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Catalog 2002-2003
Psychology (BA)
School of Theoretical and Applied Science

Requirements of the Major
Requirements of the Minor
Convener: Mary Starke
Advisors: Gordon Bear
Robert Becklen
Annette Benedict
Joseph Cataliotti
Donna Crawley
Virginia Gonsalves-Domond
David Greene
Marshall Harth
Paul Humphreys
Roger N. Johnson
James Morely
Eileen Roth
Tilahun Sineshaw
Howard Sisco

About the Major

Psychology focuses on an understanding of behavior and experience. The Psychology Program at Ramapo College seeks to educate students in both the science and profession of psychology. It teaches psychology in a liberal arts context that makes clear the interconnections between psychology and other disciplines, promotes critical reasoning skills, and emphasizes the ethical issues involved in psychological practice and research.

The program nurtures learning by immersing students in a variety of theoretical orientations, research methodologies, therapeutic techniques, and human diversity issues. Students also gain hands-on experience in the practice of psychology through fieldwork in a mental health agency or through an independent research project. Students are trained to appropriately apply their psychological knowledge to issues in the world and to become discriminating readers of social and behavioral research.

To attain these goals, the program requires that students complete two basic courses: Introduction to Psychology and Research Methods in Psychology. The remaining requirements are structured around a number of courses that are grouped into six categories. Students are required to take at least one course from each of these categories. This structure allows some flexibility and choice, yet insures that each student will be exposed to content in the areas of social, developmental, experimental, and personality/abnormal psychology. Majors also take a course that presents a cultural or historical perspective on the discipline and three elective courses in psychology.

Students experience hands-on, applied experience in psychology through a fieldwork course or an independent research course. In fieldwork courses students work in a mental health or educational agency in the community such as a school for special children; in the independent research course they design and implement a piece of original research. The final psychology requirement is a 400-level seminar in the senior year: Advanced Topics in Psychology. Examples of these include "Black Issues in Psychology," "Neuropsychology," and "Cults."

Psychology is an appropriate major for a student seeking a career in any one of the human-service professions and for a student planning graduate work in psychology. Graduates may find opportunities for employment in a variety of human-service settings such as community mental health centers, counseling services, substance-abuse programs, geriatric facilities, probation services, and schools for special education. Other opportunities lie in the fields of advertising, consulting, consumer research, criminal justice, education, environmental policy, evaluation research, human factors engineering, marketing, personnel, and product planning,

The psychology major is offered by the School of Social Science and Human Services and by the School of Theoretical and Applied Science leading to a B.A. degree. Although the requirements for the major are identical in both schools, the difference in focus is reflected by differences in the school core requirements. A psychology minor is available.
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