Dec 11, 2023  
2018-2019 Undergraduate Catalog 
2018-2019 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.

Core Foundations (9-11 credit hours)

Foundations requirements provide the basic skills essential for effective participation in other classes as well as the professional world.

Core Pillars & Levels (30 credit hours)

Pillars and Levels requirements address the breadth of knowledge expected of a liberal arts education and challenges students to integrate prior knowledge and create new ideas through higher levels of coursework.

Cross-Application Note: All courses that meet a Pillar also meet a Level and may meet a Designation requirement. Some courses taken for major and/or minor requirements may also meet Core requirements.

    Social Justice & Civic Life Pillar 
(6 credit hours required)

Creativity & Culture Pillar
(6 credit hours required)

Belief & Reason Pillar
(6 credit hours required)
Explorations of Nature Pillar 
(6 credit hours required)

24 credit hours required 












6 credit hours required CONTRIBUTE LEVEL




Core Designations

Core Component Designations requirements incorporate assignments and experiences focused on developing and deepening student understanding to prepare students for responsible lifelong contributions to the global community.

CORE Designations

Interdisciplinary Studies (IS)

(9 credit hours)

Global Studies (GS)    

(9 credit hours)     

Community Engagement (CE)    

(3 credit hours) 







Transfer Students

The Core Component Designations requirement for transfer students is determined by the number of credit hours transferred to Avila University. Please see the Transfer Students  page within this catalog.


As noted above, courses can have multiple designations and thus meet multiple requirements at once.

Example: BI 215 - Humans & the Environment (3)  meets all of the following requirements:

  • Belief & Reason Nature Pillar
  • Transform Level
  • Global Studies (GS) Designation
  • Major Requirement

Major Related Requirements

Students must complete the following major related requirements:

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 42 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 27 credit hours in the following courses:

General Concentration

In addition to the 27 hours of 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

The Department of Psychology offers an accelerated option 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 early admission to the master’s program, undergraduate students with senior standing admitted to the accelerated 4+1 program 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 an application for admission to the Department of Psychology.