Study human behavior

What's atypical on a traditional semester schedule is typical at Cornell College (thanks to One Course At A Time). Day tripping to an amusement park, observing and recording the interactions between couples before and after they embark on a thrilling ride, and testing theories about brain chemistry and romance are all a part of your social psychology course at Cornell. What's not to love?

A degree in psychology prepares you for diverse career options from research and behavioral health care to social services and public policy. As a student of psychology, you’ll take on courses and projects that foster proficiency with research design and research methods. You’ll gain an understanding of human behavior, thinking, and emotion.

Learning while doing

Faculty here encourage students to chase down answers to their own questions. You might record the cortisol (stress hormone) and testosterone levels while your subjects play air hockey. You might examine your subjects’ stress response using electrocardiography. Or you might decide to pursue your own research project. Elisabeth Sage ’19 decided to examine the eating and exercise behaviors of wrestlers versus other collegiate athletes to see if their dieting routines impacted their cardiac function.

Learning psychology at Cornell is hands-on and experiential. Your professor may send you and your classmates to an escape room so you can reflect on the group’s problem-solving techniques. Or have you play a game of catch while wearing disorienting eyewear to mimic an eye disorder. Test, examine, experience, and reflect—that’s learning on the block plan.

Psychology is one of our top 10 programs for a reason

Psychology is a hub science, which means you can use your degree to spin off in many different scientific pursuits. For example, psychosocial factors are crucial in understanding numerous facets of healthcare and criminal justice outcomes.

As a student of psychology at Cornell, you have the flexibility to sink into a specialty field in one of three psychology concentrations. You can develop an individualized major that combines elements of our psychology concentration with requirements within another major. Your degree is as agile as your interests.

Psychology specialist concentration

The psychology specialist concentration is for you if you want to understand the impact of sociocultural forces on behaviors, thoughts, and emotions. You will examine the impact of various environmental systems on human behavior, thinking, and emotional responses, including social systems, political structures, educational systems, occupational systems, and healthcare systems.

You will receive strong preparation to continue your studies after Cornell in graduate and professional programs which emphasize the role of these systems in normal and abnormal psychological functioning, including graduate programs in social psychology, counseling psychology, developmental psychology, social work, marriage and family therapy, school psychology, education, gender and sexuality studies, higher education administration, and hospital administration. There is a strong emphasis within this program on research and statistics in order to prepare you for advanced graduate or professional study.

Requirements

A minimum of 13 courses, and one of three concentrations listed below. Research Methods I (PSY 292) should be completed by the end of the sophomore year. Research Methods II (PSY 392) should be completed by the end of the junior year for all majors in the Specialist or Behavioral Neuroscience concentrations. Statistics (STA 201 or STA 347-STA 348) must be taken before Research Methods II (PSY 392), and PSY 392 must be completed no later than the end of the junior year and before PSY 483. The Senior Seminar (PSY 483) can be taken any time after the completion of Research Methods II (PSY 392)

This program of study provides a broad foundation in psychology and prepares students for careers and graduate study in a wide variety of psychology subfields. It allows for specialization through the careful selection of psychology elective courses and courses in the wider context.

Four Foundation Courses for All Majors

  • PSY 161 - Fundamentals of Psychological Science (1)
  • PSY 292 - Research Methods I (1)
  • PSY 392 - Research Methods II (1) -Must be taken before Senior Seminar
  • STA 201 - Statistical Methods I (1)OR STA 347 - Mathematical Statistics I (1)- STA 348 - Mathematical Statistics II (1)

One Course in Personality/Social Psychology

Selected from

  • PSY 274 - Social Psychology (1)
  • PSY 276 - Multicultural Psychology (1)
  • PSY 279 - Personality Theories (1)
  • PSY 282 - Abnormal Psychology (1) (formerly381)
  • PSY 382 - Counseling and Psychotherapy (1)

One Course in Experimental Psychology

Selected from

  • PSY 361 - Cognitive Neuroscience (1) (formerly 272)
  • PSY 362 - Learning (1) (formerly 273)
  • PSY 370 - Memory and Cognition (1)

One Course in Developmental Psychology

Selected from

  • PSY 245 - Lifespan Development (1)
  • PSY 277 - Child Development (1)
  • PSY 278 - Adolescence (1)
  • PSY 386 - Adult Development and Aging (1)

One Course in Biological Processes

Selected from

  • PSY 363 - Introduction to Behavioral Neuroscience (1) (formerly 281)
  • PSY 344 - Social Neuroscience (1)
  • PSY 378 - Abnormal Behavioral Neuroscience (1)
  • PSY 383 - Health Psychology and Behavioral Medicine (1)
  • Relevant topics courses in psychology

Two Elective Courses in Psychology

Capstone Course:

  • PSY 483 - Senior Seminar (1)

Two Courses in the Wider Context Selected from:

  • ANT 101 - Cultural Anthropology (1)
  • ECB 101 - Macroeconomics (1)
  • ECB 102 - Microeconomics (1)
  • EDU 215 - Educational Psychology (1)
  • EDU 230 - Exceptional Learner (1)
  • EDU 240 - Education and Culture (1)
  • EST 123 - Introduction to Ethnic Studies (1)
  • PHI 202 - Ethics (1)
  • POL 111 - Introduction to Politics (1)
  • POL 172 - American Politics (American Politics & Public Policy) (1)
  • POL 182 - Public Policy (American Politics & Public Policy) (1)
  • REL 222 - Religions of the World (1)
  • SOC 101 - Sociological Thinking (1)
  • SOC 273 - Families in a Social Context (1)
  • SOC 348 - Race and Ethnic Relations: Identity, Activism, and Social Justice (1)
  • SOC 365 - Sexualities (1)
  • SOC 367 - Self and Identity (1)
  • GSS 171 - Gender, Power, and Identity (1)

Behavioral neuroscience concentration

The behavioral neuroscience concentration prepares you to understand the biological and chemical foundations of behaviors, thoughts, and emotions. Principles in neuroanatomy and neurochemistry are used to understand a variety of psychological processes including learning, memory, social interactions, and the nature of the mental illness.

You’ll receive strong preparation to continue your studies after Cornell in graduate or professional programs that emphasize the biological and chemical foundations of behaviors, thoughts, and emotions, including behavioral neuroscience, clinical psychology, health psychology, neuropsychology, and public health. There is a strong emphasis within this program on research and statistics in order to prepare you for advanced graduate or professional study.

Requirements

A minimum of 13 courses, and one of three concentrations listed below. Research Methods I (PSY 292) should be completed by the end of the sophomore year. Research Methods II (PSY 392) should be completed by the end of the junior year for all majors in the Specialist or Behavioral Neuroscience concentrations. Statistics (STA 201 or STA 347-STA 348) must be taken before Research Methods II (PSY 392), and PSY 392 must be completed no later than the end of the junior year and before PSY 483. The Senior Seminar (PSY 483) can be taken any time after the completion of Research Methods II (PSY 392)

This program of study is recommended for students who are considering graduate study in Behavioral Neuroscience, biological subfields of psychology, as well as for those interested in neuroscience or health-related careers.

Five Foundation Courses for All Majors

  • PSY 161 - Fundamentals of Psychological Science (1)
  • PSY 292 - Research Methods I (1)
  • PSY 392 - Research Methods II (1)
  • -Must be taken before Senior Seminar
  • PSY 363 - Introduction to Behavioral Neuroscience (1)
  • STA 201 - Statistical Methods I (1) OR STA 347 - Mathematical Statistics I (1) -STA 348 - Mathematical Statistics II (1)

One Course in Psychology

Selected from

  • PSY 245 - Lifespan Development (1)
  • PSY 274 - Social Psychology (1)
  • PSY 276 - Multicultural Psychology (1)
  • PSY 279 - Personality Theories (1)
  • PSY 282 - Abnormal Psychology (1)
  • PSY 382 - Counseling and Psychotherapy (1)

One Course in Experimental Psychology

Selected from

  • PSY 361 - Cognitive Neuroscience (1)
  • PSY 362 - Learning (1)
  • PSY 370 - Memory and Cognition (1)

One Course in Biological Processes

Selected from

  • PSY 344 - Social Neuroscience (1)
  • PSY 378 - Abnormal Behavioral Neuroscience (1)
  • PSY 383 - Health Psychology and Behavioral Medicine (1)
  • Relevant topics courses in psychology with departmental approval

Capstone Course:

  • PSY 483 - Senior Seminar (1)

Four Courses in Biology and Chemistry that must include:

  • BIO 141 - Foundations: Cellular Biology (1)
  • CHE 121 - Chemical Principles I (1)OR CHE 161 - Accelerated General Chemistry (1)
  • The two additional courses in Biology or Chemistry must be above the BIO 141 and CHE 121 levels. These additional courses should be consistent with the student’s overall plan of study and should be selected in consultation with their Psychology advisor.

Psychological services concentration

The psychological services concentration is similar to the psychology specialist in that it prepares you to understand the impact of sociocultural forces on behaviors, thoughts, and emotions and you will examine the impact of various environmental systems on behaviors, thoughts, and emotions, including social systems, political structures, educational systems, occupational systems, and healthcare systems.

The psychology services concentration is distinguished from the psychology specialist and behavioral neuroscientist concentrations in that there are fewer courses in research methodology (you are not required to take Research Methods II or Senior Seminar). There is a greater emphasis on encouraging a capstone experience that places you in an internship designed to prepare you for your professional career. You will receive strong preparation to directly apply your skills and knowledge to a work environment immediately following graduation.

The services concentration prepares you for careers in non-profit organizations, retail management, human resources, entry-level psychological services, sales positions, and entry-level positions in some other business settings. This concentration is also intended to prepare you for graduate programs in psychology and related fields that are not research-intensive. Your advisor will mentor you through your course selections and be a valuable resource as you consider careers or grad schools.

Requirements

A minimum of 13 courses, and one of three concentrations listed below. Research Methods I (PSY 292) should be completed by the end of the sophomore year. Research Methods II (PSY 392) should be completed by the end of the junior year for all majors in the Specialist or Behavioral Neuroscience concentrations. Statistics (STA 201 or STA 347-STA 348) must be taken before Research Methods II (PSY 392), and PSY 392 must be completed no later than the end of the junior year and before PSY 483. The Senior Seminar (PSY 483) can be taken any time after the completion of Research Methods II (PSY 392)

This program of study prepares students for entry-level work in psychological and human services following the completion of their undergraduate degree and provides a foundation for those planning to pursue a master’s degree program in an applied area of psychology or a related field. Students who plan to pursue doctoral-level graduate study in psychology or related fields are strongly urged to complete the Psychology Specialist or the Psychological Scientist concentration.

Three Foundation Courses:

  • PSY 161 - Fundamentals of Psychological Science (1)
  • PSY 292 - Research Methods I (1)
  • STA 201 - Statistical Methods I (1) OR STA 347 - Mathematical Statistics I (1)- STA 348 - Mathematical Statistics II (1)

One Course on Theoretical Foundations for Practice

Selected from

  • PSY 279 - Personality Theories (1)
  • PSY 282 - Abnormal Psychology (1) (formerly 381)

One Course in Developmental Psychology

Selected from

  • PSY 245 - Lifespan Development (1)
  • PSY 277 - Child Development (1)
  • PSY 278 - Adolescence (1)
  • PSY 386 - Adult Development and Aging (1)

One Course Relevant to Diversity

Selected from

  • PSY 276 - Multicultural Psychology (1)
  • PSY 374 - Psychology of Women and Gender (1)
  • EDU 240 - Education and Culture (1)
  • EST 123 - Introduction to Ethnic Studies (1)
  • GSS 171 - Gender, Power, and Identity (1)

One Course in an Area of Practice or Applied Psychology

Selected from

  • PSY 283 - Abnormal Child/Adolescent Psychology (1) (formerly 377)
  • PSY 379 - Intimate Relationships (1)
  • PSY 382 - Counseling and Psychotherapy (1)
  • PSY 383 - Health Psychology and Behavioral Medicine (1)
  • Relevant topics courses

Two Elective Courses in Psychology

Capstone Experience

  • PSY 395 - Human Services Practicum and Seminar (1) OR PSY 483 - Senior Seminar (1)

Three Courses in the Wider Context Selected from:

  • ANT 101 - Cultural Anthropology (1)
  • ECB 101 - Macroeconomics (1)
  • ECB 102 - Microeconomics (1)
  • EDU 215 - Educational Psychology (1)
  • EDU 230 - Exceptional Learner (1)
  • EDU 240 - Education and Culture (1)
  • EST 123 - Introduction to Ethnic Studies (1)
  • PHI 202 - Ethics (1)
  • POL 111 - Introduction to Politics (1)
  • POL 172 - American Politics (American Politics & Public Policy) (1)
  • POL 182 - Public Policy (American Politics & Public Policy) (1)
  • REL 222 - Religions of the World (1)
  • SOC 101 - Sociological Thinking (1)
  • SOC 273 - Families in a Social Context (1)
  • SOC 348 - Race and Ethnic Relations: Identity, Activism, and Social Justice (1)
  • SOC 365 - Sexualities (1)
  • SOC 367 - Self and Identity (1)
  • GSS 171 - Gender, Power, and Identity (1)
Program taught in:
  • English (US)

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Last updated October 2, 2019
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Aug 2020
Duration
4 years
Full-time
Price
43,550 USD
Tuition fee 2019-2020
Deadline
Feb 1, 2020
By locations
By date
Start Date
Aug 2020
End Date
May 2024
Application deadline
Feb 1, 2020

Aug 2020

Location
Application deadline
Feb 1, 2020
End Date
May 2024