Course Catalog

Positive Psychology

  • Semester 1 2022-2023

    Aug 31, 2022-Dec 16, 2022 For Members Register
  • Semester 2 2022-2023

    Jan 11, 2023-April 28, 2023 For Members Register

Course Overview

What is a meaningful, happy, and fulfilling life? The focus of psychology has long been the study of human suffering, diagnosis, and pathology, but in recent years, however, positive psychologists have explored what’s missing from the mental health equation, taking up research on topics such as love, creativity, humor, and mindfulness. In this course, we will dive into what positive psychology research tells us about the formula for a meaningful life, the ingredients of fulfilling relationships, and changes that occur in the brain when inspired by music, visual art, physical activity, and more. We will also seek out and lean on knowledge from positive psychology research and experts, such as Martin Seligman’s well being theory, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s idea of flow, and Angela Lee Duckworth’s concept of grit. In exploring such theories and concepts, students will imagine and create real-world measurements using themselves and willing peers and family members as research subjects. As part of the learning studio format of the course, students will also imagine, research, design, and create projects that they will share with a larger community. Throughout the development of these projects, students will collaborate with each other and seek ways to make their work experiential and hands-on. Students will leave the class with not only some answers to the question of what makes life meaningful, happy, and fulfilling, but also the inspiration to continue responding to this question for many years to come.

NCAA-approved course

UC-approved course

Course Outline

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