2018-2019 Undergraduate Course Catalog 
    Jul 25, 2024  
2018-2019 Undergraduate Course Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Psychology, BS

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Amy H. Criss

430 Huntington Hall




Emily B. Ansell, Kevin Antshel, Sara E. Burke, D. Bruce Carter, Catherine A. Cornwell, Amy H. Criss, Joseph W. Ditre, Tanya L. Eckert, Joshua C. Felver, Les A. Gellis, Shannon C. Houck, Brittany K. Jakubiak, Randall S. Jorgenson, Michael L. Kalish, David Kellen, Lawrence J. Lewandowski, Lynn Lohnas, Stephen A. Maisto, Brian K. Martens, Leonard S. Newman, Aesoon Park, Natalie Russo, Lael J. Schooler, Bradley Seymour, Shannon M. Sweeney, Stanislav Treger, Peter A. Vanable, Laura VanderDrift, and Sarah Woolf-King.    


Psychology is the scientific study of behavior. Professional psychologists may be researchers investigating behavior and/or practitioners, applying their knowledge and skills to individual and social problems.

The Psychology Department offers several options for students. These include a Bachelor of Arts major, a Bachelor of Science major, and a minor. Students planning to pursue a career in which a background in psychology is useful, such as business, communications, or social services, will find the B.A. degree to be an appropriate track. These students are encouraged to pursue experiences through part-time work or internships in their area of interest. Students interested in pursuing professional careers in psychology, social work, or other professional fields such as law will need to attend graduate school and obtain an advanced degree. These students are encouraged to consult with their academic advisor for advice on whether the B.A. or B.S. degree is most appropriate to meet their long-term goals. The B.S. degree is recommended for students planning professional careers in such fields as medicine, dentistry, and physical therapy.  All students are encouraged to utilize the career resources available in the Department of Psychology, the College of Arts and Sciences, and the University to learn about opportunities and prepare strategies to meet their goals. 

Student Learning Outcomes

1. Identify the major concepts, theoretical perspectives, empirical findings, and historical trends relevant to the foundational domains of psychology, including cognitive, social, clinical, and developmental bases of behavior

2. Understand and apply basic principles related to research design, data analysis, and interpretation.  This would include the ability to formulate testable research hypotheses, design a simple study to test the hypothesis, and apply appropriate statistical tests to answer basic research questions relevant to the field of psychology

3. Demonstrate a basic understanding of the APA ethical guidelines and their applications in the context of conducting psychological research

4. Employ the effective use of written communication in the psychological sciences.  Employ the effective use of oral communication in the psychological sciences

5. Demonstrate the ability to effectively work in the field of psychology through involvement in faculty-mentored research, community-based internships, and independent study

6. Investigate natural phenomena, including the development of predictive explanatory systems, including the study of numerical and other abstract structures and relations

Bachelor of Science in Psychology Degree

Program Requirements

The B.S. requires a minimum of 30 credits in psychology (PSY) courses, 18 of which must be numbered 300 or above.  Only PSY courses count toward the 30 required credits. Students must earn a grade point average of at least a 2.0 in all upper-division Psychology (PSY) courses taken at Syracuse University and counted towards the completion of the major (see MySlice for the GPA calculator).  No more than three credits of PSY 270 or PSY 470 (Experience Credit) may be counted toward the major.  A course may be used to satisfy only one requirement. 


Students interested in taking a psychology class at another institution and transferring it to Syracuse University to count toward either the major or minor must complete a petition form (downloadable from the department web site) and bring it and a syllabus for the course to the Advising Office for approval prior to enrolling in the course. Petitions may take up to two weeks for review. Winter intersession classes are generally not accepted as transfer credit. Students should plan their program of study in consultation with their academic advisor in order to ensure timely completion of degree requirements.


Students must complete 6 courses that establish the foundation for the study of psychological science. PSY 205 (or the honors equivalent, PSY 209) is a prerequisite for most PSY courses. We recommend that students take PSY 313 early in the major. 

Statistics Sequence

Majors must satisfy a two semester statistics sequence from the list below which also satisfies the quantitative skills requirement of the Liberal Arts Core. PSY 252 counts towards the 30 required credits in Psychology, but MAT courses do not. 

Psychology Lecture-Lab Sequence

B.S. students are required to complete one psychology lecture-laboratory sequence. Courses selected to complete the sequence may not be used to satisfy other requirements for the major. There are no substitutions for this requirement. The following course sequences satisfy this requirement:

Psychology Electives

The B.S. student selects additional Psychology (PSY) electives to achieve a  minimum of 30 PSY credit hours (18 credits of which must be at the 300 level or above).  

Additional Mathematics and Natural Science Requirements

Mathematics and Natural Sciences Electives

In addition to the natural science lecture-laboratory requirement and the statistics sequence requirement for the Psychology major, the B.S. student must complete three courses (a minimum of 9 credits) in mathematics and/or in the natural sciences. This requirement is intended to deepen or enhance the student’s experience and scholarly interests in the sciences. Courses that satisfy this requirement are listed below.  Courses used toward the natural science lecture-laboratory requirement cannot be used to fulfill this requirement. Courses used toward the statistics requirement cannot be used to fulfill this requirement. 

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