Psychological Sciences

Print Options

Mission

Undergraduate majors and minors in Psychological Sciences develop the knowledge and skills which will enable them to pursue graduate education in related disciplines and to succeed in careers utilizing knowledge and skills from psychological sciences.

Student Learning Outcomes

The undergraduate Psychological Sciences program at Chadron State College adopted student learning outcomes associated with five comprehensive learning goals developed by the American Psychological Association (APA).1 Students completing a major in Psychological Sciences will be tested in “performance indicators” embedded throughout the curricula as part of the assessment strategy adopted by the Undergraduate Psychological Sciences Program Committee.

Goals

  1. Knowledge Base in Psychology
    Students should demonstrate fundamental knowledge and comprehension of the major concepts, theoretical trends, and empirical findings to discuss how psychological principles apply to behavioral problems. Students completing foundation courses should demonstrate breadth of their knowledge and application of psychological ideas to simple problems; students completing a baccalaureate degree should show depth in their knowledge and application of psychological concepts and frameworks to problems of greater complexity.

    1.1 Describe key concepts, principles, and overarching themes in psychology.
    1.2 Develop a working knowledge of psychology’s content domains.
    1.3 Describe applications of psychology
  2. Scientific Inquiry and Critical Thinking
    The skills in this domain involve the development of scientific reasoning and problem solving, including effective research methods. Students completing foundation-level courses should learn basic skills and concepts in interpreting behavior, studying research, and applying research design principles to drawing conclusions about psychological phenomena; students completing a baccalaureate degree should focus on theory use as well as designing and executing research plans.

    2.1 Use scientific reasoning to interpret psychological phenomena.
    2.2 Demonstrate psychology information literacy.
    2.3 Engage in innovative and integrative thinking and problem solving.
    2.4 Interpret, design, and conduct basic psychological research.
    2.5 Incorporate sociocultural factors in scientific inquiry.
  3. Ethical and Social Responsibility in a Diverse World
    The skills in this domain involve the development of ethically and socially responsible behaviors for professional and personal settings in a landscape that involves increasing diversity. Students completing foundation-level courses should become familiar with the formal regulations that govern professional ethics in psychology and begin to embrace the values that will contribute to positive outcomes in work settings and in building a society responsive to multicultural and global concerns. Students completing a baccalaureate degree should have more direct opportunities to demonstrate adherence to professional values that will help them optimize their contributions and work effectively, even with those who do not share their heritage and traditions. This domain also promotes the adoption of personal and professional values that can strengthen community relationships and contributions.

    3.1 Apply ethical standards to evaluate psychological science and practice.
    3.2 Build and enhance interpersonal relationships.
    3.3 Adopt values that build community at local, national, and global levels.
  4. Communication
    Students should demonstrate competence in writing and in oral and interpersonal communication skills. Students completing foundation-level courses should write a cogent scientific argument, present information using a scientific approach, engage in discussion of psychological concepts, explain the ideas of others, and express their own ideas with clarity. Students completing a baccalaureate degree should produce a research study or other psychological project, explain scientific results, and present information to a professional audience. They should also develop flexible interpersonal approaches that optimize information exchange and relationship development.

    4.1 Demonstrate effective writing for different purposes.
    4.2 Exhibit effective presentation skills for different purposes.
    4.3 Interact effectively with others.
  5. Professional Development
    The emphasis in this goal is on application of psychology-specific content and skills, effective self-reflection, project-management skills, teamwork skills, and career preparation. Foundation-level outcomes concentrate on the development of work habits and ethics to succeed in academic settings. The skills in this goal at the baccalaureate level refer to abilities that sharpen student readiness for post baccalaureate employment, graduate school, or professional school. These skills can be developed and refined both in traditional academic settings and in extracurricular involvement.

    5.1 Apply psychological content and skills to career goals.
    5.2 Exhibit self-efficacy and self-regulation.
    5.3 Refine project-management skills.
    5.4 Enhance teamwork capacity.
    5.5 Develop meaningful professional direction for life after graduation.
1

Source: APA Guidelines for the Undergraduate Psychology Major (Version 2.0) (August 2013). Visit http://www.apa.org/ed/precollege/undergrad/index.aspx to find the revised APA undergraduate program guidelines.

PSYC 131 INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOLOGY3 Credits

An introduction to the science of psychology. The course provides an overview of the subfields in the discipline including the biological basis of behavior, sensation and perception, motivation and learning, cognition, developmental psychology, abnormal psychology and social psychology. Emphasis is placed on utilizing the scientific method to investigate, interpret and describe psychological phenomena.

PSYC 160 SPECIAL TOPICS IN PSYCHOLOGY1-3 Credits

Special topics of current interest in psychology are considered in depth. Students may take more than one special topics course for credit when topics have different course content.

PSYC 231 EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY3 Credits

Reviews key theories and research on human learning and development as applied to student-learning assessment and effective instruction. Fifteen hours of school observation are required.

Prerequisites: EDUC 131 with a grade of C or better

PSYC 234 PSYCHOLOGY OF COGNITION AND LEARNING3 Credits

An introduction to the concepts, theories and research associated with cognitive psychology and learning, including attention, memory, and thinking.

Prerequisites: PSYC 131 for Psychology majors

PSYC 242 MEASUREMENT AND RESEARCH DESIGNS3 Credits

Students will explore a variety of measurement methods and understand concepts of experimental design and data quality. Students enhance their scientific literacy with an emphasis on developing effective hypotheses. Additionally, students will examine ethics in research.

Prerequisites: PSYC 131 for Psychology majors

PSYC 331 SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY3 Credits

Scientific study of social influence on human thought and behavior. Topics include the effects of attributions and attitudes on cognitive processes and behavior, the psychological effects of culture and gender, and the nature of prejudice, aggression, interpersonal attraction and helping behavior.

Prerequisites: PSYC 131 and Sophomore or above status

PSYC 334 DEVELOPMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY3 Credits

General introduction to the major theories and research findings in developmental psychology including biological, cognitive and psychosocial development from birth through the play years, school years, adolescence and adulthood.

Prerequisites: PSYC 131 and Sophomore or above status

PSYC 350 STATISTICS FOR PSYCHOLOGISTS3 Credits

Computational and graphical techniques in descriptive and inferential data analysis including introductions to measurement scales and their revisions, distributions, measures of central tendency and variability, correlation, regression, null hypothesis; analysis of variance and covariance, interval estimation, effect sizes, significance (clinical, practical, and statistical), sampling, probability theory, and data quality, including reliability and validity. This course utilizes statistical software.

Prerequisites: PSYC 131, PSYC 242, and Sophomore or above status

PSYC 390 INTERNSHIP IN PSYCHOLOGY1-6 Credits

Provides practical experience in psychology. Interested students should contact the Internship and Career Services Office to secure application materials. Application should be made prior to the semester the internship will be started. The amount of credit will be based on the availability of a suitable work position, the qualifications of the applicant and the work hours.

Prerequisites: Sophomore or above status

Add Consent: Department Consent

PSYC 400 INDEPENDENT RESEARCH1-3 Credits

Guided independent research in the area of psychology. The number of credit hours varies in accordance with the topic and the amount of work required. Permission of the advisor, the instructor, and the Dean of the School of Education, Human Performance, Counseling, Psychology and Social Work required.

Prerequisites: PSYC 131 and permission of the advisor, the instructor, and the Dean of the School of Education, Human Performance, Counseling, Psychology and Social Work

Add Consent: Department Consent

PSYC 401 TOPICS IN PSYCHOLOGY3 Credits

Individual academic needs of those registered in this course will be accommodated. Normally, the instructor will select the topic in psychology. Permission of the advisor, the instructor, or the Dean of the School of Education, Human Performance, Counseling, Psychology and Social Work required.

Prerequisites: PSYC 131 and permission of the advisor, the instructor, and the Dean of the School of Education, Human Performance, Counseling, Psychology and Social Work

Add Consent: Instructor Consent

PSYC 421 CULTURE AND PSYCHOLOGY3 Credits

The impact of culture on behavioral and psychological processes, with analysis of some of the antecedents of cross-cultural conflicts.

Essential Studies Outcome: ES10

Prerequisites: PSYC 131 and Junior or above status

PSYC 430 INTRODUCTION TO BEHAVIORAL NEUROSCIENCE3 Credits

Surveys neural morphology and physiology and addresses biology's role in psychological processes. Students will examine how the brain contributes to and is impacted by behavior, thereby gaining an understanding of neuronal function, neuroplasticity, neurotransmitter systems, neuroreceptor functions, and psychopharmacology principles as they relate to normal brain function and neuropathologies.

Prerequisites: Junior or above status

PSYC 433 ABNORMAL PSYCHOLOGY3 Credits

Survey of major mental and behavioral disorders by classification and categorical domains, and proposed genetic, neurological, behavioral, cognitive, emotional, social, and interpersonal influences that might contribute or be causative factors of mental health disorders.

Prerequisites: PSYC 131 and Junior or above status

PSYC 435 THEORIES OF PERSONALITY3 Credits

Major theoretical orientations and research findings in personality psychology.

Prerequisites: PSYC 131 and Junior or above status

PSYC 442 HISTORY OF PSYCHOLOGY3 Credits

An examination of the historical emergence of scientific psychology emphasizing its roots in philosophy, neuroscience, methodology, and statistics.

Prerequisites: PSYC 131 and Junior or above status

PSYC 499 EMPIRICAL RESEARCH PROJECT3 Credits

An exercise in application and professional performance, majors in psychology build a psychological experiment which includes data collection and analysis and manuscript preparation with tables, figures, and narrative in APA Publication Manual (6th ed.) style.

Prerequisites: PSYC 131, PSYC 242, PSYC 350, and Junior or above status