About Us

Student Learning Goals

Competencies: skills or abilities psychology majors should develop

Area I: Critical Thinking

  1. Understanding theory.
  2. Developing hypotheses based on a theory.
  3. Designing research.
  4. Evaluating empirical research articles. 

Area II: Acquiring and Analyzing Data and Other Information

     5. Basic computer literacy.
     6. Using software to create and analyze data sets. 

Area III: Values and Ethics

     7. Understanding the foundations.
     8. Using psychological tests.
     9. Implementing psychological interventions.
   10. Conducting ethical research with human participants.

Area IV: Communication Skills

   11. Writing clearly.
   12. Adhering to APA publication guidelines.
   13. Making oral presentations. 

Area V: Personal Development

   14. Summarizing growth related to education.
   15. Summarizing career-related goals.

In addition to the competencies, the SVSU psychology program also develops our majors’ general knowledge in a number of areas. During the 2011-2012 AY, members of the department worked together to identify a list of 18 knowledge domains specifically targeted by our program. In this context, a knowledge domain refers to the interrelated set of facts, definitions, and concepts that are fundamental to a specific sub-area of psychology (such as “motivation” or “personality”) (See Appendix B of the Psychology Department’s Academic Program Assessment and Departmental Planning Report for the 2011-2012 AY for a description of the development process). The final list of knowledge domains identified by our department is as follows:

  1. Research Methods
  2. Biological Foundations of Behavior
  3. Sensation and Perception
  4. Learning
  5. Memory
  6. Language, Thought, and Cognition
  7. Intelligence and Assessment
  8. Motivation
  9. Stress, Coping, and Health
  10. Developmental Psychology
  11. Sex, Gender, and Sexuality
  12. Personality
  13. Psychological Disorders and Treatment
  14. Social Psychology
  15. Comparative Psychology
  16. Statistics
  17. Ethics
  18. Philosophy of Science and History of Psychology 

Professional Organizations/Standards that informed development of learning outcomes: American Psychological Association in the APA Guidelines for the Undergraduate Psychology Major (2007)