Intensive Learning Semester (May Term)

The College provides a wide array of Intensive Learning opportunities, including travel courses as well as on-campus courses. The majority of these courses are offered in May, during a three-week term, although some travel courses may run a little over or a little under the three-week period.

These courses do not count towards the psychology major.

Examples of Past Intensive Learning Courses:


Counseling and Psychotherapy Approaches:  A Comparative Analysis  and Personal Synthesis
This Intensive Learning course will explore intellectually and experientially several of the most important models of counseling and psychotherapy.  Approaches examined will include psychodynamic, Adlerian, person-centered (Rogerian), existential-humanistic, behavioral, cognitive and cognitive-behavioral, reality, constructivist, and integrative.  Videos will show master therapists working with actual clients.  Students will learn several criteria for evaluating each therapeutic approach and will be expected to write analytical responses after viewing each video presentation.  Students will experience some of the model's major techniques through role-playing of simulated situations devised by the instructor.   Students will keep an analytical/critical thinking journal, will complete reflection exercises, and will write a personal synthesis of strategies and techniques that are useful skills for normal and healthy individuals to know and be able to use. (Instructor: Whitson)

Psychology of Thinking and Decision Making
The study of human thought processes is an activity that may be traced to antiquity with the development of systems of logic and memory techniques. In recent decades, psychologists have devoted considerable attention to the study of thinking--which has been broadly defined to include a range of topics. Specifically, this research has examined human memory, problem solving ability, reasoning, hypothesis testing, making decisions under conditions of likelihood as well as uncertainty, the structure and nature of problems, systematic errors in judgment, creative thinking, and comprehension. INQ-277-CB is designed to provide students with an in-depth look at some of these topics as they have been defined and studied by psychologists. Particular emphasis will be placed on understanding the structure of our thinking ability, the practical application of memory techniques, critical thinking skills, problem solving, and decision making. (Instructor: C. Early)

Psychology of Consciousness
An intensive study of the psychological epi-phenomenon of self-awareness and/or consciousness from multi-disciplinary perspectives including cognitive psychology, neuroscience, computer neural networks and artificial intelligence, philosophical psychology, and Judeo-Christian and Eastern religious traditions. Students surfed the internet searching for, reading and evaluating sites on consciousness, viewing and reviewing contemporary films dealing with the topic, and built and presented a web site on a chosen topic in consciousness studies. (Instructor: G. Pranzarone)

Nonverbal Behavior
An examination of the research, theory, and methods of the psychological study of nonverbal behavior. Topics included types of nonverbal behavior, uses and purposes of nonverbal behavior, and problems connected to the misinterpretation of nonverbal behavior. Student participation in research projects is required. (Instructor: C. Camac)

Psychology in Film
The goal of this course was to examine the interaction between film and psychology. Throughout the course, students explored and attempted to answer several questions: How are the discipline of psychology and psychologists portrayed in films?, What are some common film techniques employed to create specific psychological reactions?, What are some examples of psychological concepts that are depicted in film and are they accurately portrayed? (Instructor: C. Buchholz)

Exploring Vision Through the Eye of the Lens
This class will utilize the digital camera as both a metaphor for the human eye and as a tool to create photographic representations of principles of human vision. Cameras and the human eye will be compared and contrasted in order to better understand both. Mechanisms of human visual perception, such as color vision, depth perception, and motion perception, will first be discussed in lecture format and then assignments will be carried out wherein students take purposeful photographs to illuminate the discussion topics. The idea is that application through photography of principles discussed in relation to human vision, i.e. how we sense and perceive the world, will give you a better understanding of how and why the human vision system works the way it does. Photographic expeditions will be done both around campus and as part of full day trips. Students will utilize their own digital cameras, digital point-and-shoot cameras are all that will be required, as long as they allow the manipulation of settings such as 'aperture' and 'film speed' and 'shutter speed'. Digital SLRs will not be required, though encouraged. (Instructor: D. Nichols)

New Course Searches for the Meaning of Life

New Course Searches for the Meaning of Life

Students' writing will focus on eastern and western religions, chaos theory, happiness, self-esteem, meditation, neuroscience and the placebo effect.

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