Bachelor Of Arts (B.A.) / Bachelor Of Science (B.S.) In Psychology

Experiential Learning

Experiences outside of the classroom enrich your education and expand your future opportunities after graduation. Whether you choose the B.A. or B.S. in Psychology, you must earn at least three credits in an experiential course; for the B.S., you must have three credits of research experience (PSY 489). Additionally, you are encouraged to visit the Center for Career and Experiential Education for assistance on applying to internship and experiential learning sites.

Experiential Learning Courses

Psychology Courses

  • PSY 305: Field Experience in Psychology (3 credits, graded).
    Students increase their knowledge of practical problems and of how psychological theories and models are applied in the field. Through this class, students have direct contact with settings and populations served by psychologists. Each student arranges to spend time during the semester working in a setting of interest to his/her goals. May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits.
  • PSY 488: Undergraduate Teaching Experience in Psychology (1-3 credits, graded).
    Students acquire experience assisting in the delivery of a course in psychology that they have taken and done well in, working under the supervision of the course instructor. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor. May be repeated for a total of 3 credits.
  • PSY 489: Problems in Psychology – Research Experience (3 credits, graded).
    Students gain research experience either by assisting a graduate student or faculty member on an on-going research project, or by conducting a supervised individual research project. Required for BS students. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor. May be repeated once.  
  • PSY 499: Psychology Practicum (1- 6 credits, S/U only). Individual or group experiences in external or laboratory settings. Similar to PSY 305, students usually work in a real world setting during the semester, gaining experience and applying their knowledge of psychology. Prerequisite: permission of instructor. May be repeated for a maximum of 12 credits; no more than 6 credits may be taken in one semester. Not for major credit (that is, the credits count toward graduation, but do not count toward credits needed for the psychology major).

Other Opportunities for Hands-On Learning

These experiences are ways to satisfy the experiential requirement for the psychology major, but they do not count as credits for the psychology major itself. If you choose one of these options, you will still need to earn the minimum number of credits for the psychology degree (32 for the B.A.; 38 for the B.S.).

  • CSV 302: Community Service at URI (1-4 credits, graded): The University offers a course-based community service project that addresses a specific community need at the university. The project is proposed and supervised by an instructor and varies each semester. Prerequisites: junior standing or above, or permission of instructor. May be repeated for a maximum of 9 credits.
  • EDC 484: Supervised Student Teaching (6-12 credits, S/U, except for music): Education majors should discuss credit and course options with their education advisors.

Additionally, internships through the Center for Career and Experiential Education can be taken for 6-15 credits. That is, students may earn 3-12 credits during the semester for their field experience (ITR 302) and another 3 credits for a university-based seminar (ITR 304).

  • ITR 302: Field Experience II (3-12 credits, S/U only): Field experience gained at placement site through participation in the ITR program. The experience will be defined by a job description and learning contract arranged by the ITR director between the student intern, the intern’s faculty advisor, and the relevant agency supervisor. Pre: junior or senior standing, a minimum quality point average of 2.00, participation in the ITR program, and permission of faculty advisor. May be repeated for a maximum of 24 credits. This course is taken with a 3 credit seminar, ITR 304: Colloquium II.

Comparison of PSY 305 and ITR 302/304