Psychology Department/ Experimental

Program Goals and Requirements

A. Program Goals

  • Development of knowledge about experimental psychology – achieved primarily through course work.
  • Development of general knowledge about data analysis – achieved primarily through coursework.
  • Development of knowledge about a specific problem in psychology – achieved primarily through development of a thesis in consultation with an advisor.
  • Development of specific data analysis skills – achieved primarily through carrying out a thesis project.
  • Development of methodological and writing skills – achieved primarily through carrying out a thesis project.
  • Development of presentation and listening skills – achieved primarily through participation in classes and PSY 509: Proseminar in Experimental Psychology.

B. Program Requirements

    To be awarded the MA degree in Psychology, a student must complete 38 credit hours of coursework and a thesis.

    For the thesis project, each student must identify a suitable advisor.

    Each students is encouraged to consult with the program director for assistance. After a faculty member has agreed to advise a student’s thesis, the project is developed. In consultation with the advisor, the student identifies two other faculty members to serve, along with the advisor, as the student’s thesis committee. After the committee approves a thesis proposal, the project may be carried out.

    Completion of the thesis project requires both that the written thesis be accepted by the committee and that the student orally present his or her findings.

    The course requirements are listed below. A student is expected to involve his or her advisor and/or the program director in the course selection process so that course work is well suited to the student’s objectives. The Experimental Research Program Committee must approve departures from the specified curriculum and applications for transfer credit.


    Required (29 credits) 
    PSY 509 Proseminar in Experimental Psychology (1 credit) (taken 4 times--every semester for four semesters—for a total of 4 credits)
    PSY 511 Univariate Statistics and Experimental Methodology (4 credits)
    PSY 525 Social Psychology ( 3 credits)
    PSY 562 Learning, Memory, and Cognition ( 3 credits)
    PSY 611 Advanced Data Analysis with Computer Applications (4 credits)
    PSY 677 Foundations of Cognitive and Behavioral Neuroscience ( 3 credits)
    PSY 699 Research and Thesis (4 credits) (taken twice for a total of 8 credits)

    Elective (9 credits): Course options may include:
    PSY 549 Mental Health and Aging (4 credits)
    PSY 588 History of Psychology (4 credits)
    PSY 596 Special Problems in Psychology (1-4 credits)
    PSY 651 Clinical Psychopharmacology (4 credits)
    PSY 653 Health Psychology (4 credits)
    PSY 696 Special Problems in Psychology (1-12 credits)

    Elective credits may be fulfilled by taking other courses taught in the Psychology Department; these may be selected by a student after consultation with his or her primary faculty advisor. If a student wishes to fulfill elective credits by taking a course taught in a department other than Psychology, he or she must get approval from the program committee prior to enrolling in the course. Ordinarily, no more than 4 credits of PSY 596 and/or PSY 696 should be included within the 9 elective credits.

C. A Typical Program Sequence:  Typical course sequences recommended to students entering the program in recent years may be found in the program handbooks that have been provided to those students.

    Year One

    Fall Semester

    • PSY 511          Univariate Statistics and Experimental Methodology
    • PSY 677          Foundations of Cognitive and Behavioral Neuroscience
    • PSY 509          Proseminar in Experimental Psychology
    • Elective Course
    • Identify an advisor and start thinking about thesis research

    Spring Semester

    • PSY 611          Advanced Data Analysis with Computer Applications
    • PSY 562          Learning, Memory, and Cognition
    • PSY 509          Proseminar in Experimental Psychology
    • Elective Course
    • Develop a thesis proposal; it is ideal to have it approved by beginning of second year

    Year Two
    Fall Semester

    • PSY 699          Thesis (4 credits)
    • PSY 525          Social Psychology
    • PSY 509          Proseminar in Experimental Psychology
    • Elective Course
    • Conduct thesis research

    Spring Semester

    • PSY 699          Thesis (4 credits)
    • PSY 509          Proseminar in Experimental Psychology
    • Complete a thesis
engaged learning
Mailing Address
Cleveland State University
Dept. of Psychology
2300 Chester Rm 158
Cleveland, OH 44115-2214
Campus Location
2300 Chester
Room 158
Phone: 216-687-2544
Fax: 216.687.9294
psychology@csuohio.edu


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