Explore your interests in human behavior while gaining hands-on experience on individualized projects.

College of Arts & Sciences

Department of Psychology and Neuroscience

Psychology

Questions?

Undergraduate Admissions

(630) 637-5800

admissions@noctrl.edu

Why pursue a psychology degree at North Central College?

You’ll explore your interests while gaining valuable hands-on experience when our dedicated faculty work with you on individualized projects. You’ll collect on-campus data at our state-of-the-art laboratories in the Wentz Science Center, including the Schwab Psychology Research Center for families and children, our sleep lab, treadmill lab, and two small group testing rooms. And you’re bound to find the perfect off-campus internship—or two or three—among the hundreds of social service agencies and businesses nearby.

You can also:

  • Present findings of your original research at regional and national psychology conferences.
  • Apply for a Richter Grant which equips you to travel anywhere in the world your studies take you.
  • Use your senior seminar to explore topics such as eating disorders, bullying, illusions, memory disorders, persuasion and humor.
  • Join Psi Chi—the international honor society in psychology.
  • Join Psychology Club—open to all majors and minors in psychology. 

More Psychology Department information

Neuroscience Program information

Psychology, B.A.

For additional programs and courses in this department, see Psychology and Neuroscience.

Major Requirements

A minimum of 30 credit hours to include at least nine credit hours at the 300- or 400-level:

Core Courses

  • PSY 100 - Psychology: Science of Behavior

    PSY 100 - Psychology: Science of Behavior

    3.00 credit hours

    An examination of the basic concepts, processes, theories and empirical findings concerning the behavior of organisms. Consideration is given to the following topics: physiological and developmental basis of behavior, sensory and perceptual processes, states of consciousness, learning and memory and motivation and emotion, as well as personality, intellectual functioning, psychopathology and social influences on behavior.

    Core

    Social Science.
    IAI

    S6 900

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSY 250 - Statistics

    PSY 250 - Statistics

    3.00 credit hours

    A course stressing the methods, concepts and logic underlying the statistical evaluation of research data. The course stresses descriptive and inferential statistics, estimation and hypothesis testing and "why" as well as "when" to use various statistical methods. A working knowledge of basic algebraic techniques is necessary. Only one of PSY 250 and BUS 241/ECN 241 may be taken for credit.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MTH 118 or higher.

    Core

    Mathematics.
    IAI

    M1 902

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSY 255 - Research Design and Experimentation

    PSY 255 - Research Design and Experimentation

    3.75 credit hours

    The activities involved in obtaining, accumulating and organizing scientific knowledge through experimentation are stressed in this course. The concepts, logic and methods which serve as a basis for designing and conducting scientific research are presented in lecture and laboratory periods, and are practiced in laboratory exercises and in individual projects. Laboratory required.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 100 and a minimum grade of C- in PSY 250.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSY 293 - Careers in Psychology

    PSY 293 - Careers in Psychology

    1.00 credit hours

    This course focuses on exploring various career options in psychology and related fields. The course will cover the different professional options available in psychology and how to successfully prepare for one's chosen future career. By collaborating with other students, instructors and resource people both inside and outside of the North Central Community, students will learn about a wide range of careers possible with a major in psychology.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 100.

    Schedule Of Classes

Theoretical Perspectives

Social

One of the following:

  • PSY 240 - Social Psychology

    PSY 240 - Social Psychology

    3.00 credit hours

    An examination of the theories and research regarding human social behavior. Discussed in this area are social perception, self-perception, attitudes, social influence, attraction, altruism, aggression, group effects and environmental psychology.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 100.

    Core

    Social Science.
    IAI

    S8 900

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSY 310 - Cultural Psychology

    PSY 310 - Cultural Psychology

    3.00 credit hours

    The course considers what we mean by culture, and how taking culture into account affects our knowledge of basic psychology in areas such as human development, the self-concept, gender expectations, as well as our understanding of mental illness. The course focuses on both psychological and anthropological approaches to studying culture and the pros and cons of different approaches.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 100; SOA 105 or any 200-level Psychology course, excluding PSY 250; Junior standing.

    Schedule Of Classes

Biological

One of the following:

  • NSC 200 - Behavioral Neuroscience

    NSC 200 - Behavioral Neuroscience

    3.00 credit hours

    An examination of the manner in which genetic, environmental, biochemical and physiological factors contribute to the neurological basis of behavior. Special attention is given to neural contributions to reproductive behavior, psychopharmacology, fear, emotion, learning, memory, communication, stress, ingestion, psychiatric and neurological disorders.

    Prerequisite(s)


    NSC 100 and PSY 100.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • NSC 280 - Drugs and Behavior

    NSC 280 - Drugs and Behavior

    3.00 credit hours

    An examination of drug effects on behavior, with emphasis on topics such as the neurophysiology of drug action, drug use versus drug abuse, physical versus psychological dependence and the legal and social implications of drug use. A range of classes of psychoactive drugs is considered, including stimulants, depressants, alcohol, opiates, hallucinogens and psychotherapeutic drugs.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 100.

    Schedule Of Classes

Cognitive/Learning

One of the following:

  • PSY 340 - Learning

    PSY 340 - Learning

    3.75 credit hours

    This course surveys theories of learning from an historical perspective. In addition, developments in methodology and applications of learning are discussed (e.g., behavior modification and programmed instruction). A weekly lab is included. Laboratory required.

    Prerequisite(s)


    One 200-level course in Psychology, excluding PSY 250.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSY 345 - Cognitive Psychology

    PSY 345 - Cognitive Psychology

    3.75 credit hours

    An examination of how humans acquire, store, retrieve and use knowledge. The course emphasizes an information processing approach to cognition and deals with such topics as perception, selective attention, memory, imagery, problem-solving, reasoning, artificial intelligence and decision-making. A weekly laboratory is included. Laboratory required.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 255.

    Schedule Of Classes

Developmental

One of the following:

  • PSY 210 - Child Development

    PSY 210 - Child Development

    3.00 credit hours

    Theory and research from the field of child development are studied in order to better understand the child's physical, language, cognitive, social and emotional development from birth to adolescence.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 100.

    Core

    Social Science.
    IAI

    S6 903

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSY 220 - Psychology of Adolescence

    PSY 220 - Psychology of Adolescence

    3.00 credit hours

    This course focuses on the developmental tasks of adolescence, such as forming an identity and developing mature relations with peers, family and possible mates. Theory and research in the area of adolescent psychology are examined.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 100.

    Core

    Social Science.
    IAI

    S6 904

    Schedule Of Classes

Depth

At least three credit hours from one of the following:

  • 400-level Seminar
  • 400-level Independent Study (or HON 400 - Honors Thesis, if supervised by Psychology faculty)
  • 400-level Internship

Note:

Psychology majors must also complete the Psychology outcomes assessment.

Psychology, B.S.

For additional programs and courses in this department, see Psychology and Neuroscience.

Major Requirements

A minimum of 33 credit hours to include at least 12 credit hours at the 300- or 400-level:

Core Courses

  • PSY 100 - Psychology: Science of Behavior

    PSY 100 - Psychology: Science of Behavior

    3.00 credit hours

    An examination of the basic concepts, processes, theories and empirical findings concerning the behavior of organisms. Consideration is given to the following topics: physiological and developmental basis of behavior, sensory and perceptual processes, states of consciousness, learning and memory and motivation and emotion, as well as personality, intellectual functioning, psychopathology and social influences on behavior.

    Core

    Social Science.
    IAI

    S6 900

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSY 250 - Statistics

    PSY 250 - Statistics

    3.00 credit hours

    A course stressing the methods, concepts and logic underlying the statistical evaluation of research data. The course stresses descriptive and inferential statistics, estimation and hypothesis testing and "why" as well as "when" to use various statistical methods. A working knowledge of basic algebraic techniques is necessary. Only one of PSY 250 and BUS 241/ECN 241 may be taken for credit.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MTH 118 or higher.

    Core

    Mathematics.
    IAI

    M1 902

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSY 255 - Research Design and Experimentation

    PSY 255 - Research Design and Experimentation

    3.75 credit hours

    The activities involved in obtaining, accumulating and organizing scientific knowledge through experimentation are stressed in this course. The concepts, logic and methods which serve as a basis for designing and conducting scientific research are presented in lecture and laboratory periods, and are practiced in laboratory exercises and in individual projects. Laboratory required.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 100 and a minimum grade of C- in PSY 250.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSY 360 - Psychological Assessment

    PSY 360 - Psychological Assessment

    3.00 credit hours

    This course examines theory, construction, evaluation and interpretation of psychological tests. Special emphasis is placed on the ethical and appropriate use of tests and the intersection between testing and contemporary society. Special topics include testing in the areas of intelligence, personality, attitudes, interests and abilities.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 250 and one additional 200-level Psychology course.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSY 293 - Careers in Psychology

    PSY 293 - Careers in Psychology

    1.00 credit hours

    This course focuses on exploring various career options in psychology and related fields. The course will cover the different professional options available in psychology and how to successfully prepare for one's chosen future career. By collaborating with other students, instructors and resource people both inside and outside of the North Central Community, students will learn about a wide range of careers possible with a major in psychology.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 100.

    Schedule Of Classes

Theoretical Perspectives

Social

One of the following:

  • PSY 240 - Social Psychology

    PSY 240 - Social Psychology

    3.00 credit hours

    An examination of the theories and research regarding human social behavior. Discussed in this area are social perception, self-perception, attitudes, social influence, attraction, altruism, aggression, group effects and environmental psychology.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 100.

    Core

    Social Science.
    IAI

    S8 900

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSY 310 - Cultural Psychology

    PSY 310 - Cultural Psychology

    3.00 credit hours

    The course considers what we mean by culture, and how taking culture into account affects our knowledge of basic psychology in areas such as human development, the self-concept, gender expectations, as well as our understanding of mental illness. The course focuses on both psychological and anthropological approaches to studying culture and the pros and cons of different approaches.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 100; SOA 105 or any 200-level Psychology course, excluding PSY 250; Junior standing.

    Schedule Of Classes

Biological

One of the following:

  • NSC 200 - Behavioral Neuroscience

    NSC 200 - Behavioral Neuroscience

    3.00 credit hours

    An examination of the manner in which genetic, environmental, biochemical and physiological factors contribute to the neurological basis of behavior. Special attention is given to neural contributions to reproductive behavior, psychopharmacology, fear, emotion, learning, memory, communication, stress, ingestion, psychiatric and neurological disorders.

    Prerequisite(s)


    NSC 100 and PSY 100.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • NSC 280 - Drugs and Behavior

    NSC 280 - Drugs and Behavior

    3.00 credit hours

    An examination of drug effects on behavior, with emphasis on topics such as the neurophysiology of drug action, drug use versus drug abuse, physical versus psychological dependence and the legal and social implications of drug use. A range of classes of psychoactive drugs is considered, including stimulants, depressants, alcohol, opiates, hallucinogens and psychotherapeutic drugs.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 100.

    Schedule Of Classes

Cognitive/Learning

One of the following:

  • PSY 340 - Learning

    PSY 340 - Learning

    3.75 credit hours

    This course surveys theories of learning from an historical perspective. In addition, developments in methodology and applications of learning are discussed (e.g., behavior modification and programmed instruction). A weekly lab is included. Laboratory required.

    Prerequisite(s)


    One 200-level course in Psychology, excluding PSY 250.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSY 345 - Cognitive Psychology

    PSY 345 - Cognitive Psychology

    3.75 credit hours

    An examination of how humans acquire, store, retrieve and use knowledge. The course emphasizes an information processing approach to cognition and deals with such topics as perception, selective attention, memory, imagery, problem-solving, reasoning, artificial intelligence and decision-making. A weekly laboratory is included. Laboratory required.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 255.

    Schedule Of Classes

Developmental

One of the following:

  • PSY 210 - Child Development

    PSY 210 - Child Development

    3.00 credit hours

    Theory and research from the field of child development are studied in order to better understand the child's physical, language, cognitive, social and emotional development from birth to adolescence.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 100.

    Core

    Social Science.
    IAI

    S6 903

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSY 220 - Psychology of Adolescence

    PSY 220 - Psychology of Adolescence

    3.00 credit hours

    This course focuses on the developmental tasks of adolescence, such as forming an identity and developing mature relations with peers, family and possible mates. Theory and research in the area of adolescent psychology are examined.

    Prerequisite(s)


    PSY 100.

    Core

    Social Science.
    IAI

    S6 904

    Schedule Of Classes

Depth

At least three credit hours of:

  • 400-level Independent Study (Or HON 400 - Honors Thesis if supervised by Psychology faculty)

Note:

Psychology majors must also complete the Psychology outcomes assessment.

Additional Requirements for the B.S. Degree

  • MTH 152 - Calculus II

    MTH 152 - Calculus II

    3.00 credit hours

    Continuation of Calculus I with emphasis on integration and its applications. Required for the B.S. degree in any department.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MTH 141 or MTH 151.

    Core

    Mathematics.
    IAI

    M1 900

    Schedule Of Classes

At least six credit hours from two of the following areas:

  • Computer Science
  • Mathematics above MTH 152 
  • Life science or physical science course(s), beyond the courses used to fulfill general education requirements, and that count toward a major in a science discipline

Recommended Electives for the B.S. Degree

  • PSY 380 - History of Psychology

    PSY 380 - History of Psychology

    3.00 credit hours

    An examination of the major factors providing the roots for psychology, as well as the significant persons and theories which shaped its subsequent development as the scientific approach to the study of behavior and mental processes.

    Prerequisite(s)


    One HST course and one 200-level Psychology course, excluding PSY 250.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHL 370 - Philosophy of Science

    PHL 370 - Philosophy of Science

    3.00 credit hours

    An inquiry into the nature of scientific evidence, laws, explanations and theories, as well as the nature of the relationship between the natural and social sciences.

    Prerequisite(s)


    Previous course in philosophy or a natural science course.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • SOA 202 - Research Methods in Social Sciences: Qualitative

    SOA 202 - Research Methods in Social Sciences: Qualitative

    3.00 credit hours

    An overview of qualitative methods, including in-depth interviewing, oral history, focus groups and participant observation. Addresses practical issues, such as question development, negotiating access, maintaining rapport, sampling strategies, note taking and analysis. Delves more deeply into ethical issues and the "back stages" of the research process.

    Schedule Of Classes

Psychology Minor

For additional programs and courses in this department, see Psychology and Neuroscience.

Minor Requirements

A minimum of 21 credit hours to include:

  • PSY 100 - Psychology: Science of Behavior

    PSY 100 - Psychology: Science of Behavior

    3.00 credit hours

    An examination of the basic concepts, processes, theories and empirical findings concerning the behavior of organisms. Consideration is given to the following topics: physiological and developmental basis of behavior, sensory and perceptual processes, states of consciousness, learning and memory and motivation and emotion, as well as personality, intellectual functioning, psychopathology and social influences on behavior.

    Core

    Social Science.
    IAI

    S6 900

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSY 250 - Statistics

    PSY 250 - Statistics

    3.00 credit hours

    A course stressing the methods, concepts and logic underlying the statistical evaluation of research data. The course stresses descriptive and inferential statistics, estimation and hypothesis testing and "why" as well as "when" to use various statistical methods. A working knowledge of basic algebraic techniques is necessary. Only one of PSY 250 and BUS 241/ECN 241 may be taken for credit.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MTH 118 or higher.

    Core

    Mathematics.
    IAI

    M1 902

    Schedule Of Classes

    • At least three credit hours in Psychology at or above the 300-level

Psychology Internships and Jobs

A North Central education integrates career preparation with rich academic study. Our faculty encourages you to refine and apply your knowledge in an interconnected world. Here you'll learn to think independently and work globally to solve problems and lead.

Internships

  • Adult bereavement intern, Fox Valley Hospice, Geneva, IL
  • Mental health services intern, DuPage County, Wheaton, IL
  • Human resource generalist, Naperville Park District, Naperville
  • Juvenile investigation intern, DuPage County Department of Probation and Court Services, Wheaton, IL
  • Programming and exhibit assessment intern, DuPage Children's Museum, Naperville
  • Occupational therapy aid, Easter Seals DuPage and Fox Valley Regions

Graduate Schools

Recent graduates in psychology have been accepted at:

  • University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana
  • Loyola University
  • University of Minnesota
  • Northern Illinois University
  • Midwestern University
  • Emory University
  • Washington University in St. Louis
  • Rush University
  • DePaul University
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Garrett Evangelical Seminary
  • Claremont Graduate University
  • University of Central Florida
  • University of Tennessee
  • John Marshall Law School
  • Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science

Careers

Graduates in psychology work in social services, education, business, and research. Recent graduates in psychology include:

  • Youth support worker
  • Counselor
  • Social worker
  • School psychologist
  • Hospital chaplain
  • Clinical psychologist
  • Sports psychologist
  • Family therapist
  • Human resources specialist
  • Attorney

Invest in your future

Choosing the right college is a big decision. Don’t make it alone. North Central’s admission and financial aid team is here to help you design a financial aid solution that works best for you and your family.

Merit scholarships, grants, loans, campus employment - these are just some of the resources available to you. Over 95 percent of students and 100 percent of all eligible students receive aid. Let our team partner with you in finding the best value for your education.

Learn more about financial aid and costs for North Central College

Apply to North Central College

The first step to becoming a North Central student is reading the application instructions specific to you. Find out everything you need to know about applying by selecting the group you belong to below.


Related Programs

Explore Similar Programs