Goal 1. Theory and Content of Psychology - Students will
demonstrate familiarity with the major concepts, theoretical perspectives,
empirical findings, and historical trends in psychology.
Suggested Learning Outcomes - Students will be able to:
1.1 Describe the nature of psychology as a discipline.
a. Explain why psychology is a science.
b. Identify and explain the primary objectives of psychology: describing, understanding, predicting, and controlling behavior and mental processes.
c. Compare and contrast the assumptions and methods of psychology with those of other disciplines.
d. Describe the contributions of psychology perspectives to interdisciplinary collaboration.
1.2 Use the concepts, language, and major theories of the discipline to account for psychological phenomena.
a. Describe behavior and mental processes empirically, including operational definitions
b. Identify antecedents and consequences of behavior and mental processes
c. Interpret behavior and mental processes at an appropriate level of complexity
d. Use theories to explain and predict behavior and mental processes
e. Integrate theoretical perspectives to produce comprehensive and multi-faceted explanations
1.3 Explain major perspectives of psychology (e.g., behavioral, biological, cognitive, evolutionary, humanistic, psychodynamic, and sociocultural).
a. Compare and contrast major perspectives
b. Describe advantages and limitations of major theoretical perspectives
1.4 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding representing appropriate breadth and depth in selected content areas of psychology:
a. theory and research representing each of the following four general domains:
(1) learning and cognition
(2) individual differences, psychometrics, personality, and social processes, including those related to sociocultural and international dimensions
(3) biological bases of behavior and mental processes, including physiology, sensation, perception, comparative, motivation, and emotion
(4) developmental changes in behavior and mental processes across the life span
b. the history of psychology, including the evolution of methods of psychology, its theoretical conflicts, and its sociocultural contexts
c. relevant levels of analysis: cellular, individual, group/systems, and culture
d. overarching themes, persistent questions, or enduring conflicts in psychology, such as
(1) the interaction of heredity and environment
(2) variability and continuity of behavior and mental processes within and across species
(3) free will versus determinism
(4) subjective versus objective perspective
(5) the interaction of mind and body
e. relevant ethical issues, including a general understanding of the APA Code of Ethics.