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Spring Quarter

Spring Registration Now Open
Most Classes Begin Mar 29
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This quarter, select Continuing Studies courses will be Berry-eligible for employees participating in Stanford’s BeWell program.
**In order to receive a BeWell Berry, students must take the course for Credit or a Letter grade.** Students will be asked to choose the credit option during the registration process. The Continuing Studies program will report student attendance to the BeWell office at the conclusion of the quarter. And, as always, all Continuing Studies courses are STAP-fund eligible.

**All Continuing Studies spring courses will be held online. To learn more about our Live Online and Flex Online formats, please see our Course Formats page.

Spring registration is underway. BeWell Berry-eligible courses include:

Managing Emotions with Skill: An Introduction to the Principles of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (PSY 96)
Instructor: Natalie Solomon, Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Psychiatry, Stanford School of Medicine
Schedule: 5 weeks (Mondays), Mar 29–Apr 26, 6:00–7:50 pm (PT)
Format: Live Online

Whether we are trying to navigate our own distress or to comfort loved ones through trying times, we may find ourselves wishing we had more tools to think about and handle emotions from a different perspective. Skills derived from cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)—a treatment especially effective for depression and anxiety—are one way of challenging the thought patterns and behavioral habits that keep people stuck in a spiral of negative emotion. In this course, students will learn the principles of and theory behind CBT, as well as ways to integrate them into daily life. Learn more »
Gut Bacteria in Health and Disease: An Introduction to the Microbes Within (BIO 94 W)
Instructor: Tobi Schmidt, Immunotherapy Researcher; Personal Health Advisor
Schedule: 5 weeks, Mar 29–Apr 30
Format: Flex Online

Studies have demonstrated that the microbiota (microbes that live on and in us collectively) in our gut exert a strong influence over our health. In this course, we will explore how key microbiota exert this influence and what lifestyle factors contribute to healthy and unhealthy gut microbiota populations. The course emphasis is on the role of diet in influencing the gut microbiota and our overall health, but we will also explore other lifestyle factors such as exercise, sleep, and stress, and how they can modulate gut bacteria. Learn more »
Building Resilience (WELL 06)
Instructor: Antoine de Morrée, Instructor, Neurology & Neurological Sciences, Stanford
Schedule: 8 weeks (Mondays), Mar 29–May 17, 7:00–8:50 pm (PT)
Format: Live Online

In times of stress, resilience is key. Luckily, resilience can be learned. In this interactive course, you will learn research-based techniques to help you build resilience, navigate setbacks, and identify your purpose. Drawing on the latest research in neuroscience and psychology, this course will teach you how to find solid footing when you feel overwhelmed and a way to find the strength to bounce back. Students will acquire a framework to analyze and discuss their own minds and emotions, together with exercises to help them evaluate and guide those emotions. Learn more »
Vitality Essentials: How to Live Your Best Possible Life (WSP 148)
Instructor: Allan Mishra, Adjunct Clinical Associate Professor, Orthopedic Surgery, Stanford Medical Center
Schedule: 2 days (Saturdays), April 3 & 10, 9:00–11:30 am (PT)
Format: Live Online

Why do certain people seem so vital and vibrant, when many of us feel burdened by stress, pressure, and competing demands? In this course, we will draw from research in biology, medicine, psychology, sociology, and elsewhere to understand how our minds, bodies, spirituality, and relationships can work in interconnected ways to affect our overall state of well-being. Students will learn a framework for optimizing physical and mental health that relies on four pillars of vitality and leave with a personalized action plan to enhance each element of vitality in their own lives. Learn more »
Designing Your Third Third for Longevity (WELL 05)
Instructors: Lori Ogden Moore, Executive and Longevity Coach; Principal, OM Associates; Co-Founder, Third Third Ventures; and Wynn Burkett, Executive and Longevity Coach; Principal, Burkett & Co, Co-Founder, Third Third Ventures
Schedule: 8 weeks (Mondays), Apr 5–May 24, 5:00–7:00 pm (PT)
Format: Live Online

During the 20th century, a three-stage view of life emerged: education, career, then retirement. Over the same century, life expectancy increased by thirty years, with growing numbers of people living healthy, productive lives into their eighties and nineties. How will you make the most of the “third third”—the twenty to thirty (or more) potentially vital years ahead? This interactive course will help you answer that question for yourself, by providing research-based resources to design your own satisfying third third. Each student will leave with an individualized game plan to create a fulfilling and impactful next chapter. Learn more »
Mindsets Matter: Strategies for Improving Your Performance, Health, and Well-Being (PDV 95)
Instructor: Kari Leibowitz, Stanford Interdisciplinary Graduate Fellow in Psychology; Researcher, Stanford Mind & Body Lab
Schedule: 5 weeks (Mondays), Apr 12–May 10, 7:00–8:50 pm (PT)
Format: Live Online

When you eat vegetables, is it a chore or an indulgence? Do you avoid or embrace stress? Your answers to questions like these can reveal how mindsets—thoughts, beliefs, and expectations, conscious or otherwise—shape your life. Drawing from cutting-edge research in psychology, medicine, and behavioral economics, this course will illustrate how powerfully—and sometimes surprisingly—mindsets impact our motivation, performance, health, and well-being. Students will leave this course with a scientific understanding of the power of mindsets as well as practical strategies for adopting useful ones. Learn more »
Everyday Spontaneity: Improvising Our Lives (DRA 173)
Instructor: Patricia Ryan Madson, Senior Lecturer, Emerita, Department of Theater and Performance Studies, Stanford
Schedule: 8 weeks (Tuesdays), Apr 13–Jun 1, 6:00–7:30 pm (PT)
Format: Live Online

The study of improvisation can help us learn to trust our own ideas. Improvisation is not about comedy or being clever; it is about recovering and using our native common sense to solve problems. Improv basics include paying close attention to reality, learning how to work with a spirit of cooperation, and coping positively with mistakes. If you are eager to become a better listener, a more generous partner, and a more appreciative player, these ideas are worth considering. This course will give you the tools to become more comfortable thinking and speaking spontaneously and experience new ways of responding and adapting to change. Learn more »
Longing for Longevity: From Biology to Biohacking (BIO 07)
Instructors: Lucia Aronica, Lecturer, Stanford Genetics and Genomics Certificate Program; Genomics R&D Lead, Metagenics; Topic Editor, Life (MDPI), and Maddalena Adorno, Co-Founder and CEO, Dorian Therapeutics.
Schedule: 6 weeks (Thursdays), Apr 22–May 27, 7:00–8:50 pm (PT)
Format: Live Online

Everyone wants to live longer, but nobody wants to get old. So what if we could not only add years to life but also life to years? This is no science fiction, it’s geroscience. In this course, we will see how the booming field of aging biology is redefining what it means to grow old. We will describe the main theories around aging, with a focus on genetic and epigenetic mechanisms, and answer questions nobody would have considered even a decade ago. By the end of this course, students will be able to understand, critically evaluate, and use new discoveries in geroscience to live a healthier, longer life. Learn more »
Planning for Your Late-Life Brain: Habits You Can Build Now to Improve Cognitive Function Later (WSP 57)
Quinn Kennedy, Founder and CEO of QK Consulting; Professor, Naval Postgraduate School
Schedule: 2 days (Saturday/Sunday), May 1–2, 9:30 am–12:00 pm (PT)
Format: Live Online

In this online weekend workshop geared for the pragmatist, you will learn about evidence-based approaches to maintaining cognitive function as you age; the importance of regular physical exercise, mindfulness, social connection, and good sleep for your brain; and how to be a savvy consumer of brain-training products and brain-boosting supplements. You will learn methods for keeping new habits and will make an individualized plan for incorporating cognitive-boosting activities into your everyday life. By the end of the workshop, you will have the tools to create and execute a retirement plan for your late-life brain. Learn more »
Knowing Ourselves: Exploring the Enneagram (WSP 134)
Carole Pertofsky, Director, Emerita, Stanford Health Promotion Wellness Services; Lecturer, Stanford School of Medicine
Schedule: 2 days (Saturdays), May 1 & 8, 9:00 am–1:00 pm (PT)
Format: Live Online

Are you sometimes baffled by your own impulses and defensive behaviors and puzzled by the seemingly irrational behavior of others? By understanding the Enneagram—a research-based framework of nine interconnected personality types, their characteristics, and their structure—we can discover powerful benefits, including greater personal confidence, courage, and resilience. We will apply this knowledge to become a more effective communicator and confidently connect with others with greater rapport, empathy, and resilience, especially during challenging times. Learn more »
Choosing Happiness (PDV 83 W)
Instructor: Laura Delizonna, Positive Psychologist; Executive Coach
Schedule: 5 weeks, May 3–Jun 4
Format: Flex Online

Most of us have the formula backward: Success does not create happiness—it's happiness that creates success. In this course, we approach happiness as a way of being—wholehearted living as a full expression of oneself with depth and meaning—which can be learned. In this highly interactive, skill-building course, students will learn and apply principles and research-based techniques from the innovative field of positive psychology. By the end of the course, you will have developed new habits to live a happier, more satisfying life. Learn more »
Diet and Gene Expression: You Are What You Eat (BIO 03 W)
Instructor: Lucia Aronica, Lecturer, Stanford Genetics and Genomics Certificate Program; Genomics R&D Lead, Metagenics; Editor, Life by MDPI
Schedule: 5 weeks, May 3-Jun 4
Format: Flex Online

What if we could turn our “good” genes on and our “bad” genes off to improve our overall health by making the right dietary and lifestyle choices? Learn how with epigenetics, the study of how lifestyle factors can change gene activity without modifying the underlying DNA. In this course, we will discover how food is a powerful signal to our genes that can positively impact our metabolism, longevity, and mental well-being. With this information, you will be able to design a personalized nutrition action plan to positively impact your gene expression. Learn more »
Mindfulness and Creative Writing (WELL 04)
Instructor: Kelly McGonigal, Lecturer, Stanford Graduate School of Business; Ammi Keller, Former Stegner Fellow, Stanford
Schedule: 5 weeks (Tuesdays), May 4–Jun 1, 4:00–5:30 pm (PT)
Format: Live Online

Writing, paired with mindfulness practice, can bring us back to ourselves and connect us to others, even during the most challenging of times. During this course, we'll learn about and try on contemplative practices paired with creative explorations of past roles, present-moment sensory experience, future hopes and commitments, and fictional possibilities. Each session will pair mindfulness practice with step-by-step creative writing activities designed to make invention easy and available even for those with no previous writing experience, while those with an existing habit will gain new techniques for dropping into creative flow. Learn more »
Nutrition: A Personalized Approach (SCI 12)
Instructor: Clyde Wilson, Research Associate, Biochemistry, UC San Francisco
Schedule: 5 weeks (Thursdays), May 6–Jun 3, 6:00–9:00 pm (PT)
Format: Live Online

Low-calorie sweeteners, omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, and a multitude of other additives and diets of deprivation vie for our attention, all claiming to be the key to improved health. How can we figure out a “best” way to eat (or not eat), for each of us personally, and then survive a trip to the grocery store or our own kitchen? Science provides broad guidelines for meeting our body’s needs, but only when applied to each person’s individual situation does an effective, sustainable personalized approach emerge. In this course, we will contrast nutrition for general health, weight loss, disease prevention, and exercise performance. Learn more »  

For more information about Stanford's BeWell program, please visit: bewell.stanford.edu