Applied Positive Psychology (APOP)

APOP 100 Introduction to Positive Psychology

In the 20th century, the field of psychology made enormous and important strides in addressing mental health challenges. Today research in the field has expanded, inspired, in part, by Martin E.P. Seligman's 1998 APA presidential address, to include the scientific study of optimal functioning and what helps people live full lives. This course focuses on the science of of thriving-what does it mean to be "happy,"and how can one cultivate well-being at the individual and community level? Students explore the foundations of this science, understand a conceptual framework for well-being, and actively engage in activities that help to cultivate well-being. Drawing upon theory, empirical research, ancient and collective wisdom, , we examine these topics critically and experientially and together build an build an engaged learning community. For those pursuing a Certificate in Applied Positive Psychology, this course is strongly recommended as a prerequisite for the other three courses.

Taught by: na

Also Offered As: LEAD 340

Activity: Online Course

1.0 Course Unit

APOP 120 Human Flourishing: Strengths and Resilience

What does it mean to flourish? What are we like when we are at our best? What helps us bounce back from challenges and adversity? Continuing the exploration of the science of positive psychology, students delve deeply into the study of character strengths as a framework for building positive character and well-being, and explore the concept of resilience, or the ability to overcome challenging situations. In this course, we explore how we can leverage our strengths to more effectively contribute to the greater world and enhance our own well-being. We also study the physical and psychological protective factors that constitute resilience, and how they are cultivated. Students learn about these topics from a scientific and experiential perspective, both as individuals and within our learning community. This course will have required synchronous sessions and the instructor will offer a choice of times. Students will have a more robust learning experience in this course if they first complete Introduction to Positive Psychology.

Also Offered As: LEAD 350

Activity: Online Course

1.0 Course Unit

APOP 200 Positive Psychology at Work

If flourishing is related to our lived daily experience, and approximately 50% of our waking hours are spent working, how do our workplaces contribute to, and diminish, our ability to thrive? Students are exposed to an array of research-informed strategies that have been applied in a variety of disciplines and workplaces, including business, education, health care, and nonprofit organizations. Exploration of case studies and salient research topics such as relationships at work, positive leadership, prosocial behavior, and our sense of meaning and purpose, guide our learning. Students gain an understanding of the variables that contribute to our ability to flourish at work and understand how we both experience and shape our work environments through our individual contributions. This course will have required synchronous sessions and the instructor will offer a choice of times.

Taught by: Meredith Myers

Also Offered As: LEAD 360

Activity: Online Course

1.0 Course Unit

APOP 220 Flourishing with Others: Building Thriving Relationships

Interpersonal relationships are key for happiness and well-being. Christopher Peterson, one of the pioneers of positive psychology used to say that the field could be summarized in three words: "Other people matter." In this course, we will take a deep dive into the research on relationships that work well and foster well-being. We will study positive relationships at different levels, from the closest ones, like families and romantic partnerships, to friendships, relationships between colleagues and in teams at work, to broader communities, and our relationship with nature and our planet. For each of these domains, we will learn practical ways to nurture and improve relationships and to help people flourish through them. This class will combine academic rigor with experiential learning, and it will provide many opportunities for self-reflection, conversation in small teams and applied "experiments" in students' lives.

Taught by: Margarita Tarragona

Activity: Online Course

1.0 Course Unit

APOP 300 The Scientific Method in Positive Psychology

How do we both understand and measure well-being, and the psychological characteristics that contribute to it? Understanding the scientific basis of these important questions requires an understanding of the scientific methods that inform them. Students learn the basics of the scientific method, and foundational descriptive statistics used in positive psychology and social sciences. They explore how concepts such as well-being, character, and positive experiences are operationalized and measured, and learn the basics of developing hypotheses, research design, and data analysis. This course fulfills a Scientific Process requirement for the degree. This course will have required synchronous sessions and the instructor will offer a choice of times.

Taught by: Robertson-Kraft

Activity: Online Course

1.0 Course Unit

APOP 320 Morality and the Good Life

Morality pervades everyday life. Far from being confined to the ivory tower, we make moral decisions and engage in moral behavior every day, ranging from the ordinary (e.g., whether to volunteer or return a lost wallet) to the extreme (e.g., whether to donate one's kidney to a stranger or fight and die for a cause). Morality is central to our evaluations of ourselves and others, and to the wellbeing of ourselves and the societies in which we live. In this course, you will learn about psychological research on morality. We will cover topics such as (1) How people make moral judgments, (2) How and why people have differing judgments of everything from tax rates to dietary preferences, (3) Psychological factors contributing to moral (e.g., altruistic) behavior, and (4) Intersections between moral psychology and our ideals, aspirations and well-being at the individual and societal level. This course aims to introduce you to the psychology of morality, to enable you to be more aware of and effective in navigating moral challenges in daily life.

Taught by: Damien Crone

Activity: Online Course

1.0 Course Unit