CORVALLIS, Ore. – Nationally acclaimed psychologist, professor and podcast host Laurie Santos will talk about the science of happiness on April 4 as part of Oregon State University’s Provost’s Lecture Series.

Santos, the Chandrika and Ranjan Tandon Professor of Psychology and head of Silliman College at Yale University, is an expert on human cognition and biases that impede better choices. Her course, “Psychology and the Good Life,” is Yale’s most popular course ever and has been taken by over 3.3 million people to date. Her podcast, “The Happiness Lab,” has been downloaded over 65 million times.

The lecture will be held via Zoom at 6 p.m. It is free to watch but registration is required. Following her talk, Santos will be joined by Dr. Brian Primack, dean of Oregon State’s College of Public Health and Human Sciences, who will moderate a question-and-answer discussion.

Santos studies how behavioral change through positive psychology can lead to a happy and fulfilling life.

She speaks to how people are biologically programmed to be motivated by sex, deeply influenced by other people — and repeat mistakes.

Her course, “Psychology and the Good Life,” teaches stu­dents what the science of psychology says about making wiser choices and living a life that’s happier and more fulfilling.

This lecture is the second in the 2022-23 Provost’s Lecture Series. The Provost’s Lecture Series is a partnership of the Office of the Provost and the OSU Foundation. It brings renowned thinkers, writers, scientists, artists and leaders to OSU to engage, challenge and inspire.

General OSU

About Oregon State University: As one of only three land, sea, space and sun grant universities in the nation, Oregon State serves Oregon and the world by working on today’s most pressing issues. Our more than 36,000 students come from across the globe, and our programs operate in every Oregon county. Oregon State receives more research funding than all of the state’s comprehensive public universities combined. At our campuses in Corvallis and Bend, marine research center in Newport, OSU Portland Center and award-winning Ecampus, we excel at shaping today’s students into tomorrow’s leaders.

Story By: 

Sean Nealon, 541-737-0787, [email protected]


Steve Clark, 541-737-3808, [email protected]


Click photos to see a full-size version. Right click and save image to download.