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An Introduction to Psychology (II)

Course Code: PSYC 1200
Faculty: Humanities & Social Sciences
Department: Psychology
Credits: 3.0
Semester: 15
Learning Format: Lecture
Typically Offered: TBD. Contact Department Chair for more info.
course overview

Psychology 1200 provides an introduction to selected areas in the field of psychology. The focus of the course is on the investigation of major psychological processes such as emotion, motivation, personality, psychological disorders, therapy and social behaviour. Emphasis is placed on psychology as a natural science (theories, methodology, statistics).

Course Content

  1. Thinking and Language
    • Concept formation.
    • Problem solving and reasoning.
    • Language structure and development.
    • Animals and language.
  2. Intelligence
    • The measurement and assessment of intelligence.
    • Principles of test construction.
    • Biological and environmental influences on intelligence.
  3. Motivation and Work
    • Concepts of motivation.
    • Motivation for hunger, sex, and to belong.
    • Achievement motivation.
    • Motivation at work.
  4. Emotions, Stress, and Health
    • Theories of emotion.
    • The expression and experience of emotion.
    •  The relationship between stress and health.
    •  Stress management and promotion of health
  5. Personality
    • Theories and perspectives of personality development: psychoanalytic, humanistic, trait, and social-cognitive.
    • The self
  6. Psychological Disorders and Therapy
    • Defining and diagnosing psychological illnesses.
    • Classification of psychological disorders.
      • anxiety disorders, somatoform disorders, dissociative disorders, affective disorders, schizophrenic disorders, personality disorders.
    • Therapies.
      • Psychological therapies
      • Biomedical therapies
      • Evaluating types of therapies.
  7. Social Behaviour
    • Social thinking (attitudes)
    • Social influence
      • Conformity, obedience, group dynamics.
    • Social relations
      • Prejudice, aggression, attraction, altruism, conflict and peacemaking
    • Social Psychology theories and applications.

Methods of Instruction

The primary method of instruction will be the lecture, but the course may involve various other methods of instruction such as small group activities, discussion groups, seminars, oral presentation, laboratory demonstrations, field trips, computer simulations, videos, film, or guest lecturers.

Means of Assessment

The course evaluation will be in accordance with Douglas College and Psychology Department policies. Evaluations will be based on the course objectives. The specific evaluation criteria will be provided by the instructor at the beginning of the semester.

An example of a possible evaluation scheme would be:

One example of an evaluation scheme

Four multiple choice tests at 15% each         60%
One written final exam  20%
Laboratory activities    5%
Attendance and participation    5%
APA-style written assignment  10%
Total 100%

Learning Outcomes

At the conclusion of the course the student will be able to:

  1. Define psychology and give examples of the different kinds of phenomena that psychologists study (i.e. those related to PSYC1200 content).
  2. Define cognition and explain the role of concept formation, problem solving, reasoning and language in cognitive development.
  3. Describe how psychologists approach the study of intelligence, how intelligence is defined and measured, the problems associated with measurement and how heredity and environment affect intelligence.
  4. Explain how behaviour is energized and directed by the complex mixture of motives and emotions and describe the various theories that have been developed to explain motivation and emotion.
  5. Identify the various perspectives that are common in the area of personality psychology and critically evaluate each in terms of its explanatory and predictive power.
  6. List and describe the major psychological disorders.
  7. Identify the various psychological therapies, and critically evaluate each in terms of effectiveness.
  8. Discuss the issue of stress and its relationship to health and illness, and describe the various aspects of stress management.
  9. Explain the complex nature of social relations and social influence, (including conformity, compliance, persuasion, and group dynamics) and describe how psychologists investigate such phenomena as aggression, altruism, prejudice, attraction, conflict and peacemaking.
  10. Describe the experimental methodology and statistical approaches used in contemporary psychology.
  11. Write a report demonstrating basic knowledge of APA (American Psychological Association) style.

curriculum guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester/year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

course schedule and availability
course transferability

Below shows how this course and its credits transfer within the BC transfer system. 

A course is considered university-transferable (UT) if it transfers to at least one of the five research universities in British Columbia: University of British Columbia; University of British Columbia-Okanagan; Simon Fraser University; University of Victoria; and the University of Northern British Columbia.

For more information on transfer visit the BC Transfer Guide and BCCAT websites.


If your course prerequisites indicate that you need an assessment, please see our Assessment page for more information.