PSYC - Psychology


Effective 1 June 2024 through 31 May 2025

Please see the Graduate Catalog Archives for PDF versions of past catalogs.

Course Descriptions

PSYC 5000 Bases of Counseling Psychology (3)

This course provides an introduction to the field of counseling psychology. Topics addressed include the history of the discipline, professions within it, and how counseling psychology relates to other disciplines in psychology and mental health. Participants learn about the development of the profession, examine the counseling process and the importance of the therapeutic relationship, discuss ethical and professional issues, and learn to understand the role of research and science in the field. In addition, students learn basic counseling and communication skills through lectures, small group discussions, role-plays, and helpful interviews conducted with others.

PSYC 5100 Approaches to Counseling and Therapy (1-3)

This course will explore underlying theories, principles, techniques, and areas of applications of the main approaches to counseling and psychotherapy. The unity and diversity among counseling and psychotherapeutic orientations will be explored with a focus on their implications for counseling and psychotherapeutic practice. Throughout the course, participants will be encouraged to develop the skills of learning to select and/or integrate appropriate orientations for intervention. The course may be presented as a one credit hour course focused on a particular counseling orientation. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

PSYC 5200 Advanced Developmental Psychology (3)

This course covers research and theory concerning the psychological development of the maturing human. Students examine the nature and needs of individuals at all developmental levels as the course covers physical, cognitive, social, and emotional development from conception through death. This advanced class emphasizes the scientific and theoretical bases of developmental psychology, and relates the material to counseling and psychotherapy. Included are such areas as human behavior (normal and abnormal), personality development, family relations and development, and life cycle issues. Moreover, the application of developmental theories to child and adolescent deviant development and the counseling/therapy process is explored.

PSYC 5300 Psychopathology (3)

This course focuses on the understanding and identification of the major psychological disorders as detailed in the current Diagnostic and Statistic Manual of Mental Disorders (APA) and the ICD (WHO). The behavioral manifestations and psychological dynamics of mental disorders will be explored, focusing on therapeutic assessment issues and case conceptualization relevant to counselors and therapists. The course also includes a discussion of practical aspects of dealing with psychopathology in out-patient and in-patient settings.

PSYC 5400 Research Design (3)

This course both examines the role of science and research in counseling psychology and psychotherapy on a theoretical and philosophical level and introduces participants to some of the most relevant methodological issues involved in counseling and psychotherapy research. The first part of the course examines theoretical and general aspects of research in counseling psychology. The importance of process research, evaluation, and documentation for research in this field is also explored. The second part of the course is about how quantitative and qualitative methods are used to conduct research.

PSYC 5500 Assessment (3)

This course covers topics relevant to assessment in counseling psychology, including procedures for diagnostic interviewing, report writing, interpreting personality and performance assessment, and ethical issues in testing. The first part of this course acquaints students with key psychometric concepts and several commonly used assessment instruments in counseling psychology. The second part of this course focuses on specific aspects of assessment in therapeutic settings and in different schools of therapy. Students gain experience in interpreting psychological tests, writing psychological reports based on assessment data, providing and receiving feedback on assessment reports, and performing assessment procedures in an ethical, professional, and culturally-sensitive manner.

PSYC 5600 Group Processes and Group Therapy (3)

This course introduces participants to the theory behind some of the most important processes and phenomena in groups. It explores various types of groups, the role of a group leader or facilitator, and the group process. Group phenomena discussed concern both therapeutic and non-therapeutic groups such as work groups and teams, and they come from such diverse areas as counseling, psychotherapy, social psychology, and organizational psychology. This course also provides participants with the possibility to experience group phenomena and group processes first-hand in the experiential setting of a group and allows them to connect research insights and theoretical knowledge about groups to their own experience.

PSYC 5700 Psychopharmacology (1-3)

This course explores the relationship between counseling psychology, psychopharmacology, psychotherapy, and psychotropic drugs. Brain neuroanatomy, various types of psychopharmacological agents, and their mechanisms are discussed. Students explore when treatment with psychotropic drugs is indicated, and effects and side effects of various types of psychotropic drugs. The class also provides an introductory overview of medical terminology relevant for psychotherapists and counseling psychologists. Students may be introduced to first aid in therapeutic practice and explore how to assess a variety of medical emergencies and how to react appropriately. The course may be presented as a one or two credit hour course focused on a particular aspect of psychopharmacology. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

PSYC 5800 Ethical and Legal Foundations (1-3)

This course focuses on identifying and resolving ethical dilemmas, the relationship of personal values with ethical practice, and the philosophical foundations of ethical practice. The course also explores relevant national and international codes and guidelines of ethics in counseling and psychotherapy. In addition to exploring ethical foundations, the course also examines the surrounding conditions and regulatory framework relevant to the practice of counseling psychology and psychotherapy. It explores international and national legal regulations from diverse areas of law. The course may be presented as a one or two credit hour course focused on a particular aspect of ethical and legal foundations. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

PSYC 5900 Applied Statistics and Research Methods (3)

This course builds on undergraduate knowledge of statistics and research methods. It is intended for graduate students who are engaged in or will shortly be engaged in their own empirical statistical research (master’s thesis). The course (1) provides a practice-oriented overview of selected procedures and of quantitative and qualitative research methods, and (2) provides the possibility to develop ideas and skills for conducting one’s own research and analyzing one’s own data. Wherever possible, the course considers actual research issues which participants currently encounter. For practice purposes, the use of thesis data and work on other research problems in which student may be engaged is explicitly encouraged.

PSYC 6000 Special Topics in Counseling Psychology (1-3)

This course introduces students to topics of special interest within the field of counseling psychology. The course may be presented as a one credit hour course focused on a particular counseling topic. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

PSYC 6100 Master’s Thesis (3-6)

The master’s thesis consists of an individual research project designed by the student and carried out under the direction of a thesis faculty advisor. The thesis project allows students to contribute to the research in the field and to gain important research experience necessary for entrance into a doctoral program. All thesis topics need to be approved by the thesis advisor and the department. Students are expected to develop a topic, design the study, obtain IRB approval, collect and analyze data, and report the results of their research in APA format. Following completion of the thesis, students are encouraged to submit their work for possible publication. In addition to the individual feedback and support they receive from their thesis faculty advisor, students working on a thesis participate regularly in the monthly meetings of the departmental research series (consisting of psychology faculty, thesis students, and invited guests) where their work is presented and critically discussed. May be repeated for credit.

PSYC 6200 Practice and Supervision (1-3)

This course provides students with the opportunity to learn and develop their counseling skills by systematically observing peers and experts in counseling interactions, by providing observations and feedback to others, and by systematically analyzing their own and others’ counseling experience. A significant part of this class is based on activities and exercises in the counseling lab, supported by modern technical equipment. This course also provides students with the possibility of being led in group supervision by the instructor. Supervised content may include internship work and other relevant experience in counseling contexts. The course is typically taken for one credit hour over three terms. May be repeated for credit.

PSYC 6300 Internship (3-6)

The internship is a fieldwork experience that provides a supervised transition from learning in the classroom to the professional field of counseling. The internship provides the student with the practical application of counseling knowledge and skills. It consists of 500 hours of professional experience in a qualified institution in the social or health care system which provides the opportunity to perform a variety of activities related to counseling psychology and therapy. The internship must be completed in an approved setting under the supervision of a qualified supervisor.

Program participants are responsible for applying and being accepted to their internship site. A list of approved internship sites is available at the department; students may also complete their internship at another site (locally or internationally) if these sites are approved by the department. In addition to external sites, participants may also apply for an internship position at the on-campus Psychological Counseling Service to complete their internship, or part of their internship, under the supervision of qualified faculty. The internship is grade on the credit/no credit grading option. Duration: 500 hours. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: 24 credits must be completed in the program.