The field of psychology encompasses the scientific study of behavior, personality, cognitive processes, emotions, and their physiological underpinnings; it includes basic and applied research with humans and other animals as well as the clinical treatment of people. The objective of the major is to introduce students to the basic areas in which scientific research is regularly conducted and to the methods by which it is carried out. The major is structured in such a way as to require students to become familiar with a variety of subfields within the discipline while also allowing opportunities to achieve depth and to conduct research in particular subfields. Students who are considering a major in psychology should consult the Psychology Major’s Handbook
Courses and Requirements
Academic requirements and courses are available in the Vassar College Catalogue.
Psychology Majors Committee
The Psychology Majors Committee gives student majors the opportunity to plan both social and educational events for students, faculty, and staff. Students on the committee can also serve as a voice to raise concerns or suggest changes within the department.
Vassar College hosts a chapter of Psi Chi, the national honor society for psychology. Induction into Psi Chi is based on academic merit. The members of Psi Chi organize social events for the group as well as educational events for all psychology students.
Neuroscience and Behavior
Members of the Psychology Department are also intimately involved in the Neuroscience and Behavior Program, which is an interdisciplinary major (with the Biology Department). Those who are interested in particular in the biological foundations of behavior and neuroscience are encouraged to examine the requirements for the Neuroscience and Behavior Program and to talk with a faculty member who is an advisor in that program. See the Neuroscience and Behavior website.