Jul 14, 2024  
2022-2023 Westminster College Catalog 
2022-2023 Westminster College Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Psychology, B.A.

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Psychology Mission Statement
The mission of the psychology program is to provide a curriculum reflective of contemporary psychology, to work cooperatively with the college in providing students with the skills intrinsic to a liberal arts education, and to provide interdisciplinary experiences. Contemporary psychology is composed of information collected through scientific inquiry. Our curriculum trains students to understand this information and to contribute actively to the quest.

Scientific inquiry is the core that links all efforts in the discipline of psychology and, consequently, it is the core of our curriculum. All students receive a general introductory overview of psychology, a basic course in research methodology, and are required to do a thesis project.

The skills intrinsic to a liberal arts education are expressed in the college’s mission statement. Our program contributes to this mission by formally training our majors intensively in critical thinking and oral and written communication skills in all courses in our program, and very explicitly so in our introductory, research methods, and capstone courses. Our internship program affords opportunities for our students to learn from and serve in a wide variety of social contexts. Our program actively supports the College mission by being a major contributor to the content and the design of the first-year program.

We endeavor to produce graduates who manifest a lifetime of productivity by providing guidance to graduate and professional training programs and maintaining a network of alumni support for our graduates.

Learning Outcomes (Based on APA Guidelines 2.0)

  1. Students are conversant with multiple psychology content areas as understood through a historical, sociocultural, and global context.
  2. Students develop skills to find, evaluate, and use psychological knowledge.
  3. Students are able to reason scientifically, applying appropriate research design and quantitative methods.
  4. Students are able to use technology appropriately and responsibly.
  5. Students communicate effectively using appropriate psychological style in written and verbal reports of research and psychology applications.
  6. Students are able to link core scientific principles to areas of application.
  7. Students use both convergent and divergent thinking in problem-solving tasks.
  8. Students practice the ethics of psychology in professional and interpersonal settings.
  9. Students collaboratively develop research interests that extend the knowledge base of psychology.
  10. Those we educate through our curriculum become active and responsible students of psychology in community and world settings.
  11. Students are able to establish creative linkages between psychology and other knowledge domains.
  12. Students recognize competencies, seek opportunities for self-improvement, and actively engage in making strategic choices regarding academic and career goals.

The psychology major is designed to enhance a broad array of fundamental abilities - written and spoken verbal mastery; quantitative facility (especially statistical); and creative problem solving (stressing the scientific method and information technology tools). The major is composed of required and elective content area courses (both laboratory and applied work, an internship and a senior thesis). The senior thesis is accomplished as part of a full-year program of independent and guided research. Psychology majors find employment in a variety of areas including: mental health, business and industry, educational counseling, research, sales, social work, government and medical services. Because there are so many possible avenues of future employment for psychology majors, students are encouraged to select their courses, internship sites, and senior thesis topics to be most relevant to particular career paths.

Plus, at least four additional electives in PSY

16 Semester Hours

Advising Tracks

The tracks listed below are an advising tool to help students plan courses to meet their career aspirations. These tracks are intended to help students choose psychology electitves most consistent with their goals and other useful courses outside the psychology program.


Honors students will register for PSY 662 Honors Senior Psychology Scholarship Experience. Psychology majors who are in the All-College Honors Program must have at least a 3.5 average in three or more psychology courses to enter honors research. There are also opportunities for a more extensive capstone project through our Research Scholars Program.

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