Courses and Workshops

How We Decide

Barry Schwartz
Monday, Jun. 3, 2024, 12:00 AM – 11:59 PM (PT)
Price: $90.00
24 slots available

feet on gravel with arrows pointing in opposite directions

In the modern world, people are faced with many difficult decisions. Even those of us at or near retirement face decisions about what to do with our leisure time, how to invest, how to take care of our health, and about whether and when and where to move to a senior living facility. And beyond our own decisions, we may be noticing how much difficulty our children and grandchildren are having making decisions about where to go to college, how to choose a career, whether to change jobs, whether, and when, and who to marry, whether and when to have children. Our loved ones often seem to be suffering with uncertainty in the face of almost unlimited freedom to choose their futures.

This course examines the gap between how people should go about making decisions and how people do go about making decisions, and what can be done to close that gap. You'll learn about exciting contemporary research on the topic and walk away with tools that might help you to improve your own decision-making process.


Faculty Bio

Barry Schwartz taught psychology at Swarthmore College and at Berkeley Haas for 50 years. He works on the interaction between economics, psychology, and morality. His books include the national bestseller The Paradox of Choice. Schwartz's TED talks have been viewed by more than 25 million people. View his TED talks here.


This is an Encore Course

  • Encore courses are popular courses that were recorded a previous term.
  • All pre-recorded class videos and course materials will be available to enjoy from June 3–August 31 in Member Dashboards. Learn more.
  • You must be a current OLLI @Berkeley member to register. Learn about membership, including our fee assistance program

Member Praise for "How We Decide"

I loved Prof. Schwartz’s enthusiastc, lively lectures and very much appreciated his real life examples of decisionmaking that made the topic so relevant to our lives. He brought what I anticipated as a dull topic to life and made it very engaging! Excellent lecturer!!!

All material covered was interesting, relevant and deeply thought-provoking. I was greatly impressed at how clear and simple such complicated topics could be explored and presented so successfully to an audience with a widely differing background in all topics covered.


Faculty Q&A