Teaching

I teach courses at every level of the psychology and neuroscience curriculum, from an interdisciplinary seminar for first-year students to a capstone advanced laboratory course in cognitive neuroscience.  My teaching philosophy is guided by three main principles, namely, (1) that it is important to develop constructive critical thinking skills, (2) that diversity in the teaching process results in better learning, and (3) that assessments are important learning tools in and of themselves.

Currrent Teaching

  • Present2015

    Reading the Brain (FYS 139-3)

    If you’ve seen the movie Memento, or an episode of the television shows House or Perception, you know that interest in the brain and its mysteries is increasing exponentially. Pick up any newspaper and you might find a description of new research on implanting false memories directly in the brain, or using brain imaging to determine if someone is racist, or even how to make people better liars using brain stimulation. Advances in brain science such as these capture public attention and emerge in a variety of cultural products such as literature, film, works of art, commercial products, and advertising. In this course, we study the ways in which cognitive neuroscientists, writers, artists, and filmmakers explore the intricacies of our brain and reveal its limitations and possibilities. We also look at how recent advances in neuroscience help us to better understand why we consume, and how we respond to, cultural products; and, more broadly, we examine how cognitive neuroscience, art and literature, and society intersect.

  • Present2004

    Cognitive Neuroscience (PSYC 238)

    This course is an exploration of the field of cognitive neuroscience. Emphasis is on understanding the neural bases of higher mental functions such as memory, attention, emotion, and language. Major themes include the relationship between the mind and brain, localization of function, and the multi-methodological approach to cognitive neuroscience research. Students are introduced to basic neuroanatomy, brain imaging, and research involving people with focal brain damage.

  • Present2010

    Research Methods (PSYC 305)

    Introduction to scientific method and experimental design. Emphasis is on the logical development of new ideas, kinds and sources of error in experimentation, methods of control, design and analysis of experiments, and scientific communication.

  • Present2004

    Advanced Laboratory in Cognitive Neuroscience (PSYC 338)

    Advanced study of one or more specific content areas in cognitive neuroscience. Discussion focuses on current theories, experimental research, and the multi-methodological approach to cognitive neuroscience research. Laboratory work includes design, execution, and analysis of original research involving cognitive neuroscience methods.

Teaching History

  • 20092004

    General Psychology (PSYC 101)

    Introduction to basic scientific logic, facts, theories, and principles of psychology, including topics such as human motivation, learning, emotion, perception, thought, intelligence, and personality.

  • 20082007

    Human Cognition (PSYC 215)

    Introduction to cognitive psychology. Topics covered include perception, attention, memory, learning, forgetting, language comprehension, reasoning, and problem solving. Theories are presented concerning cognitive processes, and empirical evidence is considered that might challenge or support these theories.

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