PS408 Cognitive Psychology

for S1B 2011

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


PS 408 Cognitive Psychology


S1B 2011 BL


Nieto, Naomi Y.


Adjunct Psychology Instructor


BA Psychology/ minor: Criminal Justice
MA Mental Health Counseling

Office Location

Before/After Class; Email; Telephone

Office Hours

Before/After Class; Email; Telephone

Daytime Phone


Other Phone



Semester Dates

January 10- March6, 2011

Class Days


Class Time

7:40 - 10:10 PM

Credit Hours



Stephen K. Reed. Cognition: Theory and Applications, 8th Edition © 2010. - San Diego State University. ISBN-10: 0495602302 or  ISBN-13: 9780495602309
American Psychology Association. Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. 6th Edition. Copyright 2010.

Additional Resources:

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.
Career Counseling - The Career Development Center (CDC) provides services for all stages of career development.  The mission of the CDC is to provide the career planning tools to ensure a lifetime of career success.
Park Helpdesk - If you have forgotten your OPEN ID or Password, or need assistance with your PirateMail account, please email or call 800-927-3024
Resources for Current Students - A great place to look for all kinds of information

Course Description:
PS 408 Cognitive Psychology: Students are introduced to modern concepts in cognitive psychology. Human information processing, representation and organization of knowledge and the uniqueness of higher cognitive skills are emphasized. Classroom demonstrations and experiments are used in exploring human learning and memory. 3:0:3 Prerequisite: PS 101 or permission of instructor.

Learning Outcomes:
  Core Learning Outcomes

  1. Utilize the vocabulary of cognitive psychology
  2. Demonstrate metacognitive processes.
  3. Display professional psychological writing and proper and appropriate us of APA style
  4. Critically analyze cognitive psychology literature.
  5. Apply cognitive psychological concepts to one's life and circumstances.

  Instructor Learning Outcomes
  1. 1. Learn about the importance of Mental Disorders and how they affect individual's lives.
  2. 2. Learn how individuals cope with living with a mental disorder that affects cognition.
  3. 3. Learning about the emotional effects of having a mental disorder.
  4. 4. Leaning how a family support system and the individual's support can contribute to coping.
Core Assessment:

Research Paper.

Link to Class Rubric

Class Assessment:
The class assessment will be based on examinations, case studies, comprehensive paper, student presentations and class attendance/participation. 

·        The grading plan will consist of the following

1.      Midterm Exam:                         50 points

2.      Final Exam:                               50 points

3.      Research Paper (Core) :            100 points

4.      Presentation:                             40 points

5.      4 Quizzes (15 points each)        60 points

6.      Total Points =                         300 POINTS
  • PRESENTATION:  30 minute presentation on a DSM-IV-TR Mental Disorder that affects cognition, learning, or memory. There will be a list in class so they students may sign-up for a given date and topic to present. The student is responsible for presenting on the DSM, etiology of disorder, treatment, facts, and additional educational information.  


  • Quizzes and Tests will be taken in-class and closed-notes.

·        The course is conducted primarily in English, which requires the student to be proficient in reading and writing the English language at the college level.

·        Term Paper Topic and Instructions:


One of the requirements in this course is the submission of a research paper. The purpose for writing the

research paper is to better acquaint you to a specific area of cognitive psychology, delve into a topic more

deeply and comprehensively than we are able to do in class, and to learn about some of the researchers

and research methods associated with the area. Completing this assignment set also allows you to re-familiarize

yourself with APA style, scientific writing, and presentation for the general population.

The length of the body of the paper should be at least 10 pages of text with at least 10 primary references

(references from journals or books not magazines! Textbooks do not count).

The content of your paper should include:

An introduction to the general area of the topic – history of the topic is appropriate for this


An overview of the topic area with representative articles/ researchers presented.

A specific discussion of a key researcher in the area with reference to his or her research body

(include a reference to the type of research design used)

Specific overview of at least two studies by the researcher (This includes discussion of

rationale/ variables of the study, research method, results, conclusions, your evaluation of the


Present any unanswered questions or issues and conclude the paper

• 10-15 References

A good starting point is to examine the area(s) in your Cognitive textbook for references and researchers

associated with your topic. You will find that the references in the back of the book are great examples of

APA citation. Use those as guides for your own work.

The paper should be written in APA style, e.g., title page, abstract, 1 inch margins, running heads, DS,
**RUBRICS will be handed out the first day of class.

proper reference format, etc. Consult the APA Manual (6 th edition) for more specifics.

Along with the submission of the research paper, you will also prepare a handout (one page, double-sided)

to summarize your topic and to appeal to a general population. As such, the handout should

include text, images, and sources for more information, e.g., books, articles, or websites.


The following will be used to assigned course letter grades (300 points):

91 to 100  = A

81 to 90   =  B

71 to 80  =  C

61 to 70  =  D

 60 to 0   =  F

All final exams will be closed book and closed notes. No cell phones or electronic devices allowed during tests or quizzes. Turn phone off or put on vibrate mode. If there is an emergency, please let your instructor know.

Late Submission of Course Materials:
Work missed because of absences or work turned in late will not be accepted.  It is your responsibility to meet deadlines and turn in work when it's due. Military students can make alternative arrangements with the instructor because of deployments or other unforeseen military duties that often arise. Park University specializes in serving military students and accommodations will be made to help the soldier, marine, airman, or sailor complete the course successfully.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:
Attend all classes for the entire class period and be on time to all classes. Roll will be taken before and after at each class meeting, therefore students who leave during class breaks will be considered absent and receive a "U". If classes are missed for a legitimate reason such as temporary duty or illness the student is responsible to make up the missed work, obtain lecture notes and handouts. If you are going to miss a class, I expect to be communicated with prior to class, if possible.  Assignments will be turned in on time.  There will be exceptions.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

PS408 Cognitive Psychology (Monday/Wednesday 7:40-10:10pm)

Week 1
  • Class Introduction
  • Syllabus
  • Chapter 1: Introduction to Cognitive Psychology 
  • Chapter 2: Pattern Recognition 
  • Class Discussion

 Week 2

  • Quiz #1 (Ch 1 & 2)
  • Chapter 3: Attention 
  • Chapter 4: Short-Term Memory 
  • Chapter 5: Long-Term Memory
  • Class Discussion
  • Presentations

Week 3 

  • Quiz #2 (CH 3,4,5)
  • Chapter 6: Memory Codes 
  • Chapter 7: Visual Images 
  • Class Discussion
  • Presentations

Week 4 

  • MIDTERM (CH 1-7 only)

Week 5 

  • Chapter 8: Categorization 
  • Chapter 9: Semantic Organization 
  • Presentations

Week 6 

  • Quiz #3 (Ch 8 & 9)
  • Chapter 10: Language 
  • Chapter 11: Comprehension 
  • Presentations

Week 7 

  • Quiz #4 (Ch 10 & 11)
  • Chapter 12: Problem Solving 
  • Chapter 13: Expertise and Creativity 
  • Chapter 14: Decision Making 
  • Presentations

Week 8

FINAL (Chapter 8-14 only)

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 students and faculty members are encouraged to take advantage of the University resources available for learning about academic honesty ( or Park University 2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog Page 92

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. from Park University 2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog Page 92-93

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 2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog Page 95-96

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      
Sophisticated critique of at least two empirical studies - beyond description - reference to more than two strengths and weaknesses of both studies.
Description of two empirical studies with 1-2 statements of analysis and evaluation.
Description of less than 2 empirical studies and/ or no analysis or evaluation of the studies.
Sophisticated presentation of major issues and contributions.  The application reflects a depth of application (more than 3).  
General presentation of at least 2 major issues and 2 contributions.  
Superficial presentation of the major issues and contributions (less than 2 each).  
Whole Artifact                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             
Artifact displays sophisticated professional writing and correct APA formatting. More than 10 primary sources in the paper.
General professional writing displayed and APA Format is generally followed (1 class error: cover page, running head, internal citations, headings, references, etc.). Ten primary sources
Professional writing problems (e.g., excessive quoting, use of contractions, informal language) and/ or APA formatting problems (2 or more class errors: cover page, running head, internal citations, headings, references, etc.) and/ or less than 10 primary sources.


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Last Updated:12/2/2010 1:38:42 PM