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Major Requirements

Meet Your Major: Psychology

As a psychology major, you’ll investigate human behavior, including what drives our actions.

Through Merrimack’s intensive curriculum, you’ll develop a comprehensive understanding of developmental processes, personality, social factors, psychological disorders and therapy. 

What You’ll Learn

In the psychology program, you will:

  • Explore the biological foundations of behavior and experience, how people learn and develop, how individuals perceive the world and what prompts people to act the way that they do.
  • Discover the difference between normative and non-normative behavior and evaluate therapeutic approaches.
  • Analyze psychological data, with an emphasis on the logic, use and interpretation of inferential statistics.
  • Hone your analytic reading, theoretical analysis and critical-thinking skills.
  • Improve your statistical and methodological skills through hands-on research and laboratory experience.

Hands-On Learning

In a new, state-of-the-art space, you’ll take part in dynamic coursework, relevant research activities and field experiences that will effectively prepare you for a career in healthcare, human services or business, or graduate study in psychology or other fields. Bonus? Continue key conversations with your like-minded peers by joining the Psychology Club.

Career Options

Upon successful completion of the psychology program, you’ll be well-equipped to pursue graduate study or a career in psychology and related disciplines. Positions may include:

  • Business manager
  • Counselor
  • Human resources director
  • Psychologist
  • Rehabilitation specialist
  • Marketing manager

What You’ll Take

All psychology majors must take a minimum of 42 credits, 11 courses in psychology and a cognate course in biology (for a total minimum of 46 credits and 12 courses). 

Cognate Requirement in Health Sciences 

BIO 1106 Human Biology

Foundational Courses

PSY 1000                    Introduction to Psychology
PSY 1100W                       Psychological Inquiry and Methodology
PSY 2110 Statistical Methods in Psychology

Two Laboratory Courses in Basic Psychological Processes

PSY 3120           Cognitive Psychology
PSY 3150 Behavioral Neuroscience

At Least One Course Related to Psychological Individuation

PSY 2300  Developmental Psychology
PSY 2400              Personality
PSY 3410 Abnormal Psychology

At Least One Course Related to Social Relations

PSY 2200              Social Psychology
PSY 2300 Developmental Psychology

One of the Following Senior Capstone Sequences

PSY 4900    Psychological Seminar
PSY 4910/PSY 4015 Senior Thesis Research I and II
PSY 4960/PSY 4965           Field Experience: Adult Clinical Studies
PSY 4961/PSY 4966 Field Experience: Ethnographic Analysis


To complete the required 42 credits in psychology, you may take a combination of additional core courses or upper-level psychology electives listed below: 

PSY 2270  Group Dynamics
PSY 2280 Organizational Psychology
PSY 2470 Psychology of Trauma
PSY 2600 Psychology of Happiness
PSY 3250 Cultural Psychology
PSY 3340  Developmental Psychopathology
PSY 3380  Psychology of Aging
PSY 3450                             Biological Bases of Abnormal Behavior
PSY 4700  Selected Topics of Psychology
PSY 4800  Directed Study*
PSY 4810  Directed Research*

* A maximum of four credits can be taken toward the completion of the major. 

More Info 

Christina Hardway
Chair & Associate Professor Psychology