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Psychological disorders, dreams, attachment in children, genetic influences on intelligence, shyness, eyewitness testimony, neuroscience, sensation & perception - these are just a few of the numerous topics covered in psychology. Although you may find many definitions, psychology is commonly defined as the scientific study of behavior and mental processes.

What is Psychology?

Becoming a psychologist means using scientific methods to understand behavior. Psychology is a diverse field with both scientific and professional aspects. As a science, psychology focuses on research: psychologists collect, quantify, analyze and interpret data describing human and animal behavior. As a profession, psychology focuses on the application of knowledge, skills and techniques to solve individual and social problems.

BA (Bachelor of Arts) vs BS (Bachelor of Science)

Whether you choose the BA or BS degree will be dependent upon your career goal. Both the BA and the BS degree prepare you for all areas (clinical, developmental, etc.) of graduate level study in psychology and similar employment opportunities. Which degree is best for you depends upon the graduate program to which you are applying. The BS degree program prepares you for graduate programs which require you to have completed more math and science undergraduate courses. The BS degree may also be of more interest to employers such as laboratories, pharmaceutical companies and human factor labs.

The check sheets in the Social Science office provides a comparison of the courses required for the BA and the BS degree:

Some course requirement differences:  
Foreign Language More science courses
Math M118 Math M122
History courses  
Educational opportunities:  
Masters in Social Work Masters in Social Work
Masters in Counseling Masters in Counseling
PsyD PsyD
  Medical School

Whether the BA or BS is appropriate depends upon the program to which you apply (Start planning for about graduate school early)

Please contact a Psychology faculty member in your area of interest to discuss your career goals and degree options. Contact information may be obtained or appointments made through the School of Social Sciences Office, CV 140, (812) 941-2391.

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