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Undergraduate Program

Two Degree Options in Psychology: BA and BS

The Psychology Department has added the BS degree to the undergraduate program, increasing the options for students.

The Bachelor of Arts degree provides students with a solid academic preparation through an overview of the current areas of the field. Students gain a better understanding of human behavior and an enhanced awareness of themselves and society, as well as skills for analyzing and evaluating information and data. The BA program also encourages various avenues for experiential learning with practical career-related, hands-on experiences. After graduating, students who chose this degree may pursue entry-level positions in Psychology or may elect to specialize in other fields such as education, business or law. Likewise, students may decide to seek further training in related fields such as Social Work, Counseling, or Criminology (see http://www.uri.edu/artsci/psy/nav_careers.shtml for more information about career opportunities).

The Bachelor of Science degree has been developed to strengthen the preparation for students who would like to continue after their undergraduate years to pursue graduate training such as seeking a Ph.D. or going to medical school for a M.D. degree. Accordingly, the BS degree requires additional credits in the natural sciences and mathematics, more of a focus on research and statistics, and an area of specialization to more adequately prepare students for advanced work in graduate school.

  • The BA and BS degrees each require 120 credits to graduate.
  • The general education requirements are nearly the same. For the BS degree, a student must take two math classes rather than one, must take a research writing class (WRT 106 or 333), and must take BIO 101 or 105 for one of the Natural Science courses.
  • For statistics and research methods, the BA degree requires PSY 200 and PSY 301. For the BS degree, students also must take PSY 434 (Psychological Testing) and an additional research methods class (STA 412 or PSY 302 (the latter now is being developed)).
  • For the BS, students must take Physiological Psychology (PSY 381), three courses in their selected 'Focus Area', and one more class from a different focus area. The Focus Areas are:
    1. a) Child Psychology/School Psychology,
      b) Cognitive/Neuroscience,
      c) Health/Clinical,
      d) Social/Multicultural.
  • The BA requires a minimum of 32 credits (maximum of 47). The BS requires a minimum of 38 credits (maximum of 53).

Summary Chart: Comparing the BA and BS Degrees