Psychology

Psychology encompasses a range of phenomena and levels of analysis in pursuit of three goals: to deepen understanding of cognitive and neural mechanisms of sensation, perception, learning, and emotion; to probe the biological and evolutionary foundations of animal behavior; and to clarify the social perception and assessment of individuals and groups. The concentration offers an array of course options, including study in quantitative methods, laboratory techniques, and senior seminars on specialized topics. Students take upper-level courses in the field’s major sub-disciplines, including perception and cognition, behavioral neuroscience, and social psychology. The concentration in Psychology prepares students for careers in clinical psychology, business, policy-related research positions, law, and education. 

Concentration Requirements

Introductory Psychology: Planning a concentration and choosing elective courses requires general knowledge about the topics psychologists study. Introductory Psychology (CLPS 0010) is required for the concentration. Students may satisfy the Introductory Psychology requirement by submitting AP (score of 4 or 5) or IB (score of 5 or above) test credit or by transferring Introductory Psychology course credits from other 4-year institutions.

Quantitative: Careers in Psychology and related fields require familiarity with statistics. Therefore, the Psychology concentration requires Quantitative Methods in Psychology (CLPS 0900). CLPS 0900 is a prerequisite for most of the laboratory courses, so concentrators should plan to take this course by their fourth semester. The department does not grant concentration credit for AP Statistics, regardless of score. Students who feel that CLPS 0900 is too elementary can complete for concentration credit.

Course Distribution: Concentrators must take at least one laboratory course, which provides students with hands-on experience with research methods in a substantive area of psychology. Because the laboratory serves as the basis for independent research and is a prerequisite for the Honors program, concentrators should plan to take their lab before their senior year. This course must be taken in CLPS. Independent study or laboratory courses in other departments will not fulfill this requirement.

Advanced Seminar: Both A.B. and Sc.B. concentrators are required to take one advanced limited-enrollment seminar/critical readings course. The list of approved seminars varies yearly. Contact one of the concentration advisors for details.

AP and Transfer Credits: Students receiving AP credit for Introductory Psychology can place out of CLPS 0010, and can enroll directly in higher-level psychology courses. AP credits are not accepted for other concentration requirements. Students transferring from another college or university, or students studying abroad or at another US institution, may receive transfer credits for other concentration requirements. Please refer to our departmental policy on applying AP and transfer credits.

The A.B. degree requires 12 courses. The Sc.B. degree requires 17 courses. (Concentrators should complete either the A.B. or Sc.B. Concentration Worksheet before meeting with their Concentration Advisor.)

Requirements for the A.B. degree

CLPS 0010Elementary Psychology: An Introduction to Mind and Behavior 11
CLPS 0900Quantitative Methods in Psychology1
Two courses in Perception and Cognition 22
Two courses in Comparative/Physiological 22
Two courses in Social/Personality/Developmental 22
One advanced laboratory course from the following: 31
Research Methods in Psychology
Psychological Theory
Techniques in Physiological Psychology
Animal Behavior Laboratory
Experimental Analysis of Animal Behavior and Cognition
Laboratory in Genes and Behavior
Sleep and Chronobiology Research
Laboratory in Cognitive Processes
Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging: Theory and Practice
Neural Modeling Laboratory
Computational Cognitive Neuroscience
Psychology of Hearing
Laboratory in Developmental Psychology
Personality and Clinical Assessment
Laboratory in Social Cognition
An advanced seminar/critical readings course in CLPS, numbered above 1000 41
Two elective courses, with approval of the concentration advisor 52
Total Credits12
1

Or advanced placement with a score of 4 or 5, or transfer credit. If placement for CLPS0010 is granted on the basis of AP or IB test scores,  then another CLPS course (at any level) must be substituted.

2

The pre-approved courses in each area are listed on the concentration worksheets. A laboratory course or seminar (indicated on the worksheet) may be used to meet the area requirement only if it is the student’s second lab course or second seminar. Independent study courses cannot be used for this requirement. First year seminars outside of CLPS cannot be counted for the area requirement.

3

The worksheets include up-to-date lists of labs. Independent study courses and laboratory courses outside of CLPS cannot be used to satisfy this requirement.

4

Consult one of the concentration advisors for lists of approved courses.

5

The electives should complement the student’s main area of interest in Psychology. These courses can be taken outside of CLPS.  Only courses that carry concentration credit in the home department can be used for this requirement. In addition, independent study and GISP courses will not fulfill this requirement.

Requirements Specific for the Sc.B. degree

CLPS 0010Elementary Psychology: An Introduction to Mind and Behavior 11
CLPS 0900Quantitative Methods in Psychology1
Two courses in Perception and Cognition 22
Two courses in Comparative/Physiological 22
Two courses in Social/Personality/Developmental 22
An advanced laboratory course from the following: 31
Research Methods in Psychology
Psychological Theory
Techniques in Physiological Psychology
Animal Behavior Laboratory
Experimental Analysis of Animal Behavior and Cognition
Laboratory in Genes and Behavior
Sleep and Chronobiology Research
Laboratory in Cognitive Processes
Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging: Theory and Practice
Neural Modeling Laboratory
Computational Cognitive Neuroscience
Psychology of Hearing
Laboratory in Developmental Psychology
Personality and Clinical Assessment
Laboratory in Social Cognition
An advanced seminar/critical readings course in CLPS, numbered above 1000. 41
Six supporting science courses should be selected from the following areas: Applied Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, Computer Sciences, Engineering, Mathematics, Neuroscience, or Physics 56
CLPS 1980Directed Research in Cognitive, Linguistic and Psychological Sciences 61
Total Credits17
1

Or advanced placement with a score of 4 or 5, or transfer credit. If placement for CLPS0010 is granted on the basis of AP or IB test scores,  then another CLPS course (at any level) must be substituted.

2

The pre-approved courses in each area are listed on the concentration worksheets. A laboratory course or seminar (indicated on the worksheet) may be used to meet the area requirement only if it is the student’s second lab course or second seminar. Independent study courses cannot be used for this requirement. First year seminars outside of CLPS cannot be counted for the area requirement.

3

The worksheets include up-to-date lists of labs. Independent study courses and laboratory courses outside of CLPS cannot be used to satisfy this requirement.

4

Consult one of the concentration advisors for lists of approved courses.

5

The following courses cannot be used to meet the requirement for outside science courses: independent study or GISPs, courses in science studies, or ENGN 0020, 0090, 0900, 1010. AP credit can substitute for only one of these courses.

6

CLPS1980 typically involves one semester of independent research under the direct supervision of a faculty advisor in CLPS. This includes data collection and/or analysis, and a final written report. Upon department approval, the faculty advisor may be from another department or unit if the research program is within the field of psychology and approved by the concentration advisor as such.  Contact the Sc.B. Concentration Advisor for further details. CLPS1980 cannot be counted for the lab requirement. The CLPS Undergraduate Concentration Committee oversees the concentration and receives petitions regarding concentration requirements.

Honors

Detailed information about the Psychology Honors program is available on a dedicated page.