Major in Psychology

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Curriculum | Research | Internships | Careers | Clubs & Organizations | Study Abroad | Admission

What will I study?

The Psychology program at Sacred Heart University provides students with the basic foundation in the scientific study of human behavior, an excellent foundation in research methodology, and a broad exposure to many different areas of psychology. The Psychology major includes courses on conducting experimental research, as well as a wide variety of electives on such topics as psychological counseling, abnormal psychology, drugs and behavior, psychology of women, sports psychology, and many others. Courses are taught primarily by full-time faculty, and some are taught by adjunct faculty who are well-known experts in their fields.  

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Learning outcomes that every graduate will achieve:

  • Be able to  articulate the most important contributions of each of the major schools of thought in Psychology.
  • Display the ability to think critically in assessing various psychological theories and empirical findings.
  • Communicate effectively both orally and in writing about their own and others’ research findings.
  • Be able to identify, gather, and synthesize appropriate background information for empirical research projects.
  • Demonstrate comprehension and facility regarding research methods and statistical analysis skills.
  • Participate effectively in working relationships with other students and with instructors.
  • Understand the major ethical issues in psychological research with humans and animals.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of different cultural perspectives.
  • Participate in service learning projects with appropriate reflection on the experience.
  • Identify how the Psychology major has influenced his or her personal growth, life choices, and career development.

Will I have research opportunities?

All psychology majors take four courses in research methods, in which they learn to do primary research by working on a real data collection project.  These research courses are taught exclusively by full-time faculty members, and often involve having students participate in the ongoing research being conducted by these faculty members.  Students are involved in all phases of the research process, and these research projects often result in publications in professional journals, such as The Journal of Social Psychology, Endocrinology Social Development, and The Journal of Genetic Psychology.  Furthermore, students often have the opportunity to present the results of these studies at local, regional, and national conferences.  Recent research topics include infant brain development, attachment styles, children's peer relationships, and attitudes toward stigmatized individuals.

Will I have internship opportunities?

Yes, Psychology majors complete a semester-long internship in a setting (educational, social service, etc.) that fits with each student's personal career goals. Students also can gain real-world experience through the community service components that are part of several psychology classes.

What are my career options with a Psychology degree?

A bachelor's degree in Psychology provides students with broad preparation for lifelong learning. The Psychology major helps to develop students' skills in oral and written communication, critical thinking, information gathering and synthesis, and interpersonal communication.  It is excellent preparation for a wide range of careers, including marketing research, human resources, child care, substance abuse counseling, employment counseling, and public relations.

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What co-curricular activities are available?

The Psychology Club is open to all students interested in Psychology. The club assists Psychology majors with any questions that they might have about their major or future career options. Psi Chi is the International Honor Society for Psychology majors, and the best of Sacred Heart University's Psychology students are inducted into the society each year. The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is the world's largest association devoted to human resource management, representing more than 170,000 HR professionals.

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Will I be able to study abroad?

Yes, to learn more about our study abroad opportunities available to students, visit our study abroad website.

Are there special admission requirements?

No, we have an open admission policy. Incoming first-year students and transfer students may declare the Psychology major when they apply for admission to Sacred Heart University.

Review SHU’s admission process