Sunday, April 22, 2012

Paul Bloom - A Person in the World of People: Self and Other

This is an Open Yale Course taught by Paul Bloom, from 2007, as part of the Introduction to Psychology (PSY 110) class. The professor, Paul Bloom, is is the co-editor of Behavioral and Brain Sciences, and the author of two books: How Children Learn the Meanings of Words and Descartes' Baby: How the Science of Child Development Explains What Makes Us Human. His research explores children's understanding of art, religion, and morality.

His most recent book, which came out after this was released, is How Pleasure Works: The New Science of Why We Like What We Like.

Introduction to Psychology (PSYC 110)

This is the first of two lectures on social psychology, the study of how we think about ourselves, other people, and social groups. Students will hear about the famous "six degrees of separation" phenomenon and how it illuminates important individual differences in social connectedness. This lecture also reviews a number of important biases that greatly influence how we think of ourselves as well as other people.

00:00 - Chapter 1. Social Psychology and Connections Between People
15:56 - Chapter 2. Aspects of the Self: The Spotlight and Transparency Effects
22:39 - Chapter 3. Aspects of the Self: You're Terrific!
27:00 - Chapter 4. Aspects of the Self: Cognitive Dissonance
40:00 - Chapter 5. Self and the Other
50:03 - Chapter 6. How We Think About Other People

Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website:

This course was recorded in Spring 2007.
* * * * * * *

This lecture begins with the second half of the discussion on social psychology. Students will learn about several important factors influencing how we form impressions of others, including our ability to form rapid impressions about people. This discussion focuses heavily upon stereotypes, including a discussion of their utility, reliability, and the negative effects that even implicit stereotypes can incur.

The second half of the lecture introduces students to two prominent mysteries in the field of psychology. First, students will learn what is known and unknown about sleep, including why we sleep, the different types of sleep, disorders, and of course, dreams, what they are about and why we have them. Second, this half reviews how laughter remains a mysterious and interesting psychological phenomenon. Students will hear theories that attempt to explain what causes us to laugh and why, with a particular emphasis on current evolutionary theory.

00:00 - Chapter 1. First and Fast: How We Form Impressions of Others
11:15 - Chapter 2. Positive Uses and Negative Effects of Stereotypes
27:19 - Chapter 3. Implicit Attitudes
34:47 - Chapter 4. Question and Answer on Stereotypes
38:09 - Chapter 5. The Minor Mystery of Sleep
44:49 - Chapter 6. The Greater Mystery of Dreams
51:31 - Chapter 7. The True Mystery of Laughter

Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website:

This course was recorded in Spring 2007.
You can watch the whole playlist of this class at YouTube.

Introduction to Psychology with Paul Bloom

No comments: