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Psychology - RITpedia

Psychology

Program overview

The bachelor of science degree in psychology provides students with a strong grounding in the discipline of psychology, integrated with a technological focus. Upon entry, students are assigned a faculty adviser to mentor their progress through the program. Students also are provided with curriculum planning strategies and career discussions through the program’s Freshman Seminar.

Curriculum

The program is unique and encompasses three key elements: the choice among four interdisciplinary tracks, a technical/professional concentration, and a cooperative education requirement.

Interdisciplinary tracks

Students choose one of the following interdisciplinary tracks: visual perception, information processing, biopsychology, or clinical psychology. Technology is integrated into these tracks to produce a nontraditional and career-oriented psychology major. The tracks are also active fields of research in psychology, and students receive training that provides a strong foundation for graduate school and employment in related fields.

The visual perception track focuses on human perceptual systems. Vision is presented as the integration of anatomy, physiology, and behavior. Students learn psychophysical methods. The track covers cutting-edge topics such as color perception, the retinal mosaic, and neural plasticity. It stresses current research showing that visual perception is a living and growing field.

The information processing track uses an interdisciplinary approach to study cognitive processes such as judgment and decision making, memory, learning, language, problem solving, attention, and perception. The track explores the interaction of human factors, psychology, and technology.

The biopsychology track studies brain function as the basis of behavior. It focuses on topics such as lateralization, cortical specialization, brain injury, and psychopharmacology. Psychophysiological measures (including EEG, EMG, and skin conductance) are covered in depth along with the relationship between brain chemistry and behavior. Students perform laboratory work on the brain and its relationship to attention, memory, language, perception, and psychological disorders.

The clinical psychology track emphasizes the scientific and empirical foundations of clinical and applied work. Empirically based methods are introduced to understand and modify human psychological problems. This track prepares students for graduate programs in mental health.

Technical/professional concentration

The program seeks students with an aptitude for technical and quantitative reasoning as well as an interest in psychology. There is sufficient curricular flexibility to permit completion of a technical concentration.

Cooperative education

The program requires that students complete a cooperative education experience for two quarters between the sophomore and senior years of course work. The co-op experience is in a psychology-related field and does not carry academic credit.


Psychology, BS degree, typical course sequence

Course Qtr. Cr. Hrs.


First Year

Freshman Seminar 0514-201 1

Introduction to Psychology 0514-210 4

Childhood and Adolescence 0514-440 4

Cognitive Psychology 0514-443 4

Social Psychology 0514-444 4

Human Biology I, II with Lab 1004-211, 212, 231, 232 8

Algebra for Management Science 1016-225 4

Web Foundations 4002-206 4

Liberal Arts* 12

First-Year Enrichment I, II 1105-051, 052 2

Wellness Education† 0


Second Year

Scientific Writing 0514-315 4

Psychological Statistics 0514-350 4

Experimental Psychology 0514-400 4

Psychology of Personality 0514-446 4

Abnormal Psychology 0514-447 4

Industrial/Organizational Psychology 0514-448 4

Data Analysis I, II 1016-319, 320 8

Liberal Arts* 12

Technical/Professional Concentration 4

Cooperative Education (summer quarter) Co-op


Third Year

Interdisciplinary Courses 12

Technical/Professional Concentration 8

Liberal Arts* 20

University Electives 8

Cooperative Education (summer quarter) Co-op


Fourth Year

Interdisciplinary Course 4

University Electives 12

Senior Project in Psychology I, II 0514-596, 597 8

General Education Electives 16

Total Quarter Credit Hours 183


  • Please see Liberal Arts General Education Requirements for more information.

† Please see Wellness Education Requirements for more information.

Admission requirements

For information on undergraduate admission, including freshman and transfer admission guidelines, please refer to the Undergraduate Admission section of this bulletin.

Additional information

Career opportunities

The unique requirements of this program ensure that each student should be well-prepared for advanced study in psychology or a related field, employment in industry or in human service agencies, or other career opportunities.