The Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and the Bachelor of Science in Psychology are four-year programs, each requiring 124 credits to graduate from Penn State.

The psychology major combines the knowledge, skills, and values of psychology with a liberal arts foundation. Students should develop a knowledge base consisting of concepts, theory, empirical findings, and trends within psychology.

Students will understand and apply basic research methods in psychology; use critical thinking and the scientific approach to solve problems related to behavior and mental processes; apply psychological principles to personal and social issues, and be able to understand the gender, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, culture, and class issues in psychological theory, research, and practice.

Students should also develop information and computer competence and communication skills as well as realistic ideas about how to implement their psychology education in occupational pursuits in a variety of settings.

The major can lead to either a bachelor of arts or a bachelor of science degree. The bachelor of arts degree incorporates a broad exposure to the many facets of the field of psychology. The bachelor of science degree provides the same exposure to the field of psychology but adds options in science and business to prepare students for more specific career directions.

Students in both degree programs may also prepare for graduate school, and research experience with faculty members is encouraged for these students.

Possible Career Opportunities

Careers are available in numerous areas, including advertising, caseworker, chemical dependency counselor, child care worker, community service coordinator, crime prevention coordinator, group home coordinator, human resources, instructor of handicapped adults, juvenile drug and alcohol prevention program coordinator, marketing, occupational information developer, research analyst, retail security, runaway counselor, Secret Service agent, state and local government, state police officer, substance abuse specialist... and many more.