Students may complete a major or minor in psychology. Within the major, students may complete a concentration in neural and behavioral sciences.
Kimberly Wright Cassidy, Associate Professor and Chair
Margaret A. Hollyday, Professor
Clark R. McCauley, Professor
Paul Neuman, Laboratory Lecturer (on leave semester I)
Leslie Rescorla, Professor
Marc Schulz, Associate Professor
Anjali Thapar, Associate Professor
Earl Thomas, Professor
Robert H. Wozniak, Professor (on leave semester II)
The department offers the student a major program that allows a choice of courses from among a wide variety of fields in psychology: clinical, cognitive, developmental, physiological and social. In addition to the considerable breadth offered, the program encourages the student to focus on more specialized areas through advanced coursework, seminars and especially through supervised research. Students have found that the major program provides a strong foundation for graduate work in clinical, cognitive, developmental, experimental, physiological and social psychology, as well as for graduate study in law, medicine and business.
Major requirements in psychology are either Psychology 101 or 102 (or a one-semester introductory psychology course taken elsewhere); Psychology 205; and additional courses at the 200 and 300 levels, as described below. Students may choose to take either Psychology 101 or 102, or they can elect to take both, as the content areas differ. If a student takes one of the 100-level courses (101 or 102), the major requires at least nine courses above the 100 level, not including Psychology 205: five 200-level and four 300-level courses, or six 200-level and three 300-level courses. If a student takes both 101 and 102, she must take either four 200-level and four 300-level courses or five 200-level and three 300-level courses. With permission of the department, two semesters of supervised research may be substituted for one 300-level course. In addition, the following courses offered at Bryn Mawr College may be taken in lieu of one 300-level psychology course: Anthropology 203 (Human Ecology), Anthropology 212 (Primate Evolution and Behavior), Anthropology 253 (Childhood in the African Experience), Biology 321 (Neuroethology), Computer Science 361 (Emergence), Computer Science 372 (Introduction to Artificial Intelligence), Computer Science 376 (Androids: Design and Practice), Philosophy 319 (Philosophy of Mind), Sociology 217 (The Family in Social Context).
Students who have obtained a score of 5 on the Psychology Advanced Placement Exam can waive 101/102 and take courses at the 200 level. Majors may substitute advance placement credit (score of 5 on the Psychology Advanced Placement exam) for either Psychology 101 or 102.
Courses at the 200 level survey major content areas of psychological research and have introductory psychology as a prerequisite. Courses at the 300 level have a 200-level survey course as a prerequisite and offer either specialization within a content area or integration across areas. With the exception of Psychology 205, all 200-level courses require Psychology 101 or 102 or the permission of the instructor.
The psychology major requires two courses with a laboratory, one at the 100 level (101 or 102) and one at the 200 or 300 level. If a major elects to take both 101 and 102, a laboratory course at the 200 or 300 level is still required. If a student takes introductory psychology elsewhere, and the course has no laboratory, or the student receives advanced placement credit for introductory psychology, then two laboratory courses must be taken at the 200 or 300 level to fulfill major requirements.
Majors are also expected to attend a one-hour, weekly seminar in the junior year. This seminar is designed to sharpen students’ analytical and critical skills, to provide additional opportunities for student-faculty interactions, and to build a sense of community.
The selection of courses to meet the major requirements is made in consultation with the student’s major adviser. Any continuing faculty member can serve as a major adviser. It is expected that the student will sample broadly among the diverse fields represented in the curriculum. Courses outside the department may be taken for major credit if they satisfy the above descriptions of 200-level and 300-level courses. Students should contact their major adviser about major credit for a course outside the department, preferably before taking the course.
Departmental honors (called Honors in Research in Psychology) are awarded on the merits of a report of research (the design and execution; and the scholarship exhibited in the writing of a paper based on the research). To be considered for honors, students must have a grade point average in psychology of 3.6 or higher at the end of the fall semester of the senior year.
A student may minor in psychology by taking Psychology 101 or 102 and any other five courses that meet the requirements of the major.
Concentration in Neural and Behavioral Sciences
An interdepartmental concentration in neural and behavioral sciences is available as an option to students majoring in either biology or psychology. Students electing this option must fulfill requirements of both the major and the concentration, which is administered by an interdepartmental committee.
For a psychology major with a concentration in neural and behavioral sciences, students must complete six required courses: Psychology 101 or 102, 201, 205, 212, 218 and one of the following 300-level courses — Psychology 323, 326, 350, 351 or 395.
Five additional Psychology courses at the 200, 300 and 400 levels are required to complete the psychology major with a concentration in neural and behavioral sciences. These should be chosen in consultation with the major adviser to ensure that the distribution of 200- and 300-level courses satisfies the psychology major requirements. Some of these courses (such as Supervised Research) may also fulfill core major requirements.
These departmental requirements are in addition to the requirements for the neural and behavioral sciences concentration, which are described on page 230.
Haverford College Courses
Certain courses currently offered at Haverford College may be substituted for the equivalent Bryn Mawr courses for purposes of the Bryn Mawr psychology major.
Psychology 103d, 104e, 105g, 106,h 107g at Haverford may be substituted for 101/102. Psychology 200 at Haverford may be substituted for Psychology 205. The following courses at Haverford will count as 200-level courses for the major: Psychology 213 (Memory and Cognition), Psychology 217 (Biological Psychology), Psychology 224 (Social Psychology), Psychology 238 (Psychology of Language), Psychology 260 (Cognitive Neuroscience), Psychology 309 (Abnormal Psychology). The following Haverford courses will count as 300-level courses for the major: Psychology 214 (Psychology of Adolescence), Psychology 220 (The Psychology of Time), Psychology 221 (The Primate Origins of Society), Psychology 222 (Evolution and Behavior), Psychology 240 (Psychology of Pain and Pain Inhibition), Psychology 250 (Biopsychology of Emotion and Personality), Psychology 311 (Advanced Personality Psychology: Freud), Psychology 325 (The Psychology of Close Relationships), Psychology 340 (Human Neuropsychology), Psychology 350 (Biopsychology of Stress). Students who take Haverford courses with the half credit laboratory attachments may count the lab portion of the course toward fulfilling the advanced lab requirement for the Bryn Mawr major.
PSYC B101, B102 Experimental Psychology
Both 101 and 102 present psychology as a natural science and provide a survey of methods, facts and principles relating to basic psychological processes. Topics covered in 101 include neural bases of behavior, learning and motivation, and psychosocial development and abnormal psychology. Topics covered in 102 include human cognition, cognitive development, individual differences and social psychology. Lecture three hours and laboratory four hours a week (for both 101 and 102). (staff, Division IIL)
PSYC B201 Learning Theory and Behavior
This course covers the basic principles of behavior, most of which were discovered through animal research, and their application to the understanding of the human condition. Traditionally, learning has been described in terms of operant and Pavlovian processes, with modeling treated as a special kind of operant conditioning. The basic procedures and principles of operant and Pavlovian conditioning are examined, and their relation to complex human functioning, such as concept formation and awareness, is explored. An introduction to functional assessment and analysis - the benchmarks of applied behavior analysis - will follow. Lecture three hours, laboratory one to two hours a week. (Neuman, Division IIL)
PSYC B203 Educational Psychology
Topics in the psychology of human cognitive, social and affective behavior are examined and related to educational practice. Issues covered include learning theories, memory, attention, thinking, motivation, social/emotional issues in adolescence and assessment/learning disabilities. This course provides a Praxis Level I opportunity. Classroom observation is required. (Cassidy, Division I)
PSYC B205 Experimental Methods and Statistics
An introduction to experimental design, general research methodology and the analysis and interpretation of data. Emphasis will be placed on issues involved with conducting psychological research. Topics include descriptive and inferential statistics, experimental design and validity, analysis of variance and correlation and regression. Each statistical method will also be executed using computers. Lecture three hours, laboratory 90 minutes a week. (Thapar, Division I and Quantitative Skills)
PSYC B206 Developmental Psychology
A topical survey of psychological development from infancy through adolescence, focusing on the interaction of personal and environmental factors in the ontogeny of perception, language, cognition and social interactions within the family and with peers. Topics include developmental theories; infant perception; attachment; language development; theory of mind; memory development; peer relations, schools and the family as contexts of development; and identity and the adolescent transition. (Wozniak, Division I)
PSYC B208 Social Psychology
A survey of theories and data in the study of human social behavior. Special attention to methodological issues of general importance in the conduct and evaluation of research with humans. Topics include group dynamics (conformity, leadership, encounter groups, crowd behavior, intergroup conflict); attitude change (consistency theories, attitudes and behavior, mass media persuasion); and person perception (stereotyping, essentializing, moral judgment). Participation in a research project is required. (Moskalenko, Division I)
PSYC B209 Abnormal Psychology
An examination of the main psychological disorders manifested by individuals across the lifespan. It begins with a historical overview followed by a review of the major models of psychopathology, including the medical, psychoanalytic, cognitive and behavioral. Disorders covered include attention deficit disorders, personality disorders, anorexia/bulimia, schizophrenia, substance abuse, depression and anxiety disorders. Topics include symptomatology and classification, theories of etiology, research on prognosis, treatment approaches and studies of treatment effectiveness. Two lectures, one discussion section a week. (Rescorla, Division I)
PSYC B212 Human Cognition
A survey of the history, theories and data of cognitive psychology. Emphasis is placed on those models and methods that fall within the information-processing approach to human cognition. Topics include perception, object recognition, attention and automaticity, memory, mental representations and knowledge, language and problem solving. Data from laboratory experiments (including those conducted within the course) and the performance of patients with brain damage are reviewed. Participation in self-administered laboratory experiments is mandatory. A research project or paper is also required. (Thapar, Division IIL)
PSYC B214 Behavior Modification
This course covers the basic principles of behavior and their relevance and application to clinical problems. The theoretical approaches of Pavlovian conditioning and operant conditioning (behavior analysis) will be covered to help understand the methods used in clinical practice. Topics may include eating disorders, anxiety disorders, addictive behavior, autistic behavior, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and oppositional/conduct disorder. Methods for recording, analyzing and modifying behavior will be covered. This course provides a Praxis Level I opportunity. (Neuman, Division I) Not offered in 2005-06.
PSYC B218 Behavioral Neuroscience
An interdisciplinary course on the neurobiological bases of experience and behavior, emphasizing the contribution of the various neurosciences to the understanding of basic problems of psychology. An introduction to the fundamentals of neuroanatomy, neurophysiology and neurochemistry with an emphasis upon synaptic transmission; followed by the application of these principles to an analysis of sensory processes and perception, emotion, motivation, learning and cognition. Lecture three hours a week. (Thomas, Division II)
PSYC B305 Psychological Testing
Principles of measurement relevant to both experimental and individual differences psychology, with special emphasis on evaluating tests for either research or practical selection problems. Tests considered include intelligence tests (e.g., WAIS, WISC, Stanford-Binet, Raven's Matrices), aptitude tests (e.g., SAT, GRE), and personality tests (e.g., MMPI, NEO, Rorschach). Issues considered include creativity versus intelligence testing, nature versus nurture in IQ scores and effects of base rate in using tests for selection. Prerequisite: Psychology 205. (McCauley) Not offered in 2005-06.
PSYC B312 History Modern American Psychology
An examination of major 20th-century trends in American psychology and their 18th- and 19th-century social and intellectual roots. Topics include physiological and philosophical origins of scientific psychology; growth of American developmental, comparative, social and clinical psychology; and the cognitive revolution. Open only to juniors and seniors majoring in psychology or by permission of the instructor. (Wozniak) Not offered in 2005-06.
PSYC B323 Advanced Topics in Cognitive Neuroscience: Psychobiology of Sex Differences
This course reviews the literature on sex differences in brain and behavior. The first half of the semester will examine the role that sex chromosomes and hormones play in creating sex differences in cognition. The second half of the course will examine the role that developmental processes, cultural socialization and gender-role stereotypes play in creating sex differences. Course requirements: Examinations (midterm and final), laboratory assignments and participation in class discussions. Students will conduct and original research project and submit a research paper. Prerequisite: Psychology 205 or permission of instructor. (Hollyday, Thapar, Division IIL)
PSYC B326 From Channels to Behavior
(Brodfuehrer, Thomas, Division IIL; cross-listed as BIOL B326) Not offered in 2005-06.
PSYC B340 Women's Mental Health
This course will provide an overview of current research and theory related to women's mental health. We will discuss psychological phenomena and disorders that are particularly salient to and prevalent among women, why these phenomena/disorders affect women disproportionately over men, and how they may impact women's psychological and physical well-being. Psychological disorders covered will include: depression, eating disorders, dissociative identity disorder, borderline personality disorder and chronic pain disorders. Other topics discussed will include work-family conflict for working mothers, the role of sociocultural influences on women's mental health, and mental health issues particular to women of color and to lesbian women. (Bennett)
PSYC B350 Developmental Cognitive Disorders
This course uses a developmental and neuropsychological framework to study several cognitive disorders (e.g., language delay, specific reading disability, nonverbal learning disabilities and autism). Cognitive disorders are viewed in the context of the normal development of language, memory, attention, reading and quantitative/spatial abilities. More general issues of curriculum/pedagogical adjustment, educational placement, law and policy for children with disabilities will also be covered. Students will participate in a course-related placement approximately four hours a week. This course provides a Praxis Level I opportunity. (Cassidy) Not offered in 2005-06.
PSYC B351 Developmental Psychopathology
An examination of research and theory addressing the origins, progression and consequences of maladaptive functioning in children, adolescents and families. Major forms of psychopathology, such as depression and disruptive behavior syndromes will be considered. An important focus of the course is on the identification of biological, social and psychological risk and protective factors for psychopathology and the implications of these factors for prevention and treatment efforts. The role of family-based risk and protective factors, such as marital conflict and parenting quality, will be emphasized. (Schulz)
PSYC B352 Advanced Topics in Developmental Psychology
This course will provide an in-depth exploration of the development of the concept of gender and the formation of gender stereotypes in children. We will examine the major theoretical positions relating to children's understanding of gender and the empirical data that supports those positions. The course will involve the critical exploration of popular press books on gender development, focusing on the broader issue of how psychological research gets translated for public consumption. In addition, the course contains a laboratory component, which will involve original research designed by the class for both children and adults. Prerequisite: Psychology 206 (Cassidy, Division IIL) Not offered in 2005-06.
PSYC B353 Advanced Topics in Clinical Developmental Psychology: Emotion Processes and Family Interactions
This course examines research and theory at the intersection of clinical and developmental psychology. Topics will include emotion and family relationships, stress and psychological or physical well-being, and family research methods. Class will involve discussion of relevant theory and research as well as the design and execution of research projects. Open only to juniors and seniors majoring in psychology. (Schulz, Division I) Not offered in 2005-06.
PSYC B358 Political Psychology of Group Identification
This seminar will explore the common interests of psychologists and political scientists in the phenomena of group identification. The focus will be identification with ethnic and national groups, with special attention to the ways in which research on small-group dynamics can help us understand identification and conflict for these larger groups. The seminar will review major theories of group identity and examine several historical or current cases of successful and unsuccessful development of national identity. Prerequisite: Psychology 208 or two semesters of political science. (McCauley; cross-listed as POLS B358) Not offered in 2005-06.
PSYC B395 Psychopharmacology
A study of the role of drugs in understanding basic brain-behavior relations. Topics include the pharmacological basis of motivation and emotion; pharmacological models of psychopathology; the use of drugs in the treatment of psychiatric disorders such as anxiety, depression and psychosis; and the psychology and pharmacology of drug addiction. Prerequisite: Psychology 218. (Thomas)
PSYC B396 Topics in Neural and Behavioral Science
(Brodfuehrer, Thomas; cross-listed as BIOL B396)
PSYC B398 Cognitive Issues in Personality and Social Psychology
An examination of recent research in relation to issues of social perception (e.g., stereotypes and judgments of members of stereotyped groups), intergroup conflict (e.g., sources of group cohesion and "groupthink") and identification (e.g., emotional involvement with film characters, possessions and ethnic/national groups). Prerequisite: Psychology 208. (Moscalenko)
PSYC B401 Supervised Research in Neural and Behavioral Sciences
(staff; cross-listed as BIOL B401)
PSYC B403 Supervised Research in Psychology
Laboratory or field research on a wide variety of topics. Students should consult with faculty members to determine their topic and faculty supervisor, early in the semester prior to when they will begin. (staff)