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Psychology

Advising FAQ

When you declared your major, you were assigned a Psychology advisor.  Your Psychology advisor is an excellent resource if you have specific questions about the Psychology program or your future career plans.

Some common questions....


What classes should I take?

Take the following classes early in your Psychology program because they will offer you information that will be useful in other upper-division Psychology courses.

  • PSY 200 Introduction to the Psychology Major (1 credit)
  • PSY 300 Research Methods in Psychology (5 credits). 
  • PSY 362 Introductory Statistics (5 credits) is recommended in your first or second quarter at CWU. If you have not fulfilled the requirement for MATH 130, you should plan to do that because it is a prerequisite for PSY 362.
  • The upper-division Psychology courses you select should in part be influenced by your own interests, your planned career, and the chance to interact with faculty who might someday serve as valuable references.

What's the right major for me -- the 45- or 60-credit major?

  • The 45-credit major requires a student to also complete a minor or a second major in some other subject.  The 45-credit major is intended for students interested in combining a background in psychology with fields such as social work, family studies, business, forensics, primate behavior, and other fields in which training in behavioral science would be useful.
  • The 60-credit major leads to a bachelor’s degree without a minor or second major. It is recommended for students interested in pursuing graduate studies in psychology.
  • The two majors are very similar.  The 60-credit major includes PSY363: Intermediate Statistics and Research Methods as well as more elective credits.  A psychology advisor can discuss your academic and career goals and help you choose the appropriate major.

Why can't I sign up for the classes I want?

  • Many of our in-demand courses fill up quickly.  And, due to demands on faculty time, many of our courses can only be offered once or twice a year -- not every quarter.  In fact, some of our elective courses are only offered in the summer months.
  • Check with your Psychology advisor or the Departmental Secretary for information on when the courses you want are likely to be offered.

What should I be doing outside of my classes?

Get involved in student organizations, faculty research, and service learning

  • We encourage our psychology majors and minors to get involved with our two student organizations, Psi Chi and the CWU Psychology Club.  Notices about organization activities are posted in the Psychology Building. 
  • We also encourage students to get involved in research partnerships with our faculty members.  A departmental information sheet about opportunities to work with faculty members on research is available in the department office.
  • Finally, we believe that service learning (i.e. volunteering in the community) is a valuable experience for psychology students as well as a way to support human service organizations in the community.
  • All psychology majors will be required to spend a minimum of 10 hours working with faculty on research or in service learning activities related to psychology. Your PSY 200 instructor can provide more information about this requirement.