Special Topics: Social Animals

The graphic shows a balance that has two sides - Right and Wrong.

This illustration depicts how our brain distinguishes and balances Right from Wrong. By disrupting brain activity in a particular region, neuroscientists can sway people's views of moral situations, thereby shifting the balance. (Image courtesy of Christine Daniloff.)


MIT Course Number


As Taught In

Fall 2009



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Course Description

Course Features

Course Description

Humans are social animals; social demands, both cooperative and competitive, structure our development, our brain and our mind. This course covers social development, social behaviour, social cognition and social neuroscience, in both human and non-human social animals. Topics include altruism, empathy, communication, theory of mind, aggression, power, groups, mating, and morality. Methods include evolutionary biology, neuroscience, cognitive science, social psychology and anthropology.

Related Content

Rebecca Saxe. 9.916 Special Topics: Social Animals. Fall 2009. Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT OpenCourseWare, https://ocw.mit.edu. License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA.

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