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Psychology 4304

Physiological Psychology

Syllabus Spring 1st 8wk Session 2018

Basic Information

Instructor: Diana Younger

Email Address:

Office at UTPB: Mesa Building 3120 - This is on the third floor of the Mesa Building in the same hallway as the elevators.

Phone: 432.552.2351

Although there are no organized class sessions to attend, meeting you personally is very important to me. If you live near the Odessa area, please try to drop by my office so I may meet you and put a face with a name.

Location: This course is a Web Course and is conducted within Canvas. You can access this number by using the Technical Support button on the course menu or 24/7 Help Desk - 1-866-437-0867.

Course Description

Course Prerequisite: Introduction to Psychology

Credit Hours: 3

Course DescriptionThe goal of Physiological Psychology is to acquaint the student with the workings of the human body and most specifically the human nervous system.  Historically, psychology developed from two roots of study, philosophy and physiology.  The discipline of psychology is the study of individual behavior and the correlates that foster behavior both in humans and in animals.  The main focus for this course will be physiological underpinnings of human behavior, both expected and normal behaviors and those that are unexpected and demonstrate abnormal behaviors due to disease, trauma or disorder.  The course will begin by looking at the structural levels of the brain and nervous system and will then examine in depth the cellular level of behavior. Sleep and wake, the sensory modalities, learning and memory are some of the additional areas of study.

Course Purpose:  The purpose of the class is to help the student understand the link between physiological functioning of the nervous system and the human body as a whole and the resulting behavior, whether measured or inferred.  

Learning Outcomes:  students who successfully complete this course should be able to:

  • Critically examine the structures of the brain and understand their functions in both survival and flourishing

  • Differentiate between the understandings of the Mind/Body problem and the Nature/Nurture problem

  • Evaluate the various protections of the brain and the idea of adaptability, plasticity and homeostasis

  • Sequence all the steps in neural transmission and understand the effects of drugs on the nervous system

  • Compare and contrast the sensory systems and the way they transduce information and process it along with problems for each system

  • Evaluate and contrast the process of sleep in both humans and other organisms and understand the idea of body rhythms

  • Describe the development of the nervous systems and the attracter and repulser chemicals involved and how neurological abnormalities can occur

  • Define the way in which we learn and build memory on the cellular and structural level of the nervous system

  • Contrast abnormal behaviors with those considered normal and understand the characteristics of behavior pathologies and their origins

Communication Plan

Office Hours:

Office hours during the semester will be totally online through e-mail 0n Canvas unless we have specifically set up an appointment for my office. You may send me an email and we will set up an in-person appointment. Since this is an online course, know that you can email me at any time. I check my emails several times a day and will respond as quickly as possible. This goes for questions or concerns about the course or about the material we are studying.


All UTPB students are provided with email accounts through the university server. You will have email availability in CANVAS and that is what you should use to contact me. I realize that there is the UTPB email also but contact me in Canvas as that is what I will check several times a day. I get so much advertising from publishers and other mail in the UTPB email that I do not what to take a chance on missing your email about the course.

All communications via email for this class should:

  • Use correct punctuation and capitalization. No "texting" language.

  • Emails must always be signed.

  • Contain the name of the class for easy identification in the "Subject" line.

  • Identify the exact assignment number if there is a question concerning an assignment.

It will be necessary for me to delete, before reading, all emails that are not signed. This is to protect my computer against fraudulent emails that carry viruses. I have gotten quite good at recognizing this type of email, but there are always new tricks being devised so my general policy is to delete all unsigned mail.

Email is a vital communication medium in online learning. It is important that you have a working email address to receive communications from your advisor, instructors, and classmates.

Classroom Chatter:

This will be an area that you can go in and chat with each other about anything and is found in the two ungraded discussions under Getting Started. The Classroom Chatter conversations do not have to be concerning any of the course work. You can talk about current events or tell everyone something great that just happened to you - like you just bought a car!. This will be a casual conversation area just for students, but it will be expected that everyone will be treated with politeness at all times. I will not be checking this area unless I get a complaint.


Watson, N.V. and Breedlove, S. M. (2016) The Mind's Machine: Foundations of Brain and Behavior, Edition 2, Sinauer and Associates, Inc.   ISBN 978-1-60535-276-3 (paperback)]

Bauby, Jean-Dominique (2007) The Diving Bell and the Butterfly:  A Memoir of Life in Death ( this is available at the UTPB bookstore and on sites like Amazon.  It is available in paperback and ebook)  If you are near UTPB, there are some copies in the library on the reserve shelf under Younger Physiological Psychology you are welcome to use.  

Be careful if you order from an online source that your book will come in a timely manner. It is not good to have the problem of having your book finally arrive 4 weeks after the class has started as this class moves very fast. Be sure you find out how long it will take to be sent. As you navigate through this course, you will find numerous websites to visit and online lectures that will supplement the readings in the text. This book is also easily found on Amazon and such.

Online Student Authentication

UTPB requires that each student who registers for an online course is the same student who participates in, completes, and receives credit for the course. This course satisfies student authentication by presentation of approved photo ID* through a web cam and video recorded proctoring during assessment (Respondus Monitor). See Computer Skills, Technical and Software Requirments below for download information.

*Approved photo identifications are: passports, government issued identification, driver’s licenses, military ID from DoD; dual credit and early college high school students use school district identifications.

To take an online test, start LockDown Browser and navigate to the exam. (You won't be able to access the exam with a standard web browser.) This course requires the use of LockDown Browser and Monitor for online exams. Watch this short video ( to get a basic understanding of LockDown Browser and Monitor, the optional webcam feature (which may be required for some exams).

Then download and install LockDown Browser from this link:

. Finally, when taking an online exam, follow these guidelines:

  • Setup web cam for exams using Monitor

  • Ensure you're in a location where you won't be interrupted

  • Turn off all mobile devices, phones, etc.

  • Clear your desk of all external materials — books, papers, other computers, or devices

  • Remain at your desk or workstation for the duration of the test

  • LockDown Browser will prevent you from accessing other websites or applications; you will be unable to exit the test until all questions are completed and submitted

Important Dates

All graded assignment due dates are listed on the course calendar. Use the Calendar button on the course menu. For a quick look at all Weeks and what is due, scroll to the bottom of this syllabus.

Important UT Permian Basin dates for this semester can be found on the UTPB Academic Calendar (Links to an external site.).

UTPB Academic Calendar:

Course Activities

Home Page Announcements

You will see that at times there will be a new announcements on the opening page of the course. I try to make frequent announcements about important instructions for students and any issues that might be needful to explain. Always read these so that you will gain the necessary information. I will also send class emails to inform the class of anything needed.

Discussion Boards:

All Discussions must be turned in during the Module assigned and can never be late. The discussions will close at midnight at the end of the Module and postings cannot be done after that time. The reason for this is the late student will essentially be talking to themselves and that is not the reason for having discussions.

I will be reading and commenting on your graded posts for the discussions. You will be making comments with posts for other students, but I will not be further commenting on those. The 8 for-credit discussions worth 20 points each will focus on interesting and possibly controversial issues in physiological psychology. All discussions are graded except the Introduce Yourself and the Classroom Chatter discussions.

  • If you only post your own post, that will be 10 points only.

  • If you post your own post about the subject and comment on one student's post, that will be 15 total points.

  • If you post your post on the subject and comment on 2 or more other student postings, you will earn all 20 points. You will see this rubric under each discussion.

For each graded discussion question, first, you must respond to the question directly. You will not be able to see any other postings until you post your first post. Second, you must read the other student posts and reply to at least two other students’ responses. You must ensure that your responses to the questions are meaningful, reflective, may refer to personal experience and do support your course readings. Avoid postings that are limited to 'I agree' or 'great idea', and such. If you agree (or disagree) with a posting then say why you agree by supporting your statement with concepts from the readings or by bringing in a related example or experience.

There will also be a Special Discussion worth 30 points during the 5th Module. You are expected to participate in all these discussions. The topics will be from the readings and your homework and often ask for your critical opinion based on what you have read. These are meant to help you, the student, think about some of the issues that are found in Physiological Psychology.

The first discussion is ready for you to do now as a way of introducing yourself to the class. You should go to Modules in the Course Navigation Bar to the left and when you open Modules, you will see the “Getting Started” area. That is where you will find the “Introduce Yourself” Discussion. Enjoy telling students a little about yourself and reading about those who are in the class.

A Few Rules to Remember When Posting on the Discussion Board:

  • Do not post anything too personal.

  • Do not use language that is inappropriate for a classroom setting or prejudicial in regard to gender, race, or ethnicity.

  • Do not use all caps in the message box unless you are emphasizing (it is considered shouting).

  • Be courteous and respectful to other people’s ideas and postings.

  • Do not overuse acronyms like you would use in text messaging. Some of the list participants may not be familiar with acronyms.

  • Use line breaks and paragraphs in long responses.

  • Write your full name at the end of the posting.

  • Be careful with sarcasm and subtle humor; one person's joke may be another person's insult.


There will be 2 paper homework assignments. The first is a 2-3 page paper based on the book The Diving Bell and the Butterfly. It is a remarkable book and is a great way to start the course out. It will be due at the end of the second Module of class. The second paper is a 3 page paper that has to do with sleep patterns in organisms other than humans. It is really fun to discover that even the humblest of creatures do have sleep and wake even if not quite the way we as humans do. Both of these papers will be work 60 points each and if you follow the directions and proof well your writing, you should do quite well.

Are you looking at everything the course has to offer?

The Canvas course platform has a tracking feature. This feature measures how often students access different tools, pages, features, links, discussions, etc. in the course. I want you to know this because I will expect all students to be reading and participating fully in the course. I will expect that you are active on a weekly basis in this course. If you know you are going to have some constraints due to work or family please try to keep up or get a little ahead so that you do not fall behind. Always let me know any anticipated calendar problems due to work and such. I will try to work with you if I know ahead of time.

Course Assessment
Your grade will be figured in the following manner:




Test #1 – Module 1: Chapters 1, 2 - during Week 1


100 points

Test #2 - Module 2: Chapters 3, 4 - during Week 2


100 points

Test #3 - Module 3: Chapters 5, 7 - during Week 3


100 points

Test #4 - Module 4: Chapter 6, 8 - during Week 4


100 points

Test #5 - Module 6: Chapters 10, 13 - during Week 6


100 points

Test #6 - Module 7: Chapters 12, 14, 15 - during Week 7


100 points

2 Papers – Diving Bell and Sleep in Animals 60 points each


120 points

Discussions (8 at 20 points each)


160 points

Special Discussion – during Week 5


30 points



910 points

It should be noted that of the 100 points on each test, 60 points are multiple-choice with no books used and 40 points are essay in which books and notes can be used.

All tests are divided into two parts. The first part is 60 multiple-choice questions to be done in one hour and 15 minutes. This is done through Respondus Lockown Browser. There is also an Essay Test and you are allowed to use your books and notes, but the actual answers must be in your own words. You may do the essays on a separate day if you like, but watch the calendar to make sure you do all tests within the Module that they are assigned.

Grading Scale (for a total of 910 points)

Grade Range

Letter Grade

90 and above


80 to 89


70 to 79


60 to 69


Less than 59


Grading & Feedback:

You are expected to put in between a minimum of 12 and 15 hours a week to study the readings in your book and online, do assignments and discussions and take tests. This is a time accelerated class you have chosen to take so the time must be put in to do it successfully.

You will receive feedback any time you loose points on essay tests and discussions will have comments to each student. Sometimes there is a part of the comment that has a common theme that we want all students to know. If you are ever confused about grading that has been done, send an email and we will be glad to explain and answer questions.

Incomplete “I”: All students are required to complete the course within the semester they are signed up for. Incomplete grades for the course are rarely given, will only be granted if the student provides a valid, documented excuse for not being able to complete the course on time, and has contacted the instructor prior to the scheduled last class to request an extension. Also an important component of the incomplete is the student must be up to date on assignments and then have something happen that does not allow them to finish the course.


Make-Up/Late Submission Policy:
There will be a due date for each Module. That due date should be honored and you should have all work in at that time. There may be times I tell the class that late tests and assignments will be accepted. This will generally be several days but points will be removed on any late material. That will be 5 points removed for late multiple-choice tests or essays. The same for any assignments. Remember that discussions can never be late.

Academic Dishonesty/Plagiarism/Cheating: The academic community regards academic dishonesty as an extremely serious matter, with serious consequences. Any effort to gain an advantage not given to all students is dishonest whether or not the effort is successful. Any suspicion of academic dishonesty will be reported and investigated. A student who engages in scholastic dishonesty that includes, but is not limited to cheating, plagiarism, and collusion will receive an “F” for the course.

All persons involved in academic dishonesty will be disciplined in accordance with University regulations and procedures. For complete information on UTPB student conduct and discipline procedures consult the university’s handbook at:

Academic dishonesty includes, but is not limited to cheating, plagiarism, collusion, falsifying academic records, misrepresenting facts, the submission for credit of any work or materials that are attributable in whole or in part to another person, taking an examination for another person, any act designed to give unfair advantage to a student such as, but not limited to, submission of essentially the same written assignment for two courses without the prior permission of the instructor, or the attempt to commit such acts.

Plagiarism includes, but is not limited to the appropriation of, buying, receiving as a gift, or obtaining by any means material that is attributable in whole or in part to another source, including words, ideas, illustrations, structure, computer code, other expression and media, and presenting that material as one's own academic work being offered for credit.

Attendance and Class Participation: Regular and active participation is an essential, unmistakably important aspect of this online course. Students will log on a minimum of three times every seven days. All students are expected to do the work assigned, notify the instructor when emergencies arise.

Absenteeism: All the course activities have set dates to be completed and submitted. After the due dates the activities will not be available for the students. Not logging into an online course is considered absenteeism. Contact instructor immediately in case of emergency medical situation.

Find information and dates regarding drops and withdrawals at

For grade appeal process go to

Accommodation for Students with Disabilities: Americans with Disabilities Act: Students with disabilities that are admitted to The University of Texas of the Permian Basin may request reasonable accommodations and classroom modifications as addressed under Section 504/ADA regulations. The definition of a disability for purposes of ADA is that she or he (1) has a physical or mental impairment that substantively limits a major life activity, (2) has a record of such an impairment or, (3) is regarded as having such an impairment.

Students who have provided all documentation and are eligible for services will be advised of their rights regarding academic accommodations and responsibilities. The University is not obligated to pay for diagnosis or evaluations nor is it obligated to pay for personal services or auxiliary aids. Students needing assistance because of a disability must contact Testing Services & Academic Accommodations Department, 432-552-2630, Leticia Madrid,, no later than 30 days prior to the start of the semester.

Computer Skills, Technical & Software Requirements

The student should be sufficiently comfortable in an online environment to handle basic web navigation and to upload and download assignments.

Students can use cloud versions of Word, PowerPoint and other Microsoft products through use of their UTPB Outlook 365 and UTPB email address. For more information refer to Student Services below or visit:

To obtain software licensing and media for selected Microsoft titles at very low cost through a software agreement visit:

Computer Technical Requirements: Information at

Preparation for Emergencies

Computer Crash: Not having a working computer or a crashed computer during the semester will NOT be considered as an acceptable reason for not completing course activities at a scheduled time. NOTE: Identify a second computer before the semester begins, that you can use when/if your personal computer crashes.
Complete Loss of Contact: If you lose contact with course connectivity completely (i.e. you cannot contact me via Canvas or email), you need to call instructor, and leave a message regarding connectivity loss and contact information.
Lost/Corrupt/Missing Files: You must keep/save a copy of every project/assignment on an external drive, UTPB Outlook 365 OneDrive, or personal computer. In the event of any kind of failure (e.g. virus infection, student’s own computer crashes, loss of files in cyberspace, etc) or any contradictions/problems, you may be required to resubmit the files. When you put things on Outlook 365, I do not have access to those files.

End-of-Course Evaluation & Instructor Evaluation

Every student is encouraged to complete an end-of-course evaluation/survey provided by UTPB. During the last few weeks of class, you will receive an announcement through email notifying you that the Course/Instructor Survey is available. You may follow the link in the email to complete the survey using the same credentials to access your courses here. When entering the emailed Survey link you will see a list of surveys for you to complete. Another way to find End-of-Course Evaluations is through you account > My Surveys & Evaluations are on the first page after you login.
The survey is anonymous and you responses are confidential. Your feedback is critical to us and to your instructor as we strive to improve our offerings, and our support of you, the students.

Student Support Services



ADA Accommodation/Support

Testing Services & Academic Accommodations Department
(432) 552-2630


UTPB E-Advisor at


(432) 552-0220

Email, Outlook 365,

Information Resources Service

Financial Aid and Scholarship

(432) 552-2620


(432) 552-2370
The J. Conrad Dunagan Library Online at


(432) 552-2635

Student Services

Technical Support

Canvas 1-866-437-0867

Tutoring & Learning februaryResources

If you are taking courses through UTPB the following links provide services: Smarthinking Online Tutoring (provides tutoring services), SmarterMeasure (measures learner readiness for online course).

Disclaimer & Rights

Information contained in this syllabus was to the best knowledge of the instructor considered correct and complete when distributed for use in the beginning of the semester. However, the instructor reserves the right, acting within the policies and procedures of UTPB to make changes in the course content or instructional techniques without notice or obligation. The students will be informed about the changes, if any.

Copyright Statement

Many of the materials that are posted within UTPB courses are protected by copyright law. These materials are only for the use of students enrolled in the course and only for the purpose of the course. They may not be further retained or disseminated.

Schedule for Physiological Psychology



Due Date

Module 1

Monday Jan 8

Read syllabus and email Honor Statement to teacher

Introduce Yourself Discussion

Read and Study Chapter 1 and 2

Discussion – Protections of the Brain

Multiple-Choice Test

Essay Test


Jan 16

Module 2


Jan 17

Read and Study Chapter 3 and 4

Diving Bell and Butterfly Assignment

Discussion – Diving Bell

Discussion - Neurotransmitters

Multiple-Choice Test

Essay Test


Jan 23

Module 3


Jan 24

Read and Study Chapter 5 and 7

Discussion – What part does color play in how you visualize the world?

Multiple-Choice Test

Essay Test


Jan 30

Module 4


Jan 31

Read and Study Chapters 6 and 8

Discussion – Auditory and a Good Movie

Multiple Choice Test

Essay Test


February 6

Module 5 Wednesday

Feb 7

Special Discussion - Determining the importance of each sense.


February 13

Module 6


February 14

Read and Study Chapters 10 and 13

Sleep in Animals Assignment

Discussion – Thinking of Altered States of Consciousness

Discussion – Sleep in Animals

Multiple-Choice Test

Essay Test


February 20

Module 7


February 21

Read and Study Chapters 12, 14 and 15

Discussion – What was most interesting and useful?

Multiple-Choice Test

Essay Test


February 27

Class ends for the semester on March 1 at 5:00 pm. No work will be accepted after that time. No Exceptions

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