The undergraduate program in Psychological Sciences is made up of a structured curriculum in which students develop a thorough understanding of concepts and principles that attempt to explain human behavior and mental processes. This program leads to a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.), which prepares students to (1) ) begin work as a non-professional in a variety of settings where a liberal arts background plus interpersonal skills are needed and 2) obtain entrance into graduate programs in any field of Psychology. All students must fulfill the General Education requirements and regularly meet with their advisors. After completing General Education courses, student will begin to more rigorously pursue the major requirements for Psychology.
The Department of Psychological Sciences provides a culture of learning within a liberal educational context. We challenge undergraduates to apply a scientific approach to understanding the dynamic processes of human behavior and thinking in a global context. This is achieved through a variety of courses that emphasize (a) the interplay between biological, cognitive and social-level factors, (b) active engagement in experiential learning, oral and written communication, research and field-related experiences, and (c) the important role of diversity and cultural understanding. We develop solution-oriented graduates who can transition into professional studies or the workforce.
Goal 1: To instruct students in a general knowledge base in psychology
Goal 2: To engage students in scientific inquiry and critical thinking across the departmental curriculum
Goal 3: To inform students about their ethical and social responsibility in a diverse world
Goal 4: To advance students’ skills in communication
Goal 5: To contribute to students’ overall professional development
Student Learning Outcomes
The core curriculum outlined below includes courses in which university-wide student learning outcomes are integrated within the goals and content of the program. Elements of several skills are included in these courses, but the University-wide student learning outcomes are specifically examined as follows:
Information Literacy: Identity, locate, evaluate, and use information effectively and responsibility to increase understanding (PSY 2430, PSY 3310).
Written Communication: Use of appropriate language, conventions, organization, supporting evidence, and content to effectively communicate in writing, for the purpose and audience (PSY 2430 and upper level psychology courses).
Critical Reading: Interacting with written language to construct and reflect on meaning while evaluating and questioning in relation to contextual information (ALL Foundation and Elective Psychology Courses).
Scientific Literacy: Exhibit knowledge of scientific concepts and processes and ability to engage the scientific method towards informing decision making and participation in civic, social, cultural, and economic affairs (ALL Psychology courses).
Quantitative Literacy: Understand and create arguments that are supported by empirical evidence and clearly communicate those arguments in a variety of formats such as using words, tables, graphs, and mathematical equations, as appropriate (PSY 3401, PSY 4401).
Critical Thinking: Analyze, synthesize or deconstruct, interpret and evaluate information and concepts to solve problems (ALL Psychology Courses).
Oral Communication: Use appropriate language, conventions, elocution, poise, organization, supporting evidence, and content to effectively communicate through the spoken word for the purpose and audience (PSY 4440).
Major Course Sequence
1. General Education Prerequisites: 3 hrs total (must take before any Major Psychology courses):
PSY 2301 Introduction to the Psychological Sciences (3 hr)
2. Major Psychology Courses (41 credit hours minimum)
A. Core Psychology Courses: 16 hrs total (must take each of the following courses):
Core Courses are NOT open to non-majors
PSY 2430 Writing for the Psychological Sciences (4 hr)
PSY 3401 Research Methods and Statistics in Psychology I (4 hr)
PSY 4401 Research Methods and Statistics in Psychology II (4 hr)*
PSY 4440 Senior Seminar in Psychology (4 hr)*
Note: PSY 2430 and PSY 3401 CANNOT be taken simultaneously. The following course numbers have been discontinued: PSY 2326, PSY 4321, PSY 4453 (now PSY 4401), PSY 2302 (now PSY 2430), PSY 3317 (now PSY 3401)
B. Breadth Foundation Courses: 15 hrs total (must take 2 courses from 2 foundation areas and 1 course from 1 foundation area below):
Biological and Cognitive Foundations
PSY 3301 Biological Psychology
PSY 3305 Motivation and Emotion
PSY 3308 Cognitive Psychology
PSY 3346 Principles of Learning
PSY 3348 Sensation and Perception
Social and Developmental Foundations
PSY 3302 Adolescence
PSY 3303 Aging
PSY 3307 Social Psychology
PSY 3309 Cross-Cultural Psychology
PSY 3336 Lifespan Development
Community, Health, and Counseling Foundations
PSY 3321 Introduction to Community Psychology
PSY 3306 Abnormal Psychology
PSY 4310 Health Psychology
PSY 3316 Principles of Psychological Testing
PSY 4331 Counseling Psychology
C. Seminar Courses (Depth) with Labs: 4 hrs. total (must take 1 seminar course with lab from the list below: Non-majors require permission of instructor to take these courses.
PSY 4409 Seminar in Biological Psychology (4 hr)
PSY 4405 Seminar in Cognitive Psychology (4 hr)
PSY 4407 Seminar in Community Psychology (4 hr)
PSY 4411 Seminar in Counseling Psychology (4 hr)
PSY 4439 Seminar in Social Psychology (4 hr)
D. Electives in PSY: 6 hrs total (take any 2 psychology courses not taken above).
Related/Suggested Electives MAT 2326
Policies Majors must complete all core courses in psychology with a grade of C or better. Students who want to transfer from another major into the Psychological Sciences major must have at least an overall 2.0 grade point average, and they must take all required core courses in the sequencing and pacing advised by the psychology adviser and/or Department Chair.
Psychological Science majors and intended majors should have a broad interest in both theory and research as related to behavior and mental processes. Undergraduate programs in psychological sciences focus on the study of biological, cognitive, social, developmental, clinical/counseling theory and research. Completion solely of an undergraduate program in psychological sciences does not result in students having the credentials to serve as a psychologist, licensed counselor, or licensed clinician, or licensed therapist. A graduate education is required to work as a licensed clinical or counseling psychologist. No minor is required for psychological sciences majors. There are no concentration areas in the program. Students minoring in psychological sciences may take any 18 credits in the discipline, but cannot take courses listed as in the core (Area A above).