PSYCHOLOGY 1: General Psychology I (UC : CSU transferable - 3 Units) | Spring, 2016
Professor: Chadwick J. Snow, Ph.D.
Office: BEH 1306B
E-mail: [email protected]
Phone: 818-710-4315
Class: Section 0590, M / W: 9:35am – 11:00am, BEH 1305
Office Hours: M / W: 8:00am – 9:30am | T: 12:40pm – 3:40pm
Textbook: Gerrig (2013). Psychology and Life, 20th Edition
The following information is provided to you as an aid in completing this course. Its specific purpose is
to acquaint you with the policies by which this class will be conducted, what you can expect of it, and,
in turn, what is expected of you. You are held responsible for understanding these procedures and
requirements and for abiding by them throughout the course. KEEP THIS SYLLABUS IN A
This course will provide you with a broad, general introduction to psychology -- its basic subject matter,
its approaches to gathering and evaluating evidence about the causes and correlates of behavior and
also the means by which psychological knowledge is (or can be) applied to improve the quality of
individual and communal life. Finally, it will attempt to provide you with opportunities to acquire certain
skills which are useful not only in the context of investigating, understanding, and influencing human
behavior but which are applicable to other aspects of life.
Quizzes & Exams...
There will be a total of 5 quizzes in the course. Each quiz will be worth 60 points. Only the 4 quizzes
you score highest on will count towards your grade (your lowest grade on the 5 quizzes will be
dropped). Altogether, your 4 highest quiz scores will count for 60% of your grade in the class. Unless
otherwise stated, the content of each quiz will be derived from the pages you have been assigned to
read from the chapters in your textbook listed next to the quiz number in the “course schedule” and the
lectures associated with those readings. Quizzes will consist of 20 multiple choice questions and take
place during the first 30 minutes of class. There will be NO make-up quizzes. If you miss a quiz, that
will be the one dropped when calculating your grade for the course.
The final exam will be cumulative and will adopt the same format of multiple choice questions as
used in the quizzes. This exam will consist of a mix of questions from the 5 quizzes and some entirely
new questions. The final exam will be worth 100 points (25% of your final grade). All students must
take the final exam.
To complete the quizzes and final exam, it will be necessary for you to bring a Scantron 882-E
Answer Sheet to class along with a #2 pencil and eraser.
SPECIAL NOTE: Taking good notes is vital to doing well on the quizzes / exams, which in turn
makes your attendance vital. Therefore, if you miss a class, make absolutely sure that you get
the notes from someone in class. It is not possible to do well in this class without taking good
Paper Assignments...
You must also complete TWO behavior papers. The objective of these assignments is to give you
practice in and feedback about selected critical thinking and writing skills in the context of the subject
matter of an introductory psychology course. This involves the ability to use abstract concepts to
accurately explain and understand real-world events, which, in the case of psychology, have to do with
human behavior. A behavior paper consists of the following three sections.
Section 1. BEHAVIOR OBSERVATION/DESCRIPTION -- Describe the behavior i.e., action, thought,
feeling, which you observed and are going to explain. Give enough detail in this description so that I
am able to understand what you are trying to explain. This may either be your own behavior or that of
another person. (About two thirds to one page long)
Section 2. CONCEPT IDENTIFICATION -- State what concepts or principles presented in the text are
relevant to the behavior/event you described in (Section 1). This does not have to be lengthy. Simply
state what course material you will use as the basis for your explanation (Section 3). This must include
the chapter and page number in the textbook where this concept is presented and a citation of the
author(s). (About 1 or 2 sentences)
Section 3. EXPLANATION -- in this section you must explain what you described in (Section 1) in
terms of the course material referred to in (Section 2). In some cases, this will involve justifying how
the behavior/event you observed is an example of a certain phenomenon (e.g., how something is a
case of Alzheimer’s disease or an instance of operant conditioning). This will require that you show
how the concept(s) you identified in (Section 2) can be said to have “caused” the behavior in (Section
1). This is the most detailed and important section of the paper. It should be detailed enough so that I
can see that you clearly did understand the concept/principle in question and how it explains it. (About
1 to 2 pages long)
In sum, each paper should be 2 to 3 pages long, double spaced, 12 point font, 1 inch margins all
around. Sample behavior papers are available to view on the class website (discussed near the
end of this syllabus).
YOU WILL RECEIVE A ZERO FOR THAT ASSIGNMENT. Each of the three sections of a behavior
paper will be graded on a satisfactory (S) - unsatisfactory (US) basis. If you receive a US on any of the
paper sections, you must revise the paper until you receive an overall S or you will receive zero credit
for that paper. Make sure to attach the original paper to the corrected paper when you resubmit.
Revised papers are due no later than the last day of class (NOT the day of the Final Exam), but it is
strongly recommended that you revise and resubmit papers as soon as possible in case you need to
do another revision. Combined, these 2 papers are worth 15% of your course grade. In sum, turn your
papers in on time, fix them if you receive an unsatisfactory, and you can guarantee a 100% score for
this 15% of your course grade. Papers must be turned in to me in person and in class. Paper
submissions via email, campus mailbox, slipping under my office door, etc., will NOT be
accepted (NO EXCEPTIONS).
Class Attendance...
Attendance will be recorded in this course. If a student has missed 4 consecutive class sessions
and / or 6 total class sessions, I may exclude that student from the course. However, if you
decide to withdraw from this class it is ultimately your responsibility to follow the appropriate
You MUST turn off your cell phones before class begins. This includes vibrate mode because that can
be heard too. Off is when you push on the power button until all the lights of your cell phone go out. If
you wish to use a laptop in class to take notes, you must sit at the back of the classroom so as to not
disturb other students. If you have any concerns about these rules, please see me at the end of our
first class.
Whenever you wish to speak during class, raise your hand and I will call on you. Oral participation is
STRONGLY encouraged, such as sharing a relevant experience with the class or asking me relevant
questions. However, talking to fellow classmates in class is NOT PERMITTED.
Course Grade...
Best 4 out of 5 quizzes (60 points each)
Final Exam
2 Behavior Papers (30 points each)
= 240 points (60%)
= 100 points (25%)
= 60 points (15%)
= 400 points (100%)
A = 358 – 400 points
B = 318 – 357 points
C = 278 – 317 points
D = 238 – 277 points
F = Below 238 points
(Below 60%)
Class Website...
Barring unforeseen circumstances, each lecture will be available to you on a website designed
specifically for this class. You must have access to PowerPoint to view these lectures. It is strongly
recommended that you print out each lecture and bring it to class on the day that I will be presenting
that lecture. This will significantly reduce the amount of notes you need to take in class. However,
these online lectures are not a substitute for taking good notes. They are only provided to you so
that you can listen more effectively to what I’m discussing in class and take notes on information that is
not provided in the online lectures. Illustrated instructions regarding this website are provided on the
last page of this syllabus.
Student Learning Outcome...
Students will be able to examine psychological concepts and scenarios from the biological,
psychodynamic, humanistic, behavioral, and cognitive perspectives.
Student Academic Integrity Policy Statement: The faculty and administration of Pierce College are
committed to the belief that honesty and integrity are integral components of the academic process.
The College expects students to be honest and ethical at all times in their pursuit of academic goals.
Students who violate the code of academic conduct by which the College maintains its academic
integrity will be dealt with in a manner reflecting the seriousness of these violations.
I. Violations of academic honesty and integrity occur when a student participates in any act in which
he/she uses deception or fraud while performing an academic activity. Violations include, but are
not limited to, the following:
1. Using study aids such as calculators, tape recorders or notes, when not authorized by the
2. Cheating on examinations, assignments or experiments (allowing another student to copy one's
answers or copying the answers of other students; exchanging information by any means, including
verbal exchanges, sign language, hand signals, secret codes, passed notes, creation of a
distraction for the purpose of cheating; changing answers on a previously scored test, assignment
or experiment; inventing information and/or data.) NOTE: Cheating on a quiz / exam results in
an automatic zero for that quiz / exam without the ability to drop or replace that zero.
3. Allowing another student to assume one's identity in order to fulfill an assignment or take a test.
4. Submitting for a grade the words, ideas, and/or written work (including laboratory notes and
drawings) of another person without giving due credit to that person. This includes purchased
papers or papers written by other students.
5. Falsifying or attempting to falsify attendance records and/or grade rosters.
6. Conspiring with other students to commit any of the above behaviors.
II. Consequences for any offense against academic honesty and integrity:
1. Will include a ZERO “0” on the examination or assignment.
2. May include suspension from the class and other sanctions and/or penalties authorized by the
Board of Trustees for violations of the District Code of Conduct.
3. May include a record of the student's violation placed in the student's disciplinary file.
Special Services...
It is Pierce College’s policy to provide reasonable accommodations to those students who have
documented disabilities. Students with disabilities, whether physical, learning and/or psychological,
who anticipate needing accommodations for this course are encouraged to communicate with me
early in the semester. Additionally, it is your responsibility as a student to formally request services
by contacting Special Services at 818-719-6430. Special Services is located in the new Student
Services Building, south of the mall, in Room 48175.
If you require subtitles/captions for any video presentations that may be included in this course, you
must inform me of this need during the first week of class, so that I can make the appropriate
accommodations for you in the classroom.
Feb. 8
Feb. 10
Overview and Historical Roots
Read Ch. 1 (pp. 2-15)
Feb. 15
Feb. 17
Research Methods in Psychology
Read Ch. 2 (pp. 21-34)
Feb. 22
Feb. 24
Research Methods in Psychology
Biological Psychology
Read Ch. 3 (pp. 47-75)
Feb. 29
Mar. 2
Biological Psychology
Sensation & Perception
Read Ch. 4 (pp. 80-93; 102-116)
Mar. 7
Mar. 9
Sensation & Perception
Learning & Conditioning
Quiz #1 (Ch. 1, 2, 3)
Read Ch. 6 (pp. 145-170)
Mar. 14
Mar. 16
Learning & Conditioning
Behavior Paper #1 DUE
Read Ch. 7 (pp. 174-203)
Mar. 21
Mar. 23
Cognition & Language
Quiz #2 (Ch. 4, 6)
Read Ch. 8 (pp. 207-236)
Mar. 28
Mar. 30
Cognition & Language
Quiz #3 (Ch. 7, 8), Read Ch. 11 (pp. 298-319)
Apr. 4 & 6
Apr. 11
Apr. 13
Human Development
Human Development
Read Ch. 10 (pp. 261-294)
Apr. 18
Apr. 20
Read Ch. 13 (pp. 357-382)
Behavior Paper #2 DUE
Apr. 25
Apr. 27
States of Consciousness
States of Consciousness
Read Ch. 5 (pp. 121-141)
Quiz #4 (Ch. 11, 10, 13)
May 2
May 4
Emotions, Stress, & Health
Emotions, Stress, & Health
Read Ch. 12 (pp. 323-353)
May 9
May 11
Social Psychology
Social Psychology
Read Ch. 16 (pp. 447-478)
Quiz #5 (Ch. 5, 12)
May 16
May 18
Abnormal Psychology
Abnormal Psychology
Read Ch. 14 (pp. 386-415)
May 23
May 25
Abnormal Psychology
Clinical Therapy & Issues
Jun. 1
Final Exam (9:00am – 11:00am)
Read Ch. 15 (pp. 419-442)
Instructions for Accessing Class Lectures and Materials Online...
1. You need PowerPoint to access lectures. If you don’t have PowerPoint, you can download
PowerPoint reader at
2. Go to this link:
3. Click on a lecture and choose open document. Once opened go to “file”, “print”, and select
the following from this window that opens up…