Psychology Overview & Goals

The Psychology Department at Bethany College assists students in the development of the following skills and abilities:

  • Familiarity with the major concepts, theoretical perspectives, empirical findings, and the historical trends in psychology.
  • Understanding and application of basic research methods in psychology, including research design, data analysis, and interpretation.
  • Respect for and use of critical and creative thinking, skeptical inquiry, and when possible, the scientific approach to solve problems related to behavior and mental processes.
  • Understanding and application of psychological principles to personal, social, and organizational issues.
  • Ability to weigh evidence, act ethically, and conduct oneself in a manner reflective of the professionalism of psychology.
  • Recognition, understanding, and respect for the complexity of socio-cultural and international diversity.
  • Insight into one’s own and others’ behavior and mental processes and application of effective strategies for self-management and self-improvement.

Students completing a major in Psychology can earn either a Bachelor of Arts degree (Psychology with a Human Services Emphasis) or a Bachelor of Science Degree (Psychology with a Scientific Emphasis, Psychology with a Pre-Physical Therapy Emphasis, Psychology with a Pre-Occupational Therapy Emphasis).

Psychology (Major)

Psychology and Social Work (Major)

Pre-Art Therapy (Pre-Professional Program)

Pre-Occupational Therapy (Pre-Professional Program)

Pre-Physical Therapy (Pre-Professional Program)

Careers in Psychology

A psychology degree is, in many ways, provides an excellent foundation for careers in a wide variety of disciplines, including business, healthcare and medicine, education, law, social work, and many others. Bethany psychology graduates have gone on to successful careers in virtually all of these fields as well as others. Many students will combine a psychology major with a minor in another discipline to equip them for professional pursuit of their specific field of interest.

Additionally, an undergraduate degree in psychology also provides you with an academic platform for post-graduate study in numerous professional fields, including law, medicine, business, or psychology itself, among them.

Kylin Harvey McCardle“When I graduated from Bethany with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology, I had a lot of interest areas and wasn’t yet sure which I wanted to pursue for my career. Fifteen years later, I’m proud to say that my liberal arts education has given me the background and confidence necessary to easily transition between industries many times over. My first full-time job was in marketing and sales. I was able to translate that into a role at the US Treasury Department focusing on counter terrorist financing and anti-money laundering and eventually as senior staff in the U.S. Congress advising on financial services issues. Now I’m working for a global bank, representing them before their U.S. regulators. I’ve loved every minute of my wide-ranging career, and owe Bethany a debt of gratitude for helping me to realize it!”

Kylin (Harvey) McCardle, Psychology ’03
Senior Vice President for Client, Regulatory, and External Affairs, Citibank N.A.


Diane S. Snyder
Assistant Professor of Psychology; Chair
Psy.D., in Counseling Psychology, Carlow University, 2013
M.A., in Counseling Psychology, National University, 1998
B.A., in Psychology, San Diego State University, 1991

Debra B. Hull
Visiting Professor of Psychology

John H. Hull
Professor of Psychology
M.A., Ph.D., Kent State University
B.S., Alma College

Julie Osland
Associate Professor of Psychology
M.A., Ph.D., University of Albany, State University of New York
B.A., Psychology


Psychology with a Human Services Emphasis: A minimum of two additional credits in Psychology. Recommended are additional courses in psychology and courses in biology, history of scientific thought, human development, philosophy, sociology, and social work relevant to the student’s particular interests. This track is designed to meet the needs of students who wish to pursue masters-level education in a variety of fields, such as counseling, organizational psychology, and guidance; of students who desire a broad undergraduate education and graduate education in areas outside psychology, such as business, law, and education; and of students who seek a broadly applicable undergraduate degree. Students completing this track earn a Bachelor of Arts degree.

Psychology with a Scientific Emphasis: An additional course from: PSYC 311, 312, 313; six credits in courses in natural science, including at least 2 credits in biology courses emphasizing animal physiology, genetics, or natural selection (BIOL 100 and 108 do not meet this requirement) with the remaining 4 credits in similar biology courses, physics (except Astronomy), or chemistry. Students planning on graduate school in psychology are advised to take at least one course in calculus. It should also be kept in mind that graduate schools may require a reading knowledge of a world language, usually French, German, or Spanish. This track is designed for students most interested in the scientific aspects of psychology, particularly for those who are considering graduate work in experimental or clinical psychology. Most Ph.D. programs in experimental or clinical psychology require the types of undergraduate courses included in this track. Students completing this track earn a Bachelor of Science degree.

Psychology with a Sports Psychology Emphasis: The sports psychology emphasis focuses on the mental side of sport and exercise, applying principles of psychology to improve athletic and exercise performance. This track prepares the student for graduate education in clinical or experimental psychology with a specialization in sports psychology. In addition to psychology core courses the following area required: PSYC 220, 243, 287, 325; PHED 326, 327.

The dual major in Psychology and Social Work is designed for those students interested in clinical social work or mental health practice. Students completing the dual major must complete all of the Requirements for Psychology Major with a Human Services Emphasis or a Scientific Emphasis, plus all of the Requirements for Major in Social Work: SOWO 120, 150, 210, 230, 310, 320, 340, 350, 352, 455, 470, 472, PSYC or SOWO 490, 495.

All students majoring in Psychology must successfully complete the following courses: PSYC 100, 205, 207, 301, 306, 308; either 311, 312, or 313; 415, 477, 490, and 495.

Psychology with a Pre-Art Therapy Emphasis: Art therapy is an integrative mental health and human services profession that enriches the lives of individuals, families, and communities through active art-marking, creative process, applied psychological theory, and human experience within a psychotherapeutic relationship. This track prepares the student for graduate education in counseling psychology with a specialization in art therapy. In addition to psychology core courses, the following are required: 18 credits in studio art, PSYC 230, 325, 328, and 329. Students completing this track earn a Bachelor of Arts degree.

All students majoring in Psychology must successfully complete the following courses: PSYC 100, 205, 207, 301, 306, 308; either 311, 312, or 313; 415, 477, 490, and 495.

Psychology with a Pre-Occupational Therapy Emphasis: The Pre-Occupational Therapy track prepares students for graduate study in Occupational Therapy. Occupational therapy teaches patients with brain injuries, neurological disorders, or developmental disorders skills to overcome their deficits. Since this field involves behavioral and cogitative training to overcome physiological programs, this track emphasizes anatomy and physiology, behavioral adjustment, mental illness, and developmental issues by requiring in addition to the psychology core courses the following: BIOL 100, 268, and 269; PSYC 230, 315, and a second lab-based psychology course (PSYC 311, 312, or 313). MATH 201, PHYS 201, and PHYS 202 may be recommended based upon the students’ selection of graduate program.

All students majoring in Psychology must successfully complete the following courses: PSYC 100, 205, 207, 301, 306, 308; either 311, 312, or 313; 415, 477, 490, and 495.

Psychology with a Pre-Physical Therapy Emphasis: PSYC 315; BIOL 100, 268, 269; CHEM 101, 102; MATH 201; PHED 326, 327, 340, 341 (four hours of PSYC 470 or BIOL 205 may be substituted for PHED 240 and 341; also PSYC 220 may substitute for either PHED 240 or 341); PHYS 201, 202. Recommended courses are EDUC 203 or PSYC 230. This track is designed to prepare students to enter a graduate program in Physical Therapy. Students completing this track earn a Bachelor of Science degree.


Preparation for graduate programs in Physical Therapy is available through one of the majors in the Department of Psychology: Psychology with a Pre-Physical Therapy Emphasis (requirements are listed in the Psychology section of this Catalogue).

Students interested in pre-professional preparation in physical therapy should consult the pre-physical therapy advisor, Professor John H. Hull, Department of Psychology.

Course Descriptions

PSYC 100 General Psychology 4 credits
This course is an introduction to the general field of psychology, including learning, motivation, sensation, perception, cognition, personality, abnormal behavior, testing, physiological psychology, and social psychology.

PSYC 101 Lab Experience 1 credit
This course provides exposure to experimentation and data analysis in the field of psychology. (This course must be taken for a letter grade.) Open only to transfer students who have completed an introductory psychology course not including a laboratory component.

PSYC 102 Introduction to Psychology 4 credits
This course is an introduction to the general field of psychology, including brain and sensory development, learning, cognitive processes, human development, personality, communication and human interaction, abnormality and theories of psychotherapy, testing, research methodology, and statistics. The course includes practical applications of psychological theories.

PSYC 188 Psychology of Death and Dying 3 credits
This course is an examination of various topics in the area of death and dying, including attitudes towards death, stages of dying, grief and mourning, children and death, funeral practices, the hospice movement, euthanasia, suicide, and immortality. The emphasis is on learning to live a deeper, more meaningful life through exploring the importance of death. An additional course fee is required.

PSYC 205 Statistics in Psychology I 3 credits
This course is an introduction to basic statistical techniques used in psychological research. This course covers descriptive statistics, and inferential statistics through one-way ANOVA. Attention is given to ethical issues involved in statistical interpretation of data.

PSYC 200 Psychology Service Experience 1 credit
Under the supervision of departmental faculty, students complete service to others on campus through the application of psychological principles from the fields of learning, motivation, communication, persuasion, and developmental. Students can enrolled in two sections of the course during a semester and earn up to a total of four credits. Permission of the instructor is required for enrolling in the course.

PSYC 207 Statistics in Psychology II 3 credits
A continuation of PSYC 205, this course covers advanced ANOVA models, nonparametric statistical techniques, and data analysis using SPSS. Prerequisite: PSYC 205.

PSYC 210 Psychology of Women 3 credits
This course is a critical survey of empirical and theoretical treatments of the female experience. The intellectual, motivational, biological, and cultural factors which influence women throughout the life cycle are discussed.

PSYC 220 Health Psychology 2 credits
This course provides students with a basic understanding of theories, research, and concepts related to several physiological psychology topics that can be applied to their lives. The understanding of health psychology informs students about many of the biological and psychological processes experienced throughout their lives.

PSYC 230 Developmental Psychology 3 credits
This course is a study of human development from conception through old age. Topics include the influence of genetics, socialization, cognitive growth, and physiological changes on all stages of life. Students learn about current literature and applications in the field.

PSYC 231 Gerontology 3 credits
This course is a study of gerontology. Topics include the biological, cognitive, and psychosocial influences on aging. The interactions of the again individual, younger generations, and society is examined. Students learn about current literature and social policy.

PSYC 241 Religious and Psychological Lenses on Social Justice 3 credits
In this cross-listed, interdisciplinary course, religious studies and psychological lenses are employed to examine issues of social justice, including factors which either promote or interfere with the creation of communities that value inclusion, diversity, and peace. Aiming to foster a concern for social justice, the course provides theoretical and practical tools to challenge injustice, including opportunities to think and work alongside local advocacy organizations. (This course may be taken for credit as RELS 241.)

PSYC 243 Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology 3 credits
This course emphasizes discussions and writings about small sports groups as micro-social systems. The application of group dynamics theory and small group research to the study of sports groups is presented. The influence of group members’ characteristics, environmental factors, interpersonal relations, and group structural characteristics on an individual member’s adjustment and the effectiveness of the group are investigated. The course is intended to investigate those aspects of psychology which influence performance and the participant in sports. Motives, arousal, aggression, and other socio-psychological variables are discussed. (This course may be taken for credit as PHED 243.)

PSYC 250 Multicultural Psychology 3 credits
This course is an examination of historical and contemporary factors which differentiate the experiences of African, Asian, Latino, and Native Americans from the experiences of other Americans. Students examine mainstream psychological treatment of these ethnic minority experiences and pose alternative approaches.

PSYC 287 Organizations and Human Behavior 3 credits
This course is a study of specific aspects of organization culture, such as motivation, conflict, power, and leadership. Focus is on improving the effectiveness of organizations by strengthening human processes. (This course may be taken for credit as ECON/BUSI 287.)

PSYC 301 Tests and Surveys 3 credits
This course is an overview of test and survey construction, intended to help students conducting original research to design their own psychological measurement instruments. Topics to be discussed include bias in testing and survey wording, assessment of reliability and validity, and various item formats used in psychological testing. Students will construct and test their own psychological instrument. Prerequisites: PSYC 205; at least sophomore standing.

PSYC 306 Research Methodology 3 credits
This course is an examination of various types of research design and important issues in design and statistical analysis. Students propose research projects as an application of principles covered in the course. Prerequisite: At least junior status.

PSYC 307 Statistics in Psychology III 3 credits
This course covers advanced topics in statistics such as forms of covariate analysis, regression modeling, and estimating effect sizes using SPSS. Additional emphasis is on the best ways to present inferential statistical analyses in presentations and publications. The course includes a service learning component. Prerequisites: PSYC 207 or MATH 282 or permission of the instructor.

PSYC 308 Writing Papers in Psychology 2 credits
This course prepares students to write a major research paper, adhering to APA guidelines. Students will learn to use appropriate references by writing an annotated bibliography. Using this as a starting point, students will then write an APA style research paper, including (at a minimum) an introductory literature review, a method section detailing the proposed design and procedures for gathering empirical data, and a reference list. Prerequisites: A minimum of two classes in psychology, including PSYC 100; at least sophomore standing.

PSYC 311 Experimental: Cognitive 4 credits
This course gives students experience, at the intermediate level, with the research process in psychology. Students will engage in experimental work in the areas of perception, cognition, and social processes. Some familiarity with computers is desirable. Prerequisites: PSYC 100.

PSYC 312 Experimental: Learning 4 credits
This course is similar in objective to PSYC 311, but covers the areas of learning and motivation. PSYC 312 may be taken before PSYC 311. Prerequisites: PSYC 100, 205.

PSYC 313 Experimental: Biopsychology 4 credits
This course is an exploration of the biological basis of behavior through experimental work. Focus is on the nervous and endocrine systems and on their respective roles in the production of normal and abnormal behaviors. This course includes a laboratory component. Prerequisites: PSYC 100.

PSYC 315 Modification of Behavior 2 credits
This course has two main aims: to help students learn systematically to analyze behavior in terms of reinforcement principles and to help students develop skills in the application of these principles to the modification of behavior in practical situations. Behavior modification is examined in the areas of behavior disorder, child-rearing, the work situation, and habit change.

PSYC 324 Personality Psychology 3 credits
This course covers major theories of personality and principles of personal adjustment and growth, including the following: development; motivation; dynamics; problems in group living; and intellectual, emotional, and social adjustment. The course should be valuable to the potential doctor, nurse, social worker, child-care worker, teacher, or parent.

PSYC 325 Abnormal Psychology 4 credits
This course explores the development, dynamics, social significance, and theoretical implications and treatment of deviant behavior. The concepts of normality and abnormality in relation to cultural norms and stereotypes are examined. The course should prove particularly useful to students planning a career in the helping professions.

PSYC 326 Social Psychology 3 credits
Aspects of social behavior are examined in the context of theory and experimental research. Topics include social factors in development, cooperation and competition, aggression, issues of gender and race, motivation, attitudes and attitude change, social influence, and interpersonal and group processes.

PSYC 327 Interpersonal Relationships 3 credits
This course explores various theoretical perspectives of relationships with a primary focus on romantic relationships. Additionally, research on romantic partnerships will be explored. This course involves a number of primary source readings and is intended for advanced students. Prerequisites: PSYC 100, junior or senior class standing. PSYC 326 is recommended.

PSYC 328 Interpersonal Aspects of Psychotherapy and Counseling 3 credits
This course is a study of the interpersonal characteristics and personality traits that are essential for successful counselors and psychotherapists. Communication skills are emphasized and practiced throughout the course. This course would be important for anyone who will be working in the helping professions, but would also be useful for anyone who is interested in improving interpersonal communication skills. Enrollment is limited to 12 students. Prerequisite: PSYC 100 plus two additional psychology courses and at least sophomore status.

PSYC 329 Theories of Psychotherapy and Counseling 3 credits
This course provides students with a basic knowledge of the varied theories and techniques used in professional psychotherapy and counseling. Both academic and experiential learning are included. This course should be particularly useful to students interested in careers in one of the helping professions. Enrollment is limited to 12 students. Prerequisite: PSYC 100 plus two additional psychology courses and at least sophomore status.

PSYC 344 Forensic Psychology 3 credits
This course reviews the applications of empirically-supported psychological theories to the criminal justice system. Theories in perception, personality, memory, problem-solving, and psycho-physiology are extended to explain validity of eyewitness testimony, lie detection devices, jury selection, jury decision-making, problems in interrogations, criminal profiling, and criminal trials of the mentally ill. Students discuss these areas while upholding the ethical principles of objectivity. We recommend this course for students interested in a criminal justice.

PSYC 377 Junior Seminar 1 credit
This seminar prepares students for graduate school and employment opportunities after graduation as well as preparing for the senior year. Topics include preparing for aptitude tests, researching graduate schools, and beginning the application process. Students also gain more experience with reading research articles and begin preparation for the senior project.

PSYC 415 Systematic Psychology 3 credits
This course is an examination of the systematic positions and theories that have been important in the history of psychology. Major figures holding each position are also discussed. Prerequisite: senior status.

PSYC 470 Internship in Psychology 2-4 credits
Internships provide students with off-campus exposure to the life and work of professional psychologists. All internships must have the approval of the Psychology Department faculty and are supervised and evaluated by the departmental internship coordinator and by a psychologist in the field. A journal and a written summary of the student’s experiences and their relationship to pertinent theories and practices of psychology is required. Prerequisite: Declared Psychology or Psychology and Education Interdisciplinary major; junior standing or permission of the instructor.

PSYC 477 Senior Seminar 1 credit
This course is an introduction to professional opportunities in psychology and related fields and an exploration of value and ethical consideration. Continued guidance on senior project and senior comprehensive examinations also is provided during this course.

PSYC 480 Methods and Materials in Teaching Psychology 3 credits
This course is a study of materials and methods used in teaching psychology at the secondary school level. The course focuses on contemporary theories and practices and examines the nature, objectives, and curricula of psychology Teaching aids, resource units, lesson plans, evaluation, and teaching reading and study skills are considered. (This course may be taken for credit as EDUC 480.) Prerequisites: EDUC 242; a passing score on PRAXIS I Core Academic Skills for Educators; admission to the teacher education program.

PSYC 487-488 Independent Study 2-4 credits

PSYC 490 Senior Project 2-4 credits

PSYC 495 Comprehensive Exams
This course is an administrative placeholder used to record a student’s score on Comprehensive Exams (CR/NCR).