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  • PSYCHOLOGY 252    Section:

    TOPICS IN PSYCHOBIOLOGY

    Winter Quarter 2008

    Units: 4
    Prerequisites: Graduate standing in psychology or consent of instructor.

    The behavior of an organism is the sum of all of its motor movements. Our goal, however, is to identify types of behavior and its causes. Roughly speaking, we can identify social behaviors as those that generate persistent interactions or associations among organisms over time. Understanding social behavior requires identify its causes (i.e., mechanisms, developmental, and evolutionary). The mechanistic causes of behavior cannot be located solely in the brain of an organism. The mechanistic causes of behavior are multilevel, which means that behavior is generated at multiple levels of organization (e.g., genes, brains, hormones, body-environment interactions, social interactions). To both identify and understand social behavior, we need tools for identifying and explaining social behavior. This will be the focus of this seminar. More specifically, we will focus on two mythological and complementary tools: social network theory and game theory.

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