Steven Pinker, the noted Canadian-American cognitive psychologist and linguist, is offering lectures from his spring Harvard psych course for free online. If you ever wanted to get into psychology, now is your chance, as Pinker has already shared the introductory lecture via his Twitter.
The course is titled “Psy 1 – Introduction to Psychological Science” and as its description states, it has been redesigned in 2021 as a survey of “the scientific study of human psychology.” It will introduce students to such subjects as perception, consciousness, and cognition, as well as how to we make decisions that drive our social behavior, what are emotions, motivations, and psychopathology. Adapted for online learning, students will be watching recorded lectures on their own time, while contact with the professor will take place twice a week. You’d have to be taking the course at Harvard to participate in these sessions of asking questions and diving deeper into the material with Professor Pinker.
Obviously, assignments and tests are also not available unless you’re a student, but the great knowledge from a world-renowned expert is definitely there.
The spring semester at Harvard has begun, and I will be posting my lectures from Psy 1: Introduction to Psychological Science. Here's the introductory lecture (still working on improving the video quality): https://t.co/C88fXm2eOu pic.twitter.com/auO6pwl9M5— Steven Pinker (@sapinker) January 27, 2021
Recognized as an important thinker, Steven Pinker is known for a variety of contributions across scientific fields and as a popular author on language, mind, and human nature.
His research on vision, social relations, and language has won a plethora of prizes from the National Academy of Sciences, the Cognitive Neuroscience Society, the American Psychological Association, the Royal Institution of Great Britain, and other institutions. He has eight honorary doctorates, teaching awards from MIT and Harvard, and many prizes for his books like “The Better Angels of our Nature“.
Pinker’s current research looks at the role of common knowledge in language and social phenomena, studying trends in violence, psycholinguistics of writing, the neurobiology as well as genetics of language and more.