Undergraduate Study

Virginia State University’s Psychology Department offers a Bachelor’s of Science program of general psychology. This program gives students a basic understanding of all areas of psychology and provides a foundation of pre-professional education for a variety of vocations.

Students in our undergraduate program will have the opportunity to work with highly qualified faculty and Doctoral students. Research in the Psychology Department has a strong focus on Health Psychology including research topics such as substance use epidemiology, cognitive health, HIV, cardiovascular disorders, diabetes, and hypertension as well as effective health promotion education and planning. The department has several active research laboratories including a Cardiovascular Health laboratory, a Cognitive Behavioral laboratory, a Human Clinical laboratory, a Developmental Psychology laboratory, a Psychoneuroimmunology of Risk and Disease a Psychosocial Stress laboratory and a Behavioral and Community Health Laboratory. The Psychology Department faculty engages its students in research and prepare them to present at national, regional, and local conferences/symposia.

Undergraduate Program Curriculum Sheet

Undergraduate Courses

PSYC 100

PSYC 110 INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOLOGY - 3 semester hours. A basic course in psychology for majors, serving as the foundation for subsequent courses. The course is designed to give students an understanding of the scientific approach to the study of human behavior and to help students develop an appreciation for the breadth and variety of psychological theories. Required of all psychology majors.

PSYC 117 THE PSYCHOLOGY OF EARLY CHILDHOOD - 3 semester hours F A course designed to emphasize personality development of young children at the pre-school and primary levels. Prerequisite: Psychology 212

PSYC 200

PSYC 210 ADOLESCENT PSYCHOLOGY - 3 semester hours Sp Characteristics of behavior during the adolescent phase of development; personal social adjustments of the individual between childhood and adulthood.

PSYC 212 HUMAN GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT - 3 semester hours F, Sp A course designed primarily for students preparing to teach in elementary and secondary schools. It aids students in developing fundamental understanding of the patterns and sequence of development from conception through the adolescent period. Students are required to observe children under guidance and to apply some of the methods of child study.

PSYC 214 SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY - 3 semester hours Sp An introduction to the current concepts and theories that attempt to explain the behavior of the individual in society. Major topics include culture and personality, social roles, leadership, prejudice and propaganda. Review and analysis of current concepts and experimentation in the field. Prerequisites: GEPS 124 or Psychology 111

PSYC 216 DEVELOPMENT AL PSYCHOLOGY - 3 semester hours F, Sp This is a course that aims to develop a comprehensive theoretical base in developmental psychology. Complex processes of human development throughout the life span will be analyzed in systematic form and the major premises of developmental theorists will be critically examined. Supplemented by required observation and participation in the Human Development and Learning Laboratory.

PSYC 300

PSYC 305 PRACTICUM - 8 HRS. PRACTICE - 2 semester hours F, Sp Supervised field experience in mental health.

PSYC 309 EXPERIMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY LABORATORY - 1 semester hour F, Sp Experiments conducted that illustrate techniques of control and statistical analysis in various areas of psychology. Focuses on human performance and equipment and laboratory procedures used in the measuring of this performance. Must be taken concurrently with PSYC 310. Prerequisite: PSYC 315 - Quantitative Methods

PSYC 310 EXPERIMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY - 3 semester hours F, Sp Experimental design of psychological research involving appropriate techniques of control and statistical analyses. Must be taken concurrently with PSYC 309. Prerequisite: PSYC 315 - Quantitative Methods

PSYC 311 MENTAL HYGIENE - 3 semester hours F A critical consideration of the literature on mental health and personal adjustment. Emphasis is placed on the maintenance of wholesome personal-social relations and the prevention of serious mental disturbances.

PSYC 313 COGNITIVE BEHAVIOR AND LEARNING - 3 semester hours F, Sp Focuses on an analysis of cognitive behavior, such as attention memory, thinking, problem solving and metacognition and theories of learning. Instructional strategies in the use of cognitive behaviors to enhance learning will be discussed. The effects of psychological variables on learning will also be examined. This course has practical applications for educators, psychologists, develop mentalists, and human service workers. Prerequisite: Psychology 212 or Psychology 216

PSYC 314 EDUCATIONAL TESTS AND MEASUREMENTS - 3 semester hours F, Sp A study of the general field of tests and measurements including elementary statistics. Concerned with the selection and administration of group tests of mental ability, aptitude, interest, achievement and personality. Prerequisite: Psychology 212 or Psychology 216

PSYC 315 QUANTITATIVE METHODS IN PSYCHOLOGY - 3 semester hours F, Sp A general introductory course to the study of methods and techniques of research in psychology with emphasis upon research design and statistical concepts. Some automatic data processing experience is also provided. Prerequisite: STAT 210

PSYC 316 ABNORMAL PSYCHOLOGY - 3 semester hours Sp A study of the origins and symptoms of psychopathological behavior. This course considers psychopathology from the major theoretical perspectives. The course is supplemented by required observations at Central State Hospital. Prerequisites: Psychology 111 and 216

PSYC 318 APPLIED PSYCHOLOGY - 3 semester hours F The application of psychological research in the solution of specific problems. Emphasis upon psychology in industry (training, human engineering, fatigue, other conditions affecting work) and in advertising (attention, motivation, imagery appeal).

PSYC 324 PROBLEMS IN PSYCHOLOGY - 2-4 semester hours. Sp, F A study of problems in psychology by intensive reading of the major periodicals and classical works in the field. Provides the student with the opportunity to pursue a research project through independent study.

PSYC 325 PERSONALITY DEVELOPMENT - 3 semester hours Sp A survey of theory and research on the development of the personality. Primary emphasis is upon the factors that shape personality. Class projects involve some laboratory work with children. Prerequisites: GEPS 124 or Psychology 111 and Consent of Instructor.

PSYC 400

PSYC 400 SENIOR SEMINAR - 3 semester hours F An integrative course designed to show the relationship among the separate courses pursued by the student in the undergraduate experience by an in-depth review of some of the major concepts and issues in psychology. Prerequisite: Senior Status as a Psychology Major

PSYC 401 TOPICS IN PSYCHOLOGY - 3 semester hours Sp Involves a critical discussion of current theoretical and experimental issues in four areas of psychology: African-American experiences, Spiritual Experiences, Adulthood and Aging, and Selected Issues in Psychology. One topic will be offered each semester, and the course may be repeated once for credit.

PSYC 410 INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOLOGICAL TESTING - 4 semester hours F Focuses on supervised intellectual assessment of children and adults using such instruments as W AIS, WISC, WPPSI and Stanford-Binet. Relevant literature on the concept of intelligence and test construction is required reading. Prerequisites: PSYC 216 and Department Permission

PSYC 411 DIAGNOSTIC PROCEDURES FOR EXCEPTIONAL CHILDREN - 4 semester hours Sp A study of psychodiagnostic procedures useful in evaluating the abilities of exceptional children and youth. Includes how to select and administer appropriate tests of intelligence, personality, and specific disabilities, and how to utilize the findings in planning pupil experience. Prerequisite: Psychology 410

PSYC 412 PHYSIOLOGICAL PSYCHOLOGY - 3 semester hours F A study of the physiological systems of the human organism as a basis for psychological reactions, with special reference to the endocrine and central nervous systems. Prerequisites: Biology 315 and 316

PSYC 413 HISTORY AND SYSTEMS OF PSYCHOLOGY - 3 semester hours Sp The history of scientific psychology through a critical analysis of the major psychological systems, stressing the problems, methods, and contribution of each and the philosophical and physiological foundations of the discipline. Prerequisite: Senior or Graduate Status

PSYC 414 PERCEPTION - 3 semester hours Sp The various theories of perception and the experimental research relating to them.

PSYC 415 CULTURE AND PERSONALITY - 3 semester hours Sp A course designed to enhance the general education of students regardless of their majors. A cross-culture approach to the study of personality and national character by examining the value systems, institutions, culture traits and childrearing practices of diverse cultures. Prerequisite: Junior Status or above

PSYC 416 THE TEACHING OF PSYCHOLOGY IN SECONDARY SCHOOL - 3 semester hours F Focuses on methods and materials of instruction in psychology at the secondary level, with emphasis on the design of laboratory activities. The implementation of ethical principles and arrangement of major topics within psychology under the core areas. Students will explore lecture, discussion inquiry, audiovisual presentations, core history analysis, role playing, simulation, field work, demonstration, experiments, research projects as techniques for making abstract conceptions of psychology more accessible.

PSYC 417 PSYCHOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENT THROUGH THE PRIMARY YEARS - 3 semester hours F A course designed for teachers seeking certification in early childhood education (K-3), and for those students pursuing the master's degree in early childhood education. Aims to develop an understanding of psychological growth and personality development during the first decade of life. Not open to students having credit for Psychology 117.

PSYC 418 PSYCHOLOGY OF THE DISADVANTAGED - 3 semester hours Sp A course examining the dynamics of the behavior of disadvantaged groups. After an analysis of major historical revolutions, the focus is turned to contemporary groups who occupy disadvantaged positions in American society. Prerequisite: Upperclass or Graduate Status

PSYC 419 INTRODUCTION TO SCHOOL PSYCHOLOGY – 3 semester hours Sp A course designed to acquaint the student with educational policies and procedures and the role of the school psychologist.

PSYC 420 DRUGS AND BEHAVIOR – 3 semester hours Sp A course designed to aid students in understanding the chemistry of certain drugs and their effects upon the organism as well as the psychological changes that accompany them, and to aid service providers in dealing constructively with the problem. Prerequisite: Junior Status and above

PSYC 421 LANGUAGE AND COGNITIVE DEVELOPMENT – 3 semester hours Sp An overview of recent advances in the understanding of language acquisition and cognitive development in the child. It emphasizes several major theoretical positions and associated empirical works. Prerequisite: Junior Status and above

PSYC 424 RESEARCH IN PSYCHOLOGY – 3 semester hours F, Sp A course designed to provide the student with the opportunity to pursue an original research project through independent study. Emphasis is placed upon planning and conducting research, analyzing and interpreting data, and communicating about research. Prerequisite: Department Permission

PSYC 429 CRISIS INTERVENTION STRATEGIES – 3 semester hours F A course designed primarily to give students an opportunity to learn how to select and utilize psychological knowledge for the determination of appropriate strategies for crisis intervention situations. The course is supplemented by field work in selected agencies. Prerequisite: Consent of Instructor

PSYC 430 THE CLINICAL INTERVIEW – 3 semester hours Sp A seminar designed to provide an understanding of the relationship of theory to practical experience and skill-building in the use of the interview process. Emphasis is upon employing the interview to establish and maintain support with human service recipients. Prerequisite: Consent of Instructor