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Learner Reviews & Feedback for The Science of Well-Being by Yale University

4.9
stars
24,079 ratings
8,950 reviews

About the Course

In this course you will engage in a series of challenges designed to increase your own happiness and build more productive habits. As preparation for these tasks, Professor Laurie Santos reveals misconceptions about happiness, annoying features of the mind that lead us to think the way we do, and the research that can help us change. You will ultimately be prepared to successfully incorporate a specific wellness activity into your life. THE SCIENCE OF WELL BEING WAS PRODUCED IN PART DUE TO THE GENEROUS FUNDING OF THE DAVID F. SWENSEN FUND FOR INNOVATION IN TEACHING....

Top reviews

SS
Aug 21, 2020

Amazing course and amazing instructor. The environment and vibes throughout were positive and helped me feel much happier and understand much more about looking at life through different perspectives.

JH
Jun 5, 2020

I couldn't have asked for a better class to be offered during this time. Got to learn a lot about myself and why I think or do certain things without even thinking about it. Thank you for this course!

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226 - 250 of 8,939 Reviews for The Science of Well-Being

By Jeremy P C

Mar 28, 2020

Nothing new as far as the educational approach. A nice compilation of data. Peer Review Assignment at the end left a lot to be desired. No quality feedback, real one on one with the educator due to the sheer volume/magnitude of the course. Guest videos were almost like salesmen with their published data.

By Deleted A

Sep 26, 2020

oh esta en ingles

By Allison S T

Apr 13, 2020

I can't do some stuff from my cellphone and my password won't let me log in from my computer. Even when I reset from my phone it still won't let me reset. It just takes me back to the course.

By Jen M

Jun 12, 2020

Do not purchase the certificate, the course is great but the certificate is a dud you print off yourself. For $70 I need a seal otherwise my son could’ve made me a better one.

By Cristian A L

Apr 9, 2020

Esta todo en ingles, no puedo ver los videos traducidos al Español

By Ali A Z

Aug 21, 2020

I have completed the course but why don’t I get the certificate?

By Bhooshan M

Aug 29, 2020

Not very engaging

By Jane G

Jun 17, 2020

For a long time, I have been struggling in the whirlpool of negative thoughts. It is basically a negative idea when I encounter something uncomfortable, so that I am very afraid of being leisure, I feel that life has been pushed forward, rarely feeling in control of life. Maybe I am too sensitive? I feel that I must hold the railing when I walk down the stairs, worrying that I might step on the ground and fall.Over the years, I have tried various methods to ease negative thinking, which is somewhat effective, but it is good and bad. Now I can only be at home due to COIVD-19, maybe this is God's Intervention, then I can have more time to face the depths of my soul. I just saw this course on the website after spending a few days in isolation at home. Experience of years have enabled me to understand that practice and action are far more important than knowing the theory, despite facing inertia and laziness from time to time.Looking at my own records of rewirement for around two months, Basically, all rewirements--savoring, dailygratitude journal, random acts of kindness, social connection, exercise, sleep, meditation, and gratitude letter/visit-- have continued to do now. I found that the best performing is savoring, the worst is random acts of kindness. What has formed a habit is exercise.What needs to be improved is social connection and daily gratitude.

There was no clear execution plan at the beginning. It was not until two weeks ago that I saw the theory of individual development plan(IDP) which I realized that I still continued the arbitrariness of the past. Fortunately, I have a habit of recording slowly. At the same time, recording will also promote my own reflection and progress, so I stumbled on and persevered. Generally, every Monday, there is a goal to be achieved in a week and the corresponding plan. I will look at the records to detect the deficiencies in the process. This somehow makes up for my shortcomings of arbitrariness and inertia.

Through the record, I realized that if the plan was completed and it was calculated by ten points, I probably reached about seven points. Fortunately, when I am at home, I have enough time. If I have been busy in the past, I’m afraid my best is half of it. Comparing the scores of the questionnaire at the beginning and the present, and the slowly-perceived changes in mood in daily life, this course brings many good effects, specially savoring pleasures at present moment, doing meditation often. I have less anxiety. To quote the following, encourage those who are interested in Well-Being to move forward together.

Savor pleasures and live in the present moment

Make physical activity a habit

Are deeply committed to meaningful goals

Are often the first to help others

Nurture and enjoy social relationships

Are comfortable expressing gratitude

Practice optimism about future

We can take deliberate control of how we act and think through intentional activity.

From: Lyubomirsky(2001); Diener et al.(1999); Myers(2000), Diener & Lucas(1999); Argyle(1999).

By Dr S

May 23, 2020

Hi Laura!

Am Suryakumari, halfway through the Course, The Science of Well Being, that you are handling so well. Being a fellow Prof, I can gauge each and every aspect that has been painstakingly included to make the Course heavy on content and yet seemingly light. Your presentation with the accompanying smile in the videos is the charmer! Keep Smiling!!

I would like to share the way am doing the Rewirements. Presently am on Week 3.

Am a 55 year old, a Life Skills Coach in addition to being an Economics Prof. These rewirements are an everyday process, not bragging..hope you can understand what am saying.. given my profession and age:)

My only problem, I am unable to categorize and do only one act of rewiring week-wise as prescribed.

In order to keep track and make note, I created an excel with categories (as Kindness, Savoring, Gratitude and Social Connection) and dates. Am describing the act in the table and made an extra column called 'Happiness Meter' and giving it a scale of 1-5. Lockdown started for me from Mar 15th, hence I made another sheet for that month calling it 'Lockdown Rewirements' although I started this Course only from Apr 12th.

Unable to attach the template here..can mail it if you let me know how. I have shared it in the Discussion Forum for others to use, if they like it.

All I need is to make a journal entry and categorize. I found this more interesting than marking circles on the given worksheet. Am sure this will be fun to maintain after the course completion, and will serve as a wake up call to be good, do good and feel good all through, not just during the Course. It will be nice to read this later as my Rewirements Diary!!

With nudges provided in the lectures, started a 'Recollections Project' with my 84 year old mom, who is a cancer survivor and has restricted mobility at home due to osteoarthritis. She's regaling us with childhood stories of her 13 siblings!!! Phase 2 will be us, her children:)

Thank you for the great Course you are conducting. All the Best. Stay safe, be Happy!!

The above was written much earlier. Now I have completed the Course. I did extremely great on bringing down Loneliness factor pre to post course scores. That shows how connected I felt with everyone ib the Course. Gonna miss this! This was my stress buster, really.

P.S: It would be a full circle if you can include the role of relationships in well being. Irrespective of the n number of rewirements one does, if there is the presence of a bully, dominant or abusive person in one's life, be it a parent, sibling, partner or colleague/boss at work, it affects well being and self esteem very badly. Moving out of the relationship may not always be possible. Hope you consider this aspect. Thank you.

By Markus L

Sep 5, 2020

My initial aim was and my motivation during the course has been getting some feeling of studying in a Yale class. This corresponds pretty good with Dr. Laurie Santos aim of her Welcome Letter: “To make the lectures feel more intimate, we filmed at my home in one of Yale’s residential colleges with a small group of Yale students in the audience … We understand that many of you taking the course are not currently college students, but we hope you see yourselves as though you are part of this virtual classroom.”

Despite the fact that I´m about 50 years old I have the unexplainable cheesy wish to study at Yale University. I would like to be merged in the on-campus life with all experiences at least for a short term. Living in a residential college with a roommate and having access to all facilities like the gym and libraries. For those who want to get a feeling for what dream I have there are two awesome image films available at YouTube which give a great impression (“That´s Why I Chose Yale” and “That´s Why I Toured Yale”).

Taking this daydream into account it is easy understandable that I enjoyed all the video lectures that were produced in the awesome surrounding of the Master´s House of Sillimann College. It is some kind of wellness for the eyes seeing Laurie Santos sitting in this beautiful flower pattern wing chair. This set of optical attraction prepared my mind for sucking in the content of all lectures. For me as it is probably for many others too not only the contend counts it is also important how the content is provided like good arranged food in a nice ambient versus eating the same food in a takeaway box while riding the overcrowded NYC Subway.

Another reason why I have enjoyed the course during the last 10 weeks is that I have deeply savored practicing all study work in English. Reading, listening and writing as I do right now. It is a fantastic and satisfying activity for me as none native speaker experiencing the capability of being able to fully participate in an English class at Yale. Here it is the same as it is described with the beautiful environment above. I am not that focused on the aim reaching more well-being at the end of the course for me there has already been well-being conducting the course. I have been challenged and in flow.

Along with the above mentioned it is obviously that the content of the course has connected me with my real wishes and values which is a good start to continue a long lasing journey.

I couldn´t have made a better choice than taking “The Science of Well-Being”. A big thank you to Dr. Laurie Santos and all of the crew which created and produced this awesome online course, well done!

By Mercedes P

Sep 22, 2020

I thank God to give me the opportunity to do this Well-Being Course that arrived at such right time to my life. The course content is very complete and updated. The sequential order of the topics is excellent. All the works and investigations presented are very good and the authors interviews interesting and pleasant. The forum interventions sharing experiences are also very good. Prof. Laurie Santos is great.

Although having experienced difficult circumstances in different times of my life I have always considered myself fortunate. I was raised by wonderful parents with five sisters and one brother and I still maintain constant contact with the six of them. We love each other very much and we accept the differences between us. I have six children and twelve grandchildren, all good and healthy people. And I keep close contact with all of them. My husband is a nice and clever man and best of all: he loves me deeply, as I love him.

When I started this course, I had lost my zest for life. I was living like just letting days pass by. We were recently retired. We had moved from our country leaving our lives and two of our children there. Maybe I was depressed. I don´t know. I have never experienced depression. Sadness yes. Joy many times. Anger sometimes. But never this “letting time pass”. Taken together with the terrible pandemic that hit us up unexpectedly! Under these circumstances this course is another blessing of God´s goodness to me. So, I´m really happy that I had the opportunity to take this course. My thanks to Prof. Laurie Santos for conducting this course in such a brilliant way.

By Melonie G

Jun 7, 2020

I simply LOVED this course. There were several AHA moments for me, and I truly appreciated the practical nature of the course. I loved that the course was backed up by research but offered in a comfortable and easy to understand manner. I had not realized the reality that knowing something did not automatically guarantee that it would change behaviour. I also realized that I was guilty of allowing several annoying features to cloud my own sense of reality, and how blessed I am. It was an eye-opener to realise that some of my reference points were off, and I needed to reset those, which made a massive difference to my personal perspective. I have a real sense that I have changed over this course. We, as a country, have been in lockdown, and I have lost all income, because of my inability to work, BUT I had a real sense of being mindful of what I did have, and what I could control. I have spent lockdown with my family, and that has been a special gift. For someone who travels a lot generally, this has been a special joy to have daily tea dates with my parents, spend time with my adult children and have daily play dates with my brand-new grandson. I believe that the course has played a large role in that, and for that, I thank Yale for making it possible, as well as Prof Santos for being so gracious and generous in sharing this gift with the world.I

By Nicole W

Nov 2, 2020

An engaging, achievable, fun, way to learn about well being! I appreciated the authenticity of the professor (Laurie) and that the material was broken down into bit sized videos and readings with the option to further explore the material through optional reading material. I liked the video transcriptions too. The mini questions scattered throughout and the larger quizzes were all very reasonable and a great way to check in on my own understanding of the concepts and seek further clarity if needed by referencing back to the material in the lesson. The discussion forums and the other optional participation opportunities of were a creative way to engage without expectation. Thank you for creating this opportunity. And for offering the option to not have a certificate. I chose not to have a certificate as I wanted to explore the mindset of pursing something for the intrinsic value only. I wanted to not focus on attaining academic perfection (which is my approach in academia!). This allowed me to really enjoy the journey of learning. As I discovered that I am happiest when I am learning and the outcome does not determine my level of happiness as the process itself is rewarding in and of itself. So a big heartfelt thank you for sharing this wonderful opportunity with those outside of the Yale community! Kindest regards, Nicole Walleen

By Shelia R

Oct 28, 2019

This class has helped me learn how to look for joy and happiness within/intrinsically. It has helped me to understand my own happiness misconceptions, and that just knowing the tools that will make me happy does not make me happy. I have to do the work. It also made me realize that these tools have value in my life. That they are not just "fit ins" when I have the time. That I have to make the time for these things. It has helped me learn to savor moments, and to reflect and meditate. To take a deep breath and pause. It taught me the importance of sleep. I had no idea sleep was that important. Of course we know it's important, but not THAT important. And exercise. How do I find the motivation to exercise. These rewirements also made me think about circumstances. I have just finished breast cancer treatment before taking this course, and I'm tired. Fatigued at times. I know that I would have approached these rewirements differently if I was my in a different state of mind. But then I thought, isn't that exactly it? We are all dealing with some sort of stressful event in our lives on a regular basis. These rewirements will help them become less stressful if I make them a part of my practice. Thank you so much for allowing me to be a part of this class

By Marlene H

Aug 30, 2020

I wish this course had been around 50 years ago! How different my life would have been but, of course, many of its insights are only recent psychological discoveries so perhaps my wish is futile. I have benefited enormously from the insight that well-being is an emotional state that depends on one's outlook and one's outlook can be improved by simple things such as getting sufficient rest and exercise and practising daily meditation along with remembering always to give thanks for the blessings life gives us and to spread the warmth of our well-being through acts of kindness. I've also learned how easy and misguided it is to focus on possessions at the cost of experiencing life's simple pleasures and how easily one can miswant things in one's life that lead only to disappointment. Negative visualizing has also helped me to truly appreciate the abundant and extraordinary life that I enjoy. It doesn't surprise me that this excellent course has attracted millions of participants. Well done to Professor Laurie Santos who is so special and to whom I owe such an enormous debt of gratitude. Thank you so much, Professor Santos, and may you continue to bless the lives of those fortunate enough to discover what you are offering.

By Diachok N

Aug 30, 2020

First of all, I want to thank everyone involved in creating this course, especially Professor Santos.

My path as a course student began when I overcame the effects of stress by COVID-19 (with antidepressants), so my level of happiness, of course, was not too high… This course has become a kind of savior for me, so that thanks to him I not only learned how to be happy, but also became one and found a purpose in my life and, as a bonus, got to know myself and my wiches better! I started doing the exercises from the first week of classes (combining theory and practice at once). And literally from the first week I realized that it really works.

Honestly, I used to think that happiness is when you have a lot of money, a stable job, a husband. How wrong I was!

After taking the course, I realized that happiness really lies in simple things: the ability to be grateful (to life, people, yourself), to be able to live the moment and enjoy it, to have good health (and this requires at least minimal physical activity and normal sleep )! Having received such a wonderful result after the course, I am not going to stop there and continue to work on what to be happy! I wish everyone to find their well-being!

By Mary L R

Oct 9, 2020

I really enjoyed this course and learned a lot from it. Dr. Santos has a nice presentation style and provided a significant amount of relevant information. I found the results of the research on happiness to be very interesting and helpful in increasing my understanding of well-being, which enabled me to increase my overall sense of happiness. Also, I am currently reading two of the books Dr. Santos recommended, and appreciate that she gave us so many good recommendations for further study. I would have preferred to take the course face-to-face because there's so much potential for great discussions, which i find more difficult to have in an online environment, but I am glad that technology enabled me to take the course while living far away from Yale.

The pandemic and the current political situation in our country have made it much more difficult than usual to maintain a good level of well-being, so the course came at a really good time for me, and I appreciate that Yale made it available tuition-free. I think my friends and family would benefit from the course as well and have recommended it to many of them. Thank you to Dr. Santos and Yale for providing this very useful course!

By Tammy P

Jan 5, 2019

Where do I start? Love this course. I am going to post this course in/on as many things as I have access to. Ms Santos is engaging, well spoken, organized, charming, and well versed. How she presented the course and herself were confident, knowledgeable, related, and bright. The statistics, related studies, and articles were monumental and life changing. I am astounded and humbled at what I thought I knew and/or related to was being challenged and studied ever; let alone, the question of well-being being studied years back. I loved the stats, the quizzes were great, the studies profound, and the solutions/adjustments applicable and obtainable. Thank you for sharing this knowledge Ms Santos (Yale). I strongly suggest that you continue down this path and offer additional courses like such. You have the power, professors :), influence, and reach to enhance peoples lives. Use your platform!

If anyone is reading this and wondering, if they should take this class please don't even think twice. Give this to yourself. I've taken approximately 8 such courses on two different online platforms and by far this is superior. Enjoy.

By Juan C E P

Aug 29, 2020

The Experience in General was surprisingly wonderful, since I finally understood it is almost always so difficult for us to be happy in life, and why so much value to material things when they should not have it. It also allowed me to better prioritize my goals in life and especially to dedicate more time to those activities that are worthwhile and that in the end are the most satisfactory and that are almost always the ones we already have and that do not cost us anything financially speaking. I am very grateful to God and to life for allowing me to have the opportunity to receive this course, which has definitely allowed me to be a better person and especially to have achieved a greater integral well-being in my life. I think that everyone should have the opportunity, especially young people, to receive a course like this "THE SCIENCE OF WELL-BEING" since in this way I am sure that the World would be better. Special thanks to LAURIE SANTOS for the dedication, patience and professionalism of this course. Many thanks also to all the colleagues who did their best to achieve the goals they set for themselves.

By R R M

Oct 8, 2018

Dr. Santos data driven approach to happiness and well being is EXACTLY what I needed to make some shifts in my life. Thank you, Dr. Santos, and all those involved in making this course.

The only way for this course to make a lasting difference is to put the tools we've learned to use. By dedicating the last 4 weeks of this course to "rewiring" assignments, Dr. Santos has given us the time to apply our knowledge and make us accountable to ourselves as well as others taking the course. As an academic, the first 8 weeks are like learning any other topic. I'd suggest that the final four weeks is more like learning a new sport. When I was an athlete, one of my coaches suggested there are four levels of learning: 1) you don't know that you don't know, 2) you know that you don't know, 3) you know that you know, 4) you don't know that you know. By following the final four weeks rewiring assignments, we're pushing towards being at stage 4 of learning... when habits become habits that we don't even have to think about because we simply DO them. So, as Nike said, so long ago..."Just Do It."

By Alisha A R

May 2, 2020

An Incredible course and an amazing professor!

What I love about the course is the balance between theory and practice. The Science of Well-Being is for anyone, whether you are passionate about psychology or a very different field. This course shares insightful information about happiness through looking at psychological studies and ideas, but more importantly, it informs us of how we, ourselves, can be happier. The use of weekly tasks helps with this. Although not graded, the activities, in my opinion, help us develop "intrinsic motivation", which is a term that is discussed in the course. In other words, this course may not guarantee someone to become happier but certainly provides them will the tools needed to do so.

In addition to the material, the professor is lovely. Her examples make the information comprehensible and her touch of humour ensures that you are engaged. It is clear that she put in a lot of effort for all of her students to learn about positive psychology and about themselves. I really hope she will be sharing more online courses in the future.

By Hala B K

May 24, 2020

This course has been extraordinarily helpful and very engaging. The rewirement exercises were very beneficial.

One of the rewirement that I picked for the final challenge was Kindness - increasing my acts of kindness. A month ago, my friends and I started the "Care Package" initiative. It's a word-of-mouth initiative aiming to bring the local community together in the service of its underprivileged members, especially during times of political and economic uncertainty that have ravaged Lebanon.

As the gap between the poor and the wealthy is in gradual expansion in what feels like a sudden crash of social and economic order, our goal is to offer support for our destitute and most vulnerable brothers and sisters!

Each care package contains food supplies, personal hygiene and protective equipment. We have narrowed down our list into what we have deemed as essential. Contributors can then donate as many items from a curated list as possible based on their purchasing power. We were able to deliver 12 boxes in just 4 weeks and this has been very rewarding!

By Carrie K

May 7, 2020

I thought this course was remarkable. If you are a person who aspires towards wellbeing or desires greater authentic happiness this course maybe for you. If you want the leverage that only understanding can generate -I strongly recommend you take this course. You will want to pay close attention to this very skilled and delightful educator and do the work of creating new habits based on real science. How refreshing and useful to embrace all our misconceptions and miss-wanting. To learn to say -we may have been mistaken and and move towards crafting better ways of wanting and being.

Personally I adored this course and wish to thank Professor Santos, Yale and Coursera for this magnificent work of education. It was so well crafted, accessible and timely. I found myself so eager, happy and grateful to be learning that I ordered up a Yale sweatshirt and signed up for two more courses. I thank you for this quality classroom and profoundly important subject matter.

Yours with much gratitude and a deep love of learning,

Carrie Lee Kelley

By Nancy S

May 28, 2020

Laurie,

Thank you very much for letting me be part of your course for the past 10 weeks. I have enjoyed it very much. I retired from my HR job 2 years ago but during the 34 years of working for the same company, I had many opportunities to attend seminars/classes. It always amazed me that even though I was learning things to help me in my job, I could also, almost always, apply what I learned to my every day life. I saw on facebook that this class was being offered during this COVID19 Stay at Home order, at no cost. I read more about it and decided to sign up. It has surely been an eye opening experience and I have learned exactly where I need to focus my attention. There is always room for improvement in everyone's life. It will be a challenge but I really think I can do it, thanks to you. You're kind, courteous and very good at what you do. Every aspect of the course was explained in great detail and in terms everyone could understand. I thank you for that. I hope you are well and I wish you much success in the future. Nancy Sharp

By Gido S

Jun 22, 2020

The overall experience was very pleasant, I feel this has ‘lit a fire’ enabling me to pick up and keep better habits in general. At first I felt the rewirement would cost me a lot of time. In the end it did not feel like that, I feel I ‘took’ the time from useless things we all do in our spare time.

Overall the course has really helped me see things in another perspective. I feel less inclined to do things like watch TV of spend time playing games or messing with my phone. What’s strange is that I would think beforehand I would feel ‘busier’ and ‘would have no time for myself’ but it turns out that a lot of these new habits are exactly that, they are time for yourself, just better spent.

I would recommend this course to everybody. I feel this course and the classic book ‘Seven Habits of Highly Effective People’ have had the most profound impact on my self regulation I’ve ever experienced. A sincere thank you from the bottom of my heart goes out to all involved, including my fellow students reading this.

Thank you!