http://www.pacific.edu/Academics/Schools-and-Colleges/College-of-the-Pacific/Academics/Departments-and-Programs/Psychology.html
Phone: (209) 946-2133
Location: Psychology/Communications Building

Matthew Normand, Chair

Degrees Offered

Bachelor of Science
Master of Arts
(see Graduate Catalog for information)

Majors Offered

Psychology
Psychology with Departmental Honors

Minors Offered

Psychology
 

The programs of study offered by the Psychology Department are designed to help the student understand the behavior of human beings and other organisms. Behavior is a complicated subject, whether it’s a high school student trying to solve mathematics problems or a puppy learning to retrieve. As a result, there are many ways to understand it. Behavioral variety is reflected in both the course offerings of our department and in the interests of the faculty. Students may study parenting, children learning moral concepts, adolescents, adults who are depressed or anxious, and people who have chronic health problems, all in one academic year.

This diversity of interests and activities is tied together by the faculty’s commitment to scientific inquiry. Throughout their coursework, students learn how to answer questions about behavior through empirical research and theoretical analysis.

Several objectives can be met by studying psychology at the University which includes increased understanding of behavior, career preparation, and post-graduate studies preparation.

Increased Understanding of Your Behavior and the Behavior of Others

Students interested in a liberal arts education may satisfy a desire for a better understanding of themselves and others through a major in psychology. The diversity of course, fieldwork and internship offerings provides students with opportunities to study and have first-hand experience with a wide range of human behaviors and problems. Beyond personal development, the knowledge and skills acquired from this approach to the major have application to a wide variety of activities that students may find themselves engaged in following graduation, including business, science, education, sports, and the arts.

Career Preparation

The department offers programs of study that provide the psychology major with psychology-related employment opportunities directly upon receiving the Bachelor’s degree. This involves specialization in a) applied behavior analysis which provides students skills to work with a variety of populations, or b) applications in business which provides students, in cooperation with the School of Business, skills in the use of psychological approaches in the personnel, training, and performance management areas of business and government.

Graduate and Professional School Preparation

Students interested in entering Masters and Doctoral programs in psychology or professional schools such as law and education have the opportunity to pursue an intensive series of course, practicum and research experiences that can significantly improve their chances of admission and later achievement. The program provides students with research and hands-on experience as early as the freshman year, so that by the time of graduation students may have authored or co-authored conference presentations and research papers and worked with a wide range of applied problems.

Whatever objectives students may select, they find that the department provides much more than traditional in-classroom instruction. There are opportunities for direct work with children and adults in a number of community agencies, institutions and businesses. Research experience is encouraged through one or more of the several ongoing research projects, and many courses have laboratory and fieldwork experiences associated with them. As a result, students can become a part of the continuing work of psychology.

Bachelor of Science Major in Psychology

Students must complete a minimum of 120 units with a Pacific cumulative and major/program grade point average of 2.0 in order to earn the bachelor of science degree with a major in psychology.

I. General Education Requirements

For more details, see General Education

Minimum 28 units and 9 courses that include:

A. CORE Seminars (2 courses)

CORE 001Problem Solving & Oral Comm3
CORE 002Writing and Critical Thinking4

Note: 1) CORE Seminars cannot be taken for Pass/No Credit. 2) Transfer students with 28 or more transfer credits taken after high school are exempt from both CORE seminars. Students participating in the First Year Honors Program should complete an honors section of CORE 001 regardless of the number of college transfer units completed. 

B. Breadth Requirement (7 courses, at least 3 units each)

At least one course from each of the following areas:
Artistic Process & Creation
Civic & Global Responsibility
Language & Narratives
Quantitative Reasoning
Scientific Inquiry
Social Inquiry
World Perspectives & Ethics

Note: 1) No more than 2 courses from a single discipline can be used to meet the Breadth Requirement.

C. Diversity and Inclusion Requirement

All students must complete Diversity and Inclusion coursework (at least 3 units)

Note: 1) Diversity and Inclusion courses can also be used to meet the breadth category requirements, or major or minor requirements.

D. Fundamental Skills

Students must demonstrate competence in:
Writing
Quantitative Analysis (Math)

Note: 1) Failure to satisfy the fundamental skills requirements by the end of four semesters of full-time study at the University is grounds for academic disqualification.

II. Breadth Requirement

Students must complete 60 units outside the primary discipline of the first major, regardless of the department who offers the course(s) in that discipline, (Courses include general education courses, transfer courses, CPCE/EXTN units, internships, etc.)

III. Major Requirements

Minimum 51 units that include:

PSYC 001Orientation to the Psychology Major1
PSYC 002Professional Development in Psychology1
PSYC 031Introduction to Psychology4
PSYC 101Research Methods and Statistics in Psychology I5
PSYC 102Research Methods and Statistics in Psychology II5
Select one of the following: *3
Human Anatomy and Physiology
Introduction to Biology
Principles of Biology
Principles of Biology
Elements of Chemistry
Human-Computer Interface Design
Artificial Intelligence
Select one of the following:4
Introduction to Logic
Philosophy of Science
History and Systems of Psychology
Select four of the following:
Introduction to Cognitive Science
Abnormal and Clinical Psychology
Developmental Psychology
Behavioral Psychology
Social Psychology
Sensation and Perception
Select three of the following:
Advanced Lab in Cognitive Psychology
Advanced Lab in Clinical Psychology
Advanced Lab in Child Clinical Psychology
Advanced Lab in Developmental Psychology
Advanced Lab in Behavioral Psychology
Advanced Lab in Social Psychology

Note:  Only courses graded with a C- or better will count in the major. 

Bachelor of Science Major in Psychology with Departmental Honors

Students must complete a minimum of 120 units with a Pacific cumulative grade point average of 3.4 and major/program grade point average of 3.8 in order to earn the bachelor of science degree with a major in psychology with departmental honors.

I. General Education Requirements

For more details, see General Education

Minimum 28 units and 9 courses that include:

A. CORE Seminars (2 courses)

CORE 001Problem Solving & Oral Comm3
CORE 002Writing and Critical Thinking4

Note: 1) CORE Seminars cannot be taken for Pass/No Credit. 2) Transfer students with 28 or more transfer credits taken after high school are exempt from both CORE seminars. Students participating in the First Year Honors Program should complete an honors section of CORE 001 regardless of the number of college transfer units completed. 

B. Breadth Requirement (7 courses, at least 3 units each)

At least one course from each of the following areas:
Artistic Process & Creation
Civic & Global Responsibility
Language & Narratives
Quantitative Reasoning
Scientific Inquiry
Social Inquiry
World Perspectives & Ethics

Note: 1) No more than 2 courses from a single discipline can be used to meet the Breadth Requirement.

C. Diversity and Inclusion Requirement

All students must complete Diversity and Inclusion coursework (at least 3 units)

Note: 1) Diversity and Inclusion courses can also be used to meet the breadth category requirements, or major or minor requirements.

D. Fundamental Skills

Students must demonstrate competence in:
Writing
Quantitative Analysis (Math)

Note: 1) Failure to satisfy the fundamental skills requirements by the end of four semesters of full-time study at the University is grounds for academic disqualification.

II. Breadth Requirement

Students must complete 60 units outside the primary discipline of the first major, regardless of the department who offers the course(s) in that discipline, (Courses include general education courses, transfer courses, CPCE/EXTN units, internships, etc.)

III. Major Requirements

Minimum 51 units that include:

PSYC 001Orientation to the Psychology Major1
PSYC 002Professional Development in Psychology1
PSYC 031Introduction to Psychology4
PSYC 101Research Methods and Statistics in Psychology I5
PSYC 102Research Methods and Statistics in Psychology II5
Select one of the following: *3
Human Anatomy and Physiology
Introduction to Biology
Principles of Biology
Principles of Biology
Elements of Chemistry
Human-Computer Interface Design
Artificial Intelligence
Select one of the following:4
Introduction to Logic
Philosophy of Science
History and Systems of Psychology
Select four of the following:
Introduction to Cognitive Science
Abnormal and Clinical Psychology
Developmental Psychology
Behavioral Psychology
Social Psychology
Sensation and Perception
Select three of the following:
Advanced Lab in Cognitive Psychology
Advanced Lab in Clinical Psychology
Advanced Lab in Child Clinical Psychology
Advanced Lab in Developmental Psychology
Advanced Lab in Behavioral Psychology
Advanced Lab in Social Psychology
Select one of the following: **1
Internship
Practicum

Note:  Only courses graded with a C- or better will count in the major.  

Graduate and Professional School Preparation

Students who plan to go on to graduate study in psychology or to use psychology as a basis for advanced professional study may select from the following sequence of courses in addition to the major requirements:PSYC 089/PSYC 189MATH 130 and PSYC 183 (by instructor permission only). It is strongly recommended that major courses include a representation of the basic subfields of psychology as well as additionalPSYC 197 and PSYC 087. Options that include both psychology and other courses provide the student with coursework as well as research and applied experience appropriate to graduate study in all areas of psychology, as well as professional study in education, social work, and law.

Minor in Psychology

Students must complete a minimum of 20 units and 5 courses with a Pacific minor grade point average of 2.0 in order to earn a minor in psychology.

Minor Requirements:

PSYC 031Introduction to Psychology4
Select three of the following:12
Introduction to Cognitive Science
Introduction to Cognitive Science
Abnormal and Clinical Psychology
Developmental Psychology
Behavioral Psychology
Social Psychology
Sensation and Perception
Select one of the following:4
Human Anatomy and Physiology
Introduction to Biology
Principles of Biology
Principles of Biology
Elements of Chemistry
Introduction to Logic
Philosophy of Science
History and Systems of Psychology

Note: 1) All courses must be graded “C-” or better to count towards the minor.

Psychology Courses

PSYC 001. Orientation to the Psychology Major. 1 Unit.

This is a 1-credit seminar designed to familiarize students with the psychology major at the University of the Pacific. The logic and basic elements of the psychology curriculum will be reviewed, and students will be introduced to each of the faculty members in the psychology department. Additionally, the seminar will review several foundational skills necessary for success as a psychology major, including, but not limited to study skills, professional and ethical behavior, and time management. The class is for beginning Psychology majors only. Prerequisite: Psychology major.

PSYC 002. Professional Development in Psychology. 1 Unit.

This is a 1-credit seminar designed to familiarize psychology majors with various professional issues related to the field of psychology, including preparation for graduate school and career. Prerequisites: PSYC 001; Psychology major; Junior or Senior standing.

PSYC 015. Introduction to Cognitive Science. 4 Units.

Cognitive science is an exciting cross-disciplinary filed devoted to understanding how the mind works. It draws on research done in a wide variety of disciplines, including philosophy, psychology, artificial intelligence, linguistics, and neuroscience. This course examines some of the main assumptions, concepts, methods, applications, and limits of the cognitive scientific approach to the mind. Questions include: Is the mind a computer and, if so, what kind of computer? What are the prospects for genuine artificial intelligence? How is the mind organized? Does the mind have innate structures? Can we explain memory, action, perception, reasoning, and social cognition? What can the brain tell us about the mind, and what can we learn from damaged brains? How did minds evolve? To what extent does cognition depend on the body and the environment? (GE3C)

PSYC 017. Abnormal and Clinical Psychology. 4 Units.

This course covers the history of mental health and mental health diagnoses; past and current research findings, and prevailing thoughts and current controversies in the field of mental health and treatments. (DVSY, ETHC, GE1A)

PSYC 029. Developmental Psychology. 4 Units.

This course provides an overview of the growth and change that occurs in physical, cognitive, social, and emotional domains across the life span. Current theory and findings from empirical research are highlighted. (GE1A)

PSYC 031. Introduction to Psychology. 4 Units.

This course is an introduction to the major fields within psychology. Topics include: 1) experimental methods in psychology, 2) physiological psychology, 3) sensation and perception, 4) psychology of learning, 5) memory, 6) cognition and language, 7) cognitive abilities, 8), motivation and emotion, 9) human development, 10) personality, 11) abnormal psychology and treatment of mental illness, and 12) social psychology. (GE1A, PLAW)

PSYC 053. Behavioral Psychology. 4 Units.

This course provides an introduction to the science and application of basic principles related to learning and behavior. Students learn about approaches to behavioral observation, measurement of behavior, gathering and analyzing of data using single subject designs, classical and operant conditioning and the application of behavior change principles to oneself and society.

PSYC 066. Human Sexuality. 4 Units.

This course is the study of the biological, psychological and cultural bases of human sexual behavior. Topics include female and male sexual anatomy and physiology, love and communication, sexual behavior patterns, homosexuality and bisexuality, contraception, pregnancy and childbirth, sexual difficulties and sex therapy as well as sexually transmitted diseases. The course also examines changes in sexual functioning throughout the life span and it explores the development of male and female gender roles and the effect of gender roles on various aspects of life. This course is open to freshmen but does not count toward major. (GE1A, GEND)

PSYC 069. Social Psychology. 4 Units.

Social psychology is the scientific study of thoughts, feelings, and behaviors of individuals in social situations. This course examines the theories, research, and applications of social psychology. Specific topics to be covered include: self-awareness, self-esteem, self-deception, the power of first impressions, nonverbal communication, stereotypes and prejudice, interpersonal attraction, love and romantic relationships, altruism, aggression, conformity, obedience, persuasion and propaganda, leadership, and group behavior and decision-making. Throughout the course, these topics will be discussed as they inform us about human behavior in domains such as politics, sports, entertainment, health, education, advertising, and law.

PSYC 079. Sensation and Perception. 4 Units.

This course is an introduction to human sensory systems and perception. Building upon a detailed analysis of visual processing, students explore through lectures, readings, demonstrations, case studies, and investigations how scientists research various sensory systems and how they shape our experience of, and interaction with the world. This draws on diverse fields such as biology, physics, philosophy and art in addition to psychology. (GE3C)

PSYC 087. Internship. 1-4 Units.

This internship course gives experiences in a work setting, and is contracted on an individual basis. Students may register for only one course listed below in any semester and may receive no more than four units of credit for any of these courses. Pass/no credit is the only grading.

PSYC 087A. Internship. 1-4 Units.

PSYC 089. Practicum. 1-4 Units.

The practicum offers non-classroom experiences in activities related to the curriculum under conditions that is determined by the appropriate faculty member. Students may register for only one course listed below in any semester and may receive no more than four units of credit for any of these courses. Pass/no credit is the only grading.

PSYC 101. Research Methods and Statistics in Psychology I. 5 Units.

This course is the first course in a two-course sequence required for the psychology major. This course will teach the student how to design, complete, analyze, interpret, and report empirical research used to test hypotheses derived from psychological theory or its application, and to be able to critically evaluate scientific research produced by others. Prerequisite: Fundamental Math Skills requirement. (GE3B)

PSYC 102. Research Methods and Statistics in Psychology II. 5 Units.

This course is the second course in a two-course sequence required for the psychology major. This course will teach you how to design, complete, analyze, interpret, and report empirical research used to test hypotheses derived from psychological theory or its application, and to be able to critically evaluate scientific research produced by others. Prerequisite: PSYC 101 with a “C-“ or higher.

PSYC 115. Advanced Lab in Cognitive Psychology. 4 Units.

This advanced lab will focus on more in-depth exploration of a specific topic area within the field of Cognitive Psychology. The course will include strong research/applied component that will help students get more hands on feel for research and/or application of the concepts within the field. Possible topics include Memory, Thinking Fast and Slow, or other topics. Prerequisites: PSYC 015, PSYC 11102 with a C- or better.

PSYC 117. Advanced Lab in Clinical Psychology. 4 Units.

This advanced lab will focus on a more in-depth exploration of a specific topic area within the field of Clinical Psychology. The course will include a strong research/applied component that will help students get more hands on feel for research and/or application of the concepts Psychology, Testing and Assessment, or other topics. Prerequisites: PSYC 017, PSYC 053, PSYC 102 with a C- or better, or permission of instructor.

PSYC 118. Advanced Lab in Child Clinical Psychology. 4 Units.

This lab is a more in depth look at topics within the field of clinical child psychology. Each time the course is taught, a specific topic of study such as parenting, child mental health, etc. will be the focus. The course relies heavily on becoming aware of the available research within the field of Clinical Child Psychology as well as more effectively accessing and understanding research in general. Experiential opportunities will be included. Prerequisites: PSYC 017, PSYC 102 with a “C-“ or better.

PSYC 125. History and Systems of Psychology. 4 Units.

This course traces the development of “modern psychology” from its birth in early philosophy to its founding as an independent discipline in the late 1800s to its current status with an emphasis on modern behaviorism and cognitive psychology as the two dominant theoretical systems in psychology. In addition, other modern developments such as evolutionary psychology and cognitive neuroscience are discussed. The course focuses on specific content areas and ideas in psychology and the individuals who are most credited with their development.

PSYC 129. Advanced Lab in Developmental Psychology. 4 Units.

This advanced lab will focus on a more in-depth exploration of a specific topic area within the field of Developmental Psychology. The course will include a strong research/ applied component that will help students get a more hands on fells for research and/ or application of the concepts within the field. Possible topics include The Study of Infants, Psychology of Aging, Cognitive Aging, or other topics. Prerequisites: PSYC 029, PSYC 102 with a C- or better. (DVSY, ETHC)

PSYC 153. Advanced Lab in Behavioral Psychology. 4 Units.

This advanced lab will focus more in-depth exploration of a specific topic area within the field of Behavioral Psychology. The course will include a strong research/ applied component that will help students get a more hands on feel for research and/or application of the concepts within the field. Possible topics may include Behavioral Economics, Behavioral Approaches to Common Childhood Problems, the Power of Habit, or other topics. Prerequisites: PSYC 053, PSYC 102 with a C- or better.

PSYC 158. Behavioral Assessment. 4 Units.

An overview of behavioral assessment techniques is examined. Specific topics include data collection, inter-observer agreement, social validity, treatment integrity, functional assessment, stimulus preference assessment, indirect assessment techniques, and functional analysis procedures. Prerequisites: PSYC 053 and permission of instructor.

PSYC 162. Ethical Behavior. 4 Units.

This course will cover professional conduct and ethical behavior within the broad discipline of psychology, as well as the specific ethical and professional guidelines for the Behavior Anaysis Certification Board (BACB®). This course addresses ethical decision-making, regulatory standards, and professional behavior in assessment, treatment, and research, in a variety of settings. Although this course will encompass a variety of disciplines and settings within psychology, primary attention will be given to those disciplines intersecting with the practive of applied behavior analysis and on those settings in which behavior analysts in practice are most likely to operate. Topics include accountability, confidentiality and informed consent, quality of services, quality of life, emergency management, research and academic settings, professional collaborations, boundaries, cultural competence, and ethical safeguards. Prerequisites: Junior standing or higher and permission of the instructor.

PSYC 169. Advanced Lab in Social Psychology. 4 Units.

This advanced lab will focus on a more in-depth exploration of a specific topic area within the field of Social Psychology. The course will include a strong research/applied component that will help students get a more hands on feel for research and/ or application of the concepts within the field. Possible topics may include Social Influence, Conformity, or other topics. Prerequisites: PSYCH 069, PSYCH 102 with a C- or better.

PSYC 183. Research Design. 4 Units.

This course is the design and analysis of research using single subject and group designs. Prerequisite: PSYC 105 and permission of instructor.

PSYC 187. Internship. 1-4 Units.

This internship course gives experiences in a work setting and is contracted on an individual basis. PSYC 187 represents advanced internship work that involves increased independence and responsibility. Students may register for only one course listed below in any semester and may receive no more than four units of credit for any of these courses. Pass/no credit is the only grading.

PSYC 189. Practicum. 4 Units.

The practicum offers non-classroom experiences in activities related to the curriculum under conditions that is determined by the appropriate faculty member. PSYC 189 represents advanced practicum work which involves increased independence and responsibility. Students may register for only one course listed below in any semester and may receive no more than four units of credit for any of these courses. Pass/no credit is the only grading.

PSYC 189A. Applied Psychology Practicum. 4 Units.

Students will acquire skills necessary to the application of principles of general psychology to solve personal, organizational and social problems while serving as assistants to faculty and professional psychologists.

PSYC 191. Independent Study. 1-4 Units.

PSYC 195. Seminar. 4 Units.

PSYC 197. Independent Research. 1-4 Units.

Knowledge Base

  • Students use the concepts, language, and major theories of the discipline to account for psychological phenomena

Communication

  • Students communicate ideas clearly, accurately, and in accordance with APA style.  

Scientific Inquiry and Critical Thinking

  • Students evaluate the quality of information and use empirical evidence to craft arguments.
  • Students distinguish between scientific and pseudoscientific claims and use skepticism when considering the causes of behavior.
  • Students Perform mathematical computations and evaluate claims based upon mathematical arguements.

Psychology Faculty

Marlesha Bell, Visiting Assistant Professor, 2020, BA, California State University Northridge, 2013, MA, 2015, PhD, University of South Florida, 2020

Jessica Grady, Associate Professor, 2013, B.S., Lebanon Valley College, 2006; Ph.D., West Virginia University, 2011

Scott A. Jensen, Professor, 2006, BS, Brigham Young University, 1998; MS, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, 2003; PhD, 2004.

Carolynn S. Kohn, Associate Professor, 2004, BA, University of California at Santa Barbara, 1991; MA, Hahnemann University, 1996; PhD, MCP-Hahnemann University, 2000.

Matthew Normand, Professor, 2007, BA, Western New England College, 1997; MA, Western Michigan University, 1999; MS, Florida State University, 2002; PhD, 2003.

Corey Stocco, Associate Profesor, 2016, BA, University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire, 2007; MS, Northeastern University, 2010; Ph.D., Western New England University, 2013

Carla Strickland-Hughes, Assistant Professor, 2017, B.S., North Carolina State University, 2011; MS, University of Florida, 2014; PhD, University of Florida, 2017