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Learning, Cognition & Behavior syllabus, page 1
Learning, Cognition & Behavior (PSYC 104)Summer 2013Instructor:
Olga Lipatovaolipatov@uvm.edu(SUBJECT LINE: Psych 104)
Meeting Time & Location:
Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, 9:00 am-11:30 amLocation TBA
: General Psychology (PSYC 001)
Course Description:
This course will examine the behavioral and cognitive principlesunderlying learning, memory, and action inside and outside the laboratory. We willdiscuss conditioning, motivation, biological constraints, and mechanisms ofremembering and forgetting. Some intro to neuroscience will be included so we canthink about how the nervous system accomplishes all of this.In General Psychology (PSYC 001), you learned the basics of this material in a sectionentitled “Learning, Memory, Cognition”. In this part of PSYC 001, you read aboutlearning (“classical conditioning”, “operant/instrumental conditioning”, and “cognitivelearning”), memory (“remembering”, “factors influencing retrieval”, “biology andmemory”, “forgetting”, and “improving memory”), and cognition (“imagery and concepts”,“decision making”, “problem solving”, “language”, and “intelligence”). PSYC 104 will usewhat you learned in this section of PSYC 001 as a jumping-off point. I will re-introducemost of these concepts and attempt to deepen your knowledge of them.We will be discussing both human and non-human animal research in terms of bothlearning and cognition. All too often, “cognition” is equated with human research and“learning” is equated with animal research. In fact, there is quite a bit of research onboth “animal cognition” and “human learning”. I hope to interweave these to show youtwo things: (1) learning and cognition are intimately intertwined; and (2) fundamentalprinciples of learning and cognition may not be so different in humans and non-humananimals. By the end of the course, I hope you will appreciate the depth and complexityof the science underlying what we know (or think we know!) about learning andcognition.
Learning Goals:
By the end of the course, you should understand the core concepts,theoretical perspectives, empirical findings, and historical trends in the experimentalpsychology of learning, memory, and cognition.
Gluck, M.A., Mercado, E., & Myers, C. E. (2013). Learning and Memory:From Brain to Behavior (2nd edition). New York, NY: Worth.
Additional Readings (will be provided by the instructor):
Damasio, A. R. (2006). Remembering when.Foa, E. B. (2011). Prolonged exposure therapy: Past, present, and future.Chapter 12 "Learning and Memory", from An Introduction to BehavioralEndocrinology (3
edition), Randy J. Nelson.
Learning, Cognition & Behavior syllabus, page 2
Attendance is required. I will be discussing material *
on thePowerPoint slides that I post on Blackboard, there will be many in-class videos anddemonstrations,
there will be in-class assignments.
Please be on time! 
You will beallowed one unexcused absence without a detrimental effect on your grade.
Exam 1 – 20% 100 pointsExam 2 – 20% 100 pointsExam 3 – 20% 100 pointsQuizzes – 5% each, for a total of 20% 100 pointsParticipation – 10% 50 points (Includes attendance and discussion)In-Class and Outside Class Assignments – 10% 50 points500 points (denominator for calculating final grade; extra credit points are added to thenumerator)
Exams and Quizzes:
Exam and quiz format will be multiple-choice and brief answer.They will cover lectures and readings. Make-up exams must be arranged with theinstructor
at least 48 hours prior to the exam
and will be administered only if amedical excuse is provided. If you have a medical condition that may interfere withtaking an exam sometime in the semester, you *
contact me in the
first twoweeks of class
to discuss it. You may not leave the classroom during the examinationperiod until you have completed and submitted your exam/quiz to the instructor.
There will be a total of
7 short assignments
. Of these 7 assignments, 5will count toward your final grade, thus you can miss 2 of these assignments. If morethan 5 are completed, the additional points earned will become
Extra Credit points
andwill be added to your total number of points at the end of the semester. Eachassignment will be worth
10 points
and will be graded based on the quality of youranswers. Good answers will be clear and, when possible, will make concreteconnections with lectures and assigned readings. Some assignments will be completed
in-class (open book/notebook)
and others will be completed
outside of class
. If youare absent from class on the day that we have an in-class writing assignment, or comein late and miss the assignment, you will receive
0 points
for that writing assignment.Late assignments completed outside of class will not be accepted.
Participation discussions:
Classroom time will be broken up into: lecture,assignment/review and discussion of the material. On the days of the discussions oneor two students will be assigned to lead the discussion. As a discussion leader a studenthas to come to class having read the assigned material for the topic discussed on thatday, as well as prepare at least three possible discussion questions. Everyone in theclass is expected to participate in the discussion. Interesting and controversialinformation (i.e. evidence, studies, etc.) from scientific resources relative to the topic ofthe discussion are always welcome.
Learning, Cognition & Behavior syllabus, page 3
General Grading Rubric (NOTE: Grades are based on more than effort!):
A = Excellent grasp of important concepts and methods. Clearly demonstrated hardwork and effort.B = Solid grasp of important concepts and methods. Obvious hard work and effort.C = Grasp of some concepts and methods but also some deficiencies. Work and effortadequate.D = Not enough effort or not a well-organized effort put in to trying to learn the materialand convey that understanding.F = Lack of understanding of material. Little evidence of effort and/or any organization toeffort.
Tips for Studying Effectively
1. Outline textbook chapters. This will force you to read carefully and pay attention towhat you’re reading. In addition, it will force you to link together ideas, definitions, andconcepts, which will deepen your understanding and lead to much better retention. Youroutline can then serve as a study guide and you’ll find studying for exams to berelatively painless!2. Read-recite-review. Read it. Put your book and notes aside and recite it. Review whatyou don’t know. Research shows that just re-reading (even over and over) is not veryeffective for retention!
Religious Holidays:
Students have the right to practice the religion of their choice.Each semester students should submit in writing to their instructors by the
end of thesecond full week of classes
their documented religious holiday schedule for thesemester. Faculty must permit students who miss work for the purpose of religiousobservance to make up this work.
Special Needs & Health:
For special needs, you can get information atwww.uvm.edu/access. For health-related issues, you can get information atwww.uvm.edu/health
Accommodations for Students with Disabilities:
If you have a disability for whichyou are or may be requesting accommodations, please contact UVM’s ACCESS Office(Accommodation, Consultation, Collaboration & Educational Support Services) byphone (656-7753) or email (access@uvm.edu). That office will guide you through theprocesses that are required for accommodations to be made.
Important Dates:
The Add/Drop deadline is
Wednesday, May 22/Friday, May 24
. Ifyou drop the course before this deadline, it will be removed from your transcript.
UVM Department of Psychology Code of Classroom Conduct:
Faculty and studentswill at all times conduct themselves in a manner that serves to maintain, promote, andenhance the high-quality academic experience befitting the University of Vermont. Theessential characteristic of this policy is

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