I regularly teach the following classes at SOU:
This course explores the role of psychological and social factors in physical health, including the mind-body connection, stress, patient-provider relationships and communication, community development, and behavior change. Students will be introduced to the grant-writing process and learn how to design and propose a health intervention aimed to promote positive health outcomes.
Our personal and professional lives demand endless care and compassion for those we serve. Yet we encounter psychological and systemic barriers to compassion, including compassion fatigue, reductive biases, and aversion to suffering. This course will explore the theory and practice of Sustainable Compassion Training (SCT), which is a system of compassion and mindfulness meditation practices informed by neuroscience, social psychology, developmental psychology, cognitive psychology, affective science, and diverse contemplative traditions. SCT draws on three modes of care—receptive mode, deepening mode, and extending/inclusive mode—with the aim to realize more sustainable and inclusive compassion in our personal lives, our organizations, and our communities.
This course focuses on effective techniques to reduce stress and promote well-being. We will examine the physiological and psychological nature of stress, its effects on behavior and illness, how to minimize its negative effects and how to capitalize on its positive effects. We will examine strategies to cope with stress in the moment when difficult situations strike, and how to build resilience and prevent stress over time. In addition to covering material from an academic perspective, class time will be dedicated to experiential activities and discussion of these techniques, including relaxation techniques, reappraisal, mindsets, social connection, compassion, mindfulness, and other alternative approaches.