Applied Psychology: The Psychology of Personal Growth

I.     Course Prefix/Number: PSY 107

       Course Name: Applied Psychology: The Psychology of Personal Growth

       Credits: 3 (3 lecture; 0 lab)

II.    Prerequisite


III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course increases awareness of values, emotions, and other motivational factors that affect an individual’s growth.  Content includes learning theory, personal behavior, human relationships, personal growth in a culturally diverse society; opportunity for group experience to examine similarities and differences between self and others in diverse society.

IV.   Learning Objectives

  1. Through participation in small group settings, the students will apply psychological theory to develop responsible human relationships and an understanding of themselves.
  2. Students will increase their appreciation and awareness of those cultural similarities and differences, which exist between oneself and others.
  3. Students will demonstrate an understanding of psychological theories of human development and personal growth.
  4. Students will demonstrate the ability to apply psychological theories of human development and personal growth.
  5. Students will demonstrate effective human relationship skills.

V.    Academic Integrity and Student Conduct

Students and employees at Oakton Community College are required to demonstrate academic integrity and follow Oakton's Code of Academic Conduct. This code prohibits:

• cheating,
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.

There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.

Please review the Code of Academic Conduct and the Code of Student Conduct, both located online at

VI.   Sequence of Topics

  1. Psychological perspectives on human development across the life-span to create a framework for personal growth
  2. Identity formation and development of self-concept and self-esteem
  3. Relationship of self-assessment and self-awareness to personal growth
  4. Principles and processes of developing effective human relationships, including fairness, equity, trust and respect
  5. Values, beliefs and behaviors related to wellness
  6. Life transitions
  7. Influence of a person's family origin and its culture
  8. Addictive process
  9. Gender issues
  10. Multi-cultural awareness
  11. Application of human relationship skills in a diverse community: communication, stress management, group participation, and conflict resolution
  12. Group dynamics

VII.  Methods of Instruction

  1. Formal and informal lectures
  2. Class discussions
  3. Experiential learning activities
  4. Readings, films, tapes and other audio-visual stimuli
  5. Individual and group research projects
  6. Individual and group independent learning contracts that are developed with the instructor

Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

  1. Reading - A text and supplemental readings are required
  2. Writing - Students will be required to write for the class the equivalent of 12-15 typed pages of material that will be graded. This writing may take the form of a research or term paper, summaries of journal articles, personal reaction papers, and/or a series of shorter, analytical papers.

IX.   Instructional Materials

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

  • Riso, Don Richard (1999).  The Wisdom of the Enneagram: The Complete Guide to Psychological and Spiritual Growth for the Nine Personality Types.  New York, NY: Bantam Books.
  • Powell, John (1995). Why Am I Afraid to Tell You Who I Am?.  Thomas More Press.
  • Frankl, Viktor E. (2006).  Man’s Search for Meaning.  Beacon Press.
  • Corey, Gerald and Marianne Schneider Corey (2010).  I Never Knew I Had a Choice: Explorations in Personal Growth (9th Edition).  New York, NY: Cengage Learning.
  • Bolen, Jean Shinoda (2004).  Goddesses in Everywoman (20th Anniversary Edition).  William Morrow Paperbacks Publishing.
  • Lerner, Harriet Goldhor (2005).  The Dance of Anger: A Woman’s Guide to Changing the Patterns of Intimate Relationships.  Perennial Publishing.

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

  1. Written mid-term and final examinations
  2. Written assignments (at least 2,000 words)
  3. Minimum attendance
  4. Individual performance tests on skills listed in Section VI Outline of Topics.
  5. Individual projects

XI.   Other Course Information

  1. Attendance is mandatory.
  2. Policy on make-up exams and late turn-in of assignments is as prescribed by the individual instructor.
  3. The Learning Center will be utilized as prescribed by the individual instructor.

If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.

Oakton Community College is committed to maintaining a campus environment emphasizing the dignity and worth of all members of the community, and complies with all federal and state Title IX requirements.

Resources and support for
  • pregnancy-related and parenting accommodations; and
  • victims of sexual misconduct
can be found at

Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at

Electronic video and/or audio recording is not permitted during class unless the student obtains written permission from the instructor. In cases where recordings are allowed, such content is restricted to personal use only. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited. Personal use is defined as use by an individual student for the purpose of studying or completing course assignments.

For students who have been approved for audio and/or video recording of lectures and other classroom activities as a reasonable accommodation by Oakton’s Access Disabilities Resource Center (ADRC), applicable federal law requires instructors to permit those recordings. Such recordings are also limited to personal use. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited.

Violation of this policy will result in disciplinary action through the Code of Student Conduct.