Psychology Major

 

NEW Department of Psychology Major Requirements
*For students entering Barnard in FA16 and later
 

SCROLL DOWN or skip to "Old" Major Requirements (for students who entered Barnard prior to Fall 2016).

 

PSYC BC1001 Introduction to Psychology (lecture; prerequisite for all other PSYC courses)

PSYC BC1101 Statistics (taken with the accompanying BC1102 Statistics Recitation section, preferably before enrollment in any laboratory course)

Three Core Lecture Courses, one from each group below:

Group A
PSYC BC1107 Psychology of Learning (BC1106 Psychology of Learning Lab)
PSYC BC1115 Cognitive Psychology (BC1114 Cognitive Lab)

Group B
PSYC BC1110 Perception (BC1109 Perception Lab)
PSYC BC1119 Systems and Behavioral Neuroscience (BC1118 Systems and Behavioral Neuroscience Lab)

Group C
PSYC BC1125 Personality (BC1124 Personality Lab)
PSYC BC1138 Social Psychology (BC1137 Social Lab)
PSYC BC1129 Developmental Psychology (BC1128 Developmental Lab)

Two Psychology Laboratory Courses. Either:

  • PSYC BC1015 Psychology Research Methods Laboratory, followed by one laboratory course from Group A, B, or C. 
  • Two PSYC laboratory courses, from different groups (A, B, C) 

One Additional Research Course, selected from the following categories:

  • A PSYC laboratory course, along with its accompanying lecture, from a group other than those already taken (A, B, C)
  • A laboratory course in a science outside of Psychology
  • One semester of PSYC BC3601-3608 Independent Study 
  • PSYC BC3591 Senior Research Seminar/Senior Thesis (the first semester of a year-long course)

One Senior Requirement. Either:

  • Any 3000-level PSYC BC seminar 
  • PSYC BC3601-3608 Independent Study
  • PSYC BC3591-3592 Senior Research Seminar

Two Additional Psychology Lectures or Seminars: (worth three or more credits each) 

One Course from a Cognate Discipline (ANTH, COMS, ECON, LING, PHIL, SOCI, and STEM). 

Two courses in another science, one with a laboratory, chosen from ASTR, BIOL, CHEM, EESC, or PHYS.

Reminders & Guidelines:

  • Six of the required PSYC courses (worth three or more credits each) must be taken in the Department of Psychology either at Barnard College or Columbia University. This is true for transfer students as well. 
  • A letter grade of C- or better must be earned in all PSYC courses applied to the major. The required courses outside of Psychology can be graded P/D/F, as long as a student receives a “Pass.”
  • A student cannot receive credit for two courses that are considered to be equivalent. Refer to our Overlapping Courses list. 
  • All students are recommended to enroll in PSYC BC1001. However a student with acceptable AP or IB credit can choose to take another PSYC course in its place.
  • The Statistics course can be taken outside of the Psychology Department with approval (i.e., ECON BC4211).
  • BC1010/BC1015 must be taken as the first lab; Group A, B, C labs must be taken with their accompanying lectures in the same semester. 
  • PSYC BC3473 Field Work Seminar in Psychological Services and Counseling is the only 3000-level course that does not satisfy the Senior Requirement.
  • Only two semesters of the following courses may count towards the major: PSYC BC3465/66 Toddler Center Seminar, PSYC BC3591/92 Senior Research Seminar (senior thesis), PSYC BC3601-3608 Independent Study.

Detailed Notes

Courses in Psychology
Please be aware that PSYC BC1099 Science and Scientists and all of our Group A, B, C laboratory sections are worth fewer than three credits each.

Credit for Introductory Psychology Courses
The program in Psychology at Barnard emphasizes research, and PSYC BC1001 Introduction to Psychology is designed to prepare the student for this orientation in middle and upper level courses. When appropriate, approval for an equivalent introductory course taken at another school can be granted by the Departmental Representative. A student who receives a score of a 4 or a 5 on the Advanced Placement examination in Psychology, or a score of a 5 or a 6 on the International Baccalaureate exam in Psychology may be exempt from PSYC BC1001, and also receive college credit (three points) toward graduation, however, another PSYC course must be taken in place of BC1001. 

Statistics
Statistics, a requirement for the Major, is comprised of a lecture PSYC BC1101 and a recitation section PSYC BC1102, together counting as a single course, and is offered every semester. The techniques of statistics are applied in laboratory courses, and are among the fundamentals of graduate training in all areas of psychology.  Majors are encouraged to take this course by the end of the sophomore year. Those who take a course outside of the Barnard Department of Psychology to fulfill this requirement cannot also receive credit towards the major for PSYC BC1101/1102. Finally, students should consult with the Departmental Representative before enrolling in any other statistics course, to be sure it is accepted towards the major or minor.  

In the past, enrollment is determined through an on-line lottery held once per semester (for courses held the following semester), but please check back about the registration process for Fall 2016 and thereafter. 

Laboratory Courses
Psychology majors are required to take two laboratory courses in Psychology (with corresponding lectures; and from different groups, A, B, C), and one semester of laboratory in another science discipline. Students are strongly advised to take only one laboratory course per semester. Note: together with PSYC BC1001 Introductory to Psychology lecture, PSYC BC1015 "Intro Lab" (or PSYC BC1010 for those who took this course before Fall 2016) fulfills half of the two-semester laboratory science requirement for the Psychology major, but it must be taken as a student's first psychology lab course. The other half of the major requirement is fulfilled by subsequently taking any lab course (and its corresponding lecture) from Groups A, B, or C. For the College lab science requirement, a student can take BC1001, BC1015, and one additional lecture from the A, B, C group of courses. 

Students should check their calendars of commitments and review the lab attendance policy before signing up for a lab. Each laboratory follows the same policy about attendance:

  • You must attend every Laboratory meeting, and you must be present for the duration of the meeting.
  • You may not arrive late.
  • You may not depart before you complete the day's procedure.
  • If you miss more than a single Laboratory session you will be dismissed from the Laboratory and you will not be permitted to remain enrolled.

Senior Requirement
Majors may elect to fulfill the Senior Requirement with a Columbia Psychology Department Seminar or Supervised Individual Research. Those who elect this option should consult with her major adviser. Students who choose to use one of our 3000-level courses must notify the professor at the beginning of the semester that the course will be used as your senior requirement. Please note that BC3473 Field Work Seminar in Psychological Services and Counseling cannot be used to fulfill this requirement.

Additional Psychology Courses
Two additional lecture or seminar courses (chosen from any course offered by the Department that is three or more credits each) should be taken, in addition to the Senior Requirement. For example, either two courses and a 3000-level seminar (as the Senior Requirement), or one course and a Senior Requirement that is two semesters long. A maximum of two of the following may count toward the major (though more could count toward College requirements):

o   PSYC BC3465 Field Work and Research Seminar: The Barnard Toddler Center
o   PSYC BC3466 Field Work and Research Seminar: The Barnard Toddler Center
o   PSYC BC3591 Senior Research Seminar (senior thesis)
o   PSYC BC3592 Senior Research Seminar (senior thesis)
o   PSYC BC3601-3608 Individual Projects

Independent Study
This is a four-credit course and requires a Barnard faculty as a mentor. The course will appear on one's transcript as course number PSYC BC3601-3608, depending on the semester it was completed. The criteria for research projects include:

  • A set of original scientific readings of articles that are relevant to the research field.
  • A weekly research meeting with the supervisor.
  • Additional hours in the lab working on the research as approved by adviser.
  • A culminating final project or paper as discussed with adviser. 

Grades
All Psychology courses that are required for the major must be taken for a letter grade. To satisfy departmental requirements, the grade must be C- or better. The required courses outside of Psychology (cognate and outside science) can be graded Pass/D/Fail, as long as students receive a Pass.

Course Prerequisites
Most middle and upper level courses have prerequisites that are listed in the Barnard College Course Catalogue. Students who have not fulfilled the prerequisites for a particular course should ask the course instructor for permission to enroll. The instructor retains discretion for this enrollment.

Course Enrollment
Final enrollment in all courses is determined the first day or week of classes, depending on the particular course. Please note that (preliminary) enrollment in all psychology lab and statistics courses is determined the previous semester. To secure your seat you must attend the first meeting of the class: for Group A, B, and C labs, attend the first meeting of the accompanying lecture; and for BC1015 lab, attend the first lab lecture meeting.

Program Approval
A student’s major adviser must approve all tentative and final programs.

Transfer Credit Approval
There are two steps in obtaining approval for courses taken at another institution. First, you must receive Barnard College credit for the course from the Registrar. Second, you must obtain approval from the Psychology Departmental Representative to count the course toward your major requirements, by completing a Transfer Credit Approval Form and submitting it to the Departmental Representative. (Approval from the Registrar will ensure College credit, but will not ensure that the course can count toward the major.) Students already enrolled at Barnard who plan to fulfill major requirements with a course from another institution are strongly encouraged to seek approval from the Department Representative prior to filing their program. This applies to summer courses (including those taken at Columbia), courses taken abroad, and courses taken at institutions other than Barnard or Columbia during the fall and spring semesters.

Keep in mind the requirement that a minimum of six courses (of three credits or more each) must be taken in the Department of Psychology at Barnard College (or Columbia University), and transfer students are also held to this College policy. 

 

 

OLD Department of Psychology Major Requirements
*For students entering Barnard prior to Fall 2016

 

PSYC BC1001 Introduction to Psychology (lecture; prerequisite for other PSYC courses)

PSYC BC1101 Statistics (taken with the accompanying BC1102 Statistics Recitation section, preferably before enrollment in any laboratory course)

Three Core Lecture Courses, one from each group below:

Group A 
PSYC BC1107 Psychology of Learning (BC1106 Psychology of Learning Lab)
PSYC BC1115 Cognitive Psychology (BC1114 Cognitive Lab)

Group B
PSYC BC1110 Perception (BC1109 Perception Lab)
PSYC BC1119 Systems and Behavioral Neuroscience (BC1118 Systems and Behavioral Neuroscience Lab)

Group C
PSYC BC1125 Personality (BC1124 Personality Lab)
PSYC BC1138 Social Psychology (BC1137 Social Lab)
PSYC BC1129 Developmental Psychology (BC1128 Developmental Lab)

Two Psychology Laboratory Courses. Either:

PSYC BC1015 Psychology Research Methods Laboratory,* followed by one laboratory course from Group A, B, or C. 
Two PSYC laboratory courses, from different groups (A, B, C) 

*As of FA16 BC1010 Introductory Laboratory to Experimental Psychology has been replaced by PSYC BC1015 Psychology Research Methods Laboratory

One Senior Requirement. Either:

Any 3000-level PSYC BC seminar (worth three or more credits)
PSYC BC3601-3608 Independent Study 
PSYC BC3591-3592 Senior Research Seminar/Senior Thesis (a year-long commitment)

Additional Psychology Lectures or Seminars (worth three or more credits each, bringing the total number of PSYC courses to ten) 

One Course from a Cognate Discipline (ANTH, COMS, ECON, LING, PHIL, SOCI, and STEM). 

Two courses in another science, each with a laboratory component, chosen from ASTR, BIOL, CHEM, EESC, or PHYS.

Reminders & Guidelines:

  • Six of the required PSYC courses (worth three or more credits each) must be taken in the Department of Psychology either at Barnard College or Columbia University. This is true for transfer students as well. 
  • A letter grade of C- or better must be earned in all PSYC courses applied to the major. The three required courses outside of Psychology can be gradedP/D/F, as long as a student receives a “Pass.”
  • A student cannot receive credit for two courses that are considered to be equivalent. Refer to our Overlapping Courses list. 
  • All students are recommended to enroll in PSYC BC1001. However a student with acceptable AP or IB credit can choose to take another PSYC course in its place.
  • The Statistics course can be taken outside of the Department of Psychologywith approval (i.e., ECON BC4211) .
  • BC1010/BC1015 must be taken as the first lab; Group A, B, C labs must be taken with their accompanying lectures in the same semester. 
  • PSYC BC3473 Field Work Seminar in Psychological Services and Counseling is the only 3000-level course that does not satisfy the Senior Requirement.
  • Only two semesters of the following courses may count towards the major: PSYC BC3465/66 Toddler Center Seminar, BC3591/92 Senior Research Seminar (senior thesis), BC3601-3608 Independent Study.

Detailed Notes

Courses in Psychology
Please be aware that BC1099 Science and Scientists and all of our Group A, B, C laboratory courses are worth fewer than three credits each.

Credit for Introductory Psychology Courses
The program in Psychology at Barnard emphasizes research, and PSYC BC1001 Introduction to Psychology is designed to prepare the student for this orientation in middle and upper level courses. When appropriate, approval for an equivalent introductory course taken at another school can be granted by the Departmental Representative. A student who receives a score of a 4 or a 5 on the Advanced Placement examination in Psychology, or a score of a 5 or a 6 on the International Baccalaureate exam in Psychology may be exempt from PSYC BC1001, however, another PSYC course must be taken in place of BC1001. Also, a student who entered Barnard prior to Fall 2016 cannot receive both AP credit towards graduation and credit for BC1001. 

Statistics
Statistics, a requirement for the Major, is comprised of a lecture PSYC BC1101 and a recitation section PSYC BC1102, together counting as a single course, and is offered every semester. The techniques of statistics are applied in laboratory courses, and are among the fundamentals of graduate training in all areas of psychology. Majors are encouraged to take this course by the end of the sophomore year. Those who take a course outside of the Barnard Department of Psychology to fulfill this requirement cannot also receive credit towards the major for PSYC BC1101/1102. Finally, students should consult with the Departmental Representative before enrolling in any other statistics course, to be sure it is accepted towards the major or minor.  

In the past, enrollment is determined through an on-line lottery held once per semester (for courses held the following semester), but please check back about the registration process for Fall 2016 and thereafter. 

Laboratory Courses
Psychology majors are required to take two laboratory courses in Psychology (with corresponding lectures; and from different groups, A, B, C), and two semesters of laboratory (preferably in the same sequence) in another science discipline. Students are strongly advised to take only one laboratory course per semester. Note: together with BC1001 Introductory to Psychology lecture, BC1010 Introductory Laboratory to Experimental Psychology (& BC1015 as of FA16) fulfills one half of the two-semester laboratory science requirement for both the Nine Ways of Knowing general education and Psychology major requirements, but it must be taken as a student's first psychology lab course. The other half of the requirement is fulfilled by subsequently taking any lab course (and its corresponding lecture) from Groups A, B, or C.

Students should check their calendars of commitments and review the lab attendance policy before signing up for a lab. Each laboratory follows the same policy about attendance:

You must attend every Laboratory meeting, and you must be present for the duration of the meeting.
You may not arrive late.
You may not depart before you complete the day's procedure.
If you miss more than a single Laboratory session you will be dismissed from the Laboratory and you will not be permitted to remain enrolled.

Senior Requirement
Majors may elect to fulfill the Senior Requirement with a Columbia Psychology Department Seminar or Supervised Individual Research. Those who elect this option should consult with her major adviser. Students who choose to use one of our 3000-level courses must notify the professor at the beginning of the semester that the course will be used as your senior requirement. Please note that PSYC BC3473 Field Work Seminar in Psychological Services and Counseling cannot be used to fulfill this requirement.

Additional Psychology Courses
One, two, or three additional lecture or seminar courses (chosen from any course offered by the Department that is three or more credits each) should be taken to bring the total number of PSYC courses to ten, in addition to the Senior Requirement. For example, either two courses and a 3000-level seminar (as the Senior Requirement), or one course and a Senior Requirement that is two semesters long. A maximum of two of the following may count toward the major (though more could count toward College requirements):

o   PSYC BC3465 Field Work and Research Seminar: The Barnard Toddler Center
o   PSYC BC3466 Field Work and Research Seminar: The Barnard Toddler Center
o   PSYC BC3591 Senior Research Seminar (senior thesis)
o   PSYC BC3592 Senior Research Seminar (senior thesis)
o   PSYC BC3601-3608 Individual Projects

Independent Study (formerly "Indivdual Projects")
This is a four-credit course and requires a Barnard faculty as a mentor. The course will appear on one's transcript as course number PSYC BC3601-3608, depending on the semester it was completed.  The criteria for research projects include:

  • A set of original scientific readings of articles that are relevant to the research field.
  • A weekly research meeting with the supervisor.
  • Additional hours in the lab working on the research as approved by adviser.
  • A culminating final project or paper as discussed with adviser. 

Grades
All Psychology courses which are required for the major must be taken for a letter grade. To satisfy departmental requirements, the grade must be C- or better. The three required courses outside of Psychology can be graded Pass/D/Fail, as long as students receive a Pass.

Course Prerequisites
Most middle and upper level courses have prerequisites that are listed in the Barnard College Course Catalogue. Students who have not fulfilled the prerequisites for a particular course should ask the course instructor for permission to enroll. The instructor retains discretion for this enrollment.

Course Enrollment
Final enrollment in all courses is determined the first day or week of classes, depending on the particular course. Please note that (preliminary) enrollment in all psychology lab and statistics courses is determined the previous semester. To secure your seat you must attend the first meeting of the class: for Group A, B, and C labs, attend the first meeting of the accompanying lecture; and for BC1015 lab, attend the first lab lecture meeting.

Program Approval
A student’s major adviser must approve all tentative and final programs.

Transfer Credit Approval
There are two steps in obtaining approval for courses taken at another institution. First, you must receive Barnard College credit for the course from the Registrar. Second, you must obtain approval from the Psychology Departmental Representative to count the course toward your major requirements, by completing a Transfer Credit Approval Form and submitting it to the Departmental Representative. (Approval from the Registrar will ensure College credit, but will notensure that the course can count toward the major.) Students already enrolled at Barnard who plan to fulfill major requirements with a course from another institution are strongly encouraged to seek approval from the Department Representativeprior to filing their program. This applies to summer courses (including those taken at Columbia), courses taken abroad, and courses taken at institutions other than Barnard or Columbia during the fall and spring semesters.

Keep in mind the requirement that a minimum of six courses (of three credits or more each) must be taken in the Department of Psychology at Barnard College (or Columbia University), and transfer students are also held to this College policy.