General Psychology-Honors

Psychology H211- Fall 1998

Mon. 2 - 4, Wed. 3 - 4

(scroll to the bottom of the page to view the course calander)

Instructor: David Renjilian, Ph.D.

Phone: extension 2697

Office: McGowan Center # 117


Required Text

Baron, R. A. (1998). Psychology (4th ed.). Boston: Allyn and Bacon

Additional Required Readings (on reserve in curriculum lab)

Rosenhan, D. L. (1973). On being sane in insane places. Science, 179, 250 - 258

Course Description and Goals

This course offers a broad-based investigation of the nature of behavior, stressing general scientific principles, the complexity of human emotion and the potential of psychology for one's self-realization. Psychology as a science, the physiology of behavior, sensation and perception, learning and memory, human development, motivation, personality and abnormal behavior will be covered. Lecture, readings,and video presentations will be utilized to address these areas. Students will be able to convey understanding of these concepts through class discussions, written summaries of readings, independent projects and exams.

Course Learning Objectives

1. Understand the research methods utilized in psychology.

2. Compare and contrast the major schools in psychology.

3. Accurately trace the history and systems which have shaped the field as it is today.

4. Differentiate between the concepts of sensation and perception.

5. Apply the principles governing memory to everyday life.

6. Understand basic nervous system functioning.

7. Define the dimensions of consciousness, including the effects of drugs and sleep.

8. Apply several theories to conceptualizing deviant human behavior.

9. Discuss the short and long term effects of stress and conflict.

10. Identify important physiological and psychological milestones throughout the life cycle.

11. Understand the basic underpinnings of the major psychotherapeutic approaches.

12. Relate principles of social psychology to everyday life.



As exam items will be drawn from class lectures as well as from the text, regular attendance is strongly recommended. Attendance is required on the date of exams. In the event of borderline grade, attendance and class participation will be considered when determining final grades. Students are responsible for any announcements made during missed classes.


There will be two mid&endash;semester exams and a noncumulative final, each worth 50 points. Exams will be a consist of a combination of multiple choice and short answer items. "Bad" items will be dropped based on an item analysis performed by the instructor after each exam. In the event of a skewed distribution of test scores, a "curve" will be used to determine test grades. 150 points.

If an exam date is canceled by the college due to snow, the test will be given during the next scheduled class. Classes canceled which precede the test date will not affect the exam schedule. Make&endash;ups for reasons other than illness or emergency will not be allowed. Should illness or emergency prevent you from taking an exam, please call either my office or the psychology department (x6270) and leave me a message. You must bring written documentation of your absence and can expect to be administered a make&endash;up exam during the following class.


You will be required to read 2 articles in psychology. One will be assigned, the other chosen by you (clear your choice with the instructor first). You must write a brief summary (1 - 2 pages, typed, doubled spaced) on each article, worth 10 points each. 20 points total.


You will also be required to complete an independent study project. This will consist of either keeping a dream log for a week or completing a case study on a friend or family member (formats for each will be described in class). 30 points.


All General Psychology Students are required to participate in a research activity to better understand how the scientific process is utilized in the field of psychology. This will involve participation in research conducted by Marywood Psychology/Counseling faculty (or in some cases students), or completing the alternate assignment which will be described in class. Total time involved is generally less than 3 hours. Failure to complete this assignment will result in a 5 point reduction to your final grade.


Additional points may be earned on some tests in the form of extra credit items. Up to 10 points can be earned in this manner, and by participating in research (beyond the research participation requirement of the course) or role-play exercises/testing with graduate students.


The assignments are each worth...

Exams................150 points

Article Summaries....20 points

Independent project..30 points

TOTAL..............200 points

Final grades are based on the following percentages:

95 - 100%=A
75 - 79%=C
90 - 94%=B+
70 - 74%=D+
85 - 89%=B
65 - 69%=D
80 - 84%=C+
<65% =F

Recommended Readings

See me for recommended readings on various topics in psychology. To find readings related to clinical psychology, go to:


Web sites worth checking out:

To view web sites related to psychology, point your browser to my personal web page at:

then click on

Psychology Links

Course Outline - PSY H-211


Sept 2

History, systems and science of psych.

Chapter 1

Sept 9

The physiology of behavior

Chapter 2

Sept 14, 16

Sensation and perception

Chapter 3

Sept 21, 23

Sleep, drugs, and consciousness

Chapter 4

Sep 28, 30

Learning and conditioning

Chapter 5

Oct 5(exam), 7


Chapter 6

Oct 12, 14

Cognition and intelligence

Chapter 7, 11

Oct 19, 21

Development: Childhood

Chapter 8

Oct 26, 28

Development: Adult

Chapter 9

Nov 2, 4

Motivation and emotion

Chapter 10

Nov 9(exam), 12

Theories of personality

Chapter 12

Nov 16,18

Stress, adjustment and coping

Chapter 13

Nov 23

Psychopathology & abnormal behavior

Chapter 14

Nov 30, Dec 2

Psychotherapies & treatment

Chapter 15

Dec 7, 9

Social influence

Chapter 16


Final Exam

There is a 5 point a day penalty on any late assignments!

Be prepared in advance for computer problems, personal crises, and homework eating pets!

Back to Courses Page