Psychology (B.S.)

Undergraduate training offered by the Department of Psychology serves several related purposes. For the science major and the liberal arts major, the study of psychology provides an opportunity to learn the scientific approach to the study of behavior which will include material helpful in increasing self-understanding and insight into the behavior of others. For students preparing for medicine, law, education, nursing, business, and other professions, psychology provides important basic knowledge useful in these vocations. For those planning to pursue graduate study in psychology, the undergraduate program establishes a sound foundation.  Psychology-related employment for graduates with a bachelor’s degree has increased in recent years. Such employment, of course, has depended on the personal characteristics of the individual, on the special qualifications and training of the individual, and particularly on job opportunity.

Admission Requirements

Admission requirements for this program are satisfied by the general requirements for undergraduate admission to the University.

Candidates must complete 120 credits in course work including satisfaction of the University General Education Requirements and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Group Requirements, as well as the Departmental major requirements cited below. All course work must be completed in accordance with the regulations of the University and the College governing undergraduate scholarship and degrees.

Declaring a Major 

To major in psychology, students must earn a minimum of a grade of C in the Introductory Psychology Requirement (either)

  1. PSY 1010, Introductory Psychology, or
  2. PSY 1020, Elements of Psychology PLUS PSY 1030, Introductory Psychology Laboratory.

For psychology majors, a minimum grade of C in the Introductory Psychology Requirement is a pre-requisite for all other PSY courses. Students must have at least a 2.0 overall grade point average in their psychology coursework to graduate. PSY 1010 is recommended over PSY 1020 for students who intend to major in psychology.

Major Requirements 

To graduate with a major in psychology, a student must complete satisfactorily at least thirty-four credits in PSY courses BEYOND the credits for PSY 1010 or PSY 1020+PSY 1030 (Introductory Requirement).

Degree requirements include:

Introductory Requirement
Select one of the following: 14
Introductory Psychology (preferred option)
Elements of Psychology
and Introductory Psychology Laboratory (or earned by AP PSY credit)
Complete one of the following:
Beginning Algebra (or higher)
Elementary Statistics
Quantitative Methods I: Probability and Statistical Inference
A minimum math ACT score of 21
Placement into or above MAT 1050 through WSU Math Placement Exam
Transfer any 1000-level or higher math/statistics course from another institution with C or better
Research Methods in Psychology
PSY 2020Research Methods In Psychology 24
Statistical Methods
PSY 2030Statistical Methods in Psychology 34
Experimental Lecture/Laboratory
PSY 3993Laboratory in Experimental Psychology 42
Select one of the following:3
Psychology of Perception: Fundamental Processes
Psychology of Learning and Memory: Fundamental Processes
Cognitive Psychology: Fundamental Processes
Additional Core Courses
Select two of the following:6-8
Psychology and the Workplace
Developmental Psychology
Psychology of Social Behavior
Brain and Behavior
Abnormal Psychology
Honors Research in Psychology
Natural Sciences
Minimum of 27 credits outside the field of psychology. See undergraduate advisor for a list of applicable courses.27
Elective Courses
As needed to satisfy the minimum credit requirement (thirty-four PSY credits BEYOND the Introductory Psychology Requirement). Students usually need three to five elective PSY courses.9-11

No more than forty-six credits in psychology can be counted toward the total required for a degree. Transfer students must complete at least twenty credits in the Psychology Department at Wayne State University.

Preparation for Psychology Graduate Work

While individual graduate programs in psychology have different requirements for admission, students who intend to do graduate work are advised to earn the B.A. or B.S. degree and select courses that are consistent with their intended area of study. Students are also encouraged to obtain research experience. A psychology advisor will help tailor a plan-of-work that is based on academic and career goals. Additional courses in mathematics, computer science, biology, and sociology are strongly recommended for students pursuing graduate work in psychology and for students who plan to apply for professional programs.

Psychology Honors Program

Students with an overall grade point average of 3.3 and a Psychology grade point average of 3.5 are eligible for admission to the Department's Honors Program. Satisfactory completion of the Honors Program will lead to a degree 'With Psychology Honors' on the diploma. Students interested in the program should obtain detailed information from the Psychology Department Undergraduate Advising Office.

Honors Sections provide smaller classes, somewhat more advanced readings, and opportunities for independent work by students. Students must complete a minimum of eighteen credits in honors coursework, including: PSY 5020 (Honors Research in Psychology), PSY 4991 (three-credit Honors Directed Study), PSY 4998 (Senior Thesis), and one additional PSY course designated as honors through an honors section or honors option contract. Students must also complete an Honors Seminar from the HON 42xx series.