Introduction to Social Neuroscience

BSSC317 - Introduction to Social Neuroscience

Credits: 3

Human beings are inherently social creatures, yet relatively little attention has been paid to social influences on the brain. The primary goal of this course is to begin to explore social influences on the nervous system, including the neural basis of social interaction, and the neural basis of beliefs about our social world.  Contributions from social psychology and cognitive neuroscience will be addressed and emphasis will be placed on investigating social, environmental, and cultural influences on human brain processes. Topics include:  evolution of the ‘social’ brain, the interrelationships of emotions, cognitions and social behaviors, theory of mind, the role of empathy, and neural mechanisms that link progressive social exclusion and marginalization to drug-seeking and addictive behaviors. This course meets the requirements of a general education science elective.