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Yale University

The Science of Well-Being

Yale University via Coursera



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.


Taught by

Laurie Santos


4.9 rating, based on 32 Class Central reviews

Start your review of The Science of Well-Being

  • This 10-week course is really inspiring. In this course, Professor Laurie Santos introduces misconceptions about happiness and why our brain has these misconceptions. Our mind has many annoying features and biases, including having strong but wron…
  • This is an insightful course introducing practices to increase your well-being, sense of fulfillment. As my life style significantly changed during the pandemic, this course helped me answer what can improve my happiness. For sure, some of the pra…
  • Adam Meatro Shoun

    Adam Meatro Shoun completed this course, spending 3 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be easy.

    Great course which I find myself suggesting to many friends because of it's positive impact on my own life. The course is a series of lectures with slides detailing specific psychological studies and their main points which are relevant for a every…
  • This course helped me to overcome many beliefs and behaviors tha actuaaly can't make me happy. Learning new skills to improve my mindfulness, self-control and have a healthier life - including mental health - this course can be a great way to keep a life-term improvement in well-being. I suggest taking notes on a hardbook and/or keeping track of learning on a journal to improve learning and also to help as a reminder of the lessons to keep into practice what the course gives you. Good video lectures and also very helpful files to download to deepen on the weekly subjects and to study more after you completed the course.
  • This course has really helped me better understand how my brain works, especially in ways that might not lead me to happiness. At least not to true happiness. The lessons are easy to keep up with, and the practical component was very positive. Since finishing this course, I've included many new, more positive habits in my daily routines.

    The course is rooted in research, and all the references are shared with us, including books we can read and take the lessons further.
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  • Leah completed this course, spending 3 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be easy.

    This is the science that proves that less really is more when it comes to a fulfilling and happy life. Most of us, especially in the West, have been deluded into believing "if only I had more money, all the best stuff, a perfect body and a perfect r…
  • Profile image for Angie Figueroa
    Angie Figueroa

    Angie Figueroa is taking this course right now.

    Such an important topic and yet not well known or given the importance it should get. Money and the things we believe will make us complete and therefore happy are not really the key to being discover happiness..
    This course will really open your mind and will allow you to see that you can be happy right now without having to wait to be rich, or to have the things that you may think will make you happy. This psychology based class, makes sense, it’s clear and easy to understand for any level and the best part, it’s free!!! You can take it simply by signing up! Time worth spent!
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous is taking this course right now.

    More than a month since I started this course, my well-being has improved significantly. I applied some of the techniques taught (meditation, expressing gratitude, savoring, exercising) and I feel more satisfied with my life compared to how I felt two months ago. I might have discovered what intrinsic happiness means. If you want to be happier, this course will teach you how, and you don't have to wait for your life circumstances to change. You can start being happier today. This course has saved me countless hours that I would have spent reading positive psychology books. The lessons felt informal and intimate, and I've enjoyed every single one. Thank you, professor Santos!
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    Julia Brooke
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  • This is a very insightful course on a topic that hits close to everyone's home. The recommendations for a life of wellness enclosed in this material are presented excellently and practical/feasible. The content will be helpful for everyone, regardless of their psychosocial status. With the uncertainties in the world today and, perhaps, in the foreseeable long-term future, investing in yourself by heeding the lessons from this course is a great way to move forward.
  • Cecilia Marie Smith

    Cecilia Marie Smith completed this course, spending 5 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be easy.

    It's been 2 years since I finished the course. It's been absolutly, hands down, the best 2 years of my life. I'm 67. Highly recommended.
    Hopefully there is one for kindergartens on up. Should be at every grade - just a part of other studies as it really doesn't take even more than 6 weeks to change a life for the better. It's the practice that changes your life yourself when you get on the rails to real happiness for yourself. Not what to were perhaps raised or indoctrinated to believe. I have continued to refine my life and my own definition of happiness accordingly.
  • Poon Ho Chuen completed this course and found the course difficulty to be medium.

    The course introduces you with some basic ideas of positive psychology. You are introduced in the knowledge in the first 6th weeks so it will be more cramped. The last 4 weeks require you to do a rewirement challenge and is more relaxed.

    I learn something in this course and would like to dig deeper in the subject. The target of audience is students but the concept is suitable to adult.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous is taking this course right now.

    I desperately needed a kickstart to get myself back to being engaged, mentally healthy, and happy. Love this course! If you are depressed or just feeling unmotivated or maybe just a little downtrodden or flat out world weary, this course will prime your mojo! Mom of 3, entrepreneur, writer, 53
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous is taking this course right now.

    It really makes you think about what happiness means to most people and especially to you. Through week 1 to 10 you get video’s of a yale class, and it makes you feel like you’re sitting right there with them. The teacher is great and inspiring.
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    Bea Trice
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  • Anonymous

    Anonymous is taking this course right now.

    The one thing I've noticed the most is the fact that I now question just about every purchase I make. Is it really what I want and is it really going to make me happy? I'll let you know since I've been buying more things since I'm at home 24/7 during this Covid 19 pandemic.

    It's good that I'm questioning my buying spree though. Hopefully, it will help me to spend less and really question as to whether I really need it for my "happiness" or if it's just something to pass my time.

    I do want to say that most of my purchases are for my grand daughter and so far she's pretty happy with what she's gotten. But she's 9, what does she know???? JK
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous is taking this course right now.

    This course applies to all disciplines and helps people put to practice everything that will make their life 100% better. It not only teaches everything it promises but it exercises many skills like reflecting, thinking, and listening, which enhances the knowledge of anything. The course also helped me realize that if you put your mind to about anything you can to most about anything you want to accomplish. The science of well-being strongly advised, motivated me, thought me how, and encouraged me to take initiative to build a better life for myself. It was one of the best experiences I have ever done and made me want to have more experiences.
  • Simmi Kapur

    Simmi Kapur is taking this course right now.

    I have enrolled myself to this online course and i am really enjoying it. Till now have learnt about my signature strengths, savouring, gratitude, kindness and social connection, meditation and gratitude and exercise and sleep. It is so interesting that i have learnt to handle life in a positive way. I am a very extrovert person and the rewirement on social connection made me realise that i am on the right track. would definitely recommend this course to everybody.
  • Anaswara P

    Anaswara P completed this course.

    On Coursera there are some great courses that I'd like to recommend for the high quality, intelligent and interesting narrative, structure and knowledge level The professor is great and his lectures are a pleasure to watch! The course is very well structured from easy to complex matters and has got many interesting examples.

    Highly recommend to everyone interested in how the world works.

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