Jul 24, 2024  
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog 
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Psychology: General Concentration, B.A.

Psychology (BA)

Psychology is the scientific study of thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Avila psychology majors learn to approach behavior at individual, family, and systems levels through coursework, research, and field experiences.

By developing a combination of interpersonal, analytic, research, and writing skills, psychology majors are in demand for a wide variety of occupations. Avila offers three areas of concentration, each designed to prepare students for their future goals:

  1. Mental Health Concentration  - Designed for students interested in a liberal arts bachelor’s degree, who would like to better understand normal and abnormal human behavior. Students in this concentration typically find employment that utilizes their psychology skills, enter master’s level psychology or counseling programs, or enter other graduate programs in areas such as law, medicine, occupational therapy, or business.
  2. Research Concentration  - Designed for students interested in pursuing a doctorate in psychology and/or a career in research. Students must apply for acceptance into the research concentration after completing PY 261  and PY 262 . Minimal requirements for acceptance into the research concentration include: (a) completion of six hours of coursework at Avila, (b) a 3.25 cumulative grade point average, (c) a “B” grade or better in PY 261 and PY 262, and (d) recommendation of their advisor.
  3. General Concentration  - Designed for students interested in a flexible degree program.

The Psychology Club and Psi Chi (Psychology Honor Society) support extracurricular activities, collaborative learning projects, and volunteer opportunities.

Core Requirements

All students must complete the Avila University Core Curriculum as a part of their degree programs. The Core consists of a minimum of 39 credit hours that meet the requirements listed below. Please go to Core Curriculum  for more information and to view all Core classes.

Skills Level (7 credit hours)

Develops fundamental skills key for both academic and professional success.

  • Composition (3)
  • Communication (3)
  • First Year Seminar (1) - waived for transfer students

Liberal Arts Level (25 credit hours)

Provides diverse disciplinary lenses through which to examine the world. Concepts learned and viewpoints experiences at this level promote critical thinking and ethical decision-making with reference to real-life situations across the humanities, natural sciences, social sciences, and arts.

  • Arts (3)
  • History (3)
  • Literature/Rhetoric (3)
  • Mathematics (3)
  • Natural Science (4) - must include a lab
  • Philosophy (3)
  • Religious Studies (3)
  • Social Sciences (3)

Core Component Designations (6-12 credit hours)

Focuses on seeing beyond the self, immediate community, or chosen discipline. Designations include Interdisciplinary Studies, Global Studies, and Community Engagement, all of which call for application of learning across boundaries.

  • Interdisciplinary Studies (6)
  • Global Studies or Community Engagement (6)

Major Related Requirements

Students must complete the following major related requirement:

Major Requirements

The candidate for the Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology must complete all of the General Degree Requirements  stated in this catalog.

In addition, students must complete the following psychology major core course requirements as well as requirements in up to two selected areas of concentration, for a total of at least 45 credit hours. Note: ALL required major courses - core, concentration(s) and related requirements - must be completed with a grade of “C” or better.

Psychology Major Core Course Requirements

The psychology major “core” consists of 30 credit hours in the following courses:

General Concentration

In addition to core psychology requirements, students must complete the following courses:

Technology Requirement

Computer competency will be demonstrated by successful completion of the following course:


In addition to the general degree requirements, psychology majors must meet departmental learning outcomes aligned with five major areas identified in the American Psychological Association Guidelines for the Undergraduate Psychology Major (Version 2.0).

Outcome 1.  Knowledge Base in Psychology

Students should demonstrate fundamental knowledge and comprehension of major concepts, theories, historical trends, and empirical findings to discuss how psychological principles apply to behavioral problems.

Outcome 2.  Scientific Inquiry and Critical Thinking

Students should develop scientific reasoning and problem solving, including effective research methods.

Outcome 3.  Ethical and Social Responsibility in a Diverse World

Students will apply psychological principles to communicate and interact effectively with members of diverse groups in various contexts. Students should develop ethically and socially responsible behaviors for professional and personal settings.

Outcome 4.  Communication

Students should demonstrate competence in writing and in oral and interpersonal communication skills.

Outcome 5.  Professional Development

Students should develop psychology-specific content and skills, effective self-reflection, teamwork skills, and career preparation.


The outcomes for the psychology major are assessed through a combination of: (1) written and performance examinations and assignments as specified in the course syllabi; (2) self, instructor, practicum supervisor, and psychology faculty evaluations; and (3) completed projects assigned throughout the program.

4 + 1 Accelerated Option

Master of Science degree in Psychology 4+1 Accelerated Program

The Department of Psychology offers a 4 + 1 accelerated program to outstanding undergraduate Avila psychology students allowing a bachelor’s and master’s degree in Psychology to be earned in as few as five years. Through admission to the 4 + 1 program, undergraduate students with senior standing may earn up to 12 credit hours at the graduate level to be counted toward both the bachelor’s and master’s degrees. 

Interested students should submit a 4 + 1 Program Application to the Department of Psychology. The admission process should be started early to ensure timely consideration. Students may consult with the school chair and the enrollment and retention manager prior to applying. 

Initial admission is for entry into the 4+1 program to earn graduate credits during the senior year of the bachelor’s degree. Students must complete a second application through graduate admissions for entry into the graduate program.

Accelerated 4+1 Admission Requirements:

  1. Declared major in Psychology at Avila University
  2. Advanced standing and minimum overall and Avila University 3.25 GPAs
  3. A minimum of 18 credit hours completed in psychology courses with a minimum 3.5 GPA in the major
  4. 4 + 1 application

Meeting minimum admission requirements does not guarantee admission into the accelerated option. All completed application files will be reviewed by the Department of Psychology faculty. A denial decision to the accelerated option does not preclude future admission into the Psychology graduate degree program.

Once admitted, a 3.0 GPA in all graduate and undergraduate coursework must be maintained, with no grades below a “B” at the graduate level. Failure to meet these minimum requirements may result in removal from the accelerated option. 

Students must apply through the regular admission process to continue in the graduate program after completion of their bachelor’s degree.