Courses in Psychology

1000-level courses

PSY 1100: Introduction to Psychology (3)
A survey of the psychological principles which underlie human behavior. Topics include sensation and perception, learning, motivation and emotion, personality, and social processes.

3000-level courses

PSY 3000: Psychology of Gender (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100
An exploration of the psychology of women and the psychology of men and the emergent qualities of both disciplines. Students are challenged to look at their own lives to examine the threads of stereotypical and non-stereotypical patterns as they explore the history, facets and dynamics of gender in psychology.

PSY 3015: Integrated Statistics and Methodology for the Social Sciences (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100 or permission of instructor
This course will introduce the student to basic research methodology and statistics as applied to social sciences and will cover the basic theory, methods and ethics of experimental and non-experimental research in the social and behavioral sciences. The sequence PSY 3025 and PSY 3030 may be substituted for the core requirement of PSY 3015. Students who plan to go to graduate school are encouraged to take the two course sequence.

PSY 3025: Research Statistics (3)
Application of elementary statistical methods to psychological and sociological data. Lecture and laboratory course in techniques of descriptive and inferential statistics and research design. (Dual listing with AJU 3025 and SOC 3025.)

PSY 3030: Research Methods (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 3025
An examination of research methods used by sociologists, political scientists, and psychologists, including surveys, participant-observation, and experiments. (Dual listing with AJU 3030 and SOC 3030.)

PSY 3060: Cultural Diversity (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100
A study of how environmental and genetic factors contribute to individual differences. Ethnic differences in individual and group behavior will be examined. Attention is given to stereotyping, discrimination, and values in culture as well as fundamental similarities of common ethnic groups found in the United States.

PSY 3080: Psychology of Learning (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100
An exploration of the psychological foundations of pedagogical principles and practices. Students will analyze, compare and contrast selected psychological theories of learning.

PSY 3200: Behavioral Medicine/Health Psychology (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100
An examination of psychological influences on maintenance or neglect of health, how and why people become ill, and how people react when they become ill.

PSY 3220: Human Sexuality (3)
The course deals with psychological and physical functioning of human sexuality. The course will cover such topics as psychosocial sexual development, sexuality throughout the life span, contraception, sexual deviance, relationships, gender, sexual preferences and other topics related to human sexuality.

PSY 3240: Psychology of Religion (3)
The course deals with the psychological study of religious processes and phenomena in a wide diversity of religious tradition. The course covers an exploration of cults, religious experiences, religious motivation, and how religion may effect our health.

PSY 3300: Biopsychology (3)
Prerequisites: PSY 1100
An introduction to the study of biological psychology. Emphasis is given to providing an overview of how neurological and other bodily processes produce and control behavior and how behavior influences neurological processes.

PSY 3310: Social Psychology (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100
The relation between attitudes and behavior, the self-concept, group formation and maintenance, perception, and interpersonal interaction are among the topics examined. (Dual listing with SOC 3310.)

 PSY 3350: Psychology of Human Motivation (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100
An introduction to the biological, psychological, and social causes of human behavior with an emphasis on the application of motivational principles.

PSY 3410: Psychological Testing (3)
Prerequisite: Upper-division status
A comprehensive study of the basic principles and techniques of evaluation. The construction and utilization of intelligence, aptitude, and achievement tests as they relate to planning and executing the instructional program in the classroom setting will be considered. The administration and interpretation of standardized tests, special tests, and teacher-made tests as they may be used with the individual for diagnostic purposes, and problems relative to test validity, reliability scaling procedures, norms, rating scales, and questionnaires.

PSY 3500: Historical and Contemporary Issues in Psychology (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100
An overview of contemporary issues in psychology, the evolution of psychological thought and theory, and how psychology has impacted and been impacted by changing social, political, and cultural environments.

PSY 3600: Human Growth and Development (3)
A study of the development of the whole child: physical traits, learning and intelligence, social and emotional behavior, and personality adjustment. Emphasis on birth to adolescence. May not be used to satisfy psychology major or minor requirements.

PSY 3700: Interpersonal Relationships and Brain Development (3)
Prerequisites: PSY 1100
This course examines the role of interpersonal relationships in shaping the development of human brain, and how the molding of the brain affects back the interpersonal relationships and other social processes and behaviors. The recently developed field of social neurosciences, to which this topic belongs, deciphers how “nature and nurture” work together is shaping our brain and behavior. It is a confluence of neural and social processes that no other course on campus addresses, even if elements of it can be found spread in different other classes. The course will cover the following topics: Emergence of social neuroscience; Structure and functions of the ‘social brain’; Basic aspects of bridging the ‘social synapse’; Principles of social vision; Disorders of the ‘social brain’, and Social neural plasticity.

PSY 3750: Psychology of Love (3)
Prerequisites: PSY 1100
This course examines a universal and significant human experience which, for better or for worse, can greatly impact not only our personal life, but the professional one, too. The course covers the following topics: evolution of love; biobehavioral model of love; duplex theory of love; illusion, disillusion, and reality in romantic love; intercultural couples; barriers to intimacy; sexual function and dysfunction; trauma’s influence on love and attachment; intimacy problems in addiction; infant and adult attachment; maternal love; transference love, and passionate love.

 PSY 3790: Characteristics of the Behaviorally Disordered (3)
Prerequisite: EDU 3690
The study of emotional handicaps and behavior disorders including their characteristics, etiology, and assessment criteria. The class will include preparation in behavior management, psychoeducational, and ecological strategies for instructing students with emotional and behavior disorders. The student will learn to apply a variety of techniques to design educational plans for students with behavioral and emotional disabilities. This course has a required field experience of 15 observational hours in a public school setting.

PSY 3800: Behavior Modification (3)
Prerequisites: PSY 1100
The principles and techniques of behavior modification enable us to understand better and change our own behavior, as well as the behavior of others. The course teaches students how conditioning and self-management techniques can be used to change behavior in real world settings; e.g. in home or institutions like schools, hospitals, prisons, or various work places. Specific techniques and principles, like positive and negative reinforcement, factors influencing, and premack principle are introduced for increasing desirable behaviors; e.g., working out regularly, or following a diet. Others, like extinction, differential reinforcement, response cost and time out are offered for decreasing undesirable behaviors; e.g., over eating, or bed wetting in children, while modeling, prompting, fading, successive approximations and shaping are useful in developing new behaviors. Finally, students are taught how targeted behaviors can be maintained and generalized.

PSY 3950, 3960: Special Topics in Psychology (1-3, 1-3)

PSY 3970/4970: Independent Research (1-3)
Prerequisites: PSY 3030
Individual, instructor-supervised research into selected topics in psychology.

4000-level courses

PSY 4010: Abnormal Psychology (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100, PSY 3060
A study of behavior often termed “mental illness.” Students learn ways of studying, classifying, and treating abnormal behavior.

PSY 4020: Personality (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 3060
Major approaches to personality, the organization of cognitive, motivational, and social characteristics.

PSY 4070: Cognitive Psychology (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100
Introduction to classical and modern approaches to the study of human memory and higher cognitive processes. Emphasis is on the structure, formation and application of mnemonic processes, concept formation, language, and problem solving and reasoning.

PSY 4150: Sensation and Perception (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100 and PSY 3300 or permission of instructor
Appraisal of traditional and contemporary psychophysical models of sensation and perception. Emphasis on the general characteristics of the senses, color perception, illusions, perceptual learning and attention.

 PSY 4170: Psychophysiology (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100 and PSY 3030
This course will involve an in-depth study of the relationship between physiology and behavior with an emphasis on psychophysiological research and the associated challenges. The student will study the methods of investigation involving physiological changes in heart rate, blood pressure, respiration, temperature, muscle tension, and the changes in hemodynamics and electrical activity of the brain as they are associated with cognitive tasks.

PSY 4190: Psychophysical Measures (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100, PSY 3030 and PSY 4170
This course will involve an in-depth, hands-on study of various methods of collecting and analyzing psychophysiological data. The student will study and practice the methods of investigation involving physiological changes in heart rate, blood pressure, respiration, temperature, muscle tension, and the changes in electrical activity of the brain as they are associated with cognitive tasks.

PSY 4300: Forensic Psychology (3)
Prerequisite: upper division status
This course will cover a variety of topics pertaining to the interaction of psychology and the law. The student will investigate the influences of various psychological principals as they apply to our legal system. At the completion of the course, the student should possess a rudimentary knowledge of the relationship of psychology and the legal system.

PSY 4600: Human Neuropsychology (3)
Prerequisites: PSY 1100
The course examines how neurological structures and systems within the human brain function to produce human thought and behavior. The students will also investigate brain and behavioral disorders.

PSY 4720: Child Development (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100
The principles and processes of human development, interaction of heredity and experience. Major aspects of the personality (motive, emotion, intellect, etc.) are traced through experimental stages, and their characteristic interaction in organized behavior examined.

PSY 4740: Adolescent Development (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100
Human growth and development with emphasis on the period of adolescence.

PSY 4770: Theories of Psychotherapy (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100
This course examines the variety of theoretical approaches to the treatment of mental disorders. The focus of the course is divided between the theoretical bases for the various psychotherapies and the implementation of these therapies with patients.

PSY 4780: Life Span Development (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 1100
A study of development across the life span from prenatal development until death. Theories of development and aging will be discussed along with characteristics of each stage of human growth and development.

PSY 4800: Counseling Techniques (3)
Prerequisite: PSY 3060
An introduction to basic therapeutic techniques including listening, paraphrasing, clarifying and good question format. Practical application of skills and counseling theory is stressed. This course is required in preparation for the Clinical Practicum capstone course.

PSY 4850: Practicum in Psychology (3)
Prerequisites: PSY 4800
An advanced clinical practicum experience in applied psychology. Students work in paraprofessional or clinical/counseling placements and gain experience in applying the helping skills with individuals. The practicum is meant to offer students an opportunity to utilize and implement their research and training for those who seek positions in mental health.

PSY 4860: Practicum in Research Psychology (3)
Prerequisites: PSY 3030An original investigation conducted by students under the direction of their practicum supervisor.
Submission of a formal research paper and presentation of a seminar open to faculty and students is required. This course is especially valuable to students who plan to attend graduate school or who plan to conduct innovative research in education, social work, government or business.

PSY 4960: Special Topics in Psychology (1-3, 1-3)

PSY 4970: Independent Study in Psychology (3)

PSY 4990: Senior Seminar (3)
Prerequisites: all core requirements
This is the capstone course for psychology that will integrate and synthesize the information students have received as a part of the core requirement classes. There will be an oral, written and computer component to Senior Seminar Project.