Graduates listen to the commencement address by President Bashar Hanna

Psychology (B.A.)

The world is waiting for what you have to offer. We’re looking forward to joining you on your journey. Onward!

Degrees & Offerings
  • Minor
  • B.A.
Department
College
Program Contact
Chair of the Department of Psychology, Professor of Psychology
Secretary for the Department of Psychology
illustration of Carver Hall

Your first step is here!

Through personal attention and high impact experiences, our psychology faculty, curriculum, and beyond-the-classroom activities will help you discover what you do best and how you can do it for the good of "the Good." Together, we'll examine psychological theories, research, and best practices aimed at helping people live more productive and fulfilling lives.

Courses and Curriculum

We offer a curriculum that's closely aligned with the American Psychological Association’s undergraduate student learning goals.

Requirements for a Psychology Minor

18 Credit Hours

Required Courses:

  • PSYCH 101 Introduction to Psychology (min grade of C) 3 credit hours

  • PSYCH 160 Applied Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences (min grade of C) 3 credit hours
  • PSYCH 281 Research Methods 3 credit hours Prerequisites: PSYCH 101 and PSYCH 160 with a minimum grade of C in each Elective courses Nine credit hours, of which three credit hours are at the 300 or 400 level 9 credit hours

Elective Courses:

  • Nine credit hours, of which three credit hours are at the 300 or 400 level 9 credit hours

PSYCH 101 Introduction to Psychology (3 credits). Studies psychology as a system of scientific inquiry into behavior, mental processes, and social relationships. Major concepts and principles of the discipline are presented. This foundational class has no prerequisites. This course may be taken to fulfill General Education (3 GEPs for Goal 6, Social Sciences), psychology major, or psychology minor requirements. Three hours of lecture per week.

PSYCH 105 Psychology First-Year Seminar (1 credit). Provides skills and strategies for a successful transition to college for first-year Psychology majors. The course acquaints students with academic expectations, resources, and careers in psychology. There are no course prerequisites. Enrollees must be first year-students who have declared Psychology as their major or have permission of the instructor.

PSYCH 131 Psychology of Adjustment and Well-Being (3 credits). Examines the personal and social meaning of psychological adjustment. Emphasizes growth and well-being, concepts of stress and coping, and psychosocial competence in adulthood. This course requires active participation in class discussion and willingness to challenge one’s preconceptions and consider alternative psychological points of view. It concerns the application of psychological concepts and research to stress and coping in everyday adult life, emphasizing coping skills and techniques. This course is an elective and offers 2 GEPs for Goal 10, Citizenship.

PSYCH 160 Applied Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences (3 credits). Introduces and applies fundamental statistical concepts, principles, and procedures to the analysis of data related to the behavioral sciences. Students learn computation, interpretation, and application of commonly used descriptive, correlational, and inferential statistical procedures as they relate to behavioral science research. It is required for students majoring or minoring in Psychology. It provides 2 GEPs toward general education Goal 3.

PSYCH 210 Lifespan Psychology (3 credits). Examines concepts and issues related to human development from conception to death. Summarizes major developmental milestones in physical, cognitive, and social-emotional development. Discusses major theories and perspectives on human development. This course counts toward a psychology minor and is an elective for psychology majors. Prerequisite is PSYCH 101.

PSYCH 211 Early Child Development (3 credits). Examines concepts and issues related to child development from the prenatal period through middle childhood. Summarizes major concepts, theories, research, and best practices in physical, cognitive, social, and emotional development. Multiple sections of PSYCH 211 are typically offered every semester.

PSYCH 212 Adolescent Development (3 credits). Studies cognitive, social, emotional, and biological development during the transition from childhood to adulthood (roughly the second decade of life) and personal and social issues affecting adolescents. This course will especially benefit students who desire to improve understanding of their own development and/or who work with or plan to work with adolescents providing, e.g., instruction, parenting, health or psychological care, or supervision. Fulfills requirements for psychology major. Three hours lecture per week. Prerequisite: PSYCH 101.

PSYCH 218 Principles of Gerontology (3 credits). Examines areas of growth and decline in the lives of adults in their sixties and older. The themes of successful aging and positive psychology are emphasized, along with cultural, lifestyle, gender-based and individual differences. The course explores the areas of family and intimate relationships, employment, retirement, civic engagement, and lifelong learning, cognitive and intellectual functioning, and changes in personality and self-concept. The areas of coping, assistive technologies, financial assistance, housing assistance, involvement with a caregiver, and end-of-life decisions are also explored. This course is offered in spring semesters. Prerequisite is PSYCH 101.

PSYCH 235 Introduction to Abnormal Psychology (3 credits). Introduces the nature, diagnosis, etiology, epidemiology, prevention and treatment of cognitive, affective, behavioral and personality disorders. Also covers relevant theoretical perspectives and research findings. This course counts toward the psychology minor and is an elective for psychology majors. Prerequisite is PSYCH 101.

PSYCH 253 Social Psychology (3 credits). Introduces the scientific study of how people’s thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are affected by the actual, imagined, or implied presence of others. Topics include social perception and cognition, aggression, conformity, helping behavior, relationships, group processes. Course is intended for psychology majors and minors and PSYCH 101 the prerequisite. Three hours of lecture per week.

PSYCH 254 Psychological Aspects of Social Issues (3 credits). Applies current psychological theories and viewpoints to current social issues, while also considering ethical and philosophical perspectives. Topics are selected by the professor. This course counts toward the psychology minor and is an elective for psychology majors. Prerequisite includes PSYCH 101.

PSYCH 281 Research Methods (3 credits). Builds on students’ background in Applied Statistics (PSYCH 160) and affords opportunities for students to interpret and design basic psychological research, improve their information literacy, and apply APA ethical standards. Topics covered include the scientific method, research approaches and designs, and ethical issues in psychological research. The course counts towards the Psychology major and minor. Prerequisites include PSYCH 101 and PSYCH 160 (with a minimum grade of C in each). The course may only be repeated once.

PSYCH 282 Research Applications (3 credits). Allows students to use their background in applied statistics (PSYCH 160) and research methodology (PSYCH 281) to design and/or conduct studies with human participants and nonhuman animal subjects. This course affords opportunities for students to improve their information literacy, apply APA ethical standards, and learn to write effectively in psychology. The course counts towards the Psychology major. Prerequisites include PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, and PSYCH 281 (with a minimum grade of C in each).

PSYCH 309 Cognitive Development (3 credits). Studies cognitive development in humans. Focus is on theories of cognitive development and research on the development of memory, problem solving, language and literacy, intelligence, neurological correlates of cognition, as well as social cognition. Factors affecting motivation, achievement, and self-control may also be considered. Additional emphasis placed on instructional implications of theories and research. Counts for the Psychology minor. This course is an elective for Psychology majors. Prerequisites: PSYCH 101, PSYCH 211 or 212, and 60 credits earned.

PSYCH 311 Adulthood and Aging (3 credits). Examines the psychological development of individuals moving from their early twenties into old age. With an equal emphasis on young, middle, and late adulthood, this course explore personality development, cognitive development and everyday problem solving, friendships, love relationships, parenting, career growth and challenges, healthy lifestyles and successful aging. In addition to concluding with end-of-life health concerns and decisions, topics also include wisdom, life satisfaction, and happiness. This course if offered in fall semesters. Prerequisite is PSYCH 101.

PSYCH 321 Psychological Tests and Measurements (3 credits). Introduces the logic of psychological measurement including the applied and practical aspects of psychological testing with emphasis on reliability, validity and test norms. Provides background for test evaluation. Fulfills requirements for psychology major; may help prepare students for graduate training in a variety of subfields within psychology (e.g., school, clinical, rehabilitative, or counseling psychology) and related fields such as occupational or speech therapy. Three hours lecture per week. Prerequisites: PSYCH 101, 160, 281, all with minimum grade of C, or consent of the instructor.

PSYCH 327 Positive Psychology (3 credits). Examines theories, research, and best practices related to positive experiences, positive traits, and enabling institutions. Drawing on students’ background in experimental psychology (PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, and PSYCH 281), this course debunks common misconceptions and refutes the “bad science” that pervades the self-help movement and compromises the discipline’s credibility. This course also affords psychology majors and minors opportunities to apply positive psychology concepts through experiential activities, self-reflective exercises, and case studies. Positive Psychology is typically offered at least once per academic year. Prerequisites are PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, and PSYCH 281, all with a minimum grade of C.

PSYCH 335 Psychological Disorders (3 credits). Surveys the description, causation, prevention and treatment of maladaptive behavior and psychological disorders. Considers biological, psychological and social factors. Also covers relevant theoretical perspectives and research findings. This course counts for the psychology major. Prerequisites are PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, PSYCH 281, all with minimum grade of C, and PSYCH 282.

PSYCH 336 Theories of Personality (3 credits). Conveys to students a basic understanding of personality theory as a scientifically defensible model of human functioning as well as a philosophical statement regarding human nature. It will engage students in a critical study of holistic theories of personality, including psychodynamic, trait, biological, cognitive, humanistic, existential/phenomenological, and cross-cultural perspectives. There will be an emphasis placed on the healthy, adaptive personality. This course is designed for psychology majors. Prerequisites are PSYCH101, PSYCH 160, PSYCH 281 (with a minimum of C in each), and PSYCH 282.

PSYCH 337 Developmental Psychopathology (3 credits). Examines psychological theory, research, and best practices related to mental disorders that affect children and youth. More specifically, this course surveys the literature on the prevalence, symptoms, causes, and course of child psychopathologies. This course also investigates ethical issues surrounding the assessment and treatment of mental disorders in children and youth. Taught primarily through traditional classroom-based lectures, discussions, and multimedia presentations, this course also may include service learning and/or project-based activities. Developmental Psychopathology may be taken in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the psychology major. Prerequisites include PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160 (minimum of C), PSYCH 211 or PSYCH 212, PSYCH 281 (minimum of C), and PSYCH 282.

PSYCH 360 Cognitive Psychology (3 credits). Studies cognition in humans. Research and theory related to human use of attention, perception, memory, language and problem solving are central topics of study. Other topics may include creativity, reasoning, and decision-making. Traditional research approaches to understanding human thinking, as well as neuroscientific approaches, are presented. Counts toward the Psychology major. Prerequisites: PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, PSYCH 281 (with a minimum grade of C), and PSYCH 282.

PSYCH 375 Psychology of Learning (3 credits). Examines the theoretical and experimental bases of learning in animal and human behavior. The course focuses on basic principles of classical conditioning and operant conditioning. Psychology of Learning is offered for majors. Prerequisites are PSYCH 101, 160, 281 (minimum of C in each) and PSYCH 282.

PSYCH 376 Behavior Modification (3 credits). Examines the basic methods of behavior modification as they are used in individual therapy as well as in institutionalized settings. The course connects behavior modification techniques to the theoretical concepts that they are based on, especially: operant conditioning, respondent conditioning, observational learning, and cognitive models. Behavior Modification is a lecture-based course designed for psychology majors. The prerequisites are PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, PSYCH 281 (with a minimum of C in each).

PSYCH 380 Behavioral Neuroscience (3 credits). Examines the cellular bases of behavior, emphasizing contemporary views of and approaches to the study of the nervous system. Neural structure, function, and organization are considered in relation to sensory and motor function, learning and memory, and other basic behaviors. An overview of brain function will be presented, drawing on basic concepts in the biological, physical, and behavioral sciences. This course counts for the psychology major. Prerequisites: PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, PSYCH 281 (minimum grade of C in each), and PSYCH 282.

PSYCH 390 Special Topics in Applied Psychology (3 credits). Examines theories, research, and best practices related to various topics in applied psychology. Drawing on students’ background in experimental psychology (PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, and PSYCH 281), this course affords undergraduates the opportunity to explore the synergy between the basic and applied psychological sciences through traditional classroom-based or distance education lectures, discussions, experiential activities, and multimedia presentations. Depending on the topic, the course also may include community-based activities. Special Topics in Applied Psychology is typically offered at least once per academic year. This course may be repeated as an elective with different topics. Prerequisites are PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, and PSYCH 281, all with a minimum grade of C.

PSYCH 401 History of Psychology (3 credits). Examines the history of psychology. Places the discipline of Psychology in historical context in relation to the philosophical and scientific underpinnings of the field, as well as in relation to social and cultural influences on the development of the discipline. Reviews historical trends in research questions, methodologies, and explanations. Discusses major figures in the history of the field. This course counts toward the Psychology major. Prerequisites are successful completion of PSYCH 101, 160 and 281 with a minimum grade of C in each; PSYCH 282; and successful completion of at least one of the following courses: PSYCH 335, 337, 436, 360, 375, 380.

PSYCH 406 Psychology Seminar (3 credits). Provides for an advanced study of significant topics in psychology. Requires in-depth analysis and discussions of current research. This course may be taken once to fulfill a requirement for the psychology major, and may be taken again with a different topic as an elective. Perquisites: PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, PSYCH 281 (all with a minimum grade of C), PSYCH 282, and consent of instructor; each specific seminar may have additional prerequisites depending on the topic.

PSYCH 439 Introduction to Clinical Psychology (3 credits). Surveys clinical psychology and the role of the clinical psychologist in community and hospital mental health programs, clinical assessment, and diagnosis. Examines concepts in and models of psychotherapy. The prerequisites for the course are the successful completion of PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, PSYCH 281 (with a minimum of C in each), PSYCH 282 and either PSYCH 335 or PSYCH 336 or PSYCH 337. This course is intended for psychology majors.

PSYCH 441 Theory and Practice of Academic Psychology (3 credits). Utilizes a seminar format classroom experience along with opportunities to work with students in PSYCH 101 through discussions, presentations, reviews, and tutoring. Using PSYCH 101 content, students will explore pedagogical techniques and assessment methods. There is a strong emphasis on ethical and professional behaviors in all interactions, including those with PSYCH 101 students and other teaching assistants. As part of this capstone experience designed for psychology majors, students will develop items as part of a professional portfolio as preparation for employment or graduate work. This course counts toward a psychology major. Prerequisites are PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, PSYCH 281 (minimum of C in each), and PSYCH 282, 60 Earned Credit Hours, and permission of the instructor.

PSYCH 442 Theory and Practice of Academic Psychology 2 (3 credits). Provides students who have completed PSYCH 441 an opportunity to continue to develop their academic and professional skills and engage in leadership activities. This course is an elective and is offered when there is student interest and available positions. Prerequisites are PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, PSYCH 281 (minimum of C in each), and PSYCH 282, PSYCH 441, 60 Earned Credit Hours, and permission of the instructor.

PSYCH 464 Advanced Experimental Design (3 credits). Presents an advanced consideration of the planning, conduct and evaluation of research in the social and behavioral sciences, employing parametric and/or nonparametric statistics. Emphasizes inferential statistics, design, analysis, interpretation, and computer utilization. Students will acquire advanced skills in these areas. This course counts toward the psychology major and is one of the department’s capstone experiences, aimed at upper-level students. Three hours of lecture/lab per week. Prerequisites are PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, PSYCH 281, all with minimum grade of C, and PSYCH 282.

PSYCH 466 Independent Study in Psychology (3 credits). Provides for the study of a topic via review and research of technical psychological literature and/or empirical manipulation of variables in the field or laboratory under supervision of a psychology faculty member. Successful completion includes a written paper. Independent Study in Psychology is offered for majors. Prerequisites are PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, and PSYCH 281 (with minimum of C in each), PSYCH 282, and consent of the Instructor, the Department, and approval of the Dean.

PSYCH 497 Psychology Practicum (3 to 15 credits). Applies psychological knowledge through study, observation, and practice in a community or university setting. Provides experience in a work setting in the field. Processing experiences through class discussions, writing assignments, and interactions with field supervisor. This course counts toward the psychology major and is one of the department’s capstone experiences, aimed at upper-level students. Forty hours must be completed at placement site per credit hour during the course of the semester, including a weekly meeting with the site supervisor or their designee. Weekly 90-minute class meeting with faculty supervisor and peers in small groups. Prerequisites are PSYCH 101, PSYCH 160, PSYCH 281, all with minimum grade of C, PSYCH.282, 90 credit hours completed, and consent of the instructor.

Bloomsburg Initial - B -  inside a keystone shape

High Impact Experiences

Our Department of Psychology provides instruction, opportunities, and resources for undergraduate students to acquire scientific knowledge and skills in psychology and apply that understanding to socially responsible, personal, and professional growth. Below are descriptions of several high impact experiences aimed at cultivating psychologically literate citizens whose work is outstanding in quality, ethical in nature, and personally meaningful and pleasurable in its doing.

Practicum

Psychology majors can earn credit for supervised fieldwork experiences through PSYCH 497 Psychology Practicum. Students interested in pursuing this capstone experience and completed PSYCH 282 and 90 credits should contact Jeff Leitzel at jleitzel@bloomu.edu for an initial interview. Deadline for initial interviews for summer and fall placements is March 1. (The Summer Practicum is an abbreviated version of PSYCH 497 in which students complete 120 hours in a field placement for three credits). Deadline for initial interviews for spring placements is Oct. 1.

Teaching Assistantships

Psychology majors can earn credit for supervised teaching experience in higher education through PSYCH 441/442 Theory and Practice of Academic Psychology. Psychology majors who are interested in this capstone experience and have completed PSYCH 282, as well as 60 credits with a minimum GPA of a 3.0 should contact Brooke Hansen at bhansen@bloomu.edu to request an application. (Kindly note the application requires background clearances paid for by the university. Applications are due when scheduling starts for fall or spring semester).

Research

Independent Study

Juniors and seniors can earn credit for partnering with a faculty member to design and carry out a research study through PSYCH 466 Independent Study. Often, these projects fit into a faculty’s ongoing research program. This capstone experience is awarded by the Dean of the College of Liberal Arts based on a proposal submitted by the psychology major and faculty mentor. These projects are often presented at regional conferences. (Applications for Summer/Fall Independent Study projects are due by the last day of the spring semester. Applications for spring projects are due the day before Thanksgiving Break).

Volunteer Opportunities

Service Learning Opportunities

Curricular and extracurricular community-based learning affords students opportunities to apply their psychological theories and research for the betterment of others.

The Husky Difference

100%
Faculty
Tenured or tenured-track who have earned Ph.D.'s in their area of expertise
2
Capstone Courses
Each student completes at least two capstone courses
1:1
Advisement
One-to-one student-to-faculty advisement
36
Credit Hours
12 courses for the major

Careers

Psychology is one of the 10 most common majors in Pennsylvania’s workforce. In addition, workforce and economic development trends related to the discipline of psychology are favorable due to the discipline-specific knowledge and skills psychology majors bring with them as well as the versatility of the major. The majority of psychology majors put their knowledge and skills to use in the workforce immediately following graduation; whereas, a minority of psychology majors pursue an advanced degree in psychology (13%) or a related discipline (30%), according to the National Science Foundation.

Potential Job Opportunities

  • Admissions Evaluator
  • Advertising Sales Agent
  • Alumni Director
  • Assistant Bank Manager
  • Benefits Manager
  • Child Development Specialist
  • Child Welfare Protection, Placement Caseworker, Social Worker
  • Claims Supervisor
  • Conservation Officer
  • Correctional Treatment Specialist
  • Coroner
  • Criminal Investigator
  • Crisis Intervention Counselor
  • Data Base Administrator
  • Data Base Design Analyst
  • Disability Case Manager
  • Event Planner
  • Financial Advisor
  • Financial Aid Counselor
  • Geriatric Social Worker
  • Health Coach
  • Health Information Specialist
  • Life Coach
  • Management Analyst
  • Market Research Analyst
  • Media Buyer
  • Military Intelligence Officer
  • Occupational Analyst
  • Paralegal
  • Patient Advocate
  • Pharmaceutical Sales Representative
  • Physical Therapist Assistant
  • Polygraph Examiner
  • Preschool Teacher
  • Public Relations Representative
  • Real Estate Agent
  • Recreational Therapist
  • Research Assistant
  • Substance Abuse Counselor
  • Systems Analyst
  • Veterans Counselor

Top Skills Employers are Looking For

  • Communication: oral, written, and listening skills
  • Cognitive: analytical thinking, critical thinking, creativity, information management, decision making
  • Personal: adaptability, integrity, self-regulation
  • Social: collaboration, inclusivity, leadership, management, service orientation
  • Technological: flexibility/adaptability to new systems; familiarity with hardware and software

Program Contacts

Kevin Ball

Kevin Ball, Ph.D.

  • Professor of Psychology, Jessica S. and Stephen R. Kozloff Fellow

Applying to this Program

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