skip to content

Psychological Foundations of Economic Decision Making (B.Sc.)

  • Profilgruppe Psychoeconomics
  • Lecture: Thursday, 10:00 - 11:30, Philosophikum, room S 91
  • Tutorial: Thursday, 14:00 - 15:30, Philosophiikum, room S 58
  • Course starts 14.04.2016
  • Exam: Registration form for international students.
  • Post-exam review: 30.08.2016, 10:00, SSC Buliding, room 4.323. Please register beforehand: office.alos-ferrer(at)
  • Exam retake: 27.09.2016, 10:00-11:30, SSC Buliding, seminar room S37.


This course presents topics from the intersection of judgment and decision making and social and motivation psychology:

How do individuals come to their judgments and decisions? Which biases result from the psychological processes underlying decision making? In which way do emotions and moods influence decisions? How does personality come into play? Do individuals make decisions which increase their happiness? Why can monetary incentives be detrimental to decision making? How can choices alter preferences? How do decision makers deceive themselves? Are decisions made by groups better than decisions made by individuals?

The course will also provide some background on social psychological research methods and statistical methods. The topics covered in the course are as follows:

1. Heuristics in judgment and decision making
2. Dual-process models
3. Temptation and self-control
4. Biases in information processing
5. Preferences and attitudes
6. Self-serving biases
7. The role of emotions
8. Motivation and happiness
9. Social influences and decision making in groups 


  • Hardman, D. (2009). Judgment and decision making: Psychological perspectives. Oxford: BPS-Blackwell.
  • Hastie, R., & Dawes, R. M. (2010). Rational choice in an uncertain world: The psychology of judgment and decision making. Thousand Oaks: Sage.
  • Howitt, D., & Cramer, D. (2011). Introduction to statistics in psychology. Harlow: Prentice Hall.
  • Plous, S. (1993). The psychology of judgment and decision making. New York: McGraw-Hill.