Major in Psychology

Students are encouraged to review the detailed information below and utilize the checklist in planning for your major.  You can also review course descriptions and course syllabi to inform your plan.

Requirements for the Psychology Major

Prerequisites

  • PSYC 1 (Introduction to Psychology)
  • PSYC 10 (Experimental Design, Methodology, and Data Analysis Procedures)
Requirements for the Psychology Major

Requirements

  • PSYC 11 (Laboratory in Psychological Science)
  • Two PSYC courses numbered in the 20s*
    • One course from the set:
      • PSYC 23 (Social Psychology)
      • PSYC 24 (Abnormal Psychology)
      • PSYC 25 (Developmental Psychology)
    • One course from the set:
      • PSYC 21 (Perception)
      • PSYC 22 (Learning)
      • PSYC 28* (Cognitive Psychology)
*Note - PSYC 38 is an acceptable alternative to PSYC 28, and may alternatively fulfill this requirement.
  • One course numbered 50 or higher
  • Three electives numbered 21-89
  • One course numbered 60-87 or PSYC 89, which constitutes the Culminating Experience. Psychology majors are expected to complete PSYC 1, PSYC 10, and PSYC 11 prior to their culminating experience.
*Note - Students who have earned credit for PSYC 6 (Introduction to Neuroscience) may choose any two PSYC courses in the 20s, even if they are from the same set.
Planning your major

Checklist

Use this checklist to guide you in preparing a successful request for approval of your major plan. It is intended to help you plan, but you are also welcome to seek advice from faculty members in the department for assistance in designing an effective and satisfying major.  When you are ready to declare your Psychology major, follow the instructions from the Registrar's Office.  If you have questions about the major requirements or your major plan, please contact Professor Ann Clark, Chair of the PBS Undergraduate Committee.

Notes

  • Students must obtain a grade no lower than C in PSYC 1. Students who fail to obtain a C or better in PSYC 1 may still complete a major in psychology in the event that they earn C or better in their next two psychology courses.
  • PSYC 10 may be taken concurrently with PSYC 1.
  • As a course prerequisite to the major, PSYC 10 should be taken at or before the time of declaring the major; otherwise it must be taken in the first offering following sign-up for the major. The statistical methods seen in psychological research are considerably different from those utilized in other fields. While ECON 10, GOVT 10, SOCY 10, MATH 10, and QSS 15 are permitted as alternative statistics courses (with permission), we STRONGLY recommend that majors and minors take PSYC 10. Please also note that Math 10 credit by AP or IB is not an acceptable substitute.
  • The department recommends that majors take more upper level (50, 60 and 80 level) courses than we require for the major.
  • PSYC 88 may not be used to satisfy the culminating requirement.
  • Beginning in 2017-18, PSYC 89 may be used to satisfy the culminating requirement.
  • The Psychology major cannot be modified. 

    Students in the class of 2025 and earlier: The Psychology major cannot be modified with any other major.  However, students can petition to modify another major with psychology (e.g. Biology modified with Psychology) if the major forms a unified and coherent whole, as approved by the Chair of the Departmental Undergraduate Committee.

    Students in the class of 2026 and later: The Psychology major cannot be modified. This includes both modified majors in which psychology is the primary component (e.g., Psychology Modified with Economics) and those in which it is the secondary component (e.g., Economics Modified with Psychology). Students who seek to modify a major in another department with courses in psychology may do so by using the option of a modified major without indication of the secondary department (e.g. Economics Modified).  Students who wish to have a more substantial study of psychology noted on their transcript are encouraged to declare a Psychology minor.