"So how can a person discriminate between bunkum and fact, between valuable innovation and wacky waste of time? Moreover, why do so many people continue to believe in ideas that have no apparent basis in reality? How do people come to believe in extraordinary things?This course is intended to provide answers to such questions and more generally, to provide the skills and knowledge necessary to evaluate extraordinary claims and beliefs. You might find yourself having to question beliefs that you have held as factual for a long time. Some topics that we will cover include alternative medicine, psychic phenomena, hypnosis and the nature of the brain. Many of the topics and controversies that we’ll consider reflect the influence of an uncritical perspective, fallacious reasoning, and flawed research methodology. These are the hallmarks of pseudoscience. In this course, you will learn to distinguish between science and pseudoscience, to evaluate arguments and sources of evidence."I rant. She's read and smart. Take the class if you have the opportunity.
September 19, 2004
My smart half. She's got a new class she's teaching at osu this semester. It's entitled The Psychology of Extraordinary Beliefs (psy301). An excerpt from the syllabus: