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Department of Psychology

Mission Statement

The mission of the Department of Psychology is to educate students in, and contribute to, the science of psychology.

Goals

The vision of the Department of Psychology is to sustain and advance a nationally recognized department focused on promoting scientific proficiency within the cross disciplinary field of psychology. To that end, the curriculum is designed to provide students with a strong foundation in psychological science that reflects multiple perspectives within the discipline. The hallmarks of our program are learning opportunities that promote the skills necessary to conduct and evaluate research and to interpret findings. The department trains our students to be responsive to emerging trends and apply their knowledge of psychological science as responsible global citizens.

The Department of Psychology is a dynamic contributor to the General Education program and the university community through the delivery of high quality courses and other educational experiences emphasizing psychological science. We also contribute to the M.A. program in psychological science. Our faculty strive to create and implement creative and effective pedagogy, embracing the dual role of teacher/scholar. The department will foster a collegial and collaborative environment within which divergent opinions as well as cultural diversity are respected, valued and promoted.

Co-curricular Activities and Organizations

  • Active Minds. This organization promotes mental health, awareness and education and works to reduce the stigma of mental illness.
  • Psi Chi. The local chapter of the national honor society in psychology is open to students with a strong interest in psychology and an exceptional academic record.
  • Psychology Club. This club is open to all students with an interest in psychology.
  • Psychology Service Organization. This organization strives to meet the needs of the JMU and local communities by sponsoring and participating in service projects.

Special Admission Requirements

Students interested in completing the intermediate and advanced courses required for the psychology major must meet the department's progression standards and be fully admitted to the major.

Students who meet all of the following criteria will be allowed to change their status from declared to fully admitted and will be permitted to make progress in the psychology major beyond a few preliminary courses. Equivalent courses completed at another university for which the student has earned JMU approved transfer credit are acceptable.

  • Complete PSYC 101. General Psychology, with a grade of  "C-" or better.
  • Complete MATH 220, MATH 205, MATH 231, MATH 235 or another acceptable math course (http://psyc.jmu.edu/ug/ mathchart.html) with a grade of "C-" or better.
  • Complete any one of the following:
  • Earn a grade of "B" or better in PSYC 101 taken at JMU.
  • Complete any General Education PSYC course(s) at JMU (PSYC 101, 122 or 160) and earn a 3.00 grade average in the course(s).
  • Complete at least 15 credits at JMU and earn an overall cumulative GPA of 3.00 or better
  • At the time of admission to JMU, be a student who is transferring at least 30 credits including the prerequisite courses (general psychology and math) or general psychology and either psychological statistics or research methods in psychology.
  • Complete an online orientation and application, available from the Department of Psychology website.

Students should apply for full admission to the major when they make the decision to pursue a psychology degree. Admission decisions are made at the end of each semester and during the summer. Students not admitted to the major may reapply the following semester.

Retention

All psychology courses taken must carry a grade of "C-" or better to apply to the major. A psychology course completed with a grade of "D" may be credited toward graduation requirements but may not be included in courses credited toward the psychology major.

Prerequisites

Psychology majors must complete PSYC 101 and two statistics and research methodology courses (PSYC 210-211 or PSYC 212-213) before enrolling in courses numbered 330 and above. The prerequisites for PSYC 210 and PSYC 212 are any mathematics course numbered 205 or above and PSYC 101. Most psychology courses numbered 330 and above have specific prerequisites. See course listings for details. Non-psychology students may enroll in the 300- and 400-level courses only if they have fulfilled course prerequisites.

Registration and Assessment

During registration, psychology majors will be given priority for course selection. Graduating majors must participate in assessment activities. Assessment information helps the faculty modify the curriculum to meet student needs.

Degree and Major Requirements

Bachelor of Arts in Psychology

Degree Requirements

Required Courses

Credit Hours

General Education1

            41

Foreign Language classes (intermediate level required)

            0-14

Philosophy course(s) (in addition to General Education courses)

            3

Major requirements (listed below)

            44

Electives

            18-32


            120

Major Requirements

The courses listed below are required of all students pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree, or any other bachelor's degree program except Bachelor of Science, regardless of whether psychology is their first or second major.

Major Requirements – B.A.            

Credit Hours

PSYC 101. General Psychology

3

Methodology Core2

8

(choose one of the following sequences):

           

PSYC 210. Psychological Measurement and Statistics and

           

PSYC 211. Psychological Research Methods

           

PSYC 212. Psychological Research Design and Data Analysis I and 

           

PSYC 213. Psychological Research Design and Data Analysis II

           

SS Content Core – Psychology as a Social Science

           

(choose at least three of the following):

9

PSYC 330. Psychology of Personality

           

PSYC 335. Abnormal Psychology

           

PSYC 345. Social Psychology

           

PSYC 365. Developmental Psychology

           

NS Content Core – Psychology as a Natural Science

9

(choose at least three of the following):

           

PSYC/BIO 375. Sensation and Perception

           

PSYC 380. Cognitive Psychology

           

PSYC/BIO 385. Biopsychology

           

PSYC 390. Psychology of Learning

           

PSYC 395. Comparative Animal Behavior

           

Upper Level Specialty Content Courses

3

(choose at least one of the following):

           

PSYC 400. Advanced Topics3

           

PSYC 410. Psychology of the Workplace

           

PSYC 415. Forensic Psychology

           

PSYC 420. Advanced Psychological Statistics

           

PSYC 425. School Psychology

           

PSYC 427. Tests and Measurement

           

PSYC 428. Educational Psychology

           

PSYC 430. Clinical Psychology

           

PSYC 435. Community Psychology

           

PSYC 450. Child Abuse and Neglect

           

PSYC 452. Child Psychopathology

           

PSYC 460. Community Psychology within Developing Societies 

           

PSYC 475. Psychology of Adulthood

           

PSYC 480. Applied Behavior Analysis

           

Psychology electives

9

(at least three hours must be at the 400 level)

           

Capstone course4

3

(choose one of the following):

           

PSYC 492. History of Psychology

           

PSYC 493. Laboratory in Psychology

           

PSYC 495. Field Placement in Psychology

           

PSYC 497. Senior Seminar in Psychology3

           

PSYC 499. Honors Thesis3

           

Sociocultural Competency

0

(choose one of the following):

           

PSYC 220. Psychology and Culture

           

PSYC 308. Health Psychology

           

PSYC 310. Women and Gender

           

PSYC 320. Diversity Issues in Psychology

           

PSYC 325. Counseling Psychology

           

PSYC 410. Psychology of the Workplace

           

PSYC 460. Community Psychology within Developing Societies

           

Other course section that meets the sociocultural competency requirement

           

1 The General Education program contains a set of requirements each student must fulfill. The number of credit hours necessary to fulfill these requirements may vary.

2 PSYC 210 and PSYC 211 are offered every semester; PSYC 212 is offered only during the fall semester; PSYC 213 is offered only during the spring semester.

3 Some sections of this course may meet the sociocultural awareness requirement depending on the content; when this course does meet the requirement it will be listed in the notes section of the course listing in MyMadison.

4 Prior approval is required for students to enroll in more than one psychology capstone course.

Bachelor of Science in Psychology

Degree Requirements

Required Courses

Credit Hours

General Education1

41

Quantitative requirement (in addition to General Education)

3

Scientific Literacy requirement (in addition to General Education)

3-4

Major requirements (including cognate, listed below)

47-51

Electives

18-32


            120

Major Requirements

The courses and cognate described below are required of all students pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree, regardless of whether psychology is their first or second major.

Major Requirements – B.S.

Credit Hours

PSYC 101. General Psychology

3

PSYC/BIO 385. Biopsychology

3

(choose one of the following sequences):

8

 PSYC 210. Psychological Measurement and Statistics and

           

PSYC 211. Psychological Research Methods

           

PSYC 212. Psychological Research Design and Data Analysis I and 

           

PSYC 213. Psychological Research Design and Data Analysis II

           

SS Content Core – Psychology as a Social Science

9

(choose at least three of the following):

           

PSYC 330. Psychology of Personality

           

PSYC 335. Abnormal Psychology

           

PSYC 345. Social Psychology

           

PSYC 365. Developmental Psychology

           

NS Content Core – Psychology as a Natural Science

6

(choose at least two of the following):

           

PSYC/BIO 375. Sensation and Perception

           

PSYC 380. Cognitive Psychology

           

PSYC 390. Psychology of Learning

           

PSYC 395. Comparative Animal Behavior

           

Upper Level Specialty Content Courses

3

(choose at least one of the following):

             

PSYC 400. Advanced Topics 3

           

PSYC 410. Psychology of the Workplace

           

PSYC 415. Forensic Psychology

           

PSYC 420. Advanced Psychological Statistics

           

PSYC 425. School Psychology

           

PSYC 427. Tests and Measurement

           

PSYC 428. Educational Psychology

           

PSYC 430. Clinical Psychology

           

PSYC 435. Community Psychology

           

PSYC 450. Child Abuse and Neglect

           

PSYC 452. Child Psychopathology

           

PSYC 460. Community Psychology within Developing Societies 

           

PSYC 475. Psychology of Adulthood

           

PSYC 480. Applied Behavior Analysis

           

Psychology electives

9

(at least three hours must be at the 400 level)

           

Capstone course (choose one of the following)4:

3

PSYC 492. History of Psychology

           

PSYC 493. Laboratory in Psychology

           

PSYC 495. Field Placement in Psychology

           

PSYC 497. Senior Seminar in Psychology 3

           

PSYC 499. Honors Thesis 3

           

Sociocultural Competency

0

Choose one of the following:

           

PSYC 220. Psychology and Culture

           

PSYC 308. Health Psychology

           

PSYC 310. The Psychology of Women and Gender

           

PSYC 320. Diversity Issues in Psychology

           

PSYC 325. Counseling Psychology

           

PSYC 410. Psychology of the Workplace

           

PSYC 460. Community Psychology within Developing Societies

           

Other course section that meets the sociocultural competency requirement

           


44

Cognate Requirements

Courses

Credit Hours

Quantitative Competency

            6-9

(This may include credit hours that count toward General Education and degree requirements.)

           

Choose one of the following:

           

Two 200-level MATH courses or

           

One 200-level MATH course and six credits of additional MATH courses at any level

           

Scientific Literacy

            6-8

(These courses are taken in addition to the General Education requirement. They may count toward the B.S. degree requirement, second major and/or minor requirements.)

           

Choose at least two courses from the list of courses meeting B.S. degree scientific literacy requirements.

           

1 The General Education program contains a set of requirements each student must fulfill. The number of credit hours necessary to fulfill these requirements may vary.

2 PSYC 210 and PSYC 211 are offered every semester; PSYC 212 is offered only during the fall semester; PSYC 213 is offered only during the spring semester.

3 Some sections of this course may meet the sociocultural awareness requirement depending on the content; when this course does meet the requirement, it will be listed in the notes section of the course listing in MyMadison.

4 Prior approval is required for students to enroll in more than one capstone course.

Concentration

Behavior Analysis Concentration

This concentration prepares students for employment with agencies that provide behavior analytic services and/or for pursuing a graduate degree in behavior analysis. This course sequence includes the course work requirements necessary to sit for the Board Certified Associate Behavior Analysis (BCABA®) national certification examination.

Required Courses

                Credit Hours

PSYC 180. Introduction to Behavior Analysis1

3

PSYC 390. Psychology of Learning

3

PSYC 480. Applied Behavior Analysis

3

Choose one of the following:

3

PSYC 402. Independent Study: Practicum – Behavior Analysis2, 3

           

PSYC 403. Independent Research: Behavior Analysis2

           

PSYC 402. Independent Study: Readings – Behavior Analysis2

           

PSYC 402. Independent Study: Teaching – Behavior Analysis2

           

Choose one of the following:

3-6

PSYC 493. Laboratory in Psychology2

           

PSYC 497. Senior Seminar in Psychology2

           

PSYC 499. Honors Thesis2

           


 

15-18

1 Cannot be taken by students who have completed PSYC 390 or PSYC 480.

2 Only certain sections will qualify; consult with the concentration coordinator before enrolling.

3 This course will count toward the experience requirements for the Board Certified Associate Behavior Analysis (BCABA®) National Certification Examination. 

With the assistance of their faculty advisers, students majoring in psychology select their area courses and psychology electives to meet their own individual needs and goals. Within the structure of the program, students may choose the courses of greatest interest to them.

Recommended Schedule for Majors

The following program sample is intended as a guide. Courses must be taken in the sequence outlined; however, the semester during which a particular course is taken depends on a number of factors, including readiness to take MATH 220, the semester the psychology major is started and other majors or minors the student is completing.

Students are encouraged to meet regularly with their psychology academic adviser to plan their personal course schedule. Because of course sequencing requirements, even with the most compressed program, a minimum of five semesters (or four semesters and summer school) is required to complete the psychology major.

First Year

First Semester   

Credit Hours

MATH 220. Elementary Statistics1

3

PSYC 101. General Psychology

3

General Education courses

9


15

 

Second Semester

Credit Hours

General Education, B.A./B.S. degree requirement, B.S. Psychology Cognate and/or minor program courses

15


15

Second Year

First Semester   

Credit Hours

PSYC 210. Psychological Measurement and Statistics or PSYC 212. Psychological Research Design and Data Analysis I2

4

General Education, B.A./B.S. degree requirement, B.S. Psychology Cognate, minor program and/or Psychology elective courses

12


16

 

Second Semester

Credit Hours

PSYC 211. Psychological Research Methods3 or PSYC 213. Psychological Research Design and Data Analysis II4

            4

General Education, B.A./B.S. degree requirement, B.S. Psychology Cognate, minor program and/or Psychology elective courses

            12


            16

Third Year

Courses

Credit Hours

SS content core courses

            9

NS content core courses

            9

Minor program courses or electives

            12


            30

Fourth Year

Courses

Credit Hours

Psychology Upper level Specialty Content Course

            3

Psychology 400 level elective

            3

Psychology capstone course

            3

Psychology, minor program or elective courses

            21


            30

1 A preliminary math course may be suggested after placement examinations. If suggested, the preliminary course should be taken first semester and MATH 220 second semester. Other 200-level mathematics courses may be substituted for MATH 220. Any MATH course numbered 205 or above is an acceptable prerequisite for the psychology major.

2 Any MATH course numbered 205 or above is a prerequisite for PSYC 210 and PSYC 212. MATH 220 is recommended.

3 PSYC 210 is a prerequisite for PSYC 211.

4 PSYC 212 is a prerequisite for PSYC 213.

Recommended Courses

The following courses are recommended for all psychology majors especially those who plan to pursue advanced study at the graduate level after earning their bachelor’s degrees.

Participate in experiential learning, such as:

Taking an advanced statistics course is highly recommended. Consider the following:

  • MATH 280. SAS Programming and Data Management.
  • MATH 321. Analysis of Variance and Experimental Design
  • MATH 322. Applied Linear Regression
  • MATH 324. Applied Nonparametric Statistics
  • MATH 325. Survey of Sampling Methods
  • MATH 327. Categorical Data Analysis

A minor or a selection of courses from other departments that complements the psychology major for the professional field you are pursuing might be very helpful. Discuss your professional goals with your faculty adviser and ask for recommendations. Consider taking courses that emphasize writing skills, quantitative skills, critical thinking and analysis and/or oral communication.

Students should discuss their career aspirations with their academic adviser throughout their academic program. Students interested in applying to graduate school should discuss the necessary preparation with their adviser early in their academic program. Students are encouraged to visit the department's Peer Advising Office in Miller Hall where materials are available about career and graduate school opportunities. 

Other Psychology Programs

Graduate Programs

The Department of Graduate Psychology at James Madison University offers the following graduate degree programs:

Master of Arts

  • Clinical Mental Health Counseling
  • Psychological Sciences
  • School Psychology

Master of Education

  • School Counseling
  • College Student Personnel Administration

Educational Specialist

  • Counseling Psychology
  • School Psychology

Doctor of Philosophy

  • Assessment and Measurement
  • Counseling and Supervision

Doctor of Psychology

  • Combined/Integrated Program in Clinical and School Psychology

Additional information about these programs, including admission requirements and procedures, is available at http://psyc.jmu.edu/gradpsyc.