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Free Version of Popular Yale Course Teaches the Science of Happiness

Photo Courtesy of Coursera.


They say money can’t buy happiness. Maybe that’s why Yale University is offering a free version of its popular course on happiness via Coursera.

Psychology professor Laurie Santos teaches “Psychology and the Good Life” at Yale. It’s a new class this semester and has become the university’s most popular course in its 316-year history with nearly 1,200 students — almost a quarter of Yale’s undergraduate student body — enrolled, The New York Times reports.

On the online-course company Coursera, Santos is teaching a version of that coursework, renamed “The Science of Well-Being.”

According to the course description, the online class will delve into the misconceptions people have about happiness, what leads people to think the way they do, which activities have been shown to increase happiness and what strategies can help build better habits.

“You get a chance to watch these short lectures on the science of happiness but also to think about how to develop these practices in your own life,” Santos said in a video published by Yale News.

The course is self-paced, though a syllabus is available to guide students over a six-week period. Bustle reports Coursera’s version includes complete access to the lectures, but students who want all the assignments and class materials must pay a $49 tuition fee.

Twenty-nine reviewers of the online course rated it 4.7 out of 5 stars.

“It is so complex, yet so simple,” one reviewer said. “It has helped me in my [day-to-day] living, in the way I just look at life and myself. I am so grateful for the opportunity to take this free class from Yale University.”

See here for more information about the course and to enroll.

Nicole Dow is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder.

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