Department of Psychology
Liberal Arts Building 2210
Programs of the Department
The Department of Psychology offers the following programs: the major in Psychology, the minor in Psychology, an undergraduate clinical psychology area of focus and an honors thesis option.
The major in Psychology prepares students for graduate work in psychology, for training in special education and general education, for careers requiring a liberal arts background and for work in clinical services.
Transfer Credit Policy
All Psychology majors must complete a minimum of 23 units in psychology courses at Towson University, and all Psychology minors must complete a minimum of 16 units in psychology courses at Towson University, toward the major or minor.
Master of Arts in Psychology
The Master of Arts in Psychology is designed for students who are primarily interested in an advanced degree in Clinical, Counseling, Experimental or School Psychology. For detailed information, see the Graduate Catalog.
Department Animal Policy
In accordance with federal laws and regulation, Towson University, through its Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee, reviews the use of animals in teaching to assure compliance with the standards established by the USDA and NIH for the humane treatment of animals. Towson University makes every effort to minimize the use of animals and seeks alternatives wherever possible. Although Towson University recognizes that some students may believe the use of animals as teaching tools is inhumane, certain curricula require the use of animals as a necessary part of instruction. Accordingly, where the use of animals in class demonstrations or experiments is a requirement for successful completion of any course, as determined by the department, students will be obliged to comply with those requirements as set forth by the instructor in the course syllabus. TU will not provide optional procedures for students who do not comply with course requirements.
If a course requires the use of animals in class demonstrations or experiments, however, the syllabus must specifically state that animals will be used in class demonstration or experiments and that such use is a requirement for successful completion of the course. Notice of this requirement will be made a part of the course description and shall be placed in the catalog.
PSYC 101 INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOLOGY (3)
Psychological theories, principles and methods, with focus on measurement and experimentation, biopsychology, sensation and perception, learning and memory, motivation and emotion, personality and adjustment, abnormality and psychotherapy, development and individual differences. GenEd. II.C.2 or Core: Social & Behavioral Sciences.
PSYC 102 HONORS INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOLOGY (3)
An in-depth study of psychological theories, principles and methods, with focus on measurement and experimentation, biopsychology, sensation and perception, learning and memory, motivation and emotion, personality and adjustment, abnormality and psychotherapy, development and individual differences. Honors College course GenEd II.C.2. or Core: Social & Behavioral Sciences.
PSYC 201 EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY (3)
The learning process and related concepts: human development; individual differences; measurement and evaluation; personality and adjustment. Prerequisite: PSYC 101.
PSYC 203 HUMAN DEVELOPMENT (3)
Study of research and theories related to the overall development of the human throughout the life span with an emphasis on physical, cognitive, social and emotional dimensions. Prerequisite: PSYC 101 or PSYC 102. GenEd II.C.2.
PSYC 204 HONORS HUMAN DEVELOPMENT (3)
An in-depth study of research and theories related to the overall development of the human throughout the life span, with an emphasis on the interaction of physical, psychological, and social components. Honors college course. Prerequisite: PSYC 101 or PSYC 102. GenEd II.C.2.
PSYC 205 INTRODUCTION TO THE HELPING RELATIONSHIP (3)
Current concepts of the helping relationship and an exploration of the conditions that facilitate its effectiveness. Not open to students who have successfully completed PSYC 425. Prerequisite: PSYC 101.
PSYC 212 BEHAVIORAL STATISTICS (4)
Distributions and graphs, notation, levels of measurement, percentiles, measures of central tendency and variability, principles of probability, the normal curve, standard scores, sampling theory, hypothesis testing, significance of differences, correlation and prediction, Chi square, non-parametrics, one-way analysis of variance. Not open to those who have successfully completed PSYC 111. Prerequisite: MATH 109 or higher except MATH 204. GenEd I.C.
PSYC 213 RESEARCH DESIGN AND STATISTICAL ANALYSIS IN PSYCHOLOGY I (4)
Methodologies for gathering observational and self-report data, be analysis of data using descriptive statistics and correlation/regression procedures. Discuss ethics and feasibility of different research designs. Successful completion of the course is required for matriculation in Research Design and Statistical Analysis in Psychology: II (PSYC 313). To receive Psychology major credit, PSYC 313 must also be successfully completed. This course is not open to students who have successfully completed PSYC 212 or PSYC 314. Prerequisite: MATH 109 or higher except MATH 204.
PSYC 301 SCIENCE, PSEUDOSCIENCE AND SUPERSTITION (3)
Differentiating between scientific and pseudo-scientific claims, focusing on psychological factors that influence human judgement and decision making. Possible topics include: astrology, alternative medicine, New Ageism, alien abductions, parapsychology. Prerequisite: PSYC 101. GenEd II.A.
PSYC 305 PSYCHOLOGY OF LEARNING (3)
Analysis of selected problems in both human and animal learning including reinforcement, punishment, verbal learning, and verbal behavior. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and 6 units of PSYC.
PSYC 309 PSYCHOPHARMACOLOGY (3)
PSYC 311 BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION (3)
Examination and application of the basic principles of the experimental analysis of behavior, with an emphasis on the applied aspects of this modern discipline to schools, jobs, interpersonal relations and self-control. Prerequisite: 9 units of PSYC or consent of instructor.
PSYC 313 RESEARCH DESIGN AND STATISTICAL ANALYSIS IN PSYCHOLOGY II (4)
Methodologies for gathering observational and self-report data, analysis of data using descriptive statistics and correlations/regression procedures. Discuss ethics and feasibility of different research designs. To receive Psychology major credit, PSYC 213 must also be successfully completed. Not open to students who have successfully completed PSYC 212 or PSYC 314. Requires grade of C or better to fulfill Core or GenEd requirement. Prerequisites: ENGL 102 or ENGL 190; PSYC 213. Core: Advanced Writing Seminar or GenEd I.D.
PSYC 314 RESEARCH METHODS IN PSYCHOLOGY (4)
The experimental method and its application to recent problems in psychological research; introduction to experimental design and inference. Three hours lecture, two hours laboratory per week. Not open to those who have successfully completed PSYC 261. Requires grade of C or better to fulfill Core or GenEd requirement. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 or PSYC 102, ENGL 102 or ENGL 190, PSYC 212. Core: Advanced Writing Seminar or GenEd I.D.
PSYC 315 MOTIVATION (3)
Interaction between physiological, neurological and pharmacological aspects of motivation with environmental influences such as culture, learning and social dynamics. Issues in human motivation and emotion which will be emphasized are aggression, sex, achievement (competence) and cognitive-social influences. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and 6 units of PSYC. (PSYC 203 or PSYC 204 and junior standing recommended).
PSYC 317 SENSATION AND PERCEPTION (3)
A systematic investigation of the basic senses such as vision, audition, taste, smell, and touch will be undertaken. The organization of sensory input will also be emphasized. Both human and non-human data will be presented. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and 6 units of PSYC and BIOL 120 and BIOL 120L.
PSYC 325 SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY (3)
Theory and research of how people think about, influence, and relate to one another. Topics include social cognition, attitudes, aggression and helping. Prerequisite: PSYC 101 and 3 units of PSYC.
PSYC 327 INDUSTRIAL PSYCHOLOGY (3)
Theories, psychological concepts, and research applied to industrial and organizational settings. Prerequisite: PSYC 101 and 3 units of PSYC.
PSYC 341 ENVIRONMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY (3)
The relationship between the physical and social environment and behavior, i.e., places, spaces, and people. How man/woman construes, interprets, comprehends, feels about the environment, and how the environment functions as a reflection of human needs and values. Topics include environmental design, crowding, privacy, human territoriality, personal space. Prerequisite: PSYC 101 or PSYC 102.
PSYC 350 PERSONALITY (3)
Introduction to the theoretical perspectives and research aimed at understanding personality processes and individual differences in though, emotion, and behavior. Perspectives may include psychoanalytic, dispositional, biological, learning and humanistic. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and 3 units of PSYC.
PSYC 361 ABNORMAL PSYCHOLOGY (3)
Disordered personal reactions to life. Organic and functional phenomena plus therapeutic techniques. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and 3 units of PSYC.
PSYC 381 READINGS IN PSYCHOLOGY (1-2)
A survey of relevant research literature under the guidance of a staff member who will direct the student's research. May be repeated for a maximum of 4 units. Graded S/U. Prerequisite: 9 units of PSYC and consent of instructor.
PSYC 383 PROCTORING IN PSYCHOLOGY (3)
Students serve as teaching apprentices or proctors in a course which they have already completed (such as Introduction to Psychology), and which they must relearn to 100 percent mastery. Students will manage the learning and evaluate individual progress of the members of the class assigned to them. The experience includes guidance, support and motivation of the assigned students, all in a supervised situation. Only 3 units may be earned in one term. May be repeated for a maximum of 6 units. For 6 units, students must serves as proctor for two separate courses. Grade S/U. Prerequisites: successful completion of five or more psychology courses or: introductory, educational and child, or adolescent psychology, and principles of education and be a junior or a senior standing plus permission of instructor. NOTE: Psychology majors and minors will not receive psychology elective credit for this course.
PSYC 391 DIRECTED RESEARCH EXPERIENCE IN PSYCHOLOGY (1-3)
An opportunity for qualified students to gain research experience by assisting faculty members with research projects. PSYC 391 and PSYC 491 in combination may be repeated for a maximum of 12 total units, but only 6 can apply to the major; the other 6 units will be used as general electives. Graded S/U. Prerequisites: 6 units of PSYC and consent of instructor.
PSYC 403 INFANT AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT (3)
An advanced course reviewing historical and current changes in the areas of infancy and childhood. Physical, cognitive and social emotional development will be covered in depth. Emphasis is placed on critical analysis of research theory construction and methods. Not open to those students who have successfully completed ECED 413. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and PSYC 203.
PSYC 404 ADOLESCENT PSYCHOLOGY (3)
Physical, emotional, intellectual development during adolescence; social development and heterosexuality; adolescent personality; problems of adjustment; juvenile delinquency. Prerequisite: PSYC 101 and PSYC 203.
PSYC 405 PSYCHOLOGY OF AGING (3)
PSYC 411 TESTS AND MEASUREMENTS (3)
Psychological and educational testing and evaluation. The construction, administration, interpretation and use of the various evaluative devices of aptitude and achievement. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and PSYC 212.
PSYC 419 DIVERSE PERSPECTIVES IN PSYCHOLOGY (3)
Diverse theories and topics explored by both traditional and modern psychology, drawn from a range of philosophical and cultural perspectives: psychodynamic and behavioristic approaches and existential, positive, transpersonal, and mind-body psychology. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and 3 units of PSYC.
PSYC 430 SYSTEMS AND TECHNIQUES OF PSYCHOTHERAPY (3)
Review and application of current theoretical approaches to the helping relationship. Prerequisites: PSYC 361 and 3 units of PSYC.
PSYC 431 GROUP DYNAMICS (3)
Intensive study of group interactions with emphasis upon reciprocal group influence of behavior. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and 3 units of PSYC.
PSYC 432 CROSS-CULTURAL PSYCHOLOGY (3)
Comparison of psychological behavior and theory in Western and Non-Western cultures. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and 3 units of PSYC.
PSYC 433 GROUP PSYCHOTHERAPY INTERNSHIP (3)
Supervised experience in use of group intervention techniques. Students will counsel groups of troubled adolescents. Supervision will focus on both group and individual dynamics. Prerequisites: PSYC 431, admissions to Honors Clinical Track.
PSYC 435 INTERNSHIP IN PSYCHOLOGY (3-6)
Placement in a community service agency to familiarize students with its current practices. Supervised client contact will be provided. May be repeated for a maximum of 12 units, but only 6 untis can apply to the major; the other 6 units will be used as general electives. Prerequisites: 23 units of psychology, minimum PSYC GPA 3.00 and consent of instructor.
PSYC 439 THE INITIAL INTERVIEW (3)
Clinical observation and practicum experience. Focus on interviewer and interviewee dimensions and relationship with patients. Use of tapes, seminars and individual supervision. Prerequisite: PSYC 205, and admission on Honors Clinical Track.
PSYC 447 SEX DIFFERENCES: PSYCHOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVES (3)
Sex role/personality development is examined from various perspectives: social, cultural, evolutionary, and biological. Changing conceptions with regard to women, their roles and self-concepts, are emphasized within the overall context of sex differences and similarities in behavior. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and PSYC 203.
PSYC 449 PSYCHOLOGY OF LESBIAN CULTURE (3)
Impact of culture on development of a lesbian identity within a psychological framework. Prerequisite: two courses of psychology or women's studies or consent of instructor.
PSYC 451 INTRODUCTION TO THE EXCEPTIONAL CHILD (3)
Examination of children with physical, cognitive, social, emotional, sensory, and multiple disabilities in addition to children who are gifted. Cultural and familial factors that contribute to the treatment of exceptional children in historical and current contexts. How exceptional children are categorized and offered special education services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and services under section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and PSYC 203.
PSYC 452 PSYCHOLOGY OF LANGUAGE (3)
Principles of psycholinguistics, language perception, comprehension, production and acquisition; exploring syntax, lexicon, morphology, pragmatics and language disorders as they inform language processing. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and 3 additional units in PSYC or consent of instructor.
PSYC 453 ISSUES IN MENTAL HEALTH INTERVENTION (1-2)
Readings, lectures, and seminars relating to psychological emergencies and the modes of intervention during psychological crises. May be repeated for a maximum of 4 units. Prerequisites: PSYC 205; PSYC 454 (may be taken concurrently); admission to Honors Clinical Track. Graded S/U.
PSYC 454 INTERNSHIP IN PSYCHOTHERAPY (4-12)
Techniques of psychotherapeutic intervention. Students will see patients in psychotherapy under intensive supervision. Seminars and individualized readings. May be repeated for a maximum of 12 units. Prerequisites: PSYC 453 (may be taken concurrently) and admissions to Honors Clinical Track.
PSYC 457 GENDER IDENTITY IN TRANSITION (3)
Psychological consequences of changing definitions of femininity; masculinity, and personhood will be examined using recent theories of gender identity formation. Concepts such as androgyny, sex-role transcendence and future shock will be related to psychological adaptation to social change. Prerequisites: PSYC 447 or consent of instructor.
PSYC 460 ETHOLOGY AND COMPARATIVE PSYCHOLOGY (3)
A survey of the major behavioral adaptations in non-human and human species, within the framework of evolutionary theory, ethology, and experimental psychology. Three units of lecture a week. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and 6 units of PSYC and BIOL 120 and BIOL 120L.
PSYC 461 COGNITIVE PSYCHOLOGY (3)
Examination of human cognitive processes from the perspectives of information processing theory, cognitive neuroscience, and connectionism. Focus on attention, memory, reasoning, language, problem solving, and visual imagery. May include related fields such as developmental psychology, artificial intelligence, and computer modeling. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and 6 additional units in PSYC.
PSYC 465 PHYSIOLOGICAL PSYCHOLOGY (3)
An introduction to the physiological bases of behavior. The topics to be considered are basic neuroanatomy and neurophysiology, sensory and motor systems, motivational systems, and "higher-order" behavioral systems. Three units of lecture per week. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and 6 units of PSYC and BIOL 120/ BIOL 120L.
PSYC 467 MIDLIFE DEVELOPMENT (3)
A study of adult behavior between the ages of 18 and 60. The developmental stages of young adulthood, adulthood, and middle age will be discussed along with topics pertinent to each of the levels such as leaving and becoming emancipated from the family; the transition and adjustment to marriage and work; and bridging the gap between ideals and actual fulfillment. Prerequisites: PSYC 101 and PSYC 203.
PSYC 470 SPECIAL TOPICS IN PSYCHOLOGY (1-3)
Survey and critical evaluation of modern literature pertaining to selected problems in psychology. May be repeated for a maximum of 12 units provided a different topic is covered each time.
PSYC 486 ADVANCED EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN (3)
Analysis of variance, multiple comparisons, nonparametrics, general problems related to sampling, experimenter effects, SPSS analysis, reading of the experimental literature. Honors approval or consent of instructor. Prerequisite: PSYC 212 and PSYC 314.
PSYC 491 INDEPENDENT INVESTIGATION IN PSYCHOLOGY (3)
An opportunity for especially qualified students to undertake independent research problems according to their interest and training under the direction of a staff member. May be repeated for a maximum of 12 units, but only 6 units can apply to the major; the other 6 units will be used as general electives. Graded S/U. Prerequisite: PSYC 314 or PSYC 313, PSYC 391, and consent of instructor.
PSYC 494 TRAVEL AND STUDY ABROAD IN PSYCHOLOGY (1-3)
Selected topics, issues, programs, projects and/or facilities related to the field of psychology. Locations and topics to be selected by Department and instructor sponsoring the program. There is no foreign language skill requirement. Prerequisite: Consent of instructor.
PSYC 497 HONORS SEMINAR IN PSYCHOLOGY (3)
Issues of current and historical interest in psychology, examined from clinical, developmental, experimental, and other relevant points of view. Seminar format, including discussions, based on readings from primary sources and group projects. Prerequisites: Completion of the first year of Dept. Honors in PSYC (junior year) and special permit.
PSYC 498 HONORS CAPSTONE PSYCHOLOGY (3)
Advanced coursework in psychology focused on preparation and presentation of Psychology Honors Thesis to thesis committee and peers. S/U Grading. Prerequisites: Admission to the Honors Thesis in Psychology Program and successful completion of PSYC 486 and PSYC 497 with a grade of "B" or better.
Professors: Bethany Brand, Leonie Brooks, Justin Buckingham, Maria Fracasso, M. Paz Galupo, Jonathan Mattanah, Geoffrey Munro (Chair), Kim Shifren, Jan Sinnott, Evangeline Wheeler
Associate Professors: Danice La-Rae Brown, Bryan Devan, David Earnest, Kerri Goodwin, Elizabeth Katz, Sandra Llera, Abby Mello, Bruce Mortenson, Matthew Mychailyszyn, Paul Pistell, Christa Schmidt
Assistant Professors: Candice Aston, Justine Calcagno , Christina Dardis, Christina Dardis , Alexa Doerr, Alexa Doerr , Michael Ent , Erin Girio-Herrera, Jeffrey Kukucka, Jacqueline Leventon , Jared McGinley, S. Craig Rush
Lecturers: Christopher Magalis, Jessica Stansbury, Brianna Stinebaugh
Clinical Assistant Professor: Mark Chachich
Visiting Assistant Professors: Joella Anzelc, Amy Bennett