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Department of Psychology


  1. Concentrate on finishing the GENERAL EDUCATION component.
  2. Take Psych 42 (Introduction to Statistics) followed by Psych 144 (Experimental Methods). You may also select courses from nonrestricted areas of the major such as Basic Knowledge and Skills and Applications. * Students considering graduate school in any area of psychology should take Psych 162 (Introduction to Clinical Psychology).
  3. Apply for upper-division psychology major status (Psychology Advisors will give you the paperwork during their presentation in your Psych 144 class) during the semester in which you expect to successfully complete the Pre-Psychology major core courses. You must complete Psych 10, 42, and 144 (or their equivalents) with grades of C or better and have earned a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0 to be approved to take restricted, 100-level psychology courses (courses with prerequisites).
  4. If you decide to work on a minor as part of the ELECTIVES AND REMAINING DEGREE REQUIREMENTS component, take courses related to your career and/or research interests. An example would be a minor in chemistry, biology, or mathematics. Prospective graduate schools find these minors attractive. Be sure to see an advisor in your minor department and follow all departmental prerequisites and guidelines for completing the minor. If you are not planning to go to graduate school, chose a minor that will help you to develop skills for your career.
  5. See an advisor to verify your course planning.
  6. Participate in a community service activity. You may volunteer, receive class credit, grant, or scholarship. More information is available from the Jan & Bud Richter Center for Community Engagement & Service Learning at(559) 278-7079 or in the Thomas Administration Building, Room 107.
  7. Contact a professor who is currently doing research in an area of psychology that interests you. Talk about possibly becoming a research assistant. This is where you will foster your research interests and develop research skills. Your performance will enable the professor to draft a comprehensive letter of recommendation about your research abilities and predicted future success in your career and/or graduate school.
  8. * Begin developing your interests in a particular area of psychology. Decide which research topics are of interest to you. In addition, look over the Faculty Research Directory available in the Psychology Advising office and Psychology Department Office for prospective mentors.
  9. * Attend all Psychology Department colloquia.
  10. * Join PSI CHI/PSU (if you meet the requirements).