Programs

Psychology

Psychology is the scientific study of behavior and mental processes. Cottey’s psychology courses fulfill Cottey College Learning Outcome Two: Enriches her knowledge. Psychology courses teach students about major concepts, theoretical perspectives, empirical findings, and historical trends in psychology. Psychology majors seek to understand and explain both normal and abnormal behavior, mental ability, perception, development, and differences in individuals. Psychology study also explores human emotions, thoughts and motives. A few of the sub-branches within this field are biopsychology, cognitive psychology, developmental psychology, child psychology, social psychology, personality psychology, and counseling psychology. Psychology courses also teach how to understand and apply basic research methods in psychology using experimental, observational, and case study methods. Students also gain an understanding of how psychology applies to their daily lives.

A bachelor’s degree in psychology provides a firm foundation for entry-level careers in health and human services, consumer advocacy, marketing research, human resources, management and productivity improvement, and community improvement groups.  In addition, the psychology degree constitutes strong preparation for graduate education in such disciplines as psychology, education, rehabilitation, social work, law, medicine, and business.

Is This Major For You?

You might like this major if you like: observing humans and animals and how they act and respond; working with data; or helping others, of any age.

Consider this major if you are good at: finding out answers to questions, analyzing, critically thinking, communicating or empathizing.

Employment Settings

  • Colleges and universities
  • Hospitals and human service organizations
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Advertising firms
  • Private practice
  • Secondary schools
  • Military

Sample Occupations

  • Clinical Psychologist
  • School Psychologist
  • Health Care Administrator
  • Rehabilitation Counselor
  • Caseworker
  • Counselor
  • Psychiatrist
  • Researcher
  • Advocate

Academic Assistance Center Resources

Majoring in Psych?
Opportunities in Counseling and Development Careers
Real People Working in The Helping Professions
Career Paths in Psychology
Opportunities in Psychology Careers
The Psychology Major- Career Options and Strategies for Success

Typical Courses In This Major

  • Abnormal Psychology
  • Social Psychology
  • Psychology of Gender
  • Personality Psychology
  • Cross-Cultural Psychology
  • Child Psychology
  • Research Methods
  • Cognitive Psychology
  • Biopsychology

Other Majors You Might Like

  • Sociology
  • Neuroscience
  • Religious studies
  • Anthropology
  • Gerontology
  • Behavioral sciences
  • Industrial engineering

Websites To Visit

American Psychological Association
www.apa.org

National Association of School Psychologists
www.nasponline.org/

Association for Psychological Science
www.psychologicalscience.org

For more information on this and other majors, visit the Transfer and Career Planning Office located in the Academic Assistance Center, RBAC 164 ext. 2132.

Course Descriptions

PSY 101
General Psychology
(fs)
Introduces scientific study of behavior and mental processes. Overview of areas of neuropsychology, growth and development, perceptual processes, learning and thinking, motivation and emotion, intelligence and personality, social psychology, and mental disorders. 3 credits


PSY/SOC 232
Social Psychology
(xf)
Prerequisite: SOC 101 Introductory Sociology OR PSY 101 General Psychology
Social psychology is an interdisciplinary field bridging sociology and psychology. Students will examine a variety of issues related to social psychology, including established theories, concepts, findings, and uses. Topics will include social cognition; prejudice; human aggression; conformity; and liking, loving, and interpersonal sensitivity within past and current contexts. This will include the role mass communication, propaganda, and persuasion may have played/play to fuel thoughts, attitudes, and actions of a given time. 3 credits


PSY 235
Biopsychology
(s)
Prerequisite: PSY 101 General Psychology
Survey of topics from the perspective of biopsychology, including behavior genetics, neuroanatomy, sensation/perception, learning and memory, drives, emotion, language, and abnormal behavior. 3 credits


PSY 240
Cognitive Psychology
(f)
Prerequisite: PSY 101 General Psychology
An introduction to the concepts in cognitive psychology including theories and applications of memory systems, pattern recognition, attention, decision-making, problem solving, language and text comprehension, reasoning, and neurocognition. 3 credits


PSY 245
Personality Psychology
(xf)
Prerequisite: PSY 101 General Psychology
Students will examine a variety of issues related to personality psychology, including established theories, concepts, research methods, findings, and uses. Topics will include traits, self and identity, genetics, neuroscience, intrapsychic foundations, regulation and motivation, cognition, gender, sexual orientation, and resilience. 3 credits


PSY 248
Sensation and Perception
(f)
This course focuses on how humans sense and perceive stimuli in the external environment through use of the senses. In addition to discussing different sensory systems (e.g., visual, auditory) and how they influence both the brain and behavior, the course will also cover historic and contemporary research in the field. Through lecture and hands-on demonstration, students will learn about topics such as: color and depth perception, how 3-D movies work, perception of pain, balance, and the link between scent and memory. 3 credits


PSY 304
Developmental Psychology: Child – Service Learning
(fs)
Prerequisite: PSY 101 General Psychology.
1 credit


PSY 307
Lifespan Psychology Across Cultures
(xs)
Chronological approach to development from conception through death and dying. Theory and research relating to biological, psychological, and social change across the lifespan, with attention to cross-cultural similarities and differences. May not be taken for credit if credit has been received for PSY 308/Psychology of Child & Adolescent Development. 3 credits


PSY 308
Psychology of Child & Adolescent Development
(f)
Prerequisite: PSY 101 General Psychology
Scientific study of basic factors in development from conception through adolescence. Examines biosocial, cognitive, and psychosocial development. Includes service learning requirement. May not be taken for credit if credit has been received for Psy 307/Lifespan Development Across Cultures. 3 credits


PSY 310
Research Methods in Psychology: Research Design & Ethics
(s)
In this first part of a two-semester sequence, students will learn about the characteristics of science, various research study designs in psychology (e.g., surveys, observational research, single-factor experiments), and ethics in human subjects research. Students will plan a research study, complete an appropriate review of the literature and gain scientific writing skills, and will complete an IRB proposal prior to collecting and analyzing data the following semester. 3 credits


PSY 311
Research Methods in Psychology: Psychological Statistics
(f)
In this second part of a two-semester sequence, students will learn about the characteristics of science, psychological statistics, and methods of data collection and analysis. Students will collect data for the research study they designed in PSY 310 the previous semester, and will analyze their data through use of statistical software. They will also learn to write the results of these analyses and draw conclusions and complete a final written empirical research paper based on their findings. 3 credits


PSY 321
Human Sexuality
(y)
Prerequisite: PSY 101 General Psychology OR SOC 101 Introductory Sociology
Surveys topics from biological, sociological, anthropological, religious, and psychological perspectives. Examines sexual values in order to enhance students’ knowledge of sexuality and influences which affect it at personal, familial, and societal level. 3 credits


PSY 325
Motivation & Emotion
(xf)
Prerequisite: PSY 101 General Psychology
This course explores what drives our behavior, including the physiological mechanisms of motivation, behavioral and cognitive approaches to motivation, and the interaction of emotions with motivation. 3 credits


PSY 331/WST 331
Psychology of Women and Gender
(f)
Prerequisite: PSY 101 General Psychology
Critical examination of psychological theories and research on gender. Topics such as gender roles, development of gender identity differences and similarities between the sexes, relationships, mental health, and sexuality will be examined across the historical, social, and cultural contexts, with particular emphasis on women and feminist perspectives. 3 credits


PSY 335
Drugs and Behavior
(s)
This course will examine how various types of psychoactive drugs affect the brain, psychological processes, and behavior. Students will also learn about different neurotransmitters, the chemical messengers of the brain whose effects are modified by drug use. Course topics include: pharmokinetics and drug action, classes of psychoactive drugs, drug abuse and addiction, and therapeutic treatments for various disorders and diseases. 3 credits


PSY 345
Industrial-Organizational Psychology
(xs)
This course is designed to examine the psychology of the workplace from the standpoint of a behavioral scientist. A majority of the course will be devoted to topics related to research methods and proper assessment of both employees and of jobs. This includes discussions related to hiring methods, performance appraisals, best practices for job training, and other similar topics. The latter portion of the course will discuss issues related to individuals and groups within the work setting. During this section of the course, students will learn about such topics as leadership, occupational safety, and employee productivity. 3 credits


PSY 350
Abnormal Psychology
(f)
Prerequisite: PSY 101 General Psychology
Students will examine a variety of issues related to abnormal psychology, including characteristics of and biological, psychological, social, and socio-cultural explanations and treatments for major psychological disorders. Disorders may include anxiety disorders, obsessive compulsive disorders, stress disorders, dissociative disorders, mood disorders, suicide, eating disorders, substance-related disorders, schizophrenia, and personality disorders. 3 credits


PSY 351
Cross-Cultural Psychology
(f)
Prerequisite: PSY 101 General Psychology
Students will examine a variety of issues related to cross-cultural psychology, including established theories, concepts, research methods, findings, and uses. Topics will include culture’s role in intelligence, emotion, motivation and behavior, human development and socialization, psychological disorders, social perception and social cognition, and social interaction. 3 credits


PSY/SOC 355
Psychology of Intergroup Relations
(s)
Prerequisite: PSY 101 General Psychology Students will learn about theory and research related to social identity, social conflict, and social justice. Topics will include, but will not be limited to, status and power differences, bias, prejudice, discrimination, and social change efforts past and present. 3 credits


PSY 420
Counseling/Clinical Psychology
(xs)
Prerequisite: PSY 101 General Psychology and PSY 350 Abnormal Psychology
Students will examine a variety of issues related to counseling/ clinical psychology, with an emphasis on theoretical orientation and application. Topics will include neuroscience, microskills, the psychodynamic tradition, cognitive-behavioral counseling and therapy, the existential-humanistic tradition, feminist counseling and therapy, multicultural counseling and therapy, positive psychology and brief/solution-focused therapy, and family counseling and therapy. This course emphasizes learning by doing. 3 credits


PSY 430
Conflict Resolution
(s)
Prerequisite: PSY101 General Psychology and SOC/PSY232 Social Psychology or permission of instructor
Students will examine a variety of issues related to conflict resolution, with an emphasis on application. Topics will include conflict processes; communication options; the Stop-Think Listen Communicate (S-TLC) System; negotiation; management of conflict climates,stress, anger, and face; forgiveness; mediation; and management of group, organizational, and social conflict. This course emphasizes learning by doing. 3 credits


PSY 440
Learning and Conditioning
(xs)
Students will discover how new behaviors are acquired, and how existing behaviors can be changed, through different principles of learning and conditioning. Lectures will include such topics as habituation, sensitization, imprinting, classical and operant conditioning, observational learning, and applied behavior analysis. Students will also complete various hands-on computer modules that illustrate different principles of learning, and will write brief reports based on what they find. 3 credits


PSY 445
Emotional Intelligence
(xs)
Emotional intelligence is comprised of being able to perceive, understand, manage, and use emotions in beneficial ways. Topics will include multiple conceptualizations, measurements, and applications of emotional intelligence, regarding relationships, school, work, and mental health. 3 credits


PSY 450
Psychology of Sport & Physical Activity
(xf)
This course will examine the major psychological theories related to sport and exercise behavior. The course is designed to introduce students to the field of sports and exercise psychology by providing a broad overview of the major topics in the area, including the history of sports and exercise psychology, foundations of personality, motivation, coaching and leadership, gender and cultural issues, team dynamics, performance enhancement strategies, and sports as recreation. 3 credits


PSY 485
Senior Capstone
(s)
Prerequisities: PSY 101 General Psychology; MAT 112 Elementary Statistics; PSY 310 Research Methods in Psychology
Students will choose one of three tracks: a research project, a service-learning based volunteer experience, or an internship-based volunteer experience. Students will demonstrate their level of proficiency for each of the American Psychological Associations’ guidelines for the undergraduate psychology major, in conjunction with their chosen track. Students will develop a portfolio comprised of new and old work. 3 credits


General Psychology is a prerequisite for all other psychology courses and is offered each semester.

Students wishing to study psychology may pursue an Associate in Arts degree, an Associate in Science degree, or a Bachelor of Arts degree.

Psychology B.A. Plan

Year 1 Fall Spring
First Year Writing Seminar 3 College Writing 3
PSY 101 General Psychology 3 MAT 112 Statistics (Technology Intensive) 3
Foreign Language 3-4 Foreign Language 3-4
MAT 103 College Algebra 3 Women’s Studies course 3
Elective 3 Elective 3
Total: 15-16 Total: 15-16
Year 2 Fall Spring
Lab science (Biology recommended) 3-4 Psychology course (Biological category) 3
Humanities 3 Fine Arts 3
Psychology course (Social category) 3 Research Methods: Design & Ethics 3
Psychology course (Cognitive category) 3 Elective 3
Elective 3 Physical Education or Dance 1
Physical Education or Dance 1 Opportunities for Undergraduate Research 1-2
Total: 16-17 Total: 14-15
Year 3 Fall Spring
2nd Science 3-4 Psychology Elective 3
Research Methods: Psychological Statistics 3 Psychology Elective 3
Psychology course (Personality category) 3 Interdisciplinary course 3
Electives 6 Electives 6
Internship 1 Internship 1
Total: 16-17 Total: 16
Year 4 Fall Spring
Psychology course (Diversity category) 3 Psychology course (Applied category) 3
Interdisciplinary course 3 Psychology capstone 3
Psychology course (Developmental category) 3 Electives 6
Service Learning 1
Electives 6
Total: 16 Total: 12
Total Hours: 120-125

Selena Kohel, Ph. D.
Associate Professor of Psychology
Rubie Burton Academic Center 133
(417) 667-8181, ext. 2216
skohel@cottey.edu

Julie Tietz, Ph. D.
Professor of Psychology
Rubie Burton Academic Center 139
(417) 667-8181, ext. 2220
jtietz@cottey.edu

Amanda Gilchrist, Ph. D.
Assistant Professor of Psychology
Rubie Burton Academic Center 134
(417) 667-8181, ext 2276

Students Trying to Open Minds to Opportunities (S.T.O.M.P.):  STOMP is a service-learning program partnered with the Nevada Housing Authority of Nevada, MO.  Begun in 2007, STOMP exposes disadvantaged children to the possibilities the world has to offer and inspires them to set and accomplish high goals to make a difference in their community.  It is held after school at a low-income housing development.  Cottey students create weekly lesson plans, including science demonstrations, art projects, games, guest speakers, and homework time.  Cottey students may receive course credit or participate on a volunteer basis.
stomp photo

Opportunities in Undergraduate Research:  Students may enroll in this course to conduct a research project and present it at a conference.


Research photo

Mosier, A. (2016, April). The effects of music and silence on critical thinking task performance in college students. Paper presented at the meeting of the Missouri Academy of Science, Jefferson City, MO.

Kohel, S., Griffin, M., & Zondo, F. (2014, May). Connecting the past to the present: Teaching about prejudice and discrimination. Paper presented at the meeting of the Midwestern Psychological Association, Chicago, IL.

Griffin, M. (2014, May). The role of same-sex and co-educational colleges in eating disorders among college women. Poster session presented at the meeting of the Midwestern Psychological Association, Chicago, IL.

Griffin, M. (2014, April). The role of same-sex and co-educational colleges in eating disorders among college women. Paper presented at the meeting of the Missouri Academy of Science, Warrensburg, MO.

Swan, H. (2014, April). Do body modifications influence employers during personnel selection? Poster session presented at the meeting of the Missouri Academy of Science, Warrensburg, MO.

Woods, T. (2014, April). The effects of auditory and visual nature simulations on levels of stress and negative affect. Paper presented at the meeting of the Missouri Academy of Science, Warrensburg, MO.

Hilton, A. (2014, April). Belonging. Paper presented at the Cottey College Academic Showcase, Nevada, MO.

McPherson, R. (2014, April). Group communication plays a role in performing. Paper presented at the Cottey College Academic Showcase, Nevada, MO.

Griffin, M., & Swan, H. (2013, April). The antecedents, behaviors, and consequences of bullying. Presentation at the 49th Annual Meeting of the Missouri Academy of Science, College of the Ozarks, Point Lookout, MO.

Swan, H., Woods, T., & Zeghum, T. (2012, November). Creating a world of giving. Presentation at the 8th Annual Missouri Undergraduate Psychology Conference, Westminster College, Fulton, MO.

Davis, C., & Tietz, J. (2012). Sharing the world: Using a study abroad experience to enhance an on- campus service learning project. Journal of Applied Learning in Higher Education, 4, 35-43.

Beltz, S., & Tietz, J. (2010, November). Happiness is…a happy friend? Poster presented at the 6th Annual Missouri Undergraduate Psychology Conference, Westminster College, Fulton, MO.

Pivniak, A., Dunn, K., Ohene Asante, G., Cichon, A., Murphy, L., & Tietz, J. (2008, November). Connectedness at a two-year college campus: A pilot study. Paper presented at the Southwest Teachers of Psychology Annual Conference, Fort Worth, TX.