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PDV 83 W — Choosing Happiness

Quarter: Spring
Course Format: Online (System Requirements)
Duration: 5 weeks
Date(s): Apr 27—May 29
Drop Deadline: Apr 30
Unit: 1
Tuition: $370
Instructor(s): Laura Delizonna
Limit: 45
Status: Closed
Please Note: The full tuition refund deadline for this course is April 30 at 5:00 pm (PT); 50% tuition refund deadline is May 5 at 5:00 pm (PT)
Apr 27—May 29
5 weeks
Drop By
Apr 30
1 Unit
Laura Delizonna
Please Note: The full tuition refund deadline for this course is April 30 at 5:00 pm (PT); 50% tuition refund deadline is May 5 at 5:00 pm (PT)
Most of us have the formula backward: Success does not create happiness—it's happiness that creates success. Research shows a causal relationship between happiness and achieving greater wealth and higher performance, health, resilience to stress, and positive relationships. Happier people enjoy numerous advantages because they more adeptly respond to challenges and create opportunities. In this course, we approach happiness as a way of being—wholehearted living as a full expression of oneself with depth and meaning.

Happiness emerges from a skill set that can be learned. In this skill-building course, students will learn and apply principles and research-based techniques from the innovative field of positive psychology. The course text will be Thrive: Self-Coaching for Happiness and Success, a workbook written for this course that includes summaries of scientific findings, worksheets, action plans, and more. Students will engage in online breakout groups, discussions, meditations, and other experiential exercises. Between sessions, students will practice applying these lessons to their daily personal and professional lives. By the end of the course, you will have developed new habits to help you live a happier, more satisfying life.


  • Course sizes are limited.
    You won't have 5,000 classmates. This course's enrollment is capped at 45 participants.

  • Frequent interaction with the instructor.
    You aren't expected to work through the material alone. Instructors will answer questions and interact with students on the discussion board and through weekly video meetings.

  • Study with a vibrant peer group.
    Stanford Continuing Studies courses attract thoughtful and engaged students who take courses for the love of learning. Students in each course will exchange ideas with one another through easy-to-use message boards as well as optional weekly real-time video conferences.

  • Direct feedback from the instructor.
    Instructors will review and offer feedback on assignment submissions. Students are not required to turn in assignments, but for those who do, their work is graded by the instructor.

  • Courses offer the flexibility to participate on your own schedule.
    Course work is completed on a weekly basis when you have the time. You can log in and participate in the class whenever it's convenient for you. If you can’t attend the weekly video meetings, the sessions are always recorded for you and your instructor is just an email away.

  • This course is offered through Stanford Continuing Studies.
    To learn more about the program, visit our About Us page. For more information on the online format, please visit the FAQ page.

Laura Delizonna, Executive Coach, Psychologist

Laura Delizonna is a positive psychologist specializing in optimal performance and well-being. She works with companies worldwide to increase team performance, transformational leadership, and whole-life success. She specializes in team collaboration, psychological safety, and communication. Delizonna received a PhD from Boston University and has taught at Continuing Studies since 2005.

Textbooks for this course:

(Required) Laura Delizonna and Ted Anstedt, Thrive: Self Coaching for Happiness and Success (ISBN ISBN-13: 978-1502586360)