This Course at MIT

This Course at MIT pages provide context for how the course materials published on OCW were used at MIT. They are part of the OCW Educator initiative, which seeks to enhance the value of OCW for educators.

Course Overview

This page focuses on the course 9.70 Social Psychology as it was taught by Professor Stephan L. Chorover in Spring 2013.

This course examined interpersonal and group dynamics and considered how the thoughts, feelings, and actions of individuals are influenced by (and influence) the beliefs, values, and practices of large and small groups. Learning occurred through a combination of in-class activities, small study groups and regular homework assignments. The course also included occasional lectures and demonstrations.

Course Outcomes

Course Goals for Students

In this course, the instructor aimed to challenge the conventional "top-down" classroom arrangement, in which essentially everything of material and conceptual value presumably comes from "the front of the room" and, more specifically, from the uniquely powerful and centrally placed and particularly privileged position of the instructor-in-charge. The instructor aimed to replace this approach with an alternative that is scientifically credible, pedagogically sound, and educationally effective - a collaborative learning system.

Curriculum Information

Prerequisites

None

Requirements Satisfied

HASS-S

Offered

Professor Chorover is an emeritus professor and is no longer teaching this course.

 

Student Information

9-70_stat-students.png

Breakdown by Year

Rougly 1/5 sophomores, 2/5 juniors and 2/5 seniors.

Breakdown by Major

Most students were from departments other than Brain and Cognitive Sciences.

 
 

How Student Time Was Spent

During an average week, students were expected to spend 12 hours on the course, roughly divided as follows:

In class

3 hours per week
  • Met 1 time per week for 3 hours per session; 14 sessions total; mandatory attendance.
  • Study groups facilitated discussions of problems based on readings or viewings and from study group meetings.
 

Study group meetings

2 hours per week
  • Met 1 time per week for 2 hours per session; 14 sessions total; mandatory attendance.
  • Membership in groups of 4-6 students was randomly assigned.
  • Study groups submitted meeting minutes of their discussion of readings and viewings each week in advance of the class.
  • Study groups were assigned to be facilitators for class over the semester and were responsible for preparing handouts summarizing all study group meeting minutes during their facilitation week.
 

Out of class

7 hours per week
  • Students were required to complete reading and viewing assignments.
  • Students also compiled and submitted weekly meeting minutes or prepared facilitation handouts before class.
 

Semester Breakdown

WEEK M T W Th F
1 No classes throughout MIT. No session scheduled. No session scheduled. Class meeting scheduled. No classes throughout MIT.
2 Study group meeting scheduled. Study group meeting scheduled. No session scheduled. Class meeting scheduled; study group minutes due. No session scheduled.
3 No classes throughout MIT. Study group meeting scheduled. No session scheduled. Class meeting scheduled; study group minutes due. No session scheduled.
4 Study group meeting scheduled. Study group meeting scheduled. No session scheduled. Lecture facilitated by a study group; study group minutes due. No session scheduled.
5 Study group meeting scheduled. Study group meeting scheduled. No session scheduled. Lecture facilitated by a study group; study group minutes due. No session scheduled.
6 Study group meeting scheduled. Study group meeting scheduled. No session scheduled. Lecture facilitated by a study group; study group minutes due. No session scheduled.
7 Study group meeting scheduled. Study group meeting scheduled. No session scheduled. Lecture facilitated by a study group; formative evaluations due. No session scheduled.
8 No classes throughout MIT. No classes throughout MIT. No classes throughout MIT. No classes throughout MIT. No classes throughout MIT.
9 Study group meeting scheduled. Study group meeting scheduled. No session scheduled. Lecture facilitated by a study group; study group minutes due. No session scheduled.
10 Study group meeting scheduled. Study group meeting scheduled. No session scheduled. Lecture facilitated by a study group; study group minutes due. No session scheduled.
11 No classes throughout MIT. No classes throughout MIT. No session scheduled. Lecture facilitated by a study group; study group minutes due. No classes throughout MIT.
12 Study group meeting scheduled. Study group meeting scheduled. No classes throughout MIT. Lecture facilitated by a study group; study group minutes due. No session scheduled.
13 No session scheduled. No session scheduled. No session scheduled. Student presentations scheduled. No session scheduled.
14 No session scheduled. No session scheduled. No session scheduled. Student presentations scheduled. No session scheduled.
15 No session scheduled. No session scheduled. No session scheduled. Student presentations scheduled; summative evaluations due. No classes throughout MIT.
16 No classes throughout MIT. No classes throughout MIT. No classes throughout MIT. No classes throughout MIT. No classes throughout MIT.
Displays the color and pattern used on the preceding table to indicate dates when classes are not held at MIT. No classes throughout MIT
Displays the color used on the preceding table to indicate dates when class meetings are held. Class meeting
Displays the color used on the preceding table to indicate dates when lectures are facilitated by each of 8 different study groups. Lecture facilitated by each of 8 different study groups
Displays the symbol used on the preceding table to indicate dates when study group minutes are due. Study group minutes due
Displays the color used on the preceding table to indicate dates when no class session is scheduled. No class session scheduled
Displays the color used on the preceding table to indicate dates when study group meetings are held. Study group meeting either day
Displays the color used on the preceding table to indicate dates when student presentations are made. Student presentations
Displays the symbol used on the preceding table to indicate dates when formative and summative evaluations are due. Formative and summative evaluations due
 

Instructor Insights

Professor Chorover described various aspects of how he taught 9.70 Social Psychology extensively in the course syllabus.

The following sections principally depict Prof. Chorover’s approach to teaching the course: