Syllabus and Course Description 2016-2017

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Myers’ Psychology for AP by David G. Myers


Course Description
The AP Psychology course is designed to introduce students to the systematic and scientific study of the behavior and mental processes of human beings and other animals. Students are exposed to the psychological facts, principles, and phenomena associated with each of the major subfields within psychology. They also learn about the ethics and methods psychologists use in their science and practice. Areas covered include: history of psychology; research methods; biological bases of behavior; sensation and perception; cognitive psychology; physical, social and emotional development; abnormal behavior and therapies; social psychology; and gender differences. This is a rigorous and demanding course requiring students to have a strong work ethic, to read at a rigorous pace, and to complete a variety of writing assignments. Students are expected to demonstrate strong writing and analytical skills and independent work habits. This course follows the APA guidelines for Advanced Placement Psychology, and all students are expected to take the AP exam.

Course Objectives
Students will:
1. study the fundamental concepts and theories of psychology.
2. learn the basic skills of psychological research.
3. develop critical thinking, reading, writing, and discussion skills.
4. analyze ethical issues and enduring psychological questions.
5. apply psychological principles in their own lives.
6. prepare to earn a passing score on the AP Psychology Exam.

Social Studies Department Distribution of quarterly grading components:
Tests/Projects: 35%
Quizzes/Minor Projects/Writing Assignments: 15%
Class Participation/Class work/Binders: 35%
Homework: 15%

Classroom Expectations
Students must respect all people, including themselves, and all property, including their own, at all times.
Come to class each day prepared to learn and work hard. Bring all required materials daily as well as an enthusiastic, positive, curious and focused attitude. Take responsibility for your behavior, work, and learning. Collaboration is an important part of class and learning, however all work on tests must be your own and anything turned in must be in your own words. Seek extra help if you do not understand a concept or procedure.

Summer Assignment and Introduction - Technology
Unit 5 – States of Consciousness
Unit 9 – Developmental Psychology
Unit 14 – Social Psychology
Unit 1 – History and Approaches
Unit 6 - Learning
Unit 10 - Personality
Review for AP Exam
Unit 2 – Research Methods
Unit 7 - Cognition
Unit 11 – Testing and Individual Differences

Unit 3 – Biological Bases of Behavior
Unit 8 – Motivation and Emotion
Unit 12 – Abnormal Psychology
After the AP Exam - Final Projects
Unit 4 - Sensation and Perception

Unit 13 – Therapy and Treatment

Midterm Review and Exam

AP Exam Monday May 1st 2017 at noon


  1. Psychology’s History and Approaches (2-4%)
  2. What is psychology?
  3. Logic, Philosophy and History of Science
  4. Psychology’s Approaches
Myers’ Unit 1 Pages 2-17

  1. Research Methods: Thinking Critically with Psychological Science (8-10%)
  2. The Scientific Method
  3. Experimental, Correlation, and Clinical Research
  4. Statistics
  5. Ethics in Research
Myers’ Unit 2 Pages 19-49

  1. Biological Bases of Behavior (8-10%)
  2. The Brain
  3. Neuroanatomy
  4. The Nervous System
  5. Neural Communication and Transmission
  6. The Endocrine System
  7. Genetics
  8. Evolutionary Psychology
Myers’ Unit 3 pages 51-113

  1. Sensation and Perception (6-8%)
  2. Thresholds and Signal Detection Theory
  3. Vision
  4. Hearing
  5. The Other Senses
  6. Perceptual Processes
Myers’ Unit 4 Pages 115-173

  1. States of Consciousness (2-4%)
  2. Sleep and Dreaming
  3. Hypnosis
  4. Psychoactive Drug Effects
Myers’ Unit 5 Pages 175-213

  1. Learning (7-9%)
  2. Classical Conditioning
  3. Operant Conditioning
  4. Cognitive Processes
  5. Social Learning and Learning by Observation
Myers’ Unit 6 Pages 215-253

  1. Cognition (8-10%)
  2. Memory
  3. Language
  4. Thinking
  5. Problem Solving and Creativity
Myers’ Unit 7 Pages 255-325

  1. Motivation and Emotion (6-8%)
  2. Biological Bases
  3. Motivaional Concepts
  4. Hunger, Thirst, Sex and Pain
  5. Social Motives
  6. Theories of Emotion
  7. Stress
Myers’ Unit 8 Pages 327-409

  1. Developmental Psychology (7-9%)
  2. Life-Span Approacj
  3. Research Methods
  4. Heredity-Environment Issues
  5. Developmental Theories
  6. Dimensions of Development
  7. Sex Roles and Gender Roles
Myers’ Unit 9 Pages 411-477

  1. Personality (7-9%)
  2. Personality Theories and Approaches
  3. Perosonality Assessment Techniques
  4. Growth and Adjustment
Myers Unit 10 Pages 479-521

  1. Testing and Individual Differences (5-7%)
  2. Standardization and Norms
  3. Reliability and Validity
  4. Types of Tests
  5. Ethics and Standards in Testing
  6. Intelligence
Myers’ Unit 11 Pages 523-559

  1. Abnormal Behavior (7-9%)
  2. Perspectives on Psychological Disorders
  3. Theories of Psychopathology
  4. Diagnosis of Psychopathology
  5. Types of Disorders
Myers Unit 12 Pages 561-603

  1. Treatment of Abnormal Behavior (5-7%)
  2. Treatment Approaches
  3. Modes of Therapy
  4. Community and Preventive Approaches
Myers’ Unit 13 Pages 605-641

  1. Social Psychology (8-10%)
  2. Group Dynamics
  3. Attribution Processes
  4. Interpersonal Perception
  5. Conformity, Compliance, Obedience
  6. Attitudes and Attitude Change
  7. Organizational Behavior
  8. Aggression/Antisocial Behavior
  9. Cultural Influences
Myers’ Unit 14 Pages 643-695