of the psychology program is to prepare students for graduate and
professional study in a variety of fields related to human
The Bachelor of Arts degree in
Psychology is designed to help students develop a theoretical and
applied understanding of individual and social behavior. The
program offers courses for majors and non-majors. The courses
emphasize writing, research, and
critical-thinking skills necessary for a liberally educated person
to function in a dynamic, changing world.
A psychology degree prepares students for graduate training in
areas such as clinical, counseling, experimental, and social
psychology. Additionally, a psychology degree is appropriate for
students who plan to enter business or social services, or it can
also serve as preparation for post-baccalaureate work in
professions such as social work, theology, business administration,
or law. Students with an interest in psychology, but career
aspirations elsewhere, often choose a major in another field and
minor in psychology.
Psychology can be considered a hybrid discipline in that it
utilizes scientific analysis and methodologies similar to the
physical and biological sciences, and incorporates
rational-philosophical speculation common to the humanities.
The Psychological Association notes that
"psychologists study two critical relationships: one between brain
function and behavior, and one between the environment and
behavior." To investigate these relationships, the student will
learn to think as a scientist by using carful observation,
experimentation and analysis to uncover new information.
Additionally, the student will develop the critical thinking skills
used in applying scientific findings to individual and social
During the freshman and sophomore years, psychology majors
complete most of their general-education courses and their
foundation courses in psychology, which prepare them for the
advanced requirements in the discipline.
Typically, general psychology and the math requirement are
completed during the first year. Psychology courses in the second year focus on the research tools and
research methodology used in the discipline. In the final two years
of the curriculum, psychology majors take a variety of courses,
which emphasize the fundamental concepts and research findings in
Why choose Psychology?
True to the liberal arts tradition, emphasis in the psychology
major focuses on the importance of critical thinking and
communication skills necessary for entry into graduate programs
such as experimental psychology, clinical psychology and counseling
psychology. Fewer than 1-in-10 psychology graduates enroll in
graduate work in psychology. Therefore, the psychology degree is
quite appropriate for entry into professions such as law,
government service and human resources. Students with
interests in psychology, but career aspirations elsewhere, often
choose a major in another field and minor in psychology.