Psychology

Psychology literally translated means "study of the mind." To some extent that definition still holds today, but since the workings of the mind are manifested in behavior, a more contemporary definition highlights the "study of behavior and mental processes."

The psychology department offers a variety of courses intended to provide the student with an understanding of influences on behavior, both biological and socio-cultural, and of the uniquely individual dimensions of experience. Psychologists assume that behavior is lawfully determined or caused by prior events. The task of psychology then is to discern these multiple sources of behavior and to formulate general statements or theory about them and their inter-relationships. Psychological theories that stand up to testing provide useful insights for many areas of human endeavor such as mental health, education, work organization, parenting, law enforcement, technology design and so forth.

For all students, the department presents an introduction to the diverse, fascinating field of psychology and its basic principles of behavior ranging from the biological to the social, from the normal/adaptive to the abnormal/maladaptive aspects of behavior. In addition to a greater appreciation for the diversity of all behavior, human and animal alike, the student can also experience greater self-understanding, awareness and the potential for personal growth.

For students majoring in psychology, the department provides training in research philosophy and methodology. Thus students become accustomed to: 1) examining issues in terms of research; and 2) designing, executing and effectively communicating their own research. In addition, psychology majors are exposed to a wide range of theory and research in a variety of areas of psychology as well as to issues of ethics, social policy and applications of psychology. The major is designed to afford a thorough preparation for graduate work in psychology for students desiring advanced degrees.

The psychology major also offers excellent preparation for direct entry into numerous human service occupations. For those planning church-related or service-oriented careers, the department fosters an appreciation for the complex relationship between psychology and Christianity and the development and exercise of skills relating to human problems.
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Major

(42 hours)
The major in psychology consists of 42 semester hours, including a required core of 33 hours and 9 elective hours.  Courses in the core introduce students to the diverse field of psychology, develop basic skills in social and behavioral science research philosophy and methods, expose students to the code of ethics adopted by the profession of psychology and guide them in reflection upon the interaction of faith and psychology.

Required Core:  (33 semester hours)
PSY 110 Introduction to Psychology (3)
PSY 214 Child & Adolescent Psychology (3)
PSY 230 Tests & Measurements (3)
PSY 258 Social Psychology (3)
PSY 284 General Statistics (3)
PSY 310 Personality (3) 
PSY 325 Special Topics in Psychology (6) (2 different topics)
PSY 340 Abnormal Psychology (3)
PSY 360 Basics of Social Research (3)
PSY 370 Psychology of Learning (3)
PSY 403 Research Seminar (3)
PSY 412 Psychology, Faith and Ethics (3) 

CHOOSE 1 COURSE FROM THE FOLLOWING ELECTIVES:
PSY 240 Interviewing: Theoretical and Skill Based Approaches (3)
CRJ 340 Conflict Transformation & Mediation (3)
SOC 325 Race & Ethnicity in American Society (3)
SOC/SWK 185 Women in Society (3)
SWK 263 Human Behavior & Social Environment 1 (3)
SWK 280 Child Welfare Services (3)
EDU 353 Educational Psychology (3)
HFS 230 Sport Psychology (3)
PHL 110 Introduction to Public Health (3)

In addition to completing a psychology major, students often choose a complementary second major or area of emphasis, such as social work, child development, biology or criminal justice, as a way of enhancing employment possibilities.

Psychology majors preparing for graduate school need a broad, solid grounding in the fundamentals of psychology to build upon. Additional electives from the natural sciences, sociology, philosophy and literature are encouraged.

Minor

(20 hours)
Students who would like to combine a minor in psychology with a major in one of the other disciplines may do so by taking PSY 110 (3 hours) and 17 additional hours of elective psychology courses for a total of at least 20 hours. Elective courses must include at least two courses with 300-level numbers or above and may include PSY 284.

Courses

PSY 110 Introduction to Psychology   (3)
An introduction to the study of behavior covering the many and varied areas of psychological inquiry, including "world views," methodology, biological contributions to behavior sensation, perception, learning, motivation, personality, abnormal and social psychology, among others.

PSY 214 Child and Adolescent Psychology (3)
An exploration of human psychological growth and development from conception through adolescence. Covers physical development, perceptual-cognitive and linguistic development, and social and moral development. Lecture and lab. Prerequisite: PSY 110.

PSY 230 Tests and Measurements   (3)
An introduction to the study of psychological measurement and valuation. Individual and group tests in the areas of intelligence, achievement, aptitudes and personality are introduced. Test administration, scoring and interpretation are included. Prerequisites: PSY 110.

PSY 240 INTERVIEWING: THEORETICAL AND SKILL BASED APPROACHES (3)
An introduction to the process of helping individuals through the use of interviewing and counseling techniques. A range of theoretical perspectives will be examined regarding this process. Addresses interpersonal communication and multicultural issues. Focuses on the development of skills using case studies, videos and role playing. this course is open to all majors and may be taken as part of the Peace and Conflict Studies minor. Prerequisite: PSY 110 or SWK 120 or permission of instructor.
 

PSY 258 SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY   (3)
The psychological study of individuals in relation to groups and society. This course offers insight into the dynamic interaction between persons and their social environments and various social problems related to such interaction. Topics include group dynamics, attitude development and attitude change, aggression and violence, and helping behavior. Prerequisite: PSY 110 or permission of instructor. This course may be taken as part of the Peace and Conflict Studies minor.  This course is also listed as SOC 258

PSY 284 GENERAL STATISTICS (3)
A study of applied statistics for sociology and other social, behavioral or natural sciences. This course covers descriptive statistics and statistical inference for parametric and non-parametric situations (z- and t-tests, analysis of variance, correlation, linear regression and chi-square), including related computer applications. Prerequisites: MAT 050 or placement into MAT 100 or above.

PSY 310 Personality   (3)
A survey of theory and research on the development and modification of personality characteristics. Lecture and lab. Prerequisites: PSY 110 or permission of instructor, upper-division standing.

PSY 325 Special Topics in Psychology (3)
Focuses on a significant theme or topic in psychology that supplements regularly offered electives. Possible topics could include aging, cognitive sciences and religion, psychology of women, psychology of gender, psychology of racism and child psychopathology. Courses in particular topics will be offered based on student demand. May be taken more than once with different topics. Prerequisites: PSY 110

PSY 340 Abnormal Psychology (3)
The study of facts, theories and attitudes concerning abnormal behavior. Various ways in which individuals deviate from the norm in their thinking, feeling and behaving are discussed from the perspectives of psychologists' major theories of personality. Possible causes of abnormal behavior and approaches to treatment and prevention are also presented. Prerequisite: PSY 110.

PSY 360 BASICS OF SOCIAL RESEARCH   (3)
This course presents the nature of the scientific method and research applied to the analysis and interpretation of both quantitative and qualitative data. An introduction to the basic techniques of social research as well as data analysis and interpretation will be presented. Students will learn how to use SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences) to analyze and interpret quantitative data. Writing-enhanced course; prerequisites: SWK 120 or PSY 110 or SOC 152.

PSY 370 Psychology of Learning (3)
A study of the fundamental principles of conditioning and learning ranging from Pavlovian conditioning through cognitive processes including concept formation, verbal learning and memory. Prerequisites: PSY 110.

PSY 390 Independent Study   (1-3)
Provides the student with an opportunity for empirical investigation or extensive reading in an area of one's own choosing. By arrangement and permission.

PSY 403 Research Seminar  (3)
Students will obtain approval from the Institutional Review Board for research projects developed in the Basics of Social Research class. Students will collect and analyze their own data and write a research report. Students will deliver a formal conference style oral presentation of the work. Prerequisite: PSY 360, good or excellent score on research proposal.

PSY 412 Psychology, Faith and Ethics  (3)
This course is a concluding seminar for psychology majors. Areas of convergence and divergence between psychological and spiritual approaches to the human condition are explored, and various models of integration are presented and discussed. This course also reviews the ethical principles identified by the American Psychological Association as important in working with humans, either in research or in areas of applied psychology. Prerequisites: PSY 403 and senior status.

July 2013