Department of Psychology
296 Eberhart Building
The Department of Psychology approaches its subject matter as a scientific discipline with emphasis placed on understanding behavior and cognition through experimentation and observation.
All of the major areas of specialization in psychology are represented among the interests of the departmental faculty. Biopsychologists study the biological foundations of behavior. Experimental psychologists investigate problems related to cognition, learning, sensation and perception, personality, development, and social functioning. Clinical psychologists emphasize the application of psychological principles to clinical problems and other aspects of adult and child behavior.
The objectives of the curriculum are:
In addition to the BA program for undergraduates, the department has a PhD program for graduate students.
Students who wish to seek teacher licensure should see "Teacher Education Programs", Part 7, as well as below. Such persons should contact the departmental Director of Undergraduate Studies as early as possible.
Required: 122 semester hours
The Psychology Major provides a background for entry into a variety of professions other than psychology where understanding the principles of behavior and cognition is important. It also provides the necessary background for individuals planning to do graduate work in either basic or applied psychology.
The curriculum provides students with a structured, sequenced exposure to six domains of knowledge in psychology. Majors must sample from at least four domains at the intermediate (200) level but can sample as few as two at the higher (400) levels. Thus, they can choose a narrower or broader sampling of upper level courses. The curriculum also affords hands-on experience with scientific psychology via laboratory courses and field experiences.
College of Arts and Sciences Liberal Education Requirements (CLER) (54-55 hours)
All students must meet the All-University Liberal Education Requirements (AULER). The College of Arts and Sciences, however, has established liberal education requirements for its programs which, while including those of AULER, contain additional requirements in several categories. Therefore, students following this program should adhere to the College requirements. Please note that students who satisfy the College Liberal Education Requirements (CLER) will also satisfy the All-University Liberal Education Requirements (AULER). See College requirements and list of courses meeting AULER/CLER requirements.
Minimum 31 semester hours in psychology including:
Related Area Requirements
No specific courses required.
Electives sufficient to complete the 122 semester hours required for degree.
Students majoring in psychology may elect to pursue teacher licensure in Social Studies. Completion of this means of teacher licensure will enable one who wishes to teach Social Studies curricula in the secondary schools to gain the background for teaching psychology courses as well. The requirements for completion of teacher licensure in Social Studies are listed in Teacher Education Programs of this catalog. The University, College, and departmental major requirements are the same as for any other psychology major. Those intending to gain teacher licensure are encouraged to choose electives in the Department of Sociology, Philosophy, Religious Studies, or Anthropology that address human behavior and experiences from complementary or, perhaps, alternative perspectives.
A minimum of 24 semester hours to include:
Psychology courses required are the same as for a Psychology Major.
This second major is designed for students interested in behavior and the structure and function of nervous systems. Topics will span molecular, cellular, organ, and organismal levels.
(Note: PSY 300, a prerequisite for upper level Psychology courses, will be waived for Biology majors pursuing a Biopsychology second major).
A minimum of six additional hours in Biology courses selected from:
Requirements for Honors in Psychology
(to be completed in the junior and senior years)
Completion of the following courses in Psychology:
The following additional honors courses in Psychology are strongly recommended:
Total minimum hours required: 18
Qualifications for Honors in Psychology
A student may earn a minor in psychology by completing a minimum of 15 hours in the department. The Department's Director of Undergraduate Studies will be glad to recommend courses appropriate to the student's interest.
Courses For Undergraduates
121 General Psychology (3:3).
Survey of psychology. Includes psychology as science, nervous system, growth and development, sensory and perceptual processes, motivation, emotion, learning, social behavior, personality (normal and pathological), statistics, testing, intelligence, aptitudes, and achievement. [SB, CSB]
230 Biological Psychology (3:3). Pr. 121.
An introduction to the contributions of molecular, genetic, cellular, developmental, physiological, and evolutionary biology to the scientific understanding of psychological processes. [NS, CLS]
240 Learning and Motivation (3:3). Pr. 121.
Survey of scientific theories and research on learning and motivation according to classic theorists and contemporary behavioral psychologists. Topics include reinforcement, punishment, stimulus control, Pavlovian conditioning, and escape and avoidance.
250 Developmental Psychology (3:3). Pr. 121.
Survey of scientific theories and research findings in human psychological development, including its biological, behavioral, cognitive, social, and emotional aspects.
260 Social Psychology (3:3). Pr. 121.
Survey of scientific theories and research on the nature, causes, and consequences of individual behavior in social context. Topics include relationships, groups, attitudes, persuasion, aggression, altruism, and prejudice.
270 Theories of Normal and Abnormal Behavior (3:3). Pr. 121.
Comparative study of representative theories of personality from the psychodynamic, trait, behavioral, and humanistic perspectives. Additional focus on development of and classification of abnormal behavior.
280 Cognitive Psychology (3:3). Pr. 121.
Survey of scientific theories and research in cognitive psychology. Topics include human learning, attention, memory, and problem solving.
300 Research Methods in Psychology (3:2:3). Pr. 121.
Introduction to the research methodologies of psychology and to the analysis and interpretation of data. Experience with different methods of data collection, with basic statistical ways to display and analyze data, and with writing reports.
310 Statistics in Behavioral Science Research (3:3).
Moment and product-moment statistics; description and inference; estimating parameters and testing significance. Taught at introductory level. Requires knowledge of elementary algebra.
314 Industrial and Organizational Psychology (3:3). Pr. 121.
Introduction to industrial and organizational psychology with special emphasis on employee motivation, selection, training, and organizational determinants of employee behavior. (Same as MGT 314)
341 Abnormal Psychology (3:3). Pr. 121.
A description of the various psychological disorders is presented along with the research methods used to study them. Each disorder is approached from a number of perspectives: Biological, psychosocial (psychodynamic, interpersonal, behavioral, cognitive, and humanistic) and sociocultural.
346 Sex, Gender, and Behavior (3:3). Pr. 121.
Evaluation of effects of biological sex and gender role socialization on personality and behavior through examination of empirical research.
The remaining courses (400- and 500- levels) require the successful completion of PSY 121:
433, 434 Special Problems in Psychology (1 to 3), (1 to 3). Pr. juniors and seniors with at least 9 hours of psychology; student should consult instructor before registering for this course.
Opportunity for students to work individually or in small groups on psychological problems of special interest. Survey of given field or intensive investigation of particular problem. Paper or other formal evaluation required.
435 Brain and Psychological Processes (3:3). Pr. 230 and 300.
Study of brain mechanisms for feeding, aggression, sexuality, cognition, consciousness, sleep, learning, memory, thinking, and communication. Examination of brain defects in abnormal behavior and responses to drugs and psychotherapy.
435L Brain and Psychological Processes Laboratory (1:0:3). Pr. 230 and 300. Coreq. 435.
Laboratory course focusing on methods to investigate brain processes related to behavior, sensation, or animal behavior.
436 Sensory and Perceptual Processes (3:3). Pr. 230 and 300.
Survey of sensory modalities including pain, balance, touch, olfaction, gustation, audition, and vision and how they receive, process, and modify environmental stimuli leading to perception of the world.
438 Animal Behavior (3:3). Pr. 230.
Application of theory of evolution to the explanation of animal behavior. Surveys a variety of species, addressing several behavioral categories as well as issues in sociobiology and human evolution. (Same as BIO 438)
438L Animal Behavior Laboratory (1:0:3). Pr. PSY 230 and 300, or BIO 111 and 112. Corequisite PSY 438 or BIO 438.
Required laboratory component for PSY 438/BIO 438. Methods for assessing the developmental, physiological, evolutionary and adaptive bases of animal behavior using laboratory and field techniques. (Same as BIO 439) (Alt SP)
442 Behavioral Approaches to Complex Human Behavior (3:3). Pr. 240.
Examination of contemporary behavior-analytic research and theory pertaining to the social origin of conceptualizing, language, self-awareness, self-control, problem solving, and remembering.
442L Behavioral Learning Laboratory (1:0:3). Pr. 240 and 300.
Laboratory course focusing on experimental methods used to investigate elementary and complex behavioral phenomena.
444 Applied Behavioral Psychology (3:3). Pr. 240 or 270.
Principles of behavior and their current applications to educational and human service settings. Recommended for psychology majors, and graduate and undergraduate students in counseling, speech pathology, social work, physical education, nursing. Field experience in applied behavioral psychology is available through Clinical Field Experience (PSY 473).
455 Social and Personality Development (3:3). Pr. 250.
Examination of current theories and empirical research concerned with social, emotional, and personality development.
456 Cognitive Development (3:3). Pr. 250.
Examination of current theories and empirical research concerned with perceptual and cognitive development.
456L Cognitive Development Laboratory (1:0:3). Pr. 250 and 300. Coreq. 456.
Laboratory course focusing on research methods of cognitive development.
457 Developmental Psychobiology (3:3). Pr. 250 and 300 or permission of instructor.
Examination of current research and theory in behavioral development in non-human animals. Topics include instinct theory, role of experience in development, and the relation between development and evolution of behavior.
460 Interpersonal Behavior and Group Processes (3:3). Pr. 260.
In-depth analysis of interpersonal behavior and group processes. Topics include aggression, prosocial behavior, attraction, prejudice and discrimination, social comparison, close relationships and groups.
460L Interpersonal Behavioral and Group Processes Laboratory (1:0:3). Pr. 260. Coreq. 460.
Laboratory course focusing on research methods of social psychology.
461 Attitudes and Social Influence (3:3). Pr. 260.
In-depth analysis of attitudes and social influence. Topics include attitude structure, formation and change, propaganda and persuasion; attitude-behavior consistency; conformity; compliance; and obedience.
462 Social Cognition: Perceiving and Thinking in a Social Context (3:3). Pr. 260.
In-depth analysis of how we think about ourselves and others. Topics include impression formation, attribution, affect and cognition, social judgement, stereotyping and the self in social context.
470 Psychological Disorders of Children (3:3). Pr. 270.
Etiology, assessment, and treatment of various psychological disorders of children, e.g., conduct disorder, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, depression, anxiety.
471 Psychological Disorders of Adults (3:3). Pr. 270.
Etiology, assessment, and treatment of various psychological disorders of adults, e.g., schizophrenia, depression, anxiety.
472 Experimental Course: Clinical Field Experience (3). Pr. or Coreq. 444 or 470 or 471 and permission of instructor.
Community field experience designed for practical applications of principles and concepts related to psychological disorders in children or adults or to application of principles of behavior modification/behavior management. (Offered SP 97, FA 97)
481 Cognition and Consciousness (3:3). Pr. 280.
In-depth discussion of psychological processes of attention and memory and their relationship to consciousness. Analyses of theories, experimental techniques, and results.
481L Cognition and Consciousness Laboratory (1:0:3). Pr. 280.
Laboratory course focusing on the research methods of cognitive psychology.
483 The Psychology of Thinking (3:3). Pr. 280.
Research and theory on human problem-solving and reasoning. Topics include classification, categorization, decision making, rational thought, and a discussion of awareness in thinking.
493 Honors Work (3-6). See prerequisites under Honors Program, XXX 493.
495 Senior Honors Seminar (3:3). Pr. 300 and completion of core requirements for psychology major, senior standing, and GPA 3.3, or permission of the instructor.
Provides students with advanced study and critical analysis of contemporary problems in psychology.
Courses For Advanced Undergraduates and Graduate Students
502 Psychological Problems of Childhood (3:3). Pr. 121 or permission of instructor.
General survey of significant psychological problems characteristic of various classes of exceptional children. Especially designed to fit the needs of teachers in special education.
506 Psychology of Aging (3:3). Pr. 121 or permission of instructor.
Adult lifespan changes in psychophysiology, cognition, personality, sexuality, social relationships, and mental health.
515 History and Systems of Psychology (3:3). Pr. minimum of 12 hours of psychology, including 121, or permission of instructor.
Discussion of prescientific thinking on psychological problems, origin of systems of psychology, and ways systems are reflected in contemporary psychology.
519 Special Topics in Psychology (3:3). Pr. appropriate introductory 200-level core course or equivalent, or permission of instructor.
Intensive examination of current theories and research in a specific area of biopsychology, learning, development, cognition, social psychology or clinical psychology. Check with department for offerings.
524 Consumer Behavior (3:3). Pr. 121 or MGT 312 or permission of instructor.
Psychological and socio-economic factors affecting consumer motivation, behavior, and buying decisions. Emphasis on current research on, and theory about, behavior of consumers as individuals and as members of socio-economic groups. (Same as MGT 524)
Please refer to The Graduate School Bulletin for additional graduate level courses.