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Psychology 441

Seminar in Cross-Cultural Psychology

Cross-Cultural Psychology

Spring Quarter, 2011

Academic Instructional West 408

Monday, Wednesday, Friday – 2:30 to 3:50 PM

Instructors -- Joseph E. Trimble, PhD, Distinguished University Professor, Professor of Psychology

Offices and Contact Information -- AIC 594 - Telephone – 360.650.3058. Office hours will be discussed in class and posted on my office door.

Readings -- Selected readings collected from journal articles and book chapters are listed below under each of the topic areas. I will email you copies of all of the articles except those that you can access directly through the web address. Many of the readings come from The Online Readings in Psychology and Culture (ORPC) series. ORPC is designed to serve as a resource for researchers, teachers, students, and anyone who is interested in the interrelationships between psychology and culture. As part of the IACCP, the publication is a free resource. Cross-Cultural PsychologyCross-Cultural Explorations

Required Textbooks -- (available in the Western Associated Students Bookstore, through an Internet book seller such as Amazon.com, and on limited one day reserve in the Wilson Library).

-- Shiraev, E. & Levy, D. (2013) Cross Cultural Psychology: Critical Thinking and
Contemporary Applications, Fifth Edition. New York: Routledge/Taylor & Francis.

Prerequisites – C- or better in Psychology 210-250, 303, and one from 342 – 344 or equivalent courses in other departments


Course Theme

Cross-cultural psychology is the comparative study of cultural effects on human psychology. It examines psychological diversity and the links between cultural norms and behavior. It also examines the ways in which particular human activities are influenced by social and cultural forces. Furthermore, cross-cultural psychology primarily uses the comparative method to establish psychological concepts, principles, and hypotheses. The purpose of the seminar is to introduce the field of cross-cultural psychology and its contemporary applications.  Through discussions and readings students can expect to develop a broader, global perception of contemporary psychology. Activities are intended to explain current psychological knowledge and its applications from a cross-cultural perspective. Additionally, the seminar will assist in developing a useful set of critical-thinking tools with which to analyze and evaluate psychology from various, ethnic, national, and religious groups.

Selected Seminar Theme Quotations

“The Western conception of the person as a bounded, unique, more or less integrated motivational and cognitive universe, a dynamic center of awareness, emotion, judgment, and action, organized into a distinctive whole and set contrastively -- both against other such wholes and against social and natural background -- is however incorrigible it may seem to us, a rather peculiar idea within the context of the world's cultures.” (Clifford Geertz, 1973, p. 34).

“Never look for a psychological explanation unless every effort to find a cultural one has been exhausted” (Margaret Mead, 1959, p. 16).

“The way to do fieldwork is never to come up for air until it is all over.&rduo; (Letter from New Guinea, quoted by Jane Howard on Margaret Mead, 1984)

“Malinowski was most insistent that every culture beunderstood in its own terms, that every institution be seenas a product of the culture within which it developed. Itfollows from this that a cross-cultural comparison ofinstitutions is essentially a false enterprise, for we are comparing incomparables” (Walter Goldschmidt, 1966, p. 8).

“This was my first night in Lesu alone. As I sat on the veranda of my thatched-roofed, two-room house in the early evening I felt uncertain and scared not of anything in particular, but just of being alone in a native village. I asked myself, ‘What on earth am I doing here, all alone and at the edge of the world?’”  (Hortense Powdermaker (1966, p. 51).

“There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it's going to be a butterfly.” (R. Buckminster Fuller, 1995-1983)

“'Curiouser and curiouser!' cried Alice (she was so much surprised, that for the moment she quite forgot how to speak good English).” (Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson), 1832-1898; Alice's Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking Glass)

“What sets worlds in motion is the interplay of differences, their attractions and repulsions. Life is plurality, death is uniformity. By suppressing differences and peculiarities, by eliminating different civilizations and cultures, progress weakens life and favors death. The ideal of a single civilization for everyone, implicit in the cult of progress and technique, impoverishes and mutilates us. Every view of the world that becomes extinct, every culture that disappears, diminishes a possibility of life” (Octavio Paz, 1978)

Student and Course Learning Objectives

Upon successfully completing the course students will be able to:

Knowledge and Understanding

1).   Identify and describe the major components and principles of multicultural competence, awareness, knowledge, skills, and values.

2).   Discuss alternative conceptions of cultural, ethnic, and cultural psychology and the role played by different academic disciplines in describing and researching an individual’s behavior, world view, attitudes, and values.

3).   Recognize and describe how cross-cultural psychology theories explain the influence of the human condition at universal and cultural-specific levels.

4).   Identify the role of race, ethnicity, cultural heritage, nationality, socioeconomic status, family structure, age, gender, sexual orientation, religious and spiritual beliefs, occupation, physical and mental status, and related social justice issues in educational and psychological practices.

5).   Describe and illustrate some of the psychological implications of cultural differences and of contact among members of different cultures, and to consider the role which psychological research and theory can play in advancing intercultural understanding.


6).   Analyze and critique scientific research articles that describe and present research findings on cross-cultural topics.

7).   Demonstrate an understanding of how well Western psychological principles and research hold up in other cultures.

8).   Conduct an extensive literature review exploring selected characteristics, qualities, or peculiarities associated with a chosen topic in the field of cross-cultural psychology.


9).   Reflect and write about multiculturalism as it relates to your personal life's experiences.

10).   Demonstrate increased cultural awareness and sensitivity which includes subjective and objective perceptions of ethnic groups and the role culture plays in human and social behavior.

11).   Identify and challenge traditional psychological theories limited to North American Euro-centric cultural lifeways and thoughtways.


Student Evaluation

In addition to attending seminar sessions regularly and doing the reading, the course requires you to work through selected exploratory activities and present the findings to the class when appropriate, be responsible for leading discussions during selected class periods (may involve doing additional readings), and submit assignments and project reports at the end of the quarter.

Seminar Projects

Final Research Paper. For the final research assignment, select one of the exercises from the Shiraev and Levy text: : 3.6 on page 63; 4.2 on page 112; 6.1 on page 162; 6.2 on page 164; 8.1 on page 213; 9.1 on page 245; 10.3 on page 267; 11.1 on page 288; or 12.1 on page 299. Also, you can choose one of the following activities from the Goldstein text: 1.5, p. 13; 3.7, p. 89; 4.2, p. 115; 4.8, p. 137; 4.10, p. 145; 5.4, p. 159; 5.5, p. 165; 5.6. p. 173; 5.7, p. 179; 6.8, p. 217; 7.2, p. 233; 7.6, p. 245; 7.8, p. 257; 7.10, p. 265; 8.6, p. 289; 9.6, p. 337. Choose someone in the class to work with you on the project. Your final paper is graded according to the following general criteria (specific requirements are in the assignments and they may differ – the rubric for this assignment will assist you):
Format: 1,000 words or so, double-spaced.
Style: Make an introduction, complete with a relevant literature review, in which you describe briefly the goal of your paper. Generalize your thoughts in a conclusion. Break up your paper in several paragraphs. Each paragraph should represent a particular idea, explanation, or description.
Validity: Use facts to support your ideas and suggestions. The assignment should contain references following the APA style manual and format. You are welcome to suggest a topic for your original term paper. Talk with me to confirm your choice.

Essay Questions. During the quarter, you are to read several important articles, chapters, and sections of the assigned books; the readings and assignments ar elisted for you in sections of the syllabus. After reading the assigned and/or suggested readings you will select three questions from the list of questions for the unit and answer each one carefully and accurately; include your thoughts and observations about the material. Summarize your answers and thoughts into 4-6 pages. In addition, students will submit one question they want to discuss relevant to the week's readings. Add it to the end of your essay responses.

Article Presentation. With another student, select an article of interest selected from one of the readings in the syllabus. Prepare a 15-20 minute oral presentation with slides based on the content and theme of selected reading; the last slide should contain at least 2 discussion questions. Articles less than 3 pages are not eligible for this activity. The joint student presentation should coincide with the unit we're discussing at the time. Presentations begin the third week of the quarter.

Psychology in a Foreign Country. In this project, you are required to submit a paper describing the discipline of psychology in one foreign country. Finding material on this topic will not always be easy. However, your report must be based upon at least three sources. Your report should clearly provide the reader with a good overview of the discipline of psychology in your chosen country. In your report, you should attempt to address the following topics:

  • 1). A brief history of the discipline in that country;
  • 2). The degree to which psychology has been imported from other countries;
  • 3). The relative importance of scientific or academic research and applied psychology;
  • 4). The status of psychology as a profession;
  • 5). The level and type of training necessary to become a professional psychologist;
  • 6). The major theoretical orientation(s) and if any one theoretical orientation dominates;
  • 7). Major research trends or focuses; and
  • 8). Professional organizations and codes of ethics.
  • Two excellent resources for an overview of psychology in a variety of countries are: 1). The Annual Review of Psychology. Periodically, this annually published edited volume includes articles that describe the discipline of psychology in a foreign country. These reviews include issues related to research emphases, training and education, and the application of psychology; 2). Wikipedia citations on International Psychology (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_psychology) and National Psychology (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_psychology).

    Seminar Portfolio. Over the course of the seminar maintain an electronic portfolio of all your work you’ve completed and submitted for this seminar. In the two weeks or so of the quarter read it over, reflective on your knowledge, understanding, skills and your ability to synthesize the information and write an analysis of how far you’ve progressed in your understanding of culture and psychology.


    Grades will be based mainly on the conduct and quality of the activities, the mid-term written assignment, the final paper, and research design and presentation submitted at the end of the term, with greater emphasis on the latter. I will also factor in what I learn about your knowledge of cross-cultural psychology concepts and methods from discussions in class and observations of your work on the exploratory activities.

    Submission of Work

    Submit electronic copies of all your written work to my email address. However, I will accept written assignments in hard copy form if necessary. I tend to use Turnitin to evaluate all submitted papers and assignments (see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turnitin).

    Extensions and Incompletes

    No extensions are permitted on the definitions, final project papers, and exploratory activities. Extensions for the final research paper must be requested in advance and will be granted with reluctance. I strongly discourage you from taking incomplete grades in this course; as a rule, taking incompletes will delay your progress through your undergraduate studies. While I realize that one may produce a better research report by taking more time to, it is usually preferable to produce a draft within the given time-frame, get commentary, and improve the work later through revision.

                In summary, student performance in the seminar and achievement of the student learning outcomes will be evaluated using the following criteria:


                In addition, by the end of the quarter, seminar participants must complete a portfolio containing:

    1).  Final Written Paper – 60 points. Due on June 9th by 6:00PM.
    2). Article Presentation – 20 points. Students will select an article related to their own research interest or other professional interest that is related to a unit's readings. Choose a partner to review and present the material.
    3). Lead a Discussion 10 points. With another student lead a discussion on submitted student essay questions.
    4). Activities in Cross-Cultural Psychology (3 of them). - 30 points. Due on Wednesdays by 9:00PM.
    5). Psychology in a Foreign Country – 40 Points. Due on May 4th.
    6). Essay Questions – (16 points for each set of 3). 128 points. Due on Sundays by 9:00PM.
    7). Seminar Portfolio – 50 points. Due May 31st at 9:00PM.
    8). Classroom participation in discussion of the readings and topics – 20 points.

    Point distributions vary according to the criteria described in detail in the various assessment rubrics prepared for the seminar; they will be distributed in class.

                Final letter grades will be based on one’s total point accumulation at the end of the quarter. The point distribution is as follows:

    A =      340 - 358
    B =      303 - 339
    C =      266 - 302
    D =      229 – 265
    F =      228 and less

                Each paper and activity will be evaluated on several dimensions including the substantive and the mechanical (see Rubrics). The substantive dimension includes such features as writing style, evidence of considerable work expended, clarity, and ease of reading. The mechanical dimension includes such things as spelling, grammar, and proper sentence structure. Guidelines and criteria for both dimensions are available for student review and use. Students are required to follow the style guidelines of the American Psychological Association (APA) for every writing assignment. A guide for the APA style is available at - http://www.psywww.com/resource/apacrib.htm. Late papers will not be accepted.

    Schedule of Seminar Activities

    The following outline contains the general topics and approximate time allotted for discussion and review of assigned readings. At times, it’s possible that guest lecturers will be invited to the seminar to present and discuss relevant and appropriate material intended to supplement seminar activities. Additionally, PowerPoint presentations will be used to complement discussions. The seminar is organized around ten basic units and corresponding parts or sub-units. Assigned and recommended readings are listed for each section. Students should familiarize themselves with the outline and the weekly activities, read the material in advance, and be fully prepared to discuss the readings during the seminar as well as record summaries and observations in the notebook.

    Course Organization




    Understanding Cross-Cultural Psychology. What is cross-cultural psychology? Basic definitions: Culture, cultural psychology, race, nationality, and ethnicity. Empirical examination of culture. Power distance, masculinity, and uncertainty avoidance. Collectivism and individualism. Different views on cross-cultural psychology. Evolutionary approach. Sociological approach. Ecocultural approach. The Cultural Mixtures approach: A new cross-cultural psychology in the 21st century. The Integrative approach. Indigenous psychology. Ethnocentrism.  Multiculturalism. A brief history of cross-cultural psychology.

    Theme: "I am afraid, my dear Watson, that most of your conclusions were erroneous."
    - Arthur Conan Doyle, The Hound of the Baskervilles (Sherlock Holmes).


    - Shiraev & Levy – Chapter 1, pp. 1-23.

    - Phinney, J. (1996). When we talk about American ethnic groups, what do we mean? American Psychologist, 51(9), 918-927.

    - Fons J. R. van de Vijver. Types of cross-cultural studies in cross-cultural psychology. (http://www.wwu.edu/culture/vandeVijver.htm)

    -Teo, T. (20080. Psychology without Caucasians. Canadian Psychology, 50(2), 91-97.

    Suggested Additional Readings:

    -Trimble, J. E. (2007). Prolegomena for the connotation of construct use in the measurement of ethnic and racial identity. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 54(3), 247-258.

    -Trimble, J. E. (2014). Ethnic gloss. In K. Keith (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Cross-Cultural Psychology. New York: Wiley.

    Research Resource: Consider the following: “Researchers who study different populations must be aware that the cultural processes of research participants are just as extant as those processes of researchers and their colleagues. To ignore this simple yet important truth enables researchers to ignore the influence of their personal and professional cultures on the research processes and populations of focus” (p. 26). For more information on this timely and insightful statement go to: https://obssr.od.nih.gov/pdf/cultural_framework_for_health.pdf.



    Methodology of Cross-Cultural Research. Goals of cross-cultural research. Quantitative research in cross-cultural psychology. Looking for linkages and differences. Qualitative approach in cross cultural psychology. Major steps for preparation of a cross-cultural study. Sample selection. Observation in cross-cultural psychology. Survey methods. Experimental studies. Content Analysis. Focus-group methodology. Meta Analysis: Research of research. A hidden obstacle of cross-cultural studies: Test translation. Comparing two phenomena: Some important principles. On similarities and differences: Some critical thinking applications. Cultural dichotomies: There are fewer/more differences than one might think. Avoiding bias of generalizations. Know more about cultures you examine!

    Theme: "When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbably, must be the truth."
    - Arthur Conan Doyle, The Sign of the Four (Sherlock Holmes).
    "It has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the most important."
    - Arthur Conan Doyle, A Case of Identity (Sherlock Holmes).


    - Shiraev & Levy – Chapter 2, pp. 24-48.

    - Hall, G. C., Yip, T. & Zarate, M. (2016). On becoming multicultural in a monocultural research world: A conceptual approach to studying ethnocultural diversity. American Psychologist, 71(1). 40-51.

    - Trimble, J. E. & Vaughn, L. (2014). Cultural measurement equivalence. In K. Keith (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Cross-Cultural Psychology. New York: Wiley.

    - Henrich, J., Heine, S. J., & Norenzayan, A. (2010). The weirdest people in the world? Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 33, 61-135. See: http://www.psmag.com/magazines/pacific-standard-cover-story/joe-henrich-weird-ultimatum-game-shaking-up-psychology-economics-53135

    Suggested additional readings:

    - Rivkin, I., Trimble, J. E., Lopez, E., Johnson, S., Orr, E., & Allen, J. (2013). Disseminating research in rural Yup’ik communities: Challenges and ethical considerations in moving from discovery to intervention development in the translational pathway. International Journal of Circumpolar Health, 72, 1-8.

    - Sue, S. (1999). Science, ethnicity, and bias: Where have we gone wrong? American Psychologist, 54, 1070-1077.

    - Trimble, J. E., Scharron-del Rio, M. & Bernal. G. (2010).The itinerant researcher: Ethical and methodological issues in conducting cross-cultural mental health research. In D. C. Jack & A. Ali (Eds.), Cultural perspectives on women’s depression: Self-silencing, psychological distress and recovery (pp. 73-95). New York: Oxford.

    - Trimble, J.E., Rivkin, I.D., Johnson, S., Lopez, D.S., Orr, E., Allen, J., Fok, C., & Henry, D. B. (2012). ‘Taringenqegcallrat cayarat umyuat-llu': Indigenous understandings in community based participatory research. Symposium published online by invitation in SCRA special issue of the Global Journal of Community Psychology Practice, 2(3). Link Here

    - Rivkin, I., Johnson, S., Lopez, E., Orr, E., & Trimble, J.E. (2012). Understanding Yup’ik conceptions of stress within the context of rapid cultural change. Narrated presentation published online by invitation in SCRA special issue of the Global Journal of Community Psychology Practice, 2(3). Link Here

    Activity: Pagtatanong-Tanong: An Indigenous Research Method* Due on April 12th by 6:00PM (S. Goldstein, p. 53).



    Critical Thinking in Cross-Cultural Psychology. The Evaluative Bias of Language: To describe is to prescribe. Differentiating Dichotomous Variables and Continuous Variables: Black and white, or shades of gray? The Similarity-Uniqueness Paradox: All phenomena are both similar and different. The Barnum Effect: “One Size-Fits-All” descriptions. The Assimilation Bias: Viewing the world through schema-colored glasses. The Representativeness Bias: Fits and misfits of categorization. The Availability Bias: The persuasive power of vivid events. The Fundamental Attribution Error: Underestimating the impact of external influences. The Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: When expectations create reality. Correlation Does Not Prove Causation: Confusing “what” with “why.”  Bi-Directional Causation and Multiple Causation: Causal loops and compound pathways. The Naturalistic Fallacy: Blurring the line between “is” and “should”. The Belief Perseverance Effect: “Don’t confuse me with the facts!”  “To metathink or not to metathink?”

    Theme: : “It was easier to know it than to explain why I know it. If you were asked to prove that two and two made four, you might find some difficulty, and yet you are quite sure of the fact.”
    “It is a capital mistake to theorize before you have all the evidence. It biases the judgment.”
    -Arthur Conan Doyle, The Scarlet Letter (Sherlock Holmes).


    - Shiraev & Levy – Chapter 3, pp. 49-87.

    - Trimble, J. (2003). Cultural competence and cultural sensitivity. In M. Prinstein & M. Patterson, (Eds.) The portable mentor: Expert guide to a successful career in psychology (pp. 13-32). NY: Kluwer Academic/Plenum.

    - Martin, L. (1986). “Eskimo words for snow”: A case study in the genesis and decay of an anthropological example. American Anthropologist, 88(2), 418-423.

    - Belsky, G. (2106, March 25). Why we think we’re better investors than we are. The New York Times.

    - C. Dominik Güss. Decision making in individualistic and collectivistic cultures. (http://www.wwu.edu/culture/Guss2.htm)

    Suggested additional readings:   

    - Okrent, A. (2013, January 25). How many words do Eskimos really have for snow? Mental Floss Link Here

    - C. Dominik Güss. Decision making in individualistic and collectivistic cultures. (http://www.wwu.edu/culture/Guss2.htm)

    - No Such Thing As Ethnic Groups, Genetically Speaking, Researchers Say

    - Knowledge of core subjects increasing, but so is belief in pseudoscience



    Cognition: Sensation and Perception. States of Consciousness. Sensation and perception: Basic principles. Sensation and the brain: Basic universal pathways. How culture influences what we perceive. How people perceive depictions.  How do people scan pictures? Perception of depth. Are people equally misled by visual illusions? Some cultural patterns of drawing pictures. Perception of color.  Other senses.  Perception of time.  Perception of the beautiful.  Perception of music.  Consciousness and culture. Sleep and cultural significance of dreams. Beyond Altered States of Consciousness.

    Theme: “The world is full of obvious things which nobody by any chance ever observes.”
    - Arthur Conan Doyle, The Hound of the Baskervilles (Sherlock Holmes).
    "You see, but you do not observe. The distinction is clear.”
    - Arthur Conan Doyle, A Scandal in Bohemia (Sherlock Holmes).
    "No ghosts need apply."
    - Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventure of the Sussex Vampire (Sherlock Holmes).


    - Shiraev & Levy – Chapter 4, pp. 88-114.

    - Nisbett, R. E. & Miyamoto, Y. (2005). The influence of culture: Holistic vs. analytic perception. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 9, 467-473.

    - Luhrmann, T. M. "To Dream in Different Cultures," http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/14/opinion/luhrmann-to-dream-in-different-cultures.html

    - Segall, M., Campbell, D., & Herskovit, M. (1968). The influence of culture on visual perception. In H. Toch & C. Smith (Eds.), Social Perception: The Development of Interpersonal Impressions. Princeton: Van Nostrand.

    Suggested additional readings:   

    - Toussaint, G. T. (1978). The use of context in pattern recognition. Pattern Recognition 10(3), 189-204.

    - Miyamoto, Y., Nisbett, R. E., & Masuda, T. (2006). Culture and the physical environment: Holistic versus analytic perceptual affordances. Psychological Science, 17(2), 113-119.

    - What She Sees in You: Facial Attractiveness Explained. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090824115811.htm

    - Selflessness -- Core Of All Major World Religions -- Has Neuropsychological Connection


    Emotion. When we laugh, we are happy: Similarities of emotional experience. You cannot explain pain if you have never been hurt: Differences in emotional experience. Emotions: Different or universal? Physiological Arousal. The meaning of preceding events. Emotion as an evaluation. We are expected to feel a particular way. How people assess emotional experience. When emotions signal a challenge: Cross-cultural research on stress. Expression of emotion. When emotion hurts: Cross-cultural studies of anger. Emotion and inclination to act. Emotion and judgment.

    Theme: “Nothing clears up a case so much as stating it to another person.”
    - Arthur Conan Doyle, Silver Blaze (Sherlock Holmes).
    "The emotional qualities are atagonistic to clear reasoning."
    - Arthur Conan Doyle, The Sign of Four (Sherlock Holmes).


    - Shiraev & Levy – Chapter 6, pp. 144-166.

    - Tsai, J. L., Louie, J. Y., Chen, E. E., & Uchida, Y. (2007). Learning what feelings to desire: Socialization of ideal affect through children’s storybooks. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 33, 17-30.

    - Ekman, P., Friesen, W., O'Sullivan, M., Chan, D., Diacoyanni-Tarlatzis, I., Heider, K., & Tzavaras, A. (1987). Universals and cultural differences in the judgments of facial expressions of emotion. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 53, 712-717.

    - Joshanloo, M. & Weijers, D. (2014). Aversion to Happiness Across Cultures: A review of where and why people are averse to happiness. Journal of Happiness Studies, 15(3), 717-735. Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2014-03-cultures-differ-happiness-beliefs.html#jCp

    Suggested additional readings:   

    - Facial Expressions Show Language Barriers, Too. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090813142131.htm

    - Miyamoto, Y., Uchida, Y., & Ellsworth, P. C. (2010). Culture and mixed emotions: Co-occurrence of positive and negative emotions in Japan and the United States. Emotion, 10(3), 404-415.

    - Tsai, J. L. & Park, B. K. (2014). The cultural shaping of happiness: The role of ideal affect. In J. Moskowitz & J. Gruber (Eds.). The light and dark sides of positive emotion (pp. 345-362). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

    - Oishi, S., Graham, J., Kesebir, S., & Galinha, I.C. (2013). Concepts of happiness across time and cultures. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 39(5), 559-577.




    Human Development and Socialization Development and socialization: Definitions. Quality of life and the child’s development. Norms, customs, and child-care. Parental values and expectations. Erik H. Erikson's Stages of Psychosocial Development. Jean Piaget: Stages of cognitive development. Stages of moral development according to Kohlberg. Developmental stages. Life before birth: Prenatal period. First steps: Infancy. Discovering the world: Childhood. Major rehearsals: Adolescence. Adulthood. Late Adulthood. Other topics discussed in class. Video materials.

    Theme: “The chief proof of man’s greatness lies in his perception of his own smallness.”
    “What you do in this world is a matter of no consequence. The question is what can you make people believe you have done.”
    - Arthur Conan Doyle, A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes).

    Required readings:

    - Shiraev & Levy – Chapter 7, pp. 172-194.

    - Trimble, J.E. & Dickson, R. (2005). Ethnic identity. In C.B. Fisher & Lerner, R. M. (Eds.), Encyclopedia of applied developmental science, (pp. 415-420) (Volume I). Thousand Oaks: Sage.

    - Heidi Keller. Culture and development: Developmental pathways to individualism and interrelatedness. http://www.wwu.edu/culture/keller.htm.

    - Frank Eyetsemitan. Life-span developmental psychology: Midlife and later years in Western and Non-Western societies. http://www.wwu.edu/culture/Eyetsemitan1.htm.

    Recommended readings:   

    - Children as Young As 19 Months Understand Different Dialects

    - Are Men Hardwired to Overspend?

    - Schafer, M., Haun, D. B. M., & Tomasello, M. (2015). Fair is not fair. Psychological Science, 26(8), 1252-1260.


    Psychological Disorders. American background: DSM-IV. Two views on culture and psychopathology. Culture-Bound Syndromes. Central and peripheral symptoms. Anxiety disorders. Schizophrenia. Depressive Disorders. Culture and suicide. Personality Disorders. Substance abuse. Psychodiagnostic biases. Psychotherapy. Culture match.

    Theme: “As a rule,” said Holmes, “the more bizarre a thing is the less mysterious it proves to be. It is your commonplace, featureless crimes which are really puzzling, just as a commonplace face is the most difficult to identify.”
    - Arthur Conan Doyle, The Red-Headed League (Sherlock Holmes).
    “The more outré and grotesque an incident is the more carefully it deserves to be examined.”
    - Arthur Conan Doyle, The Hound of the Baskervilles (Sherlock Holmes).


    - Shiraev & Levy – Chapter 8, pp. 195-220.

    - Hopper, K. and Wanderling, J. (2000). Revisiting the developed vs. developing country distinction in course and outcome in schizophrenia. Schizophrenia Bulletin, 26, 835-846.

    - Parket, G., & Gladstone, G., & Chee, K.T. (2001). Depression in the planet's largest ethnic group: The Chinese. American Journal of Psychiatry, 158(6), 857-862.

    - Andrew G. Ryder, Jian Yang, & Steven J. Heine. Somatization vs. psychologization of emotional distress: A paradigmatic example for cultural psychopathology.

    Suggested additional readings:   

    - Kohort, B. A., Kunz, R. D., Baldwin, J. L., Koirala, N. R., Sharma, V. D., & Nepal, M. K. (2005). Somatization and comorbidity: A study of Jhum-Jhum and depression in rural Nepal. Ethos, 33, 125-147.

    - Allen, G. E. K., & Smith, T. B. (2015). Collectivistic coping strategies for distress among Polynesian Americans. Psychological Services, 12(3), 322-329.

    - Jones, M. (2006, January 15). Shutting themselves in. New York Times Magazine. Download here.

    - Trimble, J.E., King, J., Norman, D., Bigfoot, D., & LaFromboise, T. (2014). North American Indian mental health. In, R. Parekh & D. Dominguez, (Eds.), The Massachusetts General Hospital textbook on cultural sensitivity and diversity in mental health. Current Clinical Psychiatry series with Springer Science + Business Media. New York: Springer.

    - King, J. & Trimble, J.E (2013). The spiritual and sacred among North American Indians and Alaska Natives: Synchronicity, wholeness, and connectedness in a relational world. In K.I. Pargement, J. Exline, J. Jones, A. Mahoney, & E. Shafranske (Eds.). Handbook of Psychology, Religion, and Spirituality. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

    Trimble. J. E. (2010). Bear spends time in our dreams now: Magical thinking and cultural empathy in multicultural counselling theory and practice. Counselling Psychology Quarterly, 23(3), 241-253.

    Activity: Magical Thinking Due on May 17th by 6:00PM. (S. Goldstein, p. 67).

    Paper on Psychology in a Foreign Country due May 27th by 6:00PM


    Social Perception and Social Interaction. Values. Western and non-Western values. Striving for consistency: The Cognitive Balance theory. Avoiding inconsistency: Cognitive dissonance. Prejudice: Is it inevitable? Stereotypes in daily life Psychological Dogmatism. Social Attribution. Attribution as locus of control. Explaining the behavior of others. Attribution of success and failure. Self-Perception. Do social norms affect the way we see our own body weight? Duty and fairness in individualist and collectivist cultures. Stereotypes and the power of generalizations.

    Theme: : “It is my belief, Watson, founded upon my experience, that the lowest and vilest alleys in London do not present a more dreadful record of sin than does the smiling and beautiful countryside.”
    - Arthur Conan Doyle, The Cooper Beeches (Sherlock Holmes).


    - Shiraev & Levy – Chapter 10, pp. 221-298.

    - Trimble, J. E. (1988). Stereotypic images, American Indians and prejudice. In P. Katz & D. Taylor (Eds.), Toward the elimination of racism: Profiles in controversy (pp. 181-202). New York, NY: Pergamon.

    - Festinger, L., & Carlsmith, J.M. (1959). Cognitive consequences of forced compliance. Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 58, 203-210.

    - Cialdini, R. B., Borden, R. J., Thorne, A., Walker, M. R., & Freeman, S. (1976). Basking in reflective glory. Three (football) field studies. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 34, 366–375.

    Suggested additional readings:   

    - Fryberg, S. A., Markus, H. R., Oyserman, D., & Stone, J. M. (2008). Warrior chiefs and Indian princesses: The psychological consequences of American Indian mascots. Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 30, 208-218.

    - Chin, J. L. & Trimble, J. E. (2014). Diversity and leadership. Los Angeles, CA: Sage. Chapter titled, Leadership for the 21st Century.

    - Payne, B. K. (2006). Weapon bias: Split-second decisions and unintended stereotyping. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 15, 287-291.

    - John Adamopoulos. The perception of interpersonal behaviors across cultures.

    - Tara West and Sheri R. Levy. Background belief systems and prejudice.

    Activities: (for your interest only and not an assignment)
    Check out Project Implicit at: https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/ and The Jigsaw Classroom at http://www.jigsaw.org/ and Test Your Native IQ at: http://www.understandingprejudice.org/nativeiq/ and Can You Avoid Segregation: To learn more, go to the following Internet address and complete the activity: http://www.understandingprejudice.org/segregation/

    ***Seminar Portfolio due on May 31st by 9:00PM

    Activity Credit

    I want to acknowledged the assistance of Susan Goldstein for use
    of the activities from her book, Cross-cultural explorations: Activities in culture and
    psychology (Pearson Education, Boston, MA, 2008). The activities are provided with
    written permission from Pearson Education, Inc.

    Class Schedule Note

    Psychfest will be held on the last Friday of the spring quarter (June 3rd) hence there will be no class that day. Plan to attend the Psychfest.

    Note:   Student interest may necessitate spending more or less time on certain topics thus requiring a rearrangement of the topics or time schedules presented above.

    A Professor's Manifesto

    Here is what I expect from students: You will treat everyone in the class, including the professor, with the respect due to all human beings. You will attend every class, give your full attention to the material, and conduct yourself in an appropriate manner. You will agree to do the work outlined in the syllabus on time. You will acknowledge that previous academic preparation (e.g., writing skills) will affect your performance in this course. You will acknowledge that your perception of effort, by itself, is not enough to justify a distinguished grade. You will not plagiarize or otherwise steal the work of others. You will not make excuses for your failure to do what you ought. You will accept the consequences of your actions.

    Here is what students can expect from me: I will treat you with the respect due all human beings. I will know your name and treat you as an individual. I will not discriminate against you because of your identity or your well-informed viewpoints. I will manage the class in a professional manner; that may include educating you in appropriate behavior. I will prepare carefully for every class. I will begin and end class on time. I will teach only in areas of my professional expertise. If I do not know something, I will say so. I will conduct scholarly research and publication with the aim of making myself a more informed teacher. I will return your assignments quickly with detailed feedback. I will pursue the maximum punishment for plagiarism, cheating, and other violations of academic integrity. I will keep careful records of your attendance, performance, and progress. If I am absent from class for personal or professional reasons, I will make every effort to find a qualified colleague who will be willing to teach and supervise the topic for discussion and review. I will investigate every excuse for nonattendance of classes and non-completion of assignments. I will make myself available to you for advising. I will maintain confidentiality concerning your performance. I will provide you with professional support and write recommendations for you if appropriate. I will be honest with you. Your grade will reflect the quality of your work and nothing else. I am interested in your feedback about the class, but I am most interested in what you learned. (I express my gratitude to a Thomas H. Benton - a pseudonym - for providing the essential information described in the "Manifesto." The original article can be found in the Chronicle of Higher Education, June 9, 2006).


    -- Geertz, C. (1973). The interpretation of cultures: Selected essays. New York, NY: Basic Books.
    -- Goldschmidt, W. (1966). Comparative functionalism. Berkeley: University of
    -- Mead, M. (1959). An anthropologist at work: Writings of Ruth Benedict. Boston:
    -- Powdermaker, H. (1966). Stranger and friend: The way of the anthropologist. New York: Norton.


    I want to extend my gratitude to those who kindly and generously provided me with suggestions and materials for the seminar to include: Susan Goldstein, The University of Redlands; Eric B. Shiraev, George Mason University; David Levy, Pepperdine University; William K. Gabrenya, Florida Institute of Technology; materials provided by the International Association for Cross-Cultural Psychology, the Society for the Psychological Study of Culture, Ethnicity, and Race, and the Society for the Teaching of Psychology; and former students who took this course.