Program Level Goals for Psychology Majors

1. Define basic concepts that characterize psychology as a field of scientific inquiry; and appreciate the various subfields that form the discipline as well as things that differentiate it from other related disciplines. Develop an understanding of the central questions, issues in contemporary psychology.


2. Be familiar with the range of methods used to investigate psychological questions.


3. Develop skills to critically evaluate the presentation of scientific ideas and research in the popular media.


4. Develop competence in reading and evaluating original scientific papers.


5. Become familiar with the basic concepts of statistics and develop skills in evaluating information from a statistical perspective.


6. Develop and articulate, both orally and in written form, a testable hypothesis, or an argument drawing from an existing body of literature.


7. Develop competence in interpreting graphical data to understand what is being compared/manipulated (independent variables) and what is being measured (dependent variables).


8. Be familiar with the history of psychology as a field and different theoretical and empirical frameworks that have defined and shaped the field.


9. Apply a psychological principle to an everyday problem; or take an everyday problem and identify the relevant psychological mechanisms/issues.


10. Develop a deeper understanding of one of the major content areas of psychology (i.e., Social/personality, Developmental, Clinical, Cognitive, Biological).


11. Develop an understanding and an appreciation of how social (e.g., environmental/cultural), and biological (genes, hormones) factors jointly shape human behavior.


12. Develop an awareness of the importance of science to humanity while recognizing its limits (i.e., some scientific knowledge is culture specific and may not applicable to the human condition universally)