The lecturer, Professor Polk, speaks at a slow pace, so I sped up the course by accelerating his speech to 1.25 times normal. I can tell you there were several professors at the Cal I wish I could have done that to! Nevertheless, the material is great. He goes into the neurochemistry of the brain in order to give you an idea of how the brain works, and then walks you through each drug to analyze which receptors the drug binds to in the brain, and how and why it has the effect it does. As he does so, he frequently provides a history of the drug as used in human society, as well as the process by which it became isolated, refined, used, and then (almost invariably) abused.
The drugs covered are:
- Amphetamine (and meta-Amphetamine)
- Morphine (& Opiates)
- Gambling, Porn, and Video Games