lectures, class discussions, films, and personal reflection on one’s own self-concept. Students take two tests and write a complete a narrative life history that demonstrates their ability to use appropriate principles and concepts from the course. This course is not open to students who have taken or plan to take Psychology 311. This course may fulfill an elective requirement in the Psychology major. Prerequisite: Psychology 151. J. Brink, G. Weaver. 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
W83 The Meaning of Childhood. How do we view children in our society? Are they to be indulgently pampered with Disney Cruises and given trophies “just for showing up”, or are they seen as an impediment to adult happiness and self-fulfillment? Does our definition of childhood impact how they are treated? Views of children throughout history will first be examined, including examples of societal attempts to exploit children (for example, Nazi Germany, the Salem witchcraft trials, and Lowell Mill girls) will be explored. We will also examine the meaning of childhood at different times in the Christian tradition. We will also consider modern perspectives and views on children, including the legal definitions of childhood. We will also consider children as the important consumer group that they have become. Values regarding children implicit in parenting literature (both Christian and non-Christian) will be critically examined, in order to gain a richer understanding of what childhood means to current society. Evaluation is based on discussion of required reading, one exam and a brief group project. This course may fulfill an elective requirement in the Psychology major. Prerequisite: Psych 201, Psych 204, or Sociology 350, or consent of the instructor. L. De Haan. 8:30 a.m. to noon.