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VIDEO Courses: Top Yale Courses – PART I

27. The Good Life: Happiness

This final lecture in the Introduction to Psychology course discusses if therapy actually works, and the different kinds of influences treatment might have on those receiving therapy. The talk also centers in on questions wrangled with by positive psychology like “what makes us happy?” “how does happiness vary across people and cultures?” and “what is happiness for?” Course materials are available here.

Course description: What do your dreams mean? Do men and women differ in the nature and intensity of their sexual desires? Can apes learn sign language? Why can’t we tickle ourselves? This course tries to answer these questions and many others, providing a comprehensive overview of the scientific study of thought and behavior. It explores topics such as perception, communication, learning, memory, decision-making, religion, persuasion, love, lust, hunger, art, fiction, and dreams. We will look at how these aspects of the mind develop in children, how they differ across people, how they are wired-up in the brain, and how they break down due to illness and injury.

  • Course: Introduction to Psychology

26. How Do We Communicate? Language in the Brain, Mouth

This lecture introduces viewers to the major topics in the study of language, including phonology, morphology, syntax, and recursion. Theoretical aspects of language are also introduced, such as theories of language acquisition, thoughts on the specialization of language, and commonalities between languages across cultures. Course materials are available here.

Course description: What do your dreams mean? Do men and women differ in the nature and intensity of their sexual desires? Can apes learn sign language? Why can’t we tickle ourselves? This course tries to answer these questions and many others, providing a comprehensive overview of the scientific study of thought and behavior. It explores topics such as perception, communication, learning, memory, decision-making, religion, persuasion, love, lust, hunger, art, fiction, and dreams. We will look at how these aspects of the mind develop in children, how they differ across people, how they are wired-up in the brain, and how they break down due to illness and injury.

  • Course: Introduction to Psychology

25. Jack Kerouac, On the Road

This lecture dissects Jack Kerouac’s beat classic On the Road, placing it in context of other movements of the time like modernism, as well as implicit themes in the book like the desire for connection among men and disjunct between the characters lives and the comforts of a certain middle-class American life. Course materials are available here.

Course description: In “The American Novel Since 1945″ students will study a wide range of works from 1945 to the present. The course traces the formal and thematic developments of the novel in this period, focusing on the relationship between writers and readers, the conditions of publishing, innovations in the novel’s form, fiction’s engagement with history, and the changing place of literature in American culture. The reading list includes works by Richard Wright, Flannery O’Connor, Vladimir Nabokov, Jack Kerouac, J. D. Salinger, Thomas Pynchon, John Barth, Maxine Hong Kingston, Toni Morrison, Marilynne Robinson, Cormac McCarthy, Philip Roth and Edward P. Jones. The course concludes with a contemporary novel chosen by the students in the class.

  • Course: The American Novel Since 1945

24. Foundations: Skinner

This class discusses the evolutionary role of unconscious processing, components of the theory of behaviorism–and one of its original proponents, B.F. Skinner– and why behaviorism has largely been displaced as being a reasonable theory of our mental life. Course materials may be found here.

Course description: What do your dreams mean? Do men and women differ in the nature and intensity of their sexual desires? Can apes learn sign language? Why can’t we tickle ourselves? This course tries to answer these questions and many others, providing a comprehensive overview of the scientific study of thought and behavior. It explores topics such as perception, communication, learning, memory, decision-making, religion, persuasion, love, lust, hunger, art, fiction, and dreams. We will look at how these aspects of the mind develop in children, how they differ across people, how they are wired-up in the brain, and how they break down due to illness and injury.

  • Course: Introduction to Psychology

23. What Motivates Us: Sex

This Introduction to Psychology lecture jumps into recent scholarship and evolutionary theories to explain a number of factors of sexuality and gender differences. Some of the subjects addressed include why we find those that we do attractive, what we desire in mates, and sexual orientation. Course materials are available here.

Course description: What do your dreams mean? Do men and women differ in the nature and intensity of their sexual desires? Can apes learn sign language? Why can’t we tickle ourselves? This course tries to answer these questions and many others, providing a comprehensive overview of the scientific study of thought and behavior. It explores topics such as perception, communication, learning, memory, decision-making, religion, persuasion, love, lust, hunger, art, fiction, and dreams. We will look at how these aspects of the mind develop in children, how they differ across people, how they are wired-up in the brain, and how they break down due to illness and injury.

  • Course: Introduction to Psychology

22. Introduction to Ancient Greek History

This lecture is an argument on why we should study the Ancient Greeks. Not only for their achievements, and their many contributions to Western civilization (science, law, and politics), but because they had a very unique perspective. The Greeks were some of the earliest Westerners to leave behind an intelligible corpus detailing many of the struggles, paradoxes, and conditions we find ourselves in today. Course materials are available here.

Course description: This is an introductory course in Greek history tracing the development of Greek civilization as manifested in political, intellectual, and creative achievements from the Bronze Age to the end of the classical period. Students read original sources in translation as well as the works of modern scholars.

  • Course: Introduction to Ancient Greek History

21. Quantum Mechanics I: The key experiments and wave-particle duality

This lecture outlines many of the seminal experiments that ushered Newtonian Mechanics out, including the double slit experiment, the photoelectric effect and Compton scattering, and the uncertainty principle. The de Broglie relation between wavelength and momentum is also covered. Course materials may be access here.

Course description:This is a continuation of Fundamentals of Physics, I (PHYS 200), the introductory course on the principles and methods of physics for students who have good preparation in physics and mathematics. This course covers electricity, magnetism, optics and quantum mechanics.

  • Course: Fundamentals of Physics II

20. The Second Law of Thermodynamics and Carnot’s Engine

This Fundamentals of Physics lecture works through a number of fascinating laws, addressing why there is an upper limit to efficiency in heat engines, discussing the concept of entropy, and answering questions like “why doesn’t a dropped egg rise back into your hands though no laws prohibit it?” Course materials may be accessed here.

Course description: This course provides a thorough introduction to the principles and methods of physics for students who have good preparation in physics and mathematics. Emphasis is placed on problem solving and quantitative reasoning. This course covers Newtonian mechanics, special relativity, gravitation, thermodynamics, and waves.

  • Course: Fundamentals of Physics I

19. The Nature of Persons: Dualism vs. Physicalism

This lecture highlights the two main philosophical positions on the question “what is a person?” On the one hand, dualists argue that people have bodies and souls. As expected, physicalists argue that people are composed only of a physical body. Conceptual problems arise with both positions, and a number of arguments address the opposing camp. Course materials may be accessed here.

Course description: There is one thing I can be sure of: I am going to die. But what am I to make of that fact? This course will examine a number of issues that arise once we begin to reflect on our mortality. The possibility that death may not actually be the end is considered. Are we, in some sense, immortal? Would immortality be desirable? Also a clearer notion of what it is to die is examined. What does it mean to say that a person has died? What kind of fact is that? And, finally, different attitudes to death are evaluated. Is death an evil? How? Why? Is suicide morally permissible? Is it rational? How should the knowledge that I am going to die affect the way I live my life?

  • Course: Death (Phil 176)

18. J.D. Salinger, Franny and Zooey

This lecture presents a close reading of Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger, and follows Professor Hungerford as she presents an argument about religion in the novel that she uses as an example of how to write a sound critical lit paper. The lecture also tackles Salinger’s portrayal of religion in the text. Course materials are available here.

Course description: In “The American Novel Since 1945″ students will study a wide range of works from 1945 to the present. The course traces the formal and thematic developments of the novel in this period, focusing on the relationship between writers and readers, the conditions of publishing, innovations in the novel’s form, fiction’s engagement with history, and the changing place of literature in American culture. The reading list includes works by Richard Wright, Flannery O’Connor, Vladimir Nabokov, Jack Kerouac, J. D. Salinger, Thomas Pynchon, John Barth, Maxine Hong Kingston, Toni Morrison, Marilynne Robinson, Cormac McCarthy, Philip Roth and Edward P. Jones. The course concludes with a contemporary novel chosen by the students in the class.

  • Course: The American Novel Since 1945

17. What is Biomedical Engineering?

This introductory lecture highlights current applications of biomedical engineering technologies, as well as areas where improvements can be made. A final portion of the lecture also reads through the poem “London Bridge” in an attempt to highlight social issues involved with making materials and biomedically engineered devices. Course material may be accessed here.

Course description: The course covers basic concepts of biomedical engineering and their connection with the spectrum of human activity. It serves as an introduction to the fundamental science and engineering on which biomedical engineering is based. Case studies of drugs and medical products illustrate the product development-product testing cycle, patent protection, and FDA approval. It is designed for science and non-science majors.

  • Course: Frontiers of Biomedical Engineering

16. Electrostatics

The basics of electricity are outlined in this course. Discussion of Coulomb’s law and the principle of superposition help to explain how electrostatic forces may be calculated from a given distribution of charge. Course materials are available here.

Course description:This is a continuation of Fundamentals of Physics, I (PHYS 200), the introductory course on the principles and methods of physics for students who have good preparation in physics and mathematics. This course covers electricity, magnetism, optics and quantum mechanics.

  • Course: Fundamentals of Physics, II

15. Thermodynamics

This lecture on thermodynamics, one of the main subjects of the course begins by outlining an understanding of temperature. Scales and instruments of measurement of focused on, then a discussion of heat and heat transfer is entered into, including the concepts of convection and conduction. Course materials are available here.

Course description: This course provides a thorough introduction to the principles and methods of physics for students who have good preparation in physics and mathematics. Emphasis is placed on problem solving and quantitative reasoning. This course covers Newtonian mechanics, special relativity, gravitation, thermodynamics, and waves.

  • Course: Fundamentals of Physics, I

 

14. Maxwell’s Equations and Electromagnetic Waves I

This lecture centers around waves on a string and Maxwell’s equation, with the equation written down and considered in free space. The wave equation is also considered, suggesting that light is an electromagnetic wave. Course materials are available here.

Course description: This is a continuation of Fundamentals of Physics, I (PHYS 200), the introductory course on the principles and methods of physics for students who have good preparation in physics and mathematics. This course covers electricity, magnetism, optics and quantum mechanics.

  • Course: Fundamentals of Physics II

13. How to Live Given the Certainty of Death

This lecture on what we value in the time we have looks at human values in light of our inevitable deaths. It focuses on goal setting as well as what we consider worth doing with our time alive. Course material is available here.

Course description: There is one thing I can be sure of: I am going to die. But what am I to make of that fact? This course will examine a number of issues that arise once we begin to reflect on our mortality. The possibility that death may not actually be the end is considered. Are we, in some sense, immortal? Would immortality be desirable? Also a clearer notion of what it is to die is examined. What does it mean to say that a person has died? What kind of fact is that? And, finally, different attitudes to death are evaluated. Is death an evil? How? Why? Is suicide morally permissible? Is it rational? How should the knowledge that I am going to die affect the way I live my life?

  • Course: Death (Phil 176)

12. Introduction: What is Political Philosophy?

The second lecture in our ranking to focus on Plato’s Apology, this lecture focuses on providing an overview on the oldest of social sciences: political philosophy. Works of Plato and Aristotle are examined, and traditional questions of political philosophy such as “what types of regimes are best?” and “what does it take to be a good citizen?” are answered. Course materials are available here .

Course description: This course is intended as an introduction to political philosophy as seen through an examination of some of the major texts and thinkers of the Western political tradition. Three broad themes that are central to understanding political life are focused upon: the polis experience (Plato, Aristotle), the sovereign state (Machiavelli, Hobbes), constitutional government (Locke), and democracy (Rousseau, Tocqueville). The way in which different political philosophies have given expression to various forms of political institutions and our ways of life are examined throughout the course.

  • Course: Introduction to Political Philosophy

11. Finance and Insurance as Powerful Forces in Our

This introductory lecture frames the importance of studying finance, as well as the important of component topics, including: behavioral finance, financial technology, financial instruments, commercial banking, investment banking, financial markets and institutions, real estate, regulation, monetary policy, and democratization of finance. Course materials are available here.

Course description: Financial institutions are a pillar of civilized society, supporting people in their productive ventures and managing the economic risks they take on. The workings of these institutions are important to comprehend if we are to predict their actions today and their evolution in the coming information age. The course strives to offer understanding of the theory of finance and its relation to the history, strengths and imperfections of such institutions as banking, insurance, securities, futures, and other derivatives markets, and the future of these institutions over the next century.

  • Course: Financial Markets

10. Foundations: Freud

This Introduction to Psychology lecture puts the thought of Sigmund Freud into context, explaining some of the basic tenets of pscyhoanalysis, those that are now considered as having limitations, and contributions from Freud’s conception of the unconscious mind that still operate in mainstream psychology. Course materials are available here.

Course description: What do your dreams mean? Do men and women differ in the nature and intensity of their sexual desires? Can apes learn sign language? Why can’t we tickle ourselves? This course tries to answer these questions and many others, providing a comprehensive overview of the scientific study of thought and behavior. It explores topics such as perception, communication, learning, memory, decision-making, religion, persuasion, love, lust, hunger, art, fiction, and dreams. We will look at how these aspects of the mind develop in children, how they differ across people, how they are wired-up in the brain, and how they break down due to illness and injury.

  • Course: Introduction to Psychology

 

9. Introduction to Theory of Literature
This introductory lecture explores three segments of the course title through critical analysis, including: the relationship between theory and philosophy, the question of what literature “is” and “does,” and what an introduction involves. Literary theory is then placed in the historical narrative of major thinkers and modern criticism, including Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud. Course materials are available here.Course description: This is a survey of the main trends in twentieth-century literary theory. Lectures will provide background for the readings and explicate them where appropriate, while attempting to develop a coherent overall context that incorporates philosophical and social perspectives on the recurrent questions: what is literature, how is it produced, how can it be understood, and what is its purpose?

  • Course: Introduction to Theory of Literature

8. Foundations: This is Your Brain

This Introduction to Psychology lecture introduces two conflicting schools of thought in psychology: dualism, or belief that our conscious minds are separate from our physical bodies, and materialism, the idea that all of our mental states are caused by physical brain states. The lecture explains why materialism is the current dominant theory in psychology, as well as an overview of the physiology of the brain. Course materials are available here.

Course description: What do your dreams mean? Do men and women differ in the nature and intensity of their sexual desires? Can apes learn sign language? Why can’t we tickle ourselves? This course tries to answer these questions and many others, providing a comprehensive overview of the scientific study of thought and behavior. It explores topics such as perception, communication, learning, memory, decision-making, religion, persuasion, love, lust, hunger, art, fiction, and dreams. We will look at how these aspects of the mind develop in children, how they differ across people, how they are wired-up in the brain, and how they break down due to illness and injury.

  • Course: Introduction to Psychology

7. Why Finance?

This lecture covers the history of financial theory, leading up to the efficient market hypothesis, a crucial element of standard financial theory. An overview of the financial crisis of 2007-2009 is then presented, which refutes the efficient markets hypothesis. The lecture ends with a number of thoughts on when the efficient markets hypothesis does work well. Course material is available here.

Course description: This course attempts to explain the role and the importance of the financial system in the global economy. Rather than separating off the financial world from the rest of the economy, financial equilibrium is studied as an extension of economic equilibrium. The course also gives a picture of the kind of thinking and analysis done by hedge funds.

  • Course: Financial Theory

6. Purgatory XXX, XXXI, XXXIII

This lecture examines Dante’s representation of the Earthly Paradise at the peak of Mount Purgatory. The talk works through three Cantos, and culminates in the thought that Dante shifts the notion of conversion as a one-time event with that of an ongoing process that continues to be represented in the Paradiso. Course materials are available here.

Course description: The course is an introduction to Dante and his cultural milieu through a critical reading of the Divine Comedy and selected minor works (Vita nuova, Convivio, De vulgari eloquentia, Epistle to Cangrande). An analysis of Dante’s autobiography, the Vita nuova, establishes the poetic and political circumstances of the Comedy’s composition. Readings of Inferno, Purgatory and Paradise seek to situate Dante’s work within the intellectual and social context of the late Middle Ages, with special attention paid to political, philosophical and theological concerns. Topics in the Divine Comedy explored over the course of the semester include the relationship between ethics and aesthetics; love and knowledge; and exile and history.

  • Course: Dante in Translation

5. Course Introduction and Newtonian Mechanics

This introductory lecture for Fundamentals of Physics gives an overview of Newtonian mechanics, looking into kinematics and dynamics. Basic concepts in physics as well as tracing a particle in one dimension along the x-axis are also covered. Course material is available here.Course description: This course provides a thorough introduction to the principles and methods of physics for students who have good preparation in physics and mathematics. Emphasis is placed on problem solving and quantitative reasoning. This course covers Newtonian mechanics, special relativity, gravitation, thermodynamics, and waves.

  • Course: Fundamentals of Physics, I

4. Course Introduction for Death

This introductory lecture for Death (PHIL 176), focuses on what subjects a philosophical discussion on the nature of death should stay away from. An overview of what will be covered in the course, from metaphysical questions to value theory is also covered. Course materials are available here.

Course description: There is one thing I can be sure of: I am going to die. But what am I to make of that fact? This course will examine a number of issues that arise once we begin to reflect on our mortality. The possibility that death may not actually be the end is considered. Are we, in some sense, immortal? Would immortality be desirable? Also a clearer notion of what it is to die is examined. What does it mean to say that a person has died? What kind of fact is that? And, finally, different attitudes to death are evaluated. Is death an evil? How? Why? Is suicide morally permissible? Is it rational? How should the knowledge that I am going to die affect the way I live my life?

  • Course: Death (PHIL 176)

3. Introduction to Psychology

This introductory lecture gives a general overview of the study of the human mind, detailing the five main branches of psychology. These include: neuroscience, or the study of the mind by looking at the brain; developmental psychology, or psychology that looks at how people grow and learn; cognitive psychology, which looks at computational approaches to studying the mind; social psychology, which studies human interaction; and clinical psychology, which examines health and mental illness. Course materials are available here.

Course description: What do your dreams mean? Do men and women differ in the nature and intensity of their sexual desires? Can apes learn sign language? Why can’t we tickle ourselves? This course tries to answer these questions and many others, providing a comprehensive overview of the scientific study of thought and behavior. It explores topics such as perception, communication, learning, memory, decision-making, religion, persuasion, love, lust, hunger, art, fiction, and dreams. We will look at how these aspects of the mind develop in children, how they differ across people, how they are wired-up in the brain, and how they break down due to illness and injury.

  • Course: Introduction to Psychology

2. Fluid Dynamics and Stats and Bernoulli’s

This lecture focuses on fluid dynamics and statics, discussing density and pressure. Both Archimedes’ Principle and Bernoulli’s Equation are also talked through. Course materials are avialable here.

Course description: This course provides a thorough introduction to the principles and methods of physics for students who have good preparation in physics and mathematics. Emphasis is placed on problem solving and quantitative reasoning. This course covers Newtonian mechanics, special relativity, gravitation, thermodynamics, and waves.

  • Course: Fundamentals of Physics

1. Introduction: Five First Lessons of Game Theory

This introductory lecture on Game Theory targets the essence of strategic thinking. First the lecture organizes the game into players, strategies, and goals. Then a number of lessons are shown from the game (a prisoners’ dilemma), such as that rational play by rational players can lead to bad outcomes. Real world dilemmas and potential remedies, as well as putting yourself into others’ shoes to predict what they will do are also discussed. Course materials are available here.

Course description: This course is an introduction to game theory and strategic thinking. Ideas such as dominance, backward induction, Nash equilibrium, evolutionary stability, commitment, credibility, asymmetric information, adverse selection, and signaling are discussed and applied to games played in class and to examples drawn from economics, politics, the movies, and elsewhere.

  • Course: Game Theory

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