Feb 09, 2023  
2015-2016 Graduate Catalogue 
    
2015-2016 Graduate Catalogue Archived Catalogue

Psychology, M.A.


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Graduate Coordinator: Dr. Christine Hughes

The Department of Psychology offers a program leading to the Master of Arts in psychology. The specific goals of the programs are to emphasize the scientific methods and principles common to all fields of psychology. Within the program there are three separate concentrations:

  1. a general psychology concentration with a major goal to prepare students for entry into doctoral programs in applied or experimental psychology;
  2. a substance abuse treatment psychology concentration. The purpose of this clinical concentration is to help prepare students for the North Carolina Psychological Associate Licensure Examination and the North Carolina Clinical Addictions Specialist Licensure.
  3. an applied behavior analysis concentration. The purpose of this clinical concentration is to help prepare students for the North Carolina Psychological Associate Licensure Examination and examination for Board Certification as an Applied Behavior Analyst.

Admission Requirements


Applicants seeking admission to the graduate program in psychology are required to submit the following to the Graduate School:

  1. An application for graduate admission
  2. Official transcripts of all college work (undergraduate and graduate)
  3. Official scores on the Graduate Record Examination
  4. Three recommendations from educators or others with professionally relevant information. (note: at least one letter must be from an educator)
  5. A $60 non-refundable application fee in U.S. dollars
  6. Application and supplemental documents must be submitted by the published deadline.

Students who have majored in psychology or who have taken substantial coursework in psychology while majoring in another field will be considered for acceptance into the program. Students desiring admission into the graduate program in psychology must meet the following requirements: (a) a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university or its equivalent from a foreign institution of higher education; (b) a strong academic record with an average of “B” or better in at least 21 credit hours of psychology courses, including statistics and a psychology research methods course; (c) Graduate Record Examination Scores.  Non-psychology majors must also submit GRE Psychology exam scores.  Note:  evidence of b and c must be provided by the submission deadline.

Additional submission requirements include:

  1. Psychology Statement of Research Interest Form.  You can access this form during the online application process.  The form will ask you to select a concentration (General, Applied Behavior Analysis, or Substance Abuse Treatment) and rate your research interests in a variety of areas of psychology.
  2. Statement of Interest.  This 500-800 word statement is completed during the online application process.  Your statement should address:  a) the areas of psychology in which you are interested; b) your career & educational goals immediately upon completion of the master’s degree; c) your long-term educational & career goals; d) how completion of this degree program will help you reach your career & educational goals; and e) any career-relevant experience you have had (e.g., instructional, research, computer skills, counseling, animal care, etc.).

Degree Requirements


  1. The general concentration will require a minimum of 33 credit hours; the substance abuse treatment concentration will require a minimum of 55 credit hours and the applied behavior analysis concentration will require a minimum of 53 credit hours.
  2. Courses open only to graduate students: All students will take at least 33 credit hours of coursework open only to graduate students.
  3. Students must maintain a “B” average in all graduate courses taken. A student ineligible to continue because of poor grades, based upon special circumstances, may petition the Graduate School for reinstatement. A petition for reinstatement must be accompanied by statements of endorsement or non-endorsement from both the department chairperson and the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. A student so reinstated will be dismissed if any additional grade below that of “B” is earned.
  4. A minimum of 26 credit hours of graduate study must be completed in residence.
  5. A faculty committee composed of a chairman and at least two other members of the Graduate Faculty will be established for each student within the first two semesters in residence. One committee member may be from outside the field of concentration. This committee will oversee the student’s thesis and program of study.
  6. A comprehensive written examination must be successfully completed. This is usually done during the semester in which the student is enrolled in final course work.
  7. The student will present and defend a thesis which is acceptable to the faculty committee prior to graduation.
  8. Satisfactory completion of nine credit hours of Research Methods courses is required: PSY 555  (4), PSY 579  (1), PSY 580  (1), and PSY 589  or PSY 515  (3).
  9. Each student must complete an approved course of study within five years of the date of the first registration for graduate study to be eligible for graduation.
  10. PSY 591  may be repeated only once for credit toward the graduation requirement.

Requirements for the Master of Arts in psychology


Core courses


Students in all three concentrations, general psychology, substance abuse treatment psychology and applied behavior analysis, must take the following core courses in addition to concentration requirements. Core courses specific to each concentration are noted.

I. Research Methods (9 credit hours required)


II. Academic Core courses (four of the following)


III. Thesis


General psychology concentration requirements (33 credit hours)


In addition to four of the core courses listed above, students seeking a Master of Arts in psychology under the general psychology concentration must also complete the following:

  • Credits: 3
  • One elective approved by the psychology graduate coordinator (3)

Substance abuse treatment psychology concentration requirements (55 credit hours)


Students in the substance abuse treatment concentration must take PSY 556 - Advanced Physiological Psychology  as an Academic Core course, but may select any three of the remaining four courses from that category. In addition to the four core courses, students seeking a Master of Arts in psychology under the substance abuse treatment psychology concentration must complete the following:

Applied behavior analysis concentration requirements (53 credit hours)


Students in the applied behavior analysis concentration must take PSY 517 , PSY 520  and PSY 556  to fulfill three of the four academic core requirements and may select from PSY 510  or PSY 565  for the fourth. In addition to the four core courses, students seeking a Master of Arts in psychology under the applied behavior analysis concentration must complete the following:

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