The quest to understand human behavior is the heart of psychology. Through the application of scientific principles, the psychologist searches for laws that explain human behavior and looks for ways to help people improve the quality of their lives.
Within the psychology department, students can work toward a BA and can focus study in a number of different content areas, including clinical, developmental, cognitive/neuroscience, social or quantitative psychology.
Faculty members are nationally recognized scholars and researchers as well as dedicated instructors. The department has excellent research and computing facilities and undergraduate students are encouraged to participate actively in research with their professors. Many students have coauthored one or more papers or publications with faculty members. The department also has an outstanding two-year distinction sequence, beginning in the junior year with an introduction to basic research principles and culminating in the senior year with the completion of a senior honors research project. A one-year internship experience is also available in a community hospital or agency for students with clinical interests.
While many psychology students pursue advanced degrees, interesting positions in related fields are also available for students with a BA or BS. These include positions as counselors, educators, parole officers, welfare officers and childcare and advocacy workers. A major in psychology can also provide strong preparation for careers in fields such as business, law and medicine. Students with an interest in brain function may want to consider the concentration in cognitive neuroscience, a joint major involving psychology and biological sciences. Please see the cognitive neuroscience section of this bulletin for more information.