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Exploring Psychology

Check out the different areas of psychology in the Department of Psychology at Western Michigan University to determine what matches your educational interests and career goals.

Search the Web for "psychology", "psychology careers" and "learning psychology," keep a critical eye and talk with your advisor or a faculty member about the information that you find to make sure it is accurate.

General psychology

WMU general psychology classes will begin to help you decide if psychology is right for you. Our introductory core consisting of PSY 100, PSY 160 and PSY 250 is the same for both majors and minors.

School psychology

While WMU does not have a graduate level program in school psychology, we offer PSY 517: Psychology in the Schools as an elective for psychology majors. This course covers issues of importance to future school psychologists.

Behavior analysis

Several of our courses within both the major and the minor integrate crucial information about behavior analysis and the practice of psychology as a natural science. Key courses include: PSY 330, PSY 360 and PSY 460.

Forensic psychology

While we realize that this is an area of interest to many students, our department does not currently offer any coursework specifically in forensic psychology. Most individuals interested in this field find that having a double major or a minor in criminal justice is helpful to them.

Art and music therapy

While the department does not currently offer any course work in these areas, you are encouraged to talk with advisors in the art or music departments about possible coursework options.

Industrial/Organizational psychology

WMU offers students several courses in industrial/organizational psychology including PSY 4440, Industrial/Organizational Behavior Analysis, PSY 5470, Practicum in Organizational Performance Improvement and PSY 5480, Instructional Design. Minors in psychology are encouraged to enroll in PSY 344: Industrial/Organizational Behavior if they are interested in the area. Note that PSY 344 is an elective for minors only--majors should enroll in PSY 444.

In addition, PSY 597: Behavior Based Safety is offered regularly and provides a background to individuals interested in I/O Psychology.

Clinical/Counseling psychology

Clinical and counseling psychology programs often look for some research and applied experiences. Courses that may be appropriate include all of the introductory core as well as PSY 561: Introduction to Clinical Psychology.

Association for the Advancement of Behavior Therapy (AABT)

Divisions related to Clinical and Counseling Psychology within the American Psychological Association:

Sports and health psychology

A course in the management of health-related behaviors (PSY 463) is offered and fulfills an elective requirement for both majors and minors.