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AP Psychology - 2nd Period

An Introduction To This Class:

Psychology is a discipline in the social and behavioral sciences. It is the study of mental processing and behavior. Psychology involves people studying themselves. Therefore, it is a very subjective science. I approach psychology from a more conservative perspective.

I teach this course in a method that covers the traditional content, but from a conservative point of view. This way I can maintain my core values while at the same time thoroughly prepare my students for the AP Exam.

Select topics include the brain (biological roots of behavior), human development, learning and cognition, sensation and perception, motivation and emotion, personality, disorders, therapy, and social behavior. Students find most of the topics to be interesting and involving.

Motivated students with a desire to learn and achieve have little difficulty with this material.

* Note: Because of the required physiological content knowledge of this course, it includes a discussion of human sexuality.

ALL students are expected to complete their reading assignments, to discuss readings using e-mail with both me and their classmates, to complete study guide assignments, and to use the Internet.

All students are expected to meet deadlines.


1. Introducing Psychology
The World of Psychology: An Overview
Unity and Diversity in Psychology

2. Research in Psychology
Thinking Critically About Psychology (Or Anything Else)
Research Methods in Psychology
Statistical Analysis of Research Results
Ethical Guidelines for Psychologists

3. Biological Aspects of Psychology
The Nervous System
The Peripheral Nervous System: Keeping in Touch with the World
The Central Nervous System: Making Sense of the World
The Chemistry of Psychology
The Endocrine System: Coordinating the Internal World
The Immune System: Linking the Brain and the Body's Defense System

4. Sensation
Sensory Systems
The Chemical Senses: Smell and Taste
Somatic Senses and the Vestibular System

5. Perception
The Perception Paradox
Three Approaches to Perception
Organizing the Perceptual World
Recognizing the Perceptual World
Applications of Research on Perception

6. Learning
Learning About Stimuli
Classical Conditioning: Learning Signals and Associations
Operant Conditioning: Learning the Consequences of Behavior
Cognitive Processes in Learning
Using Research on Learning to Help People Learn

7. Memory
The Nature of Memory
Acquiring New Memories
Retrieving Memories
Biological Bases of Memory
Applications of Memory Research

8. Cognition and Language
Basic Functions of Thought
Mental Representations: The Ingredients of Thought
Thinking Strategies
Problem Solving
Decision Making

9. Consciousness
Analyzing Consciousness
Sleeping and Dreaming
Psychoactive Drugs

10. Mental Abilities
Testing for Intelligence
Measuring the Quality of Tests
Evaluating IQ Tests
Understanding Intelligence
Diversity in Mental Abilities

11. Motivation and Emotion
Concepts and Theories of Motivation
Hunger and Eating
Sexual Behavior
Achievement Motivation
Relations and Conflicts Among Motives
The Nature of Emotion
Theories of Emotion
Communicating Emotion

12. Human Development
Exploring Human Development
Infancy and Childhood: Cognitive Development
Infancy and Childhood: Social and Emotional Development

13. Health, Stress, and Coping
Health Psychology
Stress and Stressors
Stress Responses
Stress Mediators: Interactions Between People and Stressors
The Physiology and Psychology of Health and Illness
Promoting Healthy Behavior

14. Personality
The Psychodynamic Approach
The Trait Approach
The Social-Cognitive Approach
The Phenomenological Approach
Assessing Personality

15. Psychological Disorders
Understanding Psychological Disorders: Some Basic Issues
Classifying Psychological Disorders
Anxiety Disorders
Somatoform Disorders
Disassociative Disorders
Mood Disorders
Personality Disorders
A Sampling of Other Psychological Disorders
Mental Illness and the Law

16. Treatment of Psychological Disorders
Basic Features of Treatment
Psychodynamic Psychotherapy
Phenomenological Psychotherapy
Behavior Therapy
Group, Family, and Couples Therapy
Evaluating Psychotherapy
Biological Treatments
Community Psychology: From Treatment to Prevention

17. Social Cognition
Social Influences on the Self
Social Perception
Prejudice and Stereotypes
Interpersonal Attraction

18. Social Influence
Social Influence
Conformity and Compliance
Altruism and Helping Behavior
Cooperation, Competition, and Conflict
Group Processes



Week 1
January 15 - January 19
Mental Abilities

Week 2
January 22 - January 26
Chapter 10
Mental Abilities

Week 3
January 29 - February 2
Chapter 11
Motivation and Emotion

Week 4
February 5 - February 9
Chapter 11
Motivation and Emotion

Week 5
February 12 - February 16
Chapter 12
Human Development

Week 6
February 19 - February 23
Chapter 13
Health, Stress, and Coping

Week 7
February 26 - March 2
Chapter 13
Health, Stress, and Coping

Week 8
March 5 - March 9
Chapter 14

Week 9
March 12 - March 16
Chapter 14

Week 10
March 19 - March 23
Chapter 15
Psychological Disorders

Week 11
March 26 - March 30
Chapter 15
Psychological Disorders

Week 12
April 9 - April 13
Chapter 16
Treatment of Psychological Disorders

Week 13
April 16 - April 20
Chapter 16
Treatment of Psychological Disorders

Week 14
April 23 - April 27
Chapter 17
Social Cognition

Week 15
April 30 - May 4
Chapter 18
Social Influence

Week 16
May 7 - May 11
AP Exam Review

Week 17
May 14 - May 18
Video : "Awakenings"

Week 18
May 21 - May 25
Video : "Tuesday's with Maurie"

Week 19 - May 28 - June 1

Cross Creek High School
3855 Old Waynesboro Road
Augusta, GA 30906