Psychology 626

PSYC 626: Advanced Comparative Learning and Motivation

Prerequisite: Graduate standing in psychology or permission of the instructor

Credit Hours: (3)

This course will involve an extensive review of basic principles, theoretical approaches, and current research in associative learning, comparative cognition, and motivation. Data from both animal and human research will be discussed.


Detailed Description of Course Content

I. Introduction and historical background

A. Learning
B. Motivation

II. Classical conditioning

A. Principles and applications
B. Theoretical analysis

III. Appetitive instrumental conditioning

A. Principles and applications
B. Theoretical analysis

IV. Aversive instrumental conditioning

A. Principles and Applications
B. Theoretical analysis

V. Motivation

A. Physiological bases
B. Motivational-emotional systems
C. Cognitive and social influences

VI. Biological and evolutionary perspectives

A. Learning
B. Motivation

VII. Comparative cognition
VIII. Memory and concept Learning
IX. Integration


Detailed Description of Conduct of the Course

The format of the course will involve primarily in-class lecture and discussion, supplemented by audio/visual materials. Oral presentations by the students may be required.


Goals and Objectives of the Course

Students will acquire current knowledge, including history, principles, theory, and applications, of associative learning, motivation, and comparative cognition.


Assessment Measures

Graded assignments may include in-class tests, a final examination, pop quizzes, the assignment and presentation of exercise/labs and projects, and class preparation and participation.


Other Course Information

A textbook will be used for the course, but additional outside readings will be assigned in order to address current and/or original professional literature.


Review and Approval

March 1999