PS101 Introduction to Psychology

for FA 2009

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Mission Statement: The mission of Park University, an entrepreneurial institution of learning, is to provide access to academic excellence, which will prepare learners to think critically, communicate effectively and engage in lifelong learning while serving a global community.

Vision Statement: Park University will be a renowned international leader in providing innovative educational opportunities for learners within the global society.


PS 101 Introduction to Psychology


FA 2009 HOA


Johnson, Andrew T.


Professor of Psychology

Office Location


Office Hours

Mon & Wed (11am -1:30); Fri (11am- noon); virtual (Tuesday 9-11am) or by appointment

Daytime Phone



Semester Dates

Aug 17-Dec 11

Class Days


Class Time

10:00 - 10:50 AM

Credit Hours


Myers, D. (2009). PSYCHOLOGY (9th Ed.). New York:  Worth publishers.

      Cloth Text - ISBN: 1-4292-1597-6 or ISBN-13: 978-1-429-21597-8 estimated U.S. Price: $114.95

      ebook version ISBN-10: 1-4292-2521-1 or ISBN-13: 978-1-429-22521-2

SAGrader online service -

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:
The course textbook has a website to support the textbook.  It may be found at  (This website has reviews, quizzes, and simulations that reinforce the material in the text.) Additional information will be posted in the eCompanion course site.

McAfee Memorial Library - Online information, links, electronic databases and the Online catalog. Contact the library for further assistance via email or at 800-270-4347.
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Course Description:
PS 101 Introduction to Psychology: (MGE) A survey of the assumptions, history, methods, and techniques of psychology. A presentation of representative theory and reseach in the areas of consciousness, learning, motivation, cognition, personality and social behavior. 3:0:3

Educational Philosophy:
My educational philosophy is based on using a variety of methods in learning, focusing on student engagement.  Lectures, demonstrations, participation activities, readings, group work, class discussion, examinations, writing, and use of the Internet and technology are significant components of this learning process. Students will be required to analyze, criticize, synthesize course material and apply it to their own lives.

Learning Outcomes:
  Core Learning Outcomes

  1. Define and apply basic psychological vocabulary.
  2. Critically analyze psychological concepts, theories and ethical issues.
  3. Apply psychological concepts to one's life and circumstances.
  4. Identify representative theories in the areas of learning, motivation, cognition, personality, social influence, abnormal behavior and multicultural issues.
  5. Effectively gather, evaluate, and communicate about psychological issues present in the popular media and scholarly publications.
  6. Identify the basic assumptions, history, methods, and techniques of psychology.

  Instructor Learning Outcomes
  1. Demonstrate understanding of Park's General Education literacies: critical thinking, civic, science, and values.
Core Assessment:

PS 101 Introduction to Psychology

Position Paper- Controversial Topic

The purpose of this critical thinking assignment is to examine both sides of a controversial issue, select a position, apply it to a multicultural context, and to apply the Park University General Education literacies:  aesthetic, civic, critical, science, and values. Two of these literacies (critical and values) are perceived to cut across disciplines and departments, while the other three (aesthetic, civic, and scientific) literacies address major academic concerns.  Students with these literacies should be able to succeed in communicating, computing and problem-solving, clarifying values, using the arts, functioning within social institutions, and using the sciences and technology.



  • Selection of a controversial topic
  • Descriptions of both sides with a personal position.
  • Application to a multicultural context and the Park University literacies.
  • Utilizes a minimum of 2 sources (one for the pro perspective and one for the con perspective of the controversial issue.
  • Paper should be organized and presented according to the sections presented in the assignment instructions.
  • Text body should be no less than 3 pages.
  • References should be formatted in a standardized form, e.g., APA.

Link to Class Rubric

Class Assessment:
A variety of methods will be used to assess the learning that occurs in this course. Students will be assessed on performance on exams, and writing assignments.

SAGrader Questions:

Students will be required to complete SAGrader questions over the chapters. Students will access the questions from the SAGrader website and may submit answers to the questions until they receive the score that they desire up to the day of the inclass exam. For example, a student has until September 11th (Exam 1 day) to complete SAGrader questions for chapters 1, 2, 6, & 7. There are four blocks of questions worth a total of 80 points. Upon completion of all SAGrader questions, an additional 5 points will be awarded.

There will be a total of 4 exams (including the final). The exams will consist of 40 multiple-choice questions. Exam 4 (final exam) will cover only the material after exam 3. The dates for the exams are listed in the reading assignment section. This is a tentative schedule and any change from this schedule will be announced in class. The exams will be worth a total of 40 points each. Make-ups for the exams will be given only to those who have scheduled a test time before that exam. Note: the questions and format of make-up exams may be different than regular exams.


As an additional means of having you develop an understanding of the course material and how it relates to your life, you are required to write two papers.  Papers should be double-spaced typed with 1-inch margins and in 12pt Times New Roman, or 10 pt Arial font.

The first paper is a one-page (double-spaced) reaction paper to the Myths quiz found in eCompanion class. Your paper should include your quiz score and discussion about the items that you missed or items that surprised you. The first paper is due to the eCompanion Dropbox on Friday August 21st and is worth 5 points. 

The second paper is a position paper on a psychological topic, for example, “Does divorce negatively affect children?” Topics will be drawn from the Taking Sides books on reserve in the Library. This paper is due Friday November 6th to the eCompanion Dropbox and is worth 75 points.







Myths Paper



Position Paper (CA)









Exam 1



Exam 2


Exam 3


Exam 4 – Final






The course grade is determined by the total number of points from the assignments and exams. Grades will be based on percentage cutoffs, i.e., 90% = A, 80% = B, 70% = C, 60% = D, & 59% less = F.
Points (total = 325)
293 - 325
260 – 292
228 - 259
195 - 227
Below 195

Late Submission of Course Materials:
For each class period an assignment is late, points will be deducted. No course assignments will be accepted after the last regular class meeting. 

Classroom Rules of Conduct:
I expect all students to arrive on time and remain in the classroom except for emergencies. 

No food or drink is permitted in the classroom.

Turn your cell phones off or to vibrate and use of camera phones is prohibited.
Computers make writing and revising much easier and more productive. Students must recognize though that technology can also cause problems. Printers run out of ink and hard drives crash. Students must be responsible for planning ahead and meeting deadlines in spite of technology. Be sure to save copies of your work to a disk, a hard drive, and print out paper copies for backup purposes.

Submission of papers written for other classes is not acceptable.  I expect that each paper you submit in this class is a unique paper created by you.  Violation of this will result in a zero for the assignment.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:
(The Instructor reserves the right to amend this Schedule based on the progress of the course and the needs of the students. )

Week of



Assignments/ Exams

1. Aug   17

Intro / Thinking Critically

Prologue, 1  

Paper 1 (due Friday 8-21)

2. Aug 24

Biology of Mind



3. Aug 31


2, 3


            Monday September 7th - No class - Labor Day

4. Sept 7

Sensation/ Perception


Exam 1 on Friday Sept 11 over Prologue + chaps 1, 2, 3, 6

            Monday September 14th - Exam 1 over Prologue & Chaps 1, 2, 3, 6

5. Sept 14




6. Sept 21




7. Sept 28

Memory/ Thinking & Language

8, 9


8. Oct 5



Exam 2 on Friday October 9th  over chaps 7, 8, 9, 10

October 10 – 18  Fall Break

10. Oct 19

Developing Person



11. Oct 26

Developing Person/ Motivation

5, 11


12. Nov 2

Emotion/ Personality

12, 13

Paper 3 Position Paper (due Fri 11-6)

13. Nov 9




Wednesday November 11th - No Class - Veterans' Day

Apr 16 - Exam 3- Monday over chaps 5,11, 12,13

14. Nov 16

Disorders/ Therapy

14, 15


15. Nov 23

Disorders/ Therapy

14, 15


            Friday November 27th - No class –Thanksgiving Day

16. Nov 30

Social Psychology



Final Exam -  Monday December 7th, 10:15 am - 12:15 pm  MA 221 (WLC) Chaps 14, 15, 16

Academic Honesty:
Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life.   Park University 2008-2009 Undergraduate Catalog Page 87

Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. Park University 2009-2010 Undergraduate Catalog Page 92

Attendance Policy:
Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  3. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "F".
  4. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  5. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  6. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.

Park University 2009-2010 Undergraduate Catalog Page 95

Disability Guidelines:
Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: .


CompetencyExceeds Expectation (3)Meets Expectation (2)Does Not Meet Expectation (1)No Evidence (0)
Analysis & Evaluation                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      
There are more than 2 distinct descriptive statements and 1 distinct statement of evaluation for each side

There are 2 distinct descriptive statements and 1 distinct statement of evaluation for each side

There are fewer than 2 distinct descriptive statements and 1 distinct statement of evaluation for each side

No literacy application errors and no multicultural application error

No literacy application errors, e.g., student correctly applies the topic to the literacies of: critical thinking, science, civic, and values

Literacy application error(s)

Whole Artifact                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             
Position paper contains all of the components and formatted in correct APA style

Position paper contains the following components: an introduction, topic position descriptions, personal position with explanation, multicultural application, application to four literacies, a conclusion, reference page

Position paper has a component error or writing errors that are distracting



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Last Updated:8/14/2009 1:39:03 PM