Discover how to make better personal and professional decisions, and how the brain could be more flexible than we think.
Weekly study5 hours
The Mind is Flat: The Shocking Shallowness of Human Psychology
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Explore the forces shaping human behaviour
We are often told that our minds are shaped by ‘deep’ factors – subconscious motives or hidden beliefs that can be uncovered through therapy, lab experiments, or brain scanning.
While not entirely incorrect, the brain also improvises – inventing these motives at the moment of decision. Understanding this could help make the world a better place.
On this course, you’ll explore why we take risks, and why we fear them. You’ll learn from top behavioural experts in numerous fields about how our minds are ‘flatter’ than we think, uncovering the influence of marketing and peer behaviour in the process.
Now an award-winning book: The Mind is Flat: The Illusion of Mental Depth and The Improvised Mind (Winner, American Association of Publishers PROSE award for best book in Clinical Psychology, 2019).
What topics will you cover?
- Why we take risks and why we fear them
- How people succeed or fail to work with other people successfully
- How our behaviour, governed by a plethora of complicated psychological forces, makes sense at all
- The theory that we are creating an improvised character and trying to stay in our role
- How we can make society more coherent and create a better world
Learning on this course
On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.
Who is the course for?
No special knowledge or previous experience of studying is required.
Who will you learn with?
I have over 200 publications and four awards for my research. I've recently co-hosted two series of The Human Zoo on the UK’s BBC Radio 4.
Learning on FutureLearn
Your learning, your rules
- Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
- Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
- Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores
Join a global classroom
- Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
- Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
- Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others
Map your progress
- As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
- Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
- Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate
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