5: Graduate School of Arts and Sciences

General Information | Programs and Degrees Offered | Admission Information
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Requirements for Specific Graduate Degrees | Departments and Programs | Faculty

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Department of Psychology
Course Descriptions | Departmental Degree Requirements

Course Descriptions

PSYC 520 - (3) (Y)
Seminar in Psychobiology

Prerequisites: PSYC 220 or PSYC 222, or PSYC 420
A critical examination of a major subject area in psychobiology.

PSYC 521 - (3) (IR)
Developmental Psychobiology

Prerequisites: PSYC 420, graduate standing or permission of instructor
Examination of behavior and neural development with an emphasis on animal models. Topics include the role of both intrinsic and extrinsic factors in directing maturation, attachment and early learning, theoretical concepts of development, and regulatory mechanisms.

PSYC 522 - (3) (IR)
Fundamentals of Motivation

Surveys the major theories and findings dealing with the immediate causes of action. Both human and animal literature are considered, with emphasis on the relations between them.

PSYC 523 - (2) (IR)
Advanced Psychobiology Research Seminar

Prerequisites: PSYC 321 and permission of instructor
Study of selected current neuropsychology research problems, focusing on issues related to content areas of student research projects in PSYC 529.

PSYC 524 - (3) (IR)
Primate Behavior

Prerequisite: Twelve credits in psychology or permission of instructor
Examination of a variety of nonhuman primates in natural, zoo and laboratory settings. Emphasizes a comparison of nonhuman primates to humans in the areas of sensory-motor, socialization, cognitive, intellectual, language and social organization development, and in the problem areas of abnormal development (e.g., social isolation, neurosis, incest, drug problems).

PSYC 525 - (3) (IR)
Hormones and Behavior

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
An examination of the role of hormones in mediating and modulating many complex behaviors such as memory, aggression, sexual behavior, and regulatory actions between hormones and the brain.

PSYC 526 - (3) (IR)
Psychobiology and Memory

Prerequisites: PSYC 220 or PSYC 222, or PSYC 420
Study of the major theories, findings, and conceptual issues important to an analysis of the neuronal mechanisms that underlie memory storage.

PSYC 527 - (3) (IR)
Chemistry of Synaptic Transmission

Prerequisite: PSYC 420
Study of neurochemistry and physiology of neurotransmitter systems as they relate to behavioral issues.

PSYC 529 - (3) (S)
Advanced Psychobiology Laboratory

Prerequisite or corequisite: PSYC 321 or permission of instructor
Each student will help design and carry out an original research project related to neural bases of behavior. Six laboratory hours.

PSYC 531 - (3) (IR)
Functional Neuroanatomy

Prerequisite: Graduate standing or PSYC 420
An overview of the structure of the mammalian central nervous system, organized around the various functional subunits of the brain.

PSYC 532 - (3) (IR)
Chemical Senses: Taste and Smell

Prerequisites: PSYC 220 or PSYC 222, or PSYC 420, or permission of instructor
Neurobiology of the chemical senses is explored by examining the biophysical basis of sensory transduction, the anatomical organization of the two systems, and the physiological properties of peripheral and central structures along the gustatory and olfactory pathways. Emphasizes new, important findings in taste and smell.

PSYC 533 - (3) (IR)
Neural Network Models of Cognition and Brain Computation

Prerequisites: Must be PC-literate and willing to program
Introduction, from an elementary, yet mathematical viewpoint, to the newly developing field of neural networks. Examines the basic principles and the philosophy of neural network theory as it is relevant to biological neural networks.

PSYC 535 - (3) (IR)
Neurochemical Systems in Learning and Memory

Prerequisites: PSYC 220 or PSYC 222, or permission of instructor
Examination of historical and current theories implicating the involvement of specific neurotransmitter, amino-acid, and peptide systems in regulating learning and the encoding of memory. An extensive review of the literature is covered to understand mechanisms by which chemical compounds modify learning and the brain sites where neurochemicals exert their effects.

PSYC 540 - (3) (IR)
Personality Theory in Psychotherapy

Prerequisites: Twelve credits in psychology or permission of instructor
An overview of personality theories in psychology, especially those found useful in psychotherapy; includes experimental and theoretical problems in the study of personality.

PSYC 541 - (3) (IR)
Special Issues in the Psychological Study of Children, Families, and the Law

Seminar acquainting the student with various areas in which law impacts on children and in which psychological research and practice are germane to legal policy. The underlying question throughout is, “What can the behavioral sciences, in particular, psychology, contribute to legal policy related to children and families?”

PSYC 554 - (3) (IR)
Theories of Cognitive Development

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
Study of current theories of cognitive development from birth through adolescence. The views of Piaget, Werner, Bruner, G.H. Mead, and others. Cybernetic approaches to be covered briefly. Some discussion of the measurement and assessment of cognitive processes.

PSYC 555 - (3) (Y)
Developmental Psycholinguistics

Prerequisites: PSYC 250, PSYC 411 or PSYC 512 or permission of instructor
Examination of current research and theoretical models of children’s language acquisition. In addition to studying normal children’s acquisition of spoken language skills, course emphasizes the development of communication skills in deaf, autistic and other language-handicapped children.

PSYC 560 - (3) (IR)
Dynamical Systems in Social Behavior

Prerequisites: PSYC 260 and PSYC 230. Completion of PSYC 306 is strongly recommended
Applications of dynamical systems theory to the analysis of action, interaction, and interpersonal relationships. Includes a review of research employing dynamical systems models and analytic techniques, and close consideration of the application of these ideas to psychological contexts.

PSYC 581, 582, 583, 584 - (3) (S)
Current Topics in Psychology

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
Seminars on special and current topics in psychology.

PSYC 701 - (3) (IR)
Theoretical Psychology

An examination and critical evaluation of prominent historical and contemporary theoretical positions in psychology.

PSYC 710 - (3) (IR)
Cognition

Study of the facts of human information processing and their theoretical implications. Topics include memory, pattern recognition, problem solving, and psycholinguistics.

PSYC 711 - (3) (IR)
Psycholinguistics

A survey of the psychology of language for graduate students in disciplines related to linguistics. Topics include linguistic theory applied to the production and comprehension of language, development of language, biology of language, and pathologies of language.

PSYC 715 - (3) (Y)
Cognitive Processes

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
An exploration, in depth, of the life of the mind. Topics include pattern recognition; observational skills; remembering; language and thought; categorization; the nature of similarity; discovery and invention; problem and puzzle solution; animal cognition; and views of intelligence in man and machine.

PSYC 720 - (3) (Y)
Physiological Psychology

Study of the biological mechanisms and processes underlying behavior, sensory functions, and internal regulation. Concepts and theories in these areas will be related to methods of physiological investigation.

PSYC 736 - (3) (IR)
Advanced Perception

A systematic study of visual, auditory, and cutaneous perception.

PSYC 740, 741 - (1) (Y)
Introduction to Clinical Intervention

Prerequisite: First- or second-year students in the clinical psychology training program or permission of instructor
A working introduction to the ethical issues, principles, and techniques of psychotherapy. Includes introduction to and practice in case conceptualization, designing intervention plans, and active listening skills. Emphasizes individual psychotherapy with adolescents and adults.

PSYC 742 - (4) (Y)
Psychological Intervention I

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
An overview of psychotherapy process and outcome research, ethnicity issues in psychotherapy and ethical considerations. Begins the survey of adult psychotherapy. Emphasizes a problem-focused, rather than a treatment-focused perspective. Three lecture hours, practicum in supervised intervention.

PSYC 743, 744 - (4) (Y)
Psychological Assessment

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
Topics include strategies of assessment, issues of reliability and validity, test construction; theory and practice of individual, couple, family, and community assessment techniques, including testing, interviewing, observation; and assessment research. Three lecture hours, two lab hours.

PSYC 745 - (4) (Y)
Psychological Intervention II

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
Concludes the problem-focused survey of adult psychotherapy. Provides a survey of therapy focused on relationship issues in the family, including couples therapy, divorce issues, and especially, child and family therapy. Three lecture hours, practicum in supervised intervention.

PSYC 746 - (3) (Y)
Research Methods in Clinical Psychology

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
An introduction to methodology and design in clinical research, covering both laboratory and naturalistic approaches. Topics include clinical psychophysiology, measurement of process and outcome in psychotherapy, patterns of family interaction, and program evaluation. Students will engage in design and execution of original research.

PSYC 747 - (3) (Y)
Experimental Psychopathology

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
A review of symptomatological, classificatory, and epidemiological issues, and an overview of the psychological, behavior-genetic, and psychophysiological literature in abnormal psychology. Emphasizes adult psychopathology.

PSYC 748 - (4) (E)
Community Psychology and Prevention Science I: Research and Consultation

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
An intensive introduction to the broad area of community psychology and prevention science. Topics include social ecology and primary prevention; conceptions, strategies, and tactics of social intervention; the creation of settings; and interventions in the education, mental health, mental retardation and criminal justice systems. Weekly seminar meetings and participation in community laboratory required.

PSYC 749 - (4) (O)
Community Psychology and Prevention Science II: Intervention and Research in Social Systems

Prerequisite: PSYC 748 or permission of instructor
A continuation of PSYC 748 (including the community laboratory) focusing on interventions and research issues for specific social problems and the social systems in which they occur; e.g., education, mental health, criminal justice, welfare, employment, race relations. Emphasizes application of the conceptual models and strategies of community psychology to substantive areas and research issues, and the implications of intervention and research for social change and public policy.

PSYC 751 - (3) (O)
Research Methods in Developmental Psychology

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
An introduction to problems in conceptualization, methodology, and design in developmental research. Emphasizes the concept of development, naturalistic methods, and cross-sectional, longitudinal, and sequential designs.

PSYC 757 - (3) (O)
Behavior Disorders in Childhood

Detailed survey of the various psychological problems encountered by infants, children, and adolescents. Focuses on the descriptive characteristics of each disorder and presents theoretical etiologies and proposed treatments. Emphasizes empirical findings, although various models of disorder are considered including learning, family, developmental, biological, and psychodynamic approaches. Offers a detailed review of current thinking concerning psychological disorders of children, and provides a critical perspective.

PSYC 758 - (3) (IR)
Adolescent Development

A survey of the major research findings and theories dealing with the transition from childhood to adulthood. Physical, emotional, cognitive-intellectual, social, and moral development are explored along with a brief presentation of the educational and/or therapeutic treatment for problems in development where appropriate.

PSYC 760 - (3) (E)
Social Psychology

A survey of the major empirical and theoretical concepts in social psychology.

PSYC 761 - (3) (O)
Advanced Research Methods in Social Psychology

Prerequisites: One semester of graduate statistics and PSYC 760 or permission of instructor
A survey of various research approaches to social psychological problems, discussion of selected methodological issues, and practice in designing and criticizing research techniques on assorted psychological topics.

PSYC 762 - (3) (IR)
Social Cognition and Human Inference

Prerequisite: Graduate standing in psychology or permission of instructor
This seminar examines recent research on the strategies and shortcomings of human inference. Questions such as the following are addressed: What rules and strategies do people use when making social judgments, predictions, causal inferences, and assessments of covariation: How do these rules and strategies compare to normative models of inference: What sorts of inferential errors do people make, and what are the consequences of making such errors: How can human inference be improved?

PSYC 763 - (3) (IR)
Nonverbal Communication and Deception

Prerequisite: Graduate standing or permission of instructor
Review of research and theory in the psychology of nonverbal communication and deception.

PSYC 771 - (4) (Y)
Quantitative Methods I: Probability and Statistical Inference

Prerequisite: Graduate status or permission of instructor
A traditional graduate-level course in the fundamentals of probability and statistical inference as used in the behavioral sciences including set theory, probability distributions, conditional probability, random variables, estimation, sampling distributions, hypothesis testing (t-test for means, F-test for variances) and confidence intervals. Computer work with SPSS. Three hours lecture, two hours laboratory.

PSYC 772 - (4) (Y)
Quantitative Methods II: Experimental Design

Prerequisite: PSYC 771 or equivalent
Topics include Chi-square tests for contingency tables, correlation, multiple regression, analysis of variance of one-way and factorial designs including repeated measures experiments, and analysis of covariance. Extension work with SPSS and MANOVA computer routines.

PSYC 776 - (3) (Y)
Introduction to Applied Multivariate Methods

Prerequisites: PSYC 771-772 or equivalent
An introduction to some major statistical methods that are used for the data analysis of multiple measures. Topics include (1) elementary matrix algebra, (2) multivariate regression (including canonical correlation; multivariate analysis of variance and covariance; and discriminant analysis and classification), (3) correlational methods (including principal components and exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis), and (4) the analysis of multivariate contingency tables using log-linear models. Concepts, issues, and examples are stressed over mathematical derivations. Includes use of computer programs.

PSYC 781 - (3) (IR)
How to Do Things With Numbers

Prerequisites: One 300-level course in statistics
A hands-on introduction to the handling and presentation of data in the social sciences. Uses data collected by the students to teach how to explore data in the hopes of revealing unsuspected patterns, and how to summarize data for public presentation and publication.

PSYC 791, 792, 793, 794, 795, 796, 797, 798 - (2) (S)
Contemporary Issues in Psychology

Prerequisite: Graduate standing in psychology or permission of instructor
Discussion of contemporary developments in psychological theory, methods, and research.

PSYC 804 - (1) (Y)
Forum on Scientific and Professional Ethics

Prerequisite: Second-year standing in a graduate program in the Department of Psychology or permission of instructor
Study of scholarly writings, empirical research, current developments relating to ethics in psychology, and relevant ethical codes and regulations influencing the conduct of scientists and educators. Discussions focus on recognizing and resolving ethical dilemmas in academic and research settings.

PSYC 805 - (4) (IR)
Public Policy, Children, and Families

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
Examination of the uses of psychological knowledge, particularly knowledge specific to the area of community psychology, in the design, implementation and assessment of public policies. Provides an introduction to the opportunities, dilemmas, and constraints that effect the relation between science and policy, particularly federal legislative policies for children and families.

PSYC 846 - (3) (IR)
The Minority Family

A critical examination of the current state of research on minority families, including Black, Native American, Chicano, and Asian-American.

PSYC 847 - (3) (IR)
Ecological Theory and Assessment

Survey of the theories of person-environment interaction/transaction and other ecologically oriented theories of human behavior. Emphasizes procedures for assessing the environmental context (physical and social) of behavior.

PSYC 848 - (3) (IR)
Social Ecology and Development

Study of areas of interest common to community and developmental psychology. Provides an introduction to the ecological perspective as an approach for studying development, intervention, and change. Includes presentations by several developmental and community faculty members about their research projects, which are discussed and interpreted in light of the ecological and developmental perspectives.

PSYC 852 - (3) (IR)
Social and Personality Development

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
An in-depth analysis of current theory and research in social and personality developments from infancy through adolescence.

PSYC 853 - (3) (IR)
Family Relations and Human Development

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
A combination lecture and seminar dealing with the theory, methods and findings in the study of families. Emphasizes family systems, developmental, and ecological perspective. Focuses on the contributions of family relations to the psychological well being and psychopathology of family members. Explores changing family relations over the course of the life span.

PSYC 855 - (3) (IR)
Language Development

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
An introduction to current theory and research in language development. Emphasizes the development of communication skills and symbolic processes.

PSYC 860 - (4) (E)
Mental Health, Law, and Children

Prerequisites: Permission of instructor; or second-year standing in a graduate program in the Department of Psychology
An intensive overview of the interaction between the legal system and current research and practices relating to the mental health of children and families. Topics include children in the juvenile justice system, child custody, child forensic psychology, child maltreatment, minor’s rights and legal issues in the schools. Includes a community/clinical laboratory. Three class hours, two laboratory hours.

PSYC 872 - (3) (Y)
Psycho-Epidemiological Methods

Prerequisite: PSYC 776 or permission of instructor
A survey of techniques for structural analysis of multivariate systems. Considers principal components, exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis time series, path analysis, and congeneric test models.

PSYC 881, 882, 883, 884, 885, 886 - (3) (S)
Current Problems in Psychology

A critical examination of procedures employed in the investigation of current controversial problems.

PSYC 897 - (1-12) (S)
Non-Topical Research, Preparation for Thesis

For master’s research, taken before a thesis director has been selected.

PSYC 898 - (1-12) (S)
Non-Topical Research

For master’s research, taken under the supervision of a thesis director.

PSYC 901-980 - (1-12) (S)
Topical Research

PSYC 994 - (3-12) (S)
Readings in Psychology

PSYC 997 - (1-12) (S)
Non-Topical Research, Preparation for Doctoral Research

For doctoral research, taken before a dissertation director has been selected.

PSYC 998 - (1-3) (Y)
Practicum in Case Consultation

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
Supervision in case assessment, evaluation, and intervention. Emphasizes issues involved in case management; types of issues and decisions that may effect the outcome of the intervention; pragmatic issues in dealing with people referred as clients; consultation procedures with referral agencies; and liaisons with community agencies. Student performance is evaluated on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis.

PSYC 999 - (1-12) (S)
Non-Topical Research

For doctoral dissertation, taken under the supervision of a dissertation director.


Continue to: Departmental Degree Requirements
Return to: Chapter 5 Index