Psychology

Department/Program: Psychology

Majors, Minors & Degrees:

For the Psychology major, a student may choose either a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science. There is no difference between a B.A. and a B.S. in psychology in terms of the required classes. Students considering a career in a field that involves the natural sciences (e.g. psychiatry, neurobiology, etc.) normally would select the B.S. A B.A. degree is more appropriate for students considering a career in other areas of psychology (e.g. clinical, counseling, social, developmental, etc.). The student’s psychology advisor will be able to help answer questions.

At least 20 credit hours in the major must be taken in the Nebraska Wesleyan Psychology Department. At least 12 hours of the major must be in upper level courses (3000-4990). 

Courses

The Introduction to Psychological Science course will engage students in a learner-centered approach to the science of behavior and mental processes by synthesizing these areas of psychology: Scientific Inquiry, Biopsychology, Development and Learning, Sociocultural Context, Individual Variations, and Applications of Psychological Science.
This is not a First Year Writing Course.

The Introduction to Psychological Science course will engage students in a learner-centered approach to the science of behavior and mental processes by synthesizing these areas of psychology: Scientific Inquiry, Biopsychology, Development and Learning, Sociocultural Context, Individual Variations, and Applications of Psychological Science.

This course, intended for the newly declared psychology major, is a reflection upon the historical development, the current state, and the future of psychology. The practicalities of being an undergraduate psychology major will be presented. Discussion of the student's future in psychology will emphasize professional issues related to graduate/professional school admission and employment opportunities after graduation.
Prerequisite(s): A major in psychology or permission of the instructor.
(Normally offered each spring semester.)

An introduction to descriptive and inferential statistics as decision-making guides in psychology and related fields. Topics include organization, analysis, presentation, and interpretation of data with emphasis on the hypothesis testing model of inference. Specific procedures include z-tests, t-tests, ANOVA, correlation, and Chi-square tests. A laboratory section is required for computational experience.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science and sophomore standing.
Recommended: College level mathematics course.
(Normally offered each semester.)

A course designed to introduce and apply the basic research methods of psychology. Emphasis is placed upon problems of research design and analysis in the laboratory and in natural settings. Students conduct investigations applying various designs and methods. Interpretation of findings and preparation of research reports are treated.
Three lectures and one lab per week.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science and PSYCH 2100 Psychological Statistics.
(Normally offered each semester.)

Psychopharmacology is a course intended to introduce the student to the effects of drugs on human behavior. The course will cover routes of drug administration, how drugs affect society, and the physiological mechanisms by which drugs produce their effect(s). The course will investigate the major drug categories (i.e., stimulants, sedatives, narcotics, hallucinogens, and psychotropics). For each drug, the student will learn about its historic background, modes of action in the brain, use and abuse, and ways to treat addiction.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science
(Normally offered each fall semester.)
 

An introduction to development from infancy through adolescence. Topics include cognitive, physical, social and personality development, and child-rearing practices.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science.

This class will provide a perspective on the changes that take place during an individual's life from infancy to old age/death. Participants will study and describe the developing person at different periods in the lifespan. The processes of growth and change taking place in early, middle, and late adulthood will be considered as well as the more traditional concern with development in childhood.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science
(Normally offered each semester.)

A survey of leading theories of personality and supporting research. Includes consideration of psychodynamic, behavioral, cognitive, trait, humanistic, and interactionist approaches. Important historical figures in personality theory, current day applications, personality testing, and basic methods of personality research will be explored.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science.
(Normally offered each spring semester.)

An introduction to the field of health psychology, which is devoted to understanding how people stay healthy, why they become ill, and how they respond to illness and disease. Topics will be discussed from local, national, and global perspectives, and will include the behavioral aspects of the health care system, exercise and nutrition, health-compromising behaviors, stress, AIDS, and the etiology and correlates of health, disease, and dysfunction.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science.
(Normally offered each spring semester.)

The application of scientific methods and psychological principles to industrial and organizational behavior. Topics include job analysis, personnel selection, performance appraisal, assessment validity, the legal context for personnel decisions, work motivation, work attitudes, leadership, and occupational health. The ultimate objective of this discipline is to maximize both employee well-being and organizational effectiveness.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science.

An investigation of psychological theories and issues relating to the psychology of women from a feminist perspective. Gender bias in traditional psychological theories, research, and practice will be evaluated in relation to women's attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors. Students will gain a better understanding of women's psychology across the lifespan and how other interacting constructs such as race, ethnicity, class, sexual orientation, nationality, and disability influence women's experiences. The social and political implications of how we understand women and gender will be explored, and emphasis will be placed on envisioning possibilities for individual (psychological) and social change.

The behaviorist viewpoint and the methodology of experimental analysis is introduced in this course. The emphasis is on theories derived largely from non-human research and applied to everyday human behavior. Topics include an analysis of the basic operations of classical and operant conditioning and the biological constraints on learning. A practical animal lab is used to demonstrate the methods of behavior analysis and modification.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science.
(Normally offered each fall semester.)

This course provides an introduction to the study of topics related to happiness and the positive aspects of human experience. The first part of the course will focus on  the basic areas of research in positive psychology and the methods that researchers use to study happiness, while the second half will broaden the focus to include big-picture issues and real-world application.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010/PSYCH 1010FYW Introduction to Psychological Science

Theories and research exploring how gender is constructed in American culture are introduced in this course.    Topics include the construction and propagation of gender roles, differences between men and women in various domains, gender identity, sexuality, romantic relationships, and roles within work and family. 
Prerequisite(s): Sophomore standing.
(Normally offered each spring semester.) 

An investigation of the symptoms, etiology, and treatment of mental disorders including those associated with anxiety, moods, psychosis, dissociation, somatoform reactions, personality, substance use, sexual dysfunctional/deviance, eating, aging, child/adolescent development, and brain dysfunction.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science or permission of the instructor.
(Normally offered each semester.)

An intermediate-level course designed to treat subject matter not covered in other departmental courses. The title, content, and credit hours will be determined by current mutual interests of faculty and students.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science plus additional requirements as may be determined or permission of the instructor.

This is a research course. The student initially meets with the department chair to select a study topic and review research methods. At this time the student will be assigned a faculty resource person to guide his or her work and assist in an advisory capacity. A copy of the student's work is filed in the archives for the department. Independent study may not duplicate courses described in the catalog.
Prerequisite(s): Senior standing or permission of the department chair.

An intermediate-level course for a student to engage in an individually arranged project supervised by a member of the staff. Special Projects may not duplicate courses described in the catalog.
Pass/Fail Oriented.
Prerequisite(s): Major or minor in psychology and permission of the instructor.

Supervised field experience in settings providing psychological services with opportunities for observation and participation. Reading assignments, written reports, and class meetings typically are included, although the exact nature of a student's responsibilities are individually arranged. Students spend 45 hours per semester in the assigned setting for each hour of the academic credit. Enrollment generally is limited to 1-4 hours of academic credit in any given semester with the possibility of enrollment for a second semester. Approval from the cooperating agency also is required. Enrollment reflects a volunteer experience.
Pass/Fail only.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science.

A survey of the field of art therapy in its various applications and theoretical orientations. Taught by a registered art therapist through lectures, readings, and experiential methods.
Prerequisite(s): 8 hours of psychology, including PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science, and 9 hours of art, or permission of the instructor.

A practical introduction to the skills and techniques of counseling in a variety of human service settings. Emphasis is on skill development and application. Includes an overview of different counseling methods and exposure to individuals using these methods in the helping professions.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science or permission of the instructor.
(Normally offered each spring semester.)
 

An introduction to neurophysiological bases of general behavior, sleep, perception, emotion, learning, cognition, and mental disorders. The relevance of these topics to applied problems in psychology will also be considered, as will the methods for investigating the relationship between brain and behavior.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science and BIO 1400 Introduction to Biological Inquiry or permission of the instructor.
(Normally offered each spring semester.)

An introduction to the theory, construction, administration, and interpretation of standardized psychological tests. Tests considered include IQ assessments, general interest surveys, personality inventories, and projective techniques. General methodological and statistical issues in testing and measurement are also covered.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science.
Recommended: PSYCH 2100 Psychological Statistics.

A scientific study of the way in which thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are influenced by other people and situational factors. Topics include research methodology, conformity, social cognition, attitudes, persuasion, aggression, prejudice, and interpersonal attraction.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science.
Recommended: PSYCH 2100 Psychological Statistics and PSYCH 2110 Research Methods in Psychology

(Normally offered each fall semester.)
 

A survey of the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment procedures utilized in clinical and counseling psychology, along with a discussion of professional issues in the field. Students are given rudimentary training in interviewing and case study of a nonclinical population.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 2700 Abnormal Psychology.
(Normally offered each fall semester.)

An overview of the physical and cognitive mechanisms of the different perceptual modalities is presented in this course. The past and current methods of studying the relationship between physical stimuli and the perceptual experience are investigated. The emphasis is on the visual system and the role of the individual in depth perception, perceptual constancies and illusions.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science.
Recommended: BIO 1400 Introduction to Biological Inquiry.

(Normally offered each spring semester of odd numbered years.)

An introduction to the theories and research literature pertaining to memory, language, problem solving, creativity, cognitive development, and perception. Cognitive deomonstrations on the computer will be involved.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science.
(Normally offered each spring semester.)

Emphasis is on the psychological and physiological aspects of sleep and dreaming in humans. Topics include comparative studies, developmental changes, physiological and biochemical mechanisms of REM and NREM sleep and arousal, sleep disorders, dream content and dream recall, and functional theories of sleep and dreaming. Some laboratory experience will be required involving electrophysiological methods of sleep recording, and methodologies for analysis of sleep records.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science.
Recommended: BIO 1400 Introduction to Biological Inquiry.

(Normally offered each spring of even-numbered years.)

A topical course designed to investigate relevant subject matter not included in any standard courses. The title and the content will be determined by current mutual interests of students and faculty. This course may be offered to meet a requirement for a major only by approval of the department chair.

This is a research course. The student initially meets with the department chair to select a study topic and review research methods. At this time the student will be assigned a faculty resource person to guide his or her work and assist in an advisory capacity. A copy of the student's work is filed in the archives for the department. Independent study may not duplicate courses described in the catalog.
Prerequisite(s): Senior standing or permission of the department chair.

Supervised individual projects for students on topics selected by the student in consultation with the instructor. Special Projects may not duplicate courses described in the catalog.
Prerequisite(s): Permission of the instructor.

A course designed to treat subject matter not covered in other department courses or to provide advanced study of subject matter introduced in other coursees. The title, content, and credit hours will be determined by current mutual interests of faculty and students.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 1010 Introduction to Psychological Science, plus additional requirements as may be determined.

An opportunity for a student to engage in supervised reading of specialized literature not covered in other courses.
Pass/Fail oriented.
Prerequisite(s): Major or minor program in psychology and permission of the instructor.

In this course students will gain first-hand teaching experience by assisting a professor with teaching a course. The professor and the student will formulate a learning contract at the beginning of the term, which will outline the expectations of the students' involvement in the course and the criteria for rating the students' performance. Responsibilities may include grading, taking attendance, tutoring students, and facilitating class activities. For each hour of academic credit, students will spend 3-4 hours a week assisting with teaching. Enrollment generally is limited to 1-3 credit hours in a given semester with the possibility of enrollment in future semester.
Prerequisite(s): 12 credits of psychology courses and permission of the instructor.

In this course students will gain first-hand research experience by assisting a professor with conducting a psychological research project. Running participants, analyzing and managing data, and doing literature searches typically are included, although the exact nature of student's responsibilities will depend on the research project and will be agreed upon at the beginning of the semester. For each hour of academic credit, students will spend 3-4 hours a week assisting with the research. Enrollment generally is limited to 1-4 credit hours in a given semester with the possibility of enrollment in future semesters.
Pass/Fail only.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 2100 Psychological Statistics, PSYCH 2110 Research Methods in Psychology, and permission of the instructor.

An opportunity for a student to engage in an individually arranged research project supervised by a member of the faculty. Independent Study may not duplicate courses described in the catalog.
Pass/Fail oriented.
Prerequisite(s): Major or minor program in psychology and permission of the instructor.

An opportunity for a student to engage in an individually arranged project supervised by a member of the faculty. Special Projects may not duplicate courses described in the catalog.
Pass/Fail oriented.
Prerequisite(s): Major or minor program in psychology and permission of the instructor.

Supervised field experience in settings providing psychological services with opportunities for observation and participation. Reading assignments, written reports, and class meetings typically are included, although the exact nature of a student's responsibilities are individually arranged. Students spend 45 hours per semester in the assigned setting for each hour of the academic credit. Enrollment generally is limited to 1-4 hours of academic credit in any given semester with the possibility of enrollment for a second semester. Openings are limited to advanced psychology majors who meet the prerequisites set by the department and by the cooperating clinical or research agency. Approval from the cooperating agency also is required. Enrollment reflects a volunteer experience.
Pass/Fail only.
Prerequisite(s): Junior or senior standing and permission of the instructor.

In preparation for the psychology major's senior research project, the Introduction to Senior Research class allows the student to explore potential topics, to evaluate the literature within the student's topic of choice, to identify appropriate measurement instruments for the senior research project, and to write a research proposal using APA style. Small group collaboration and peer review will be encouraged. Typically taken the semester prior to PSYCH 4990 Senior Research.
Prerequisite(s): Major in psychology, PSYCH 2110 Research Methods in Psychology, and permission of the instructor.

This is an empirical research investigation in which each student majoring in psychology formulates his or her own research topic, collects and anlyzes the data relevant to that topic, and prepares a formal report of the investigation consistent with the publication style of the American Psychological Association. Either laboratory or field research is acceptable. Normally taken during the fall semester of the senior year, although selection of the research topic may be done during the second semester of the junior year in PSYCH 4980 Introduction to Senior Research.
Prerequisite(s): PSYCH 2100 Psychological Statistics, PSYCH 2110 Research Methods in Psychology, PSYCH 4980 Introduction to Senior Research,  and permission of the instructor.