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Right or Wrong? - Moral Psychology, Social Neuroscience, and Theory of Mind is a Course

Right or Wrong? - Moral Psychology, Social Neuroscience, and Theory of Mind

Started Apr 8, 2021

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Full course description

Thursday, April 8th, 7-8 pm (EST)-- Fully Online Lecture

Eligible for 3 CEs for LMHCs, and Psychologists

Discounts available for current Boston College students, faculty, and staff, email for more information. 


This event is free to the public, please use the promotional code ETHICSERIES11 to register at no cost.

This event is $25 for practitioners seeking CEs for this lecture. Once you have registered for the class, your CE registration status is fixed and can not be adjusted at a later time. 


“What makes morality unique is the experience of moral judgment as a flash of intuition - or feeling good vs bad. But… underneath that feeling is a complex psychological structure…”  In this Psychological Humanities and Ethics lecture, Dr. Liane Young will discuss the field of moral psychology, aspects of the theory of mind, and reasoning in moral judgments informed by social contexts.

As social creatures, we spend a lot of time thinking about the mental lives of those around us, both for social interaction and for moral evaluation. Dr. Young will explore the broad question of how social context shapes these processes, from a social neuroscience perspective. First, how is “theory of mind” (i.e., thinking about mental states) deployed for cooperation vs competition, understanding helpful vs harmful actions? Does mental state representation differ across social contexts? Second, how does mental state inference support the processing of social prediction error and moral updating, for helpful vs harmful agents, friends vs strangers? We will look at whether asymmetries in moral updating (e.g., for friends vs strangers) can be diagnosed as motivated or rational inference. Finally, we will turn to the question of how people evaluate others who treat close vs distant targets (e.g., family vs strangers) differently, and the role of obligation in moral character judgments. Overall, we will see that social context shapes how we think about other minds, how we form and update moral impressions, and how we evaluate obligation. Knowing these complex spaces can help us understand where other people are coming from; studying moral psychology may allow us access to other’s perspectives - highlight that others could have different values.

Learning Objectives

At the conclusion of this presentation the participant will be able to:

  1. Explain the basic concepts and principles of “theory of mind” and moral psychology and neuroscience
  2. Discuss the different findings regarding how social context shapes how we think about other minds and morality

Timeline and Requirements:

The course will take place on April 8th, 2021.  This lecture is instructor-led and is a fully online experience. This will be conducted synchronously online via (Zoom) from 7:00 pm-8:00 pm (EST).

CE Sponsorship: 

University Counseling Services of Boston College is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. As a co-sponsor of this program, University Counseling Services of Boston College maintains responsibility for this program and its content." Participants will be eligible to receive 1 CE units from University Counseling Services of Boston College. 

The Lynch School of Education and Human Development is providing sponsorship for CEUs for Licensed Mental Health Counselors (LMHC). Participants will be eligible to receive 1 CE unit. These credits are accepted by the Massachusetts Board of Registration for Licensed Mental Health Counselors (Category I contact hours in Content Area I).

Participants must attend the workshop in full and complete the post event survey to be eligible to receive CEs. Please note, watching the recording is not a valid form of attendance.

This lecture does not offer CEs for other clinicians not listed above. 

Fees & Policies:

Payment is due by credit card at registration. Registration closes April 8th at 5pm. Refunds will be granted only up until registration closes at 5pm on April 8th. No refunds will be granted for registration or technical errors on the participant's part (such as incorrect name/email, login failure, etc.).

Additional offerings from the Lynch School Professional & Continuing Education Office can be found on our website


Liane Young
Liane Young
Boston College
Associate Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience

Liane Young, associate professor of psychology and neuroscience at Boston College and director of the Morality Lab, received her B.A. in Philosophy and Ph.D. in Psychology from Harvard, before doing postdoctoral research at MIT in the Brain and Cognitive Sciences Department. Her lab investigates human moral psychology, using the tools of social psychology and neuroscience. The lab’s work has been published in academic journals and news outlets. Learn more by visiting