Happiness: Theory, Research, and Application in Positive Psychology

PSYCH X 401

What makes human beings flourish? Learn the science behind the field of positive psychology and what contributes to happiness, resilience and thriving.

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What you can learn.

  • Summarize theories and empirical findings in the field of positive psychology
  • Critique the scientific validity of studies
  • Create, plan, and demonstrate a positive intervention

About this course:

What makes human beings flourish? In this course, we will examine, discuss, and apply theories and research within the field of positive psychology. Lectures, readings, papers, and in-class exercises are based on the scientific discoveries, philosophical questions, historical perspectives, and practices of well-being. Topics include: biological and physiological determinants of happiness, how happiness is measured, roles of human neuroanatomical structures in well-being, human character strengths and virtues, positive emotions, meaning and engagement, relationships, accomplishment, resilience, pleasure vs. long-term happiness, bi-directional relationship between physical health and positive affect, roles of evolution and motivation in happiness, and whether or not the pursuit of happiness is a practical endeavor and moral obligation.

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