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College of Arts & Sciences

The Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences offers three undergraduate degrees and a minor. These include Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science in Psychological and Brain Sciences, Bachelor of Science in in Behavioral and Cognitive Neuroscience, and a minor in psychological and brain sciences. All degree programs prepare students to pursue graduate study in related fields and to enter entry level positions for careers.

Pursuing a Psychology Major 

Psychology is a hub discipline, in that our research and theories influence multiple fields. This work has become increasingly central to public policy and to industry. Students who work with or develop innovations for people benefit from a foundation in the science of human behavior. We recently implemented skill-based certificates within our existing major program to meet student demand and better communicate the skills of our majors to employers. We actively seek to involve students in research or internships early in their careers to give them hands-on experience with the scientific rigor and logic of psychological science, and in the application of that science in the workplace. The combination of our scholars' expertise and innovative research programs provides an excellent venue for students to develop their professional skills inside and outside of the classroom.

What Do Psychologists Do?

Psychologists teach, counsel, and work in research or administration to help understand people, their capacities, traits, and behavior and to explain their needs. They do this through interviewing and observing individuals, through testing, through the study of personal histories, and through controlled experiments. Psychologists normally hold doctorates (Ph.D., Psy.D., or Ed.D.) in psychology but they are not medical doctors, and cannot prescribe medication.

A doctorate in psychology (Ph.D. or Psy.D., doctor of psychology) is recommended for those who hope to make a career in the field. Psychologists do not need to attend medical school.

Psychologists who wish to enter private practice must meet certification or licensing requirements in all states and in the District of Columbia.

Picking a Major

Psychology majors receive a rigorous program of undergraduate education and training that encourages critical thinking, lifelong learning, and the analysis and integration of information about individuals and groups of people. The curriculum leading to a degree in psychology provides students with an understanding of human behavior and the ability to use scientific methods to answer questions about human behavior. Students are prepared to enter a variety of graduate and professional programs in psychology and related fields (such as law, medical school), as well as to enter entry-level employment in a number of fields (such as business, human resources).