The Department of Psychology offers a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree and a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree. The department also offers the Master of Science Degree in School Psychology (M.S.) and provides three doctoral programs in Behavioral Science, Clinical Psychology, and School Psychology (Ph.D. degrees).

Faculty: Professor Su L. Boatright, interim chairperson. Professors Susan Brady, Paul Bueno de Mesquita, David Faust, Ellen Flannery-Schroeder, Paul Florin, Kathleen Gorman, Lisa Harlow, Robert Laforge, Patricia Morokoff, James Prochaska, Mark Robbins, Margaret Rogers, Joseph Rossi, L. Stein, Gary Stoner, Wayne Velicer, Lisa Weyandt, and W. Grant Willis; Associate Professors Shanette Harris, Susan Loftus-Rattan, and Theodore Walls; Assistant Professor Jasmine Mena; Professors Emeriti H. Biller, J. Cohen, C. Collyer, L. Grebstein, I. Gross, A. Lott, B. Lott, P. Merenda, K. Quina, A. Silverstein, N. Smith, J. Stevenson, and D. Valentino.

The Major


The B.A. degree in Psychology provides students with a solid academic preparation through an overview of the current areas in the field of Psychology.  Student gain a better understanding of human behavior and an enhanced awareness of themselves and society, as well as skills for analyzing and evaluating information and data. Students in this program must complete a minimum of 32 credits (maximum 47) in Psychology.

In order to transfer from University College for Academic Success to Health Sciences as a psychology major (or to be coded as such in the College of Health Sciences), a student must have a C or better in PSY 113; a C average in two of the following courses: PSY 232, 235, and 254; and a C in PSY 200 (300).

Psychology majors are required to complete a minimum of 32 (maximum 47) credits in psychology courses to be distributed as follows: PSY 113 (with a grade of C or better); a minimum of two courses from PSY 232, 235, and 254 (with a C average); both PSY 200 (300) and PSY 301 (with a grade of C or better in each); a minimum of three topics courses (9 credits) from PSY 255, 310, 335, 361, 381, 384, 385, 399, 425, 432, 434, 436, 442, 460, 464, 470, 479, and 480 (the average in the three courses must be C or better); a minimum of one course (3 credits) in the applied knowledge area to be selected from PSY 103, 261, 275, 334, 399, 465, 466, 471, and 478 (with a C or better); a minimum of one course (at least three credits) from the experiential practice and/or internships area selected from PSY 305, 473, 488, 489, 499; EDC 484; ITR 301, 302; CSV 302, with a C or better in graded courses or a satisfactory in S/U courses. A minimum of 32 graded psychology (PSY) credits (not S/U) are required for the psychology major. Once 47 credits in psychology courses are taken, additional psychology credits will not count toward the 120 total credits required for graduation.  Students pursuing the B.A. degree must complete 42 of the 120 credits required for graduation at the 300-level or higher.


The B.S. degree in Psychology requires additional credits in natural science and mathematics, more of a focus on research and statistics, and an area of specialization to more adequately prepare students for advanced work in graduate school.  Students in this degree program must complete a minimium of 38 credits for the psychology major.  In order to transfer from University College for Academic Success, a student must have completed PSY 113, PSY 232, and PSY 200 with grades of C or better.

Furthermore, students must take two math classes (choosing from the following: MTH 107 or STA 220 (not both), MTH 111, 131, 132, 141, 142, or 215); students must take a research writing class (WRT 106), and must take BIO 101 or 105.

In the area of research methods, students must take PSY 200, PSY 301, PSY 434, and a special section of STA 412 offered for Psychology majors.  They must also take PSY 489 to gain research experience.  A minimum grade of C is required for each of the research methods and research experience courses.  In addition, students must choose at least three courses from a selected focus area.  Child Psychology/School Psychology Focus: PSY 432, 442 466, 471, 479 (Introduction to School Psychology); PSY/SOC 430.  Cognitive/Neuroscience Focus: PSY 361, 384, 385, 432 (cognitive topic), 479 (cognitive topic).  Health/Clinical Psychology Focus: (note that two of the three courses must be at the 300+ level) PSY 254, 255, 275, 334, 335, 436, 460, 479 (Health Promotion Topic).  Social/Multicultural Psychology Focus: PSY 335, 399, 425, 470, 480.  For the courses in the focus area, a minimum of a C average is required.  Students also must take Physiological Psychology (PSY 381) and one course from a focus area other than the main focus area selected by the student.  A minimum of a C average is required for these two courses as well.  Overall, a grade point average of 2.5 is required for all Psychology courses.

For either degree option, students who must repeat a course to meet the minimum grade requirements may use only three credits of that particular course toward graduation.

Students majoring in psychology typically go on either to pursue a career at the B.A. level or study for an advanced degree. In both cases, students should consult the department’s web site ( and their academic advisor to select the appropriate degree option and the appropriate courses for their interests and goals.

For either the B.A. or the B.S., a total of 120 credits is required for graduation.

The Minor. The minor in psychology requires completion of 18 or more credits in psychology courses. These credits must include PSY 113. Only three credits in experiential courses for letter grades (i.e. PSY 305, 473, 488, or 489) may count towards the minor. The quality point average in psychology courses must be at least 2.00 or above. At least 12 of the 18 credits (three courses) must be taken at URI. General Education credits may be used for the minor, but no course may be used for both the major and minor field of study. Courses for the minor cannot be taken pass/fail or S/U.