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Psychology

Department of Psychology - Hill 109  


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Missouri State University
901 South National Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65897
Office: 417-836-4790
Fax: 417-836-8330
Email: Psychology@missouristate.edu
http://www.psychology.missouristate.edu

Career Preparation

Psychology is both a science and a profession.  As scientists, we develop theories and devise experiments that attempt to explain behavior and mental processes.  Examples of scientific problems in psychology include how learning occurs, how we perceive the world, and how personalities are formed.  We also study particular populations, such as children, older adults, workers, and individuals with developmental disabilities.

As professionals, psychologists apply theories and research results to real world problems.  For example, clinical psychologists help people with their problems in living.  They provide psychological testing and assessment, develop treatment plans, and deliver psychotherapy for individuals, families, and groups.  Applied psychologists also work in business and industry.  They help organizations solve problems with human resources by establishing selection, training, and development systems.  Industrial/organizational psychologists also design jobs and workplaces so that people are more satisfied and productive.  Beyond these examples, Psychology includes dozens more professions.

Most professional careers in psychology require training beyond the bachelor’s degree.  However, our bachelor-level graduates enter diverse careers as rehabilitation counselors, personnel managers, youth specialists, public relations directors, manager trainees, live-in counselors, recreation directors, data processing analysts, and as future leaders in many other interesting fields.

Academic Program

The Department of Psychology offers both the Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts degrees in psychology and a Bachelor of Science in Gerontology.  Students may also minor in Psychology or Gerontology to accompany a major in another field.  The dual major in Psychology and Gerontology is also an attractive option.

The psychology major requires 34 credit hours in psychology.  Students must also select a minor field of study, which requires 15-27 credits.  In addition, each student must complete coursework that satisfies the general education requirements at Missouri State.  The requirements specify that students select a broad range of basic courses.  A student who majors in Psychology will have a faculty member in the department as an advisor.  The student and advisor work together to plan a program that will satisfy the academic requirements for a degree and meet the student’s career goals.  Suggested high school coursework includes a broad range of studies, such as English literature and composition, with a strong emphasis in mathematics and the natural sciences.  The Gerontology major, although administered by the Psychology Department, is an interdisciplinary program requiring students to complete coursework in at least five different departments.  A major emphasis of the program is allowing students to gain experience working with older adults.  A double major in psychology and gerontology enables students to graduate with the same number of credit hours as a major/minor combination. 

The department also offers a Master of Science degree, with tracks in Clinical, General/Experimental, and Industrial/Organizational Psychology. The two-year, full-time program prepares students for professional careers in psychology or for doctoral study.  Four Forensic Child Psychology courses are offered at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, and the set of courses can lead to certification.

Courses

The following is a list of some of the courses offered by the Department of Psychology.  Please consult the Missouri State Catalog online at www.missouristate.edu/catalog/ for specific course information and a complete list of courses offered. 

        Abnormal Psychology                                      Industrial/Organizational Psychology            Psychology of Addictions
        Aging and Adjustment                                     Memory and Cognition                                       Psychology of Adolescence
        Behavior Management and Change             Perception                                                            Psychology of Adulthood    
        Death and Human Behavior                           Physiological Psychology                                  Psychology of Child Abuse and Exploitation
        Ethology                                                              Psychological Tests and Measures                Psychology of Diverse Populations
        Human Sexuality                                              Psychology and Law                                           Theories of Social Psychology

Faculty

The faculty of the Department of Psychology represents many different theoretical orientations and areas of specialization. We have one of the largest psychology faculties in Missouri. As a result, psychology students at Missouri State receive instruction from Ph.D.- level teachers even in lower-level courses, and student/faculty ratios for most courses are comparable to those of much smaller institutions. The department is able to offer students the breadth necessary to accommodate their personal goals and the quality necessary to accomplish these goals.

Facilities

The Department of Psychology is located in Hill Hall.  Our labs and clinical testing rooms are located in Hill Hall, Pummill Hall, and the downtown Park Central Office Building.  Specialized rooms are designed to study animal learning, physiological processes, biofeedback, perception, and human learning and memory.  In addition, some rooms are equipped with one-way mirrors and video recording equipment to allow observation of clinical interviews and/or psychological testing.  All of these facilities are used by our undergraduate students collaborating on projects with faculty members.

Special Opportunites & Services

Academic advisement of psychology majors is an important focus for the department. We maintain an Office of Undergraduate Programs and Advisement, overseen by full-time faculty members. One of these individuals serves primarily as a professional academic advisor who assists students pursuing psychology majors or minors. 

The department provides several avenues for students to engage in career development activities. Students may earn credit through cooperative education or special practicum courses that provide "real world" exposure. Our students are also encouraged to establish a faculty "mentor" relationship and to become involved in projects as research assistants. 

Psychology students at Missouri State also maintain an active chapter of Psi Chi, the national honorary organization for psychology majors, and an active Psychology Club. These organizations allow interested students (both majors and non-majors) to become involved in department activities. Active students suggest improvements or needed additions to the curriculum, sponsor speakers on a variety of topics, organize special activities that promote student welfare in the department and engagement on campus.

Sample Schedule

Missouri State is committed to assisting students to graduate in four years--see sample graduation plans for this major.

The following is a sample schedule for this major--your actual schedule will vary.

First Semester Courses Hours
GEP 101 First-Year Foundations2
ENG 110 Writing I3
KIN 100 (Error: Course not found)
Math 130 or higher3
PSY 121 Introductory Psychology3
HST 121 or 1223
Total Hours 16
Second Semester Courses Hours
COM 115 Fundamentals of Public Speaking3
Natural World4
PSY 150 Introduction to the Psychology Major1
CIS/CSC 101 Computers for Learning2
Self Understanding/Creativity & Vision3
Self Understanding/Humanities3
Total Hours 16

Sophomore Year

First Semester Courses Hours
Minor Course3
PSY Developmental Course3
ENG 210 Writing II: Writing Across the Disciplines3
Natural World4
PSY 200 Psychological Statistical Methods3
Total Hours 16
Second Semester Courses Hours
Culture and Society/Humanities3
PSY 302 Experimental Psychology3
PSY Applied Course3
Minor Course3
Second Minor Course or General Elective3
Total Hours 15

Junior Year

First Semester Courses Hours
Second Minor Course or General Elective3
Minor Course3
PLS 101 American Democracy and Citizenship3
PSY Biological Processes Course3
PSY Elective3
Total Hours 15
Second Semester Courses Hours
Minor Course3
Minor Course3
Second Minor Course or General Elective3
PSY Learning and Cognition Course3
PSY Elective3
Total Hours 15

Senior Year

First Semester Courses Hours
Culture and Society/Social Sciences3
PSY Elective3
PSY Elective (poss. PSY 498/499) or Gen. Elec.1
Second Minor Course or General Elective3
Second Minor Course or General Elective3
Minor Course3
Total Hours 16
Second Semester Courses Hours
Second Minor Course or General Elective3
PSY 411 Psychology of Diverse Populations3
Second Minor Course or General Elective3
Second Minor Course or General Elective3
Minor Course3
PSY Elective (poss. PSY 498/499) or Gen. Elec.1
Total Hours 16