Spring, 2018

200C: Behavioral Neuroscience
Instructor: Edward Zagha
Time: Monday/Wednesday, 140pm-310pm, Psych 3210
Topic: Cortical Signaling Underlying Behavior and Cognition
Description: How does the spiking activity of cortical neurons relate to animal behavior and cognition? In this course, we will read a series of papers that analyze single unit neural recordings from behaving animals and attempt to understand the relationships between neural activity and task performance. We will read foundational papers in primates, and more recent papers in mouse utilizing novel genetic and physiological tools. Additionally, we will read cognitive psychology and computational modeling papers, to gain insights into how to analyze behavior and probe neural circuit organization. Student presentations of these papers will focus on three main topics: 1) understanding and critiquing the behavioral design, 2) understand the neural recording methods and analyses and 3) considering possible neural circuit organizations linking neurons to behavior. Lecturing will be embedded within the discussions and based on specific topics in the research papers.

255: Seminar in Social Psychology
Instructor: Dan Ozer
Time: Wednesdsay 310pm-600pm, Psych 2304
Topic: Inferring Cause in Social Psychology
Description: We will briefly consider different understandings of the notions of "cause" and then turn to various research designs and statistical methods employed in social psychology to discuss and evaluate their potential for revealing "causes" of social psychological and behavioral phenomena.

257: Seminar in Personality Psychology
Instructor: Will Dunlop
Time: Thursday 910am-120pm, Psych 1311
Topic: The Psychology of Love Lives
Description: This course offers a survey of major topics in the study of love lives broadly, and close relationships specifically. We will begin by examining various theories relevant to functioning in this domain (e.g., evolutionary theory, narrative as a root metaphor for understanding close relationships). After laying out the theoretical frameworks that have been most influential, we will consider the central topics of this field (e.g., romantic attachment dimensions, personality traits), all before going on to consider psychological research examining specific events pertinent to romantic relationships (e.g., infidelity, relationship dissolution).

271: Seminar in Cognitive Psychology
Instructor: Steve Clark
Time: Wednesday, 210pm-500pm, Location TBD
Topic: Social and Cognitive Processes in Human Memory

Description: Remembering occurs within a social context. Our memories are shaped by our interactions and relationships with others, and arguably we are shaped by our memories of the past. The social context of remembering has long been studied as simply a source of error, but there is much more to it than just error transmission. The kinds of questions that I’d like to pursue in the seminar include:

How do people remember together? How are our memories shaped by cultural and social factors? How should interviewers conduct interviews in order to maximize accuracy and minimize suggestion? More specifically, how should interviewers conduct interviews (including forensic interviews) with children? (Note – I recently got an NICHD grant with Tom Lyon at USC and Jodi Quas at UCI – about interviewing children. With that in mind, I’d like to read more than a few papers on interviewing children.) Beyond these topics the direction of the course will follow the interests of the participants (emotion and memory would be a good addition, for example, if people are interested …)

My plan for the course is to start with what I know best: Some memory basics, followed by some readings on social collaboration in remembering (how people remember events together), and social influences on memory retrieval. And then we’ll go from there. Expect to read papers by Beth Loftus, Robyn Fivush, Bob Rosenthal, Tom Lyon, Roddy Roediger, plus some papers we’ll choose together.

In terms of work load: The usual. Papers to read. Nudges and incentives to make sure we read them. And a short final paper, so that we’ll have a tangible product in the end.

Got Questions? clark@ucr.edu