Advanced Social Psychology

Location:  Schwartz 190
Timeblocks: Tuesday Evening: 6:30pm - 9:30pm
Attendance: Mandatory
Important: We may occasionally meet on Monday or Wednesday evenings for the purpose of watching a film.

Course Topic:  In Psyc 441, we will be applying the concepts of Social Psychology to the events of World War II, and predominantly, the Holocaust. The course will be content heavy, both in terms of the amount of material to be covered and in terms of the emotional weight of the content. 

Section: Psyc 441
Term:  Fall 2019
Hashtag: #XPsyc441
Syllabus:  Click Here


Office:       Annex 112A
Hours:      Office Hours

Click Here to read comments from past students. 

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not a student, Want to follow along? 

If you are not enrolled in the course (or even at the university) you can still follow along with the content of this course. Follow #XPsyc441 on Twitter or Facebook for posts relevant to the course. If you would like to participate in an online discussion of the readings, please click the button below to fill out a form. Discussion will take place on a platform called Perusall which allowed for collaborative annotation of documents to create an interactive reading experience. Voices from beyond the classroom are welcome and will help to increase the richness of the course discussions! [Some readings will be restricted to students only due to copyright laws]. 


I make extensive use of Evernote in my courses. You will need to sign up for an Evernote account as a student in this course. The basic account should be sufficient, although a Plus or Premium account is highly recommended. Using this link to sign up for your account will give you 1 month of Premium Access. Other ways that you can get Premium for free include referring others to sign up for Evernote: You'll receive 1 month Premium for free for each person who signs up. To learn more about Evernote, click here

Preparing for this course over the summer

In Psyc 441, we will be applying the concepts of Social Psychology to the events of World War II and the Holocaust. In order to be prepared for the course, you may wish to review the content that you learned in Psyc 240 - Introduction to Social Psychology. This is especially important if you are a student who has not previously taken Social Psychology and will be requesting to have the prerequisite waived. 

The second area of knowledge that will be useful to you in this course will be a basic understanding of the timeline and events of World War II and the Holocaust. You may wish to review some of the books and videos listed below. 

Below are some resources you can use for reviewing foundational concepts in Social Psychology: 

  1. There is a free online Social Psychology Course through Coursera. The course is not “live” anymore, but all of the material is still available, including the lectures, assignments, and exams.

  2. UC Berkeley’s Social Psychology course from 2014 is available online through youtube.

  3. In combination with either of the above, there is also a free online textbook for Social Psychology that can be found here.

Requrired readings

War & Genocide: A Concise History of the Holocaust, 3rd Edition (2016) - Doris L. Bergen - Available from Amazon for $43.00 (if you sign up as a student, you can receive an additional 10% discount on Amazon. It is $50.93 from Chapters/Indigo (online only) in Paperback format and is available digitally for Kobo readers (but not Kindle) for $42.49. From Google Books (digital) it is $40.40 (possibly in US$). From the American version of Amazon (, the book is available for Kindle for $31.26 USD and as a paperback for $37.05 USD. You can also get it from Rowan Books, use the code "Student30" to get 30% off the listed price - available in hardcover, paperback, and digital. 

Why: Explaining the Holocaust - Peter Hayes - Available from Amazon for $16.95 as a Paperback and $13.41 for Kindle. It is also available as an Audiobook from

Additional readings will be made available through Schoology. 

Recommended readings & viewings

Below you will find a selection of books and movies about World War II and the Holocaust. Some of these provide an overview of events, others focus on a specific individual's story, while others tackle larger thematic issues. It would take a lifetime to read all that has been written about WW2 and the Holocaust, and we only have one semester (plus the Summer if you get a head start). Pick and choose from what you find below, but try to pick at least one autobiography, one thematic/bigger issue piece, and one overview of events. Although the list is long, you will find that many of the books are "quick reads" - such as Night, which can be read in an hour or two. Many of the books are also available in Audio format through Audible or iTunes. 

Schindler's List
Starring Liam Neeson, Ben Kingsley, Ralph Fiennes, Caroline Goodall, Jonathan Sagalle
Auschwitz - Inside the Nazi State
Starring Warren Clarke, Colin Buchanan, Katy Cavanagh