Psychology Courses

2014-15 Undergraduate Academic Catalog

PSY 111. INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOLOGY 4 sh
This course surveys central topics in the field, including research methodology, learning and memory processes, social psychology, psychological disorders and personality and considers cultural issues as appropriate in each of these domains. Offered fall and spring. 

PSY 210. PSYCHOLOGY IN THE SCHOOLS 4 sh
This course will appeal to a wide variety of future practitioners (mental health counselors, teachers, school psychologists) who are eager to work with children in a school setting and who want to learn how to apply psychological principles to assist in the identification of underlying problems and the development of intervention plans.

PSY 215. PSYCHOLOGY OF PERSONAL RELATIONSHIPS 4 sh
The purpose of this course is to investigate personal relationships from various viewpoints of psychology (e.g., social, cognitive and biopsychological). Interactions with family members and friends will be discussed, but the emphasis will be placed on the initiation, maintenance and termination of romantic relationships.

PSY 225. MENTAL ILLNESS AND FILM 4 sh
Hollywood depictions of mental illness have contributed significantly to the ideas and images many individuals hold about mental illness. Students will look at some of the major types of mental illnesses (e.g., depression, sexual disorders, schizophrenia, antisocial personality disorder) and examine how they have been portrayed, for better and worse, in popular films.

PSY 240. LIFESPAN DEVELOPMENT 4 sh
An exploration of human development across the entire lifespan includes consideration of cognitive, social and emotional development as a complex interaction between individuals and their social and cultural environments. Prerequisite: PSY 111. Offered fall or spring.

PSY 241. SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY 4 sh
Topics in social psychology explore how people thing about, influence, and relate to one another. Specific topics include affiliation, aggression, altruism, attitude formation and change, attribution, compliance, conformity and persuasion. Prerequisites: PSY 111. Offered fall and spring.

PSY 242. COGNITIVE PSYCHOLOGY 4 sh
Cognitive psychology studies how humans represent and process information about the environment in their role as thinkers, planners, language users, and problem solvers. Students learn the fundamentals of cognitive processes, including attention, perception, imagery, long term and working memory, language, and reasoning and decision-making. Prerequisites: PSY 111. Offered fall and spring.

PSY 243. BEHAVIORAL NEUROSCIENCE 4 sh
This course provides fundamental information in the areas of neurophysiology, neurochemistry, neuroanatomy, cognitive neuroscience, clinical neuroscience, and behavioral genetics. The course explores the biological foundations of psychological processes such as cognitive development, learning and memory, movement and sleep. Prerequisite: PSY 111, or BIO 111, or BIO 264. Offered fall and spring. 

PSY 245. EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT 4 sh
Recent research has led to a new appreciation of the importance of early life experiences on child development. This course examines the power of the inseparable and highly interactive influences of genetics and environment on the complex emotions, cognitive abilities, and essential social skills that develop during the early years of life. The implications of this new understanding of early childhood for families, communities, policy makers, and service providers who strive to increase the odds of favorable development are explored.

PSY 302. EXPERIMENTAL RESEARCH METHODS AND STATISTICS
Students learn how to design, review, and analyze experimental psychological research. The course focuses on developing research questions, answering them using experimental research designs and complementary data analysis techniques, and the basics of writing research reports. . Prerequisites: PSY 111; MTH 112 or MTH/STS 212; Prerequisites or Corequisites: PSY 240, 241, 242 or 243; psychology major status. Offered fall and spring.

PSY 303. NONDEPARTMENTAL RESEARCH METHODS AND STATISTICS
Students learn how to design, review, and analyze nonexperimental psychological research. The course focuses on developing research questions, answering them using nonexperimental research designs and complementary data analysis techniques, and the basics of writing research reports. Prerequisites: PSY 111; MTH 112; Prerequisites or Corequisites: PSY 240, 241, 242 or 243; psychology major status. Offered fall and spring.

PSY 310. MEMORY AND MEMORY DISORDERS 4 sh
This course is about the human ability, or inability, to acquire and retain information, to recall it when needed, and to recognize it when it is seen or heard again (i.e, encoding, storage, retrieval). The course is presented from the perspectives of cognitive neuroscience and clinical neuropsychology and will examine theories and research techniques involved in the study of memory. Topics to be covered include amnesia, false memory, emotional memory, individual differences in memory and memory disorders related to brain damage, aging, diseases, and psychiatric disorders. Prerequisite: PSY 111.

PSY 311. PSYCHOLOGY OF LANGUAGE 4 sh
Students learn some of the basic principles and issues in psycholinguistics and the psychology of language. Different psychological approaches (cognitive, psycholinguistic, behavioral) are considered in understanding factors involved in acquisition, production, comprehension, and maintenance of language. How language functions for individuals and cultures, and the broader relationship between language, thought, and reality are also explored. Prerequisite: PSY 111.

PSY 314. PSYCHOLOGY AND LAW 4 sh
This course explores psychological research on eyewitness testimony evidence, interviews and interrogations, and jury procedures, with particular emphasis on memory, judgments, and decision-making. Prerequisite: PSY 111.

PSY 315. PSYCHOLOGY OF SEX AND GENDER 4 sh
This course focuses on the psychology of sex and gender from a feminist perspective and is organized around four themes: gender as a social construction, the importance of language and the power to name, class and cultural diversity, and knowledge as a source of social change.

PSY 321. EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY 4 sh
Students gain an overview of research and theory in educational psychology and explore their applications in teaching and learning. Prerequisite: PSY 111 or EDU 211 or SOC 243. Offered fall and spring.

PSY 331. PSYCHOLOGICAL TESTING 4 sh
This course addresses the reliable and valid measurement of psychological constructs such as intelligence, personality and vocational interest. In addition to exploring basic assessment principles, first-hand experience with several psychological tests will be provided, and the ways in which such test information is used and misused in making decisions will be examined. Prerequisites: PSY 111 and one of the following statistics-based courses: PSY 302, 303, ECO 203, MTH 112, MTH/STS 212, ESS 295, HSS 285, POL 220 or SOC 216.

PSY 333. ABNORMAL PSYCHOLOGY 4 sh
In this overview of major psychological disturbances (anxiety, mood, personality, sexual and schizophrenic disorders), students examine the role of different theories, diagnostic tests and procedures in understanding illness and learn the basics of therapeutic interventions. Prerequisites: PSY 111 and PSY 240, 241, 242 or 243.

PSY 343. PERSONALITY PSYCHOLOGY 4 sh
This course covers major modern perspectives in personality psychology including dispositional, biological, psychodynamic, self and social-cognitive theories. Students are also introduced to issues and techniques of personality testing and assessment. Prerequisites: PSY 111 and one of the following: PSY 302, 303, ESS 295, HSS 285, POL 220, SOC 216. Offered fall or spring.

PSY 345. PSYCHOLOGY OF LEARNING 4 sh
This course focuses on the fundamental principles of behavior and learning. Topics considered may include reinforcement, punishment, extinction, generalization and discrimination, schedules of reinforcement, concept formation, and classical conditioning. Prerequisites: PSY 111 and one of the following: PSY 302, PSY 303, ESS 295, HSS 285, POL 220 or SOC 216. Offered fall and spring.

PSY 350-354. SPECIAL TOPICS IN BEHAVIORAL NEUROSCIENCE 4 sh
This advanced-level class provides an in-depth exploration and discussion of specific topic areas in behavioral neuroscience. Course topics will vary based on instructor, and will typically be in one of the following general areas: neuropharmacology and drug action; learning and neural plasticity; clinical neuroscience, or the neurobiology of criminal behavior. Prerequisite: PSY 243 or BIO 162.

PSY 355. SENSATION AND PERCEPTION 4 sh
Study in human perception includes research and theory on the structural and functional characteristics of various perceptual systems, on perceptual phenomena such as depth and color perception and on other related topics. Prerequisite: PSY 302 or 303.

PSY 356. HEALTH PSYCHOLOGY 4 sh
This course focuses upon the role of psychology in a variety of medical issues: health-enhancing and health-compromising behaviors, stress and illness, patient-practitioner relationships, pain and other chronic conditions. The growing field of health psychology is explored as both an area of research and a clinical profession. Prerequisite: PSY 111 and one of the following: PSY 302, 303, ESS 295, HSS 285, POL 220 or SOC 216.

PSY 357. CRIMINAL BEHAVIOR 4 sh
This course focuses primarily on the causes of crime, the criminal mind and the resulting social and personal costs of crime. Also addressed are various aspects of the criminal justice system, including the relevance of psychology to courtroom proceedings. Although many types of crime are explored, emphasis is placed on violent crime.

PSY 361. ANIMAL BEHAVIOR 4 sh
An investigation of animal behavior takes into account physiology, development, evolution and adaptation. Studies emphasize specialized structures and abilities which may or may not be present in humans and which confer selective advantages upon their possessors. Prerequisite: PSY 111.

PSY 363. INDUSTRIAL AND ORGANIZATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY 4 sh
Psychological applications in the workplace are the focus of this course. Topics include personnel selection, leadership and motivation, job satisfaction and work performance. Prerequisite: PSY 111.

PSY 366. PSYCHOLOGY IN CULTURAL CONTEXT 4 sh
Issues in the related fields of cultural and cross-cultural psychology are considered in depth as students investigate basic psychological processes (e.g., motivation, cognition and emotion) in the context of how cultural world views and implicit value assumptions influence the development and functioning of human behavior and social interaction. Prerequisite: PSY 111.

PSY 367. PSYCHOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVES ON HUMAN SEXUALITY 4 sh
This course involves the application of psychological theories and research to the area of sexual behavior. Emphasis will be placed on research techniques used to study sexuality, theories of attraction and love, sexuality across the lifespan, and variations in sexual response, attitudes, orientations and practices. Counts toward the Women/Gender Studies minor. Prerequisite: PSY 111.

PSY 368  THE PSYCHOLOGY OF LEADERSHIP 4 sh
This course focuses on the major theories behind leadership behaviors and how they relate to organizational functioning and performance. More specifically, the course primarily covers the organizational
level of leadership, where leaders’ behaviors are directed at a larger group of individuals as a means of helping them achieve organizational, team and personal goals. In addition to theoretical background, empirical studies related to leadership concepts will be covered, as will be their practical applications. Complementing these topics are foci on cross-cultural leadership and students’ own  courses personal leadership styles and intentions so that they may develop as optimally effective leaders. Prerequisite: LED 210, PSY 111, BUS 303 or MGT 323.

PSY 371. SPECIAL TOPICS IN PSYCHOLOGY 4 sh

PSY 382. CHILD PSYCHOPATHOLOGY 4 sh
This course examines abnormal behavior from a developmental perspective. Students will learn about contemporary issues in the diagnosis, assessment and treatment of a wide variety of problems and disorders evident in children and youth, such as, anxiety, depression, attention, learning and conduct/behavior. Prerequisite: PSY 240.

PSY 460. EMPIRICAL RESEARCH SEMINAR 4 sh
In this capstone course, students read primary sources to identify and critically evaluate the major theoretical and empirical foundations of one topic area in the field of psychology. With faculty supervision, students devise, conduct, and report an original empirical investigation of a question related to the selected area of concern. Students present their work orally as well as in a well-developed, integrated APA-style manuscript. Prerequisites: PSY 302, 303, and senior status in the major. Offered fall and spring.

PSY 461. SENIOR SEMINAR 4 sh
In this capstone course, students will read primary sources and identify and critically evaluate theoretical issues and empirical findings of one topic area in the field of psychology. With faculty supervision, students will develop and present (in both written and oral formats) a thesis-level integrative literature review manuscript. Prerequisites: PSY 302, 303, and senior status in the major. Offered fall and spring.

PSY 481. INTERNSHIP IN PSYCHOLOGY 1-4 sh
Upper-level majors apply psychological theories and techniques to actual experiences in the field. Maximum four semester hours toward major. Prerequisite: majors with faculty approval.

PSY 489. TEACHING AND LEARNING APPRENTICESHIP 1-4 sh
Teaching and Learning Apprentices work with a faculty mentor on a particular course. This experience is intended for exceptional students who wish to deepen their knowledge of the discipline, gain a better understanding of the professional academic life, engage in a meaningful mentoring relationship with a faculty mentor around issues related to teaching, enhance their interpersonal and communication skills and develop their leadership skills. The experience may be of particular value to students who wish to pursue a career in higher education or teaching in general. Faculty members invite students to consider a 489 experience. Requires satisfactory completion of all requirements listed on the registration form.

PSY 491. INDEPENDENT STUDY 1-4 sh
Prerequisites: Junior/senior status and permission of the instructor.

PSY 499. RESEARCH 1-4 sh
In collaboration with a psychology faculty member, students undertake an empirical or theoretical study of a topic in psychology. Research projects may include a review of the relevant research literature, data collection and analysis, and a presentation or report when the study is completed. Prerequisites: PSY 111 and permission of instructor. A research proposal form completed by the student in conjunction with the faculty member is required for registration. Students may register for one to four hours of credit per semester and may register for more than one semester of research for a total of eight hours of research credit toward the major. Offered fall, winter and spring.

This page was updated July 2, 2014.