Introduction to Psychology

PSYC 1101

Course Description

An overview of the major fields within psychology with an emphasis on developing an understanding of psychology as the science of behavior. 



Learning Outcomes

Required Materials

Psychology by Peter Gray & David Bjorklund (8th edition; any format)

Assignments & Grades

Activities (10% of overall grade)

Throughout the semester, we will complete in-class and at-home activities and assignments designed to improve understanding and application of concepts. You will get credit for completing these activities. In-class activities cannot be made up; therefore, your consistent attendance is important. At-home activities will be turned in on D2L unless told otherwise. See D2L for these due dates.

Art & Psychology Analysis Papers (10% of overall grade)

You will write two papers related to the intersection of art and psychology. Instructions for both assignments are located on D2L.

Quizzes (15% of overall grade)

You will have a quiz over this syllabus, plus one quiz per chapter on D2L. The content for the quizzes will come from required text. See course calendar for the reading schedule. These quizzes are timed and designed to help you process the content in each module and prepare for your exams. You will have three attempts per quiz, and the highest attempt will be taken automatically. You are not required to complete more than one attempt. Quizzes cannot be made up; no exceptions.

Exams (50% of overall grade)

Five regular exams will be taken outside of class on D2L. Exams are timed. You will have a five-minute grace period after your time is up – after which you will not be able to make changes. Make sure you have reliable internet access, and make sure your computer is plugged in if you are using a laptop. UNG has computers you can use if you prefer (e.g., student center, library). You must work on the exam on your own, but you can use your book and notes. Any material in the assigned chapters and discussed in class is fair game. Remember that these exams must be taken before the due date and in a single session; you cannot pause and return to an exam. The cumulative final exam (see below) can take the place of the lowest previous exam grade--including a missed exam. No other exam make-ups will be allowed unless required by documentation from Dean of Students.

Final Exam (10% of overall grade)

Your final exam will take place in person during the scheduled final exam period. The exam will consist of five essay questions. You will be provided the essay questions toward the end of the semester so you can prepare and study. You will NOT need a scantron, blue book, or any other materials. You will only need a pencil. You will have 90 minutes to complete the five essay questions. If for some reason you cannot attend in person at the date/time selected for your whole class, you will need to arrange a time to take it at the UNG ACTT center or SAS office. This will need to be arranged well ahead of time since it has to be scheduled, and I have to get the exam to them. The final exam cannot be made up without documentation from the Dean of Students.  The final exam will take the place of your previous lowest exam grade--as long as it is higher than a previous exam grade. 

Research Participation (5% of overall grade)

Because the Department of Psychological Science regards your exposure to psychological research as an educational experience, this class, therefore, includes a research requirement.  You have two options for completing this requirement: (1) You can participate in research conducted in the Department of Psychological Science, and/or (2) you can complete the alternative assignments that are explained below.  You can mix these choices to earn your credits, but regardless of which option(s) you choose, you must earn 2.5 credits to complete the research requirement (each .5 credit is worth 1% of your course grade). This requirement is worth 5% of your grade. For example, a final course average of 78% (grade of ‘C’) will become an 83% (grade of ‘B’) if all credits of the research requirement are attained (either through research, alternative assignments, or a combination of the two); a final course grade of 68% (a grade of ‘D’) will become a grade of 70% (grade of ‘C’) if only two-fifths of this requirement is met. 


Option 1:  For this option, you can participate in research conducted in the Department of Psychological Science.  You will receive one-quarter of credit (.25) for each fifteen minutes of participation in a study.  A total of “two point five” (2.5) credits of studies will fulfill the research requirement which is 5% of your final grade.


You will be automatically enrolled in the SONA Systems portal (also known as the North Georgia Electronic Research Database or NERD), which manages study participation at UNG.  You will receive an auto-generated message from this system to your UNG email account shortly after the drop/add period to indicate that your SONA account has been created. To directly link to SONA systems, go to, and use your UNG ID and password. Once you have received your account information, you can use the SONA system to view available research opportunities, select studies in which you wish to participate, and sign up for specific appointments for those studies.  You may also cancel scheduled appointments and contact the researchers through the SONA system.  Please note that failure to show up for a scheduled research study will result in the loss of the privilege of participating in research unless you have given the researcher sufficient notification.  If you sign up for an online study and do not complete the study by the study’s end date, you will receive an unexcused absence.  If you lose the privilege of participating in research, then you will need to do the alternative assignment(s) to fulfill the course requirement.  If you need to cancel you may do so via the SONA website before your scheduled appointment. Studies vary in how much advance notice they need of cancellation (most are 24 hours) – please take note of this when you sign up.  If you need to cancel after the deadline, you should contact the researcher by email via the link on SONA, but cancellation approval after the deadline is at the discretion of the researcher. Participation in research is a valuable hands-on experience for students and is appreciated and essential to the research of the faculty and students in training in the Department of Psychological Science.  While you are encouraged to fulfill the research requirement by participating in research at UNG, you may choose the alternative assignment.

Option 2: In order to allow you to perform your own exploration of the immensely diverse field of psychology, you may write an APA formatted paper on a topic chosen from the list of approved topics on D2L. The paper must have at least five pages of content with little to no filler or “fluff”. In addition to these five pages, you will need a title page (including name, 900#, title of paper, and class section) as well as a reference page to document your research citations. This paper will be a combination of your own research (75%/approximately 3.5 pages) and a personal reflection on this research (25%/approximately 1.5 pages) and must be in Times New Roman 12 pt font, double spaced, one-inch margins, and no space between paragraphs. This paper will be turned in electronically on D2L. TurnItIn software will be used to check for plagiarism. See D2L for more information about both options.

Grade Scale

> 90.0% = A

80.0 - 89.9% = B

70.0 - 79.9% = C

60.0 - 69.9% = D

< 60.0 = F

Schedule Overview


Week 1: Syllabus & Chapter 1

Week 2: Chapter 2

Week 3: Chapter 4

Week 4: Exam 1


Week 5: Chapter 5

Week 6: Chapter 6

Week 7: Chapter 7 // Art & Psych Paper 1 due // Exam 2


Week 8: Chapter 8

Week 9: Chapter 9

Week 10: Chapter 10 // Exam 3


Week 11: Chapter 11

Week 12: Chapter 13

Week 13: Chapter 14 // Exam 4


Week 14: Chapter 15

Week 15: Chapter 16 // Art & Psych Paper 2 due // Research Participation // Exam 5


Final exam (IN PERSON; see final exam schedule)