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Dr. Karin Hu, Batmale 332, e-mail:, website:


Psyc 1B: Biological Psychology

Mind-body interactions, inherited behaviors, hormones, neurotransmitters, the senses, and more...


Description: Exploration of the interaction between behavior and biological factors. Includes heritability of behavior, the nervous system, the endocrine system, the senses, and the biological factors underlying behaviors such as learning and memory, food, and sexual motivation, speech, emotions, altered states of consciousness, psychosis, and depression.


Prerequisite: Psyc 1. Course is 3 units, transferable to CSU and UC, IGETC Area 5: Biological Sciences



As a result of successful completion of this course, a student will be able to:

  • Define basic terms and concepts used in biological psychology.
  • Describe the relationship between behavior and genetic, nerve and endocrine functions.
  • Illustrate how normal and abnormal behaviors can be explained at different levels, incorporating genes, neurons, regions of the brain, individual behavior, and society.
  • Analyze and evaluate biopsychological studies for scientific design, interpretation, and implications.
  • Compare scientific findings, which may sometimes be incomplete or contradictory, and synthesize a perspective on nature-nurture, and mind- body and behavior.
  • Identify and compare how electrical, biochemical, anatomical, surgical, and genetic techniques are used to investigate the relationship between the body and behavior.



Required: Textbook: Biological Psychology, 10th edition, Kalat .  Options: the textbook can be purchased as a hardback, an e-book (cheaper electronic version) or be accessed in CCSF Rosenberg Library Reserves.


Recommended: Book Companion Site/Cengage:  Free website offers online testing/tutorial, flashcards, critical thinking questions, interactive websites, crossword puzzles, etc.  Excellent study resource.


Required Skills: College level English skills in reading and writing, 3-6 hours/week study time.



For each quiz and exam, you are allowed to bring a one card of notes.

--maximum size is 3x5 inches (standard index card), both sides

--your original handwritten notes (i.e. not shared, not word processed, not photocopied)

--card will be turned in with exam and will not be returned



1) 45%: 5 quizzes. The best 3 quizzes will be counted. No make-up exams.

2) 35%: Final Exam, covers all previously tested topics.

3) 10%: Term Paper

4) 10%: Attendance and Participation. Attendance credit earned if total penalty score is 3 pts. or less. Absence=1pt, Late (after roll call, before 50% of class time)=1/2 pt.

5)  Extra Credit Options, up to 10%. Note: only limited extra credit (3%) is applicable towards an “A” grade. An “A” represents excellent knowledge of course material as measured by standard academic skills, e.g. comprehension and memorization of reading & lecture material, test-taking skills, writing papers.











Important CCSF Dates

August 17: instruction begins

September 5: Labor Day

September 8: last day to drop w/o notation

September 15: last day to request pass/no pass option

November 11: Veterans’ Day Holiday

November 17th: Last day for Withdrawal

November 23 Thanksgiving Holiday begins

December 13: Final Exams begin


Psychology 1B: Schedule

(subject to change)





Textbook Assigned Readings:


(No make-up tests)


Aug 23

Introduction, Module 1.1 Mind-Brain, Module 1.3 Animal Research



Aug 30

Module 1.2: Behavioral Genetics



Sep 6

Chap 2: Nerve Cells & Impulses



Sep 13




Sep 20

Chap 3: Synapses

Quiz #1: Chap 1,2


Sep 27




Oct 4

Chap 4: Anatomy of the Nervous System



Oct 11

Chap 5: Development & Plasticity

Quiz #2: Chap 3, 4


Oct 18

Chap 8: Movement



Oct 25

(continued) Movement and Vision



Nov 1

Chap 6: Module 6.1, 6.2:  Vision



Nov 8

Chap 9: Wakefulness & Sleep

Quiz #3: Chap 5,8,6


Nov 15

Chap 10: Module 10.3 Hunger



Nov 22

Chap 11: Module 11.2:  Reproductive Behaviors



Nov 29

Chap 12: Module 12.1, 12.3: Emotions


Quiz #4: Chap  9,10,11


Dec 6

To be announced

Independent Readings: 

--Chap 14.2 Language, 14.3 Consciousness

--Chap 15: Mood Disorders & Schizophrenia 



Dec 13

(Final Exam:  3PM)

Quiz #5: Chap 12,14,15 and comprehensive Final Exam