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Washington State University
College of Arts and Sciences Department of Psychology

Majoring and Minoring in Psychology

Why a Degree in Psychology?

Many students enter college unsure of what their future major may be. Your freshman year is an excellent time to explore a number of different interests that may, or may not, evolve into a future career. Assuming that psychology is among your interest areas, enroll in Psych 105: Introductory Psychology during your freshman year to learn more about this diverse and exciting discipline. Psych 105 will give you a better idea of what psychology “is,” what psychologists “do,” and whether or not a degree in psychology is really something that interests you.

Bachelor of Science Degree

The Department of Psychology offers a Bachelor of Science degree for students wishing to major in psychology at the undergraduate level. This degree emphasizes both the experimental and applied aspects of the discipline. It provides fundamental training in its basic areas (i.e., physiology, learning, cognition, social, developmental, etc.) as well as extensive training in statistical analysis and scientific methodology. The degree is designed to prepare students for entry into the job market, immediately following graduation, in a wide variety of fields or admission to a graduate program in pursue of advanced post-baccalaureate training in counseling, clinical, and experimental psychology.

The Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology requires a minimum of 35 credit hours in psychology.

Of these 35 credits…

  1. 15 credit hours must be in upper-division psychology courses (i.e., 300 or 400 level).
  2. A minimum of 10 credit hours of psychology must be completed at WSU

In addition, students must…

  1. Complete one semester of General Biology with Lab (Biol 102, Biol 106, Biol 107, or other approved General Biology course)
  2. Complete the Senior Exit Survey.
  3. Maintain a cumulative and Psychology GPA of 2.0

Students may use the Psychology Check Sheet for the B.S. to track their progress toward degree completion. This form is available online and in the Department of Psychology main office (JT 233).

In addition to their degree requirements, students must also fulfill the University Common Requirements (UCORE) and the College of Liberal Arts Requirements. Please refer to the WSU Catalog for details regarding these requirements.

Academic advisors will assist students with requirements and course selection, but each student is ultimately responsibility for understanding and meeting the graduation requirements.

Program Goals and Student Learning Outcomes for the BS Degree

Program Goals Table

Certifying in Psychology

Students wishing to formally declare psychology as their major must complete a process called “certification.”

To certify for the Bachelor of Science degree, a student must…

  1. Complete Psych 311 with a “C-” or better.
  2. Have a cumulative 2.5 GPA.

If these requirements are met, the student may complete the “Petition for Certifying a Major.” Students are encouraged to complete the certification process as soon as these requirements are met.

Psychology as a Second Major or Second Degree

Students majoring in another degree, but wishing to graduate with Psychology as a second major, should follow the guidelines listed below:

  1. The student must have a 2.5 cumulative GPA and complete Psych 311 with a “c-” or better to apply for a Bachelor of Science as a second major.
  2. The student must complete a “Petition for Certifying a Second Major or a Minor.” This can be done after the student completes 60 credit hours and certified your first major.
  3. The student must complete an “Undergraduate and Professional Degree Application,” This can be done at least 2 semesters before graduation.
  4. The student must complete all of the requirements for the Department of Psychology, along with all of the GER requirements for the College of Liberal Arts.
  5. The student’s transcript will indicate that he/she has a second degree upon completion of all requirements and 150 semester hours.