The curriculum in the Psychology Department is designed to: (a) give the student a background in the philosophical, theoretical, and empirical aspects of the field; (b) develop the student's basic skills in critical thinking, reading, writing, speaking, computer use, and research; (c) emphasize the role of liberal education in enhancing personal and professional development; and (d) assure that students have the background experiences necessary to pursue graduate education.

        The B.A. major in Psychology consists of at least ten courses (31-32 hours), with additional courses required for the B.S. degree (35 hours). 

All majors must take the following core courses: PSY 101, 150, 306, and 307. All majors must complete one course from each of the following groups: Group 1 (PSY 205, 210, 212, 215, 221), Group 2 (PSY 230, 235, 240, 250, 256, 265, 270, 275), a Lab course (PSY 312, 321, 325, 326, 344, 385), and a Seminar (PSY 401, 414, 416, 421, 430, 451, 485). PSY 285 may be used for either Group 1 or Group 2, depending on the topic and only with permission of the chair. Students intending to pursue graduate studies in psychology are encouraged to take PSY 401.

        For a B.A. in Psychology, majors must complete (a) a Group 1 course, Group 2 course, Lab course, or an empirical project (PSY 490A and 490B; or PSY 496A and 496B); and (b) three additional hours in PSY.

        For a B.S. in Psychology, majors must complete (a) an empirical project (PSY 490A and 490B; or PSY 496A and 496B); (b) STA 126, BIO 110, BIO 202, BIO 211, or BIO 212; and (c) six additional hours in PSY.

        A minor in Psychology consists of five courses: PSY 101, PSY 394, PSY 395, one course from Group 1 and one course from Group 2.

        Majors may attain Departmental Honors in Psychology by first filing an application to attempt honors with the chair. To be eligible to apply, the student must fulfill the following requirements: (a) have a minimum grade point average of 3.5 in all Psychology courses and a 3.0 overall grade point average; and (b) have completed at least three courses in Psychology, which must include PSY 101, 306, and one course from either Group 1 or 2. To earn Departmental Honors, the student must then (a) maintain a minimum grade point average of 3.5 in all Psychology courses and a 3.0 overall grade point average; and (b) complete PSY 496A and 496B, Honors Project in Psychology.

For an updated curriculum and degree requirements, please visit the Mercer catalog.  View an example of degree audit/ academic check sheet.


Curriculum Requirements, Effective Fall 2018

(1) PSY 101:  Introduction to Psychology (required; minimum prerequisite for all other PSY courses)
(2) PSY 150:  The Psychology Major & Career (1 credit hour; Prereq: PSY 101)
(3) PSY 306:  Research Methods & Statistics I (Prereq: PSY 101 + competition of the CLA Gen Ed Math requirement)
(4) PSY 307:  Research Methods & Statistics II (Prerequisite for this course is PSY 306)
(5) Students must take at least one course from each group listed below. PSY 285 (Special Topics) may be substituted only with prior permission of the department chair (Prereq: PSY 101).




PSY 205: Psychology of Learning

PSY 210: Biopsychology

PSY 212: Drugs and Behavior

PSY 215: Cognitive Psychology

PSY 221: Health Psychology





PSY 230: Social Psychology

PSY 235: Industrial Psychology

PSY 240: Theories of Personality

PSY 250: Child & Adolescent Psychology (disallows PSY 245)

PSY 256: Forensic Psychology

PSY 265: Abnormal Psychology

PSY 270: Psychology of Gender (cross-listed as WGS 270)

PSY 275: Cross-Cultural Psychology


Note: After PSY 101, students may proceed directly into either PSY 306 or a 200-level course. Departmentally, we recommend PSY 306 after PSY 101, but students may take Group 1or Group 2 courses if they wish.

(6) All majors must complete one LAB course from those listed below (prereq: PSY 307).
(7) All majors must complete one SEMINAR course from those listed below (prereq: PSY 307 + one Group 1 or Group 2 course).




PSY 312: Animal Behavior

PSY 321: Health Behaviors

PSY 325: Tests and Measurement

PSY 326: Behavior Modification

PSY 344: Investigations into Developmental Psych

PSY 385: Special Topics Laboratory Courses



PSY 401: History & Systems of Psychology

PSY 414: Hormones and Behavior

PSY 416: Evolutionary Psychology

PSY 421: Stress and Coping

PSY 430: Group Dynamics

PSY 451: Current Issues in Psychology

PSY 485: Special Topics Seminar Courses


(8) For B.A. and B.S.:
For B.A
.: (a) a Group 1 course, Group 2 course, Lab, or independent research project (PSY 490 or 496*)
               (b) three additional hours in PSY
For B.S.: (a) Four additional hours in PSY 290, PSY Lab Electives, PSY 490a/490b, PSY 496a/496b
               (b) One course from STA 126, BIO 110, BIO 202, BIO 211, or BIO 212
               (c) six additional hours in PSY

Majors (whether B.A. or B.S.) who wish to earn Departmental Honors must complete PSY 496* (Honors Project in Psychology).

*Description of the independent research project:
    There are two options: PSY 490 (Empirical Project in Psychology) or PSY 496 (Honors Project in Psychology).
    For each type of project it is a two semester sequence in which the student proposes (1st semester) and implements (2nd semester) an individual research project in Psychology. For PSY 490, the student works with a single faculty supervisor. For PSY 496, the project must be of higher quality, and the student works with a committee of three faculty.

PSY 245: Lifespan Development (student may take either PSY 245 or PSY 250 (Group 2), but not both)
PSY 290: Research Practicum (variable credit, maximum of 6 credit hours)
PSY 390: Field Placement (variable credit, maximum of 15 credit hours)
PSY 394: Foundations in Research Methods and Statistics, intended for PSY Minors as alternative to PSY 306
PSY 395: Perspectives in Psychology (2 credits), intended for PSY minors as an alternative to PSY 307.
PSY 495: Directed Independent Research

The Minor in Psychology: (a) PSY 101, (b) one course from Group 1, (c) one course from Group 2, (d) PSY 394, and (e) PSY 395.