Travel into the human psyche

Psychology is the science of human emotion, thought and behavior, including neural, physiological and cognitive processes; developmental factors and individual differences; and interpersonal, international, and cross-cultural components. The Psychology major is designed to expose students to a spectrum of basic issues currently being addressed in the discipline, the principles of research design and statistics, and theory and research in specific areas of psychology.

Majors

A bachelor's degree in Psychology provides preparation for graduate study for a career in psychology, and a major or minor may be paired with further training in law, education, business, social work or other health related professions. Students with this major or minor have also pursued careers in business, healthcare, social services, communications, social media, education, human resources and other fields since psychology coursework provides the knowledge of human behavior, analytical thinking, communication and teamwork skills, as well as the sensitivity and comfort with diversity sought by employers.

The psychology major at Franklin University may be completed on campus or in conjunction with a Franklin partner institution. For students interested in an intensive laboratory experience, a semester abroad during the spring semester of the third year of study is strongly recommended.  Selection of coursework and research experiences at the partner institution is completed in conjunction with the Franklin psychology advisor and approved by the Dean of Academic Affairs. The current partner institution is Southern Methodist University (SMU) in Dallas, Texas. Students may also choose to fulfill the requirement at another institution in close consultation with the psychology advisor.

View requirements

Psychology

Psychology is the science of human emotion, thought and behavior, including neural, physiological and cognitive processes; developmental factors and individual differences; and interpersonal, international, and cross-cultural components. The major is designed to expose students to a spectrum of basic issues currently being addressed in the discipline, the principles of research design and statistics, and theory and research in specific areas of psychology.

A major in psychology provides preparation for graduate study for a career in Psychology, and a major or minor may be paired with further training in law, education, business, social work, environmental or other health related professions. Students with this major or minor have also pursued careers in business, healthcare, social services, communications, social media, education, human resources and other fields since psychology coursework provides the knowledge of human behavior, analytical thinking, communication and teamwork skills, as well as the sensitivity and comfort with diversity sought by employers.

The psychology major at Franklin University may be completed on campus or in a study abroad experience. For students interested in an intensive laboratory experience, a semester abroad during the spring semester of the third year of study is strongly recommended.

Major Requirements (47 Credits)

Foundation courses (14 credits)
BIO 101 Introduction to Biology: Genetics, Evolution, and Ecology

An introduction to the biological sciences. Topics include the principles of genetics, evolutionary theory, ecology, and conservation biology. Students enrolling in this course must enroll in the parallel laboratory section BIO 101L.

BIO 101L Laboratory to Introduction to Biology: Genetics, Evolution, and Ecology

The laboratory course parallels the topics in BIO 101 and provides lab-based investigations of the material covered in BIO 101. Students must register for both BIO 101 and the lab section concurrently. Students who have previously taken BIO 101 and only need the lab credit should discuss this possibility with their advisor and the class professor.

BIO 102 Introduction to Biology: Cell and Animal Biology

This course provides students with an introduction to the biological sciences focused on the structure and functioning of animal cells and organs. Topics include basic biochemistry, cell structure and function, cellular respiration, and animal physiology. This course will emphasize human anatomy and physiology as model systems for understanding and contrasting key principles of animal biology. Students enrolling in this course must enroll in the parallel laboratory section BIO 102L.

BIO 102L Laboratory to Introduction to Biology: Cell and Animal Biology

The laboratory course parallels the topics in BIO 102 and provides lab-based investigations of the material covered in BIO 102. Students must register for both BIO 102 and the lab section concurrently. Students who have previously taken BIO 102 and only need the lab credit should discuss this possibility with their advisor and the class professor.

MAT 201 Introduction to Statistics

This computer-based course presents the main concepts in Statistics: the concept of random variables, frequency, and probability distributions, variance and standard deviation, kurtosis and skewness, probability rules, Bayes theorem, and posterior probabilities. Important statistical methods like Contingency analysis, ANOVA, Correlation analysis and Regression Analysis are introduced and their algorithms are fully explained. The most important probability distributions are introduced: Binomial, Poisson, and Normal distribution, as well as the Chebyshev theorem for non-known distributions. Inferential statistics, sampling distributions, and confidence intervals are covered to introduce statistical model building and single linear regression. Active learning and algorithmic learning are stressed. Emphasis is put both on algorithms –methods and assumptions for their applications. Excel is used while calculators with STAT buttons are not allowed. Ultimately students are required to make a month-long research project, select the theoretical concept they want to test, perform a literature review, find real data from Internet databases or make their surveys, apply methods they studied in the class, and compare theoretical results with their findings. Research is done and presented in groups, papers are Individual. Selected SPSS or Excel Data Analysis examples are also provided.

PSY 100 Introduction to Psychology

This introductory course is designed to provide an overview of the field of psychology, including theoretical positions, major research areas and methods of gathering data. Subtopics of psychology, such as physiological processes, developmental, abnormal behavior and social psychology are discussed.

Major courses (12 credits)
PSY 202 Developmental Psychology

This course surveys the major areas of developmental psychology - the science of individual human development. The overall aim is to introduce students to the fundamental questions, ideas and approaches in the psychology of development. The course emphasizes an understanding of the methods, terms, theories and findings in the field, traces human development across the entire lifespan, and explores the basic developmental theories including the biological influences on development, behavior and learning. To complete the study of human development, the course presents a multi-cultural perspective, examining the diversity of human adaptations to change across the lifespan, by cultures around the world.

PSY 203 Theories of Personality

The course addresses itself to a comprehensive in-depth study of the following question: What is personality? The major theories of personality which are prominent and important today in the field of psychology are considered individually in detail, chronologically and comparatively. These include the classical psycho-analytical theory of Freud, Jungian theory, existential/phenomenological theories, cognitive theories and behavior psychology.

PSY 215 Research Methods in the Social Sciences

The overall aim of this course is to promote students’ understanding and knowledge of research methodology in the social sciences. The course has three main features: it addresses a wide range of perspectives, comprising both qualitative and quantitative approaches; it provides opportunities to learn and reflect from research practice in various social science fields, including clinical, developmental, social and work psychology; it encompasses both traditional/mainstream and critical research approaches, paying constant attention to real world research. An important part of the course is the ''Research Proposal'', which students will draft in stages over the course of the semester. By working on their own research proposal throughout the course, students will have the opportunity to engage in relevant research activity, ‘learning by doing’ in relation to crucial research principles and practices.

PSY 210 Cognitive Psychology

This course provides an in-depth exploration of human cognition, focusing on both classic and current issues. In this class, students will discuss how cognitive psychologists build theories (or models) of mental processes, and how these models are used to understand and predict behavior. Topics to be covered include (but may not be limited to): history of cognitive psychology, research methods in cognitive psychology, attention, perception, memory, language, and reasoning. In addition to these subjects, we will examine the research on social cognition, motivation, and emotions.

Four of the following: (12 credits)
COM 201 Fundamentals of Media Studies and Criticism

Media pervades our social and private lives. We make it and in turn it makes us. This course offers an introduction to media studies, a field which seeks to understand and use media in complex and intentional ways. The course explores media as content, as an industry and as a social force. In this way, media is understood as both as an artifact (constituted by many parts) and as a set of complex processes (including production, distribution, regulation and consumption). Students will learn key vocabularies and concepts in and approaches to media studies that will help them to define, describe, and critique media artifacts and processes in a variety of written and spoken formats. In addition to equipping students with the skills to understand and critique media, this course encourages and provides students with the building blocks to produce media content. Students who successfully complete this course will be prepared to take advanced courses in media studies.

COM 202 Fundamentals of Interpersonal Communication

This course introduces students to theories, concepts, and research in the study of interpersonal communication. From a scholarly perspective, students will gain a fundamental knowledge of how interpersonal communication processes work. In addition, students will develop skill in analyzing the interpersonal communication that surrounds them in their everyday life. (COM 105 recommended)

PSY 201 Social Psychology

Introduction to major theories and research findings of social psychology in order to provide an understanding of the roles of cognitive and motivational processes in social behavior. The focus of this course is on how people's behavior, feelings and thoughts are influenced through social environment.

PSY 205 Introduction to Criminology and Psychopathology

Criminology deals with crimes and their authors through a multi-disciplinary lens, one that includes psychology, medicine, law and sociology. After introducing several of the fundamental theoretical frameworks upon which criminology is based, this course will focus on the analysis of single psycho-pathologies and how they relate to crime, in particular homicide, sex crimes, abuse, and white-collar crimes. The course will include lectures as well as the analysis of criminal cases and the participation of local experts in the field.

PSY 220 Multicultural Psychology

This course is intended to introduce and familiarize students with the concept of multicultural psychology. The entire field of psychology from a perspective that is mindful of the diversity in today’s society will be considered. Students will explore the ways in which psychology is socially constructed and will pay particular attention to the following factors as they influence human development: oppression, language, acculturation, economic concerns, racism and prejudice, socio-political factors, child-rearing practices, religious practices, family structure and dynamics, and cultural values and attitudes.

PSY 301 Abnormal Psychology

A study of the major patterns of abnormal behavior and their description, diagnosis, interpretation, treatment, and prevention.

PSY 310 Organizational Psychology

This course will provide an in-depth exploration of the key concepts, theories, and research methods in Organizational Psychology. Organizations are complex networks of social relationships between individuals, within groups, and between groups. In this course, students will examine individual, interpersonal, group and cultural behaviors in organizations. Topics to be covered include: group decision-making and communication styles; managing group processes and team design; leadership and power strategies within groups; performance management and work teams; and networking and negotiation within and across groups and organizations.

PSY 315 Environmental Psychology

This course introduces a relatively new field of study in psychology that focuses on the interaction between the environment and human beings, examining how the physical features of the environment impact cognition, behavior, and well-being, and how human actions in turn produce immediate and long-term consequences on the environment. In this course, the environment is broadly defined to include not only our physical surroundings (both natural and built) but also the larger, socio-cultural and political milieu in which people live. This course will borrow ideas and information from a variety of other areas and disciplines, including anthropology, sociology, biology, geography, urban planning, public policy, and other areas. Topics to be covered include: dysfunctional and restorative environments, the effects of environmental stressors, the nature and use of personal space, environmental risk perception, psychological impact of ecological crises, values and attitudes towards nature, and conservation psychology.

PSY 370 Special Topics in Psychology

Topics in Psychology vary from year to year. They are advanced courses on specific topics not normally offered, and they may require additional pre-requisites or permission of instruction.

 
Two of the following: (6 credits)
AHT 213 Art and Ideas: Exploring Vision

The course departs from the question of whether vision is simply what the external world imprints on our retina or if it is a cultural construct? Is it purely physiological or can we speak of a history or histories of the eye? How do culture, science, and ethnicity influence what we see and how se see it? Keeping these questions in mind the course studies aspects of vision (perception, reception, revelation, blindness) - both from an empirical and from an historical point of view. Besides practical exercises related to the seeing eye, the course examines the discovery of perspective in the Renaissance, the invention of the Baroque theater, gender and gaze in modernity, and optical instruments of the Enlightenment as precursors for modern photography and film.

BUS 353 Strategic Management Theory

Strategic management is the study of firms and the political, economic, social and technological environments that affect their organization and strategic decisions. This course considers the external market environment in which firms operate, and provides theoretical foundations, focusing on economic and strategic theories of the firm and introducing key concepts of organizational theory. Practically, the course looks at the creation of competitive advantage of a firm in the global arena. The readings and class discussions include both theoretical concepts and practical case studies. (Junior status recommended)

BUS 410 Organizational Behavior and Leadership

This course studies the internal environment of firms and organizations, namely how to organize and manage people in order to implement strategic plans effectively. Topics include: organizational structures and change, human resources, leadership, group dynamics and teamwork, motivation, and multicultural management. Special attention will be given to the study of leadership, which plays a critical role in increasingly complex and multicultural organizations. The readings and class discussions include both theoretical concepts, case studies and practical exercises.(This writing-intensive course counts towards the Academic Writing requirement.) (Junior status recommended)

CLCS 210 Deception

Deception, in all its forms, including eavesdropping, adultery, cheating, and trickery, functions as a narrative motor in the nineteenth- and twentieth-century novel and film. This class examines this notion of deception in literary and visual cultures. In particular, this class will focus on the strategies of narrative structures in the European novel and film from 1840s through the late twentieth century. We will consider eavesdropping, lying, adultery, cheating, gender switching, and their narrative consequences relating to gender and class through the course of the semester. European Realism, with its focus on the every-day and the darker side, signals a shift away from the Romantic and will introduce our study of deception in a cross-cultural context.

CLCS 335 Hauntings

This creative writing/cultural theory course focuses on the concept of haunting and related phenomena such as possession or exorcism. The course draws from recent scholarly work in hauntology, a term coined by Jacques Derrida in his SpectresdeMarx (1993). What emerges from this area of research is an unusual theoretical space in which to consider literature and culture, both philosophically (as critical thinkers) and creatively (as authors and performance artists). The class explores and creatively experiments with texts that function primarily as a medium for giving voice to those realms of human experience that are generally considered unreasonable and extrasensory; otherworldly perceptions of parallel dimensions that transcend the laws and rational orderings of the knowable physical world. Students will reflect on ghostly metaphors and manifestations as they are summoned, in various forms and to different ends, by fiction writers, performers, and filmmakers who tend to link stories of haunting to social-psychic-emotional disturbances: expressions of diasporic sensibilities and hyphenated ethnicities, stigmas of invisibility related to shadows of class and gender, spectral polyvalence and the paranormal activity emerging from recent theoretical discourse around taboo conceptual couplings such as the queer child and/or the ''unruly/child''.

CLCS 360 Critical Race Studies in a Global Context

In this course, the class will work to create a more critical understanding of what race is, what race does, and how contemporary racial meanings are constructed and disseminated. In order to do so, students will explore Critical Race Theory (CRT) and critical theories of race in several contexts. CRT refers to a theory that emerged among legal educators in the US in the 1980s and 1990s. In the last twenty years, a growing number of scholars in fields such as cultural studies, gender studies, history, media studies, politics, postcolonial studies and sociology have integrated and developed the work done by critical race theorists. This course will focus in particular on this interdisciplinary approach to critical race studies. The practice of race will be examined as well as the policies and institutions that shape race in a global context in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Finally, students will consider the intersection of race and other social hierarchies, including gender, sexuality and social class.

COM 347 Organizational Communication

This course examines the dynamic process of organizational communication. Situating communication as an essential part of ''organizing'' in our everyday life, it seeks to understand how we can participate in the creation and recreation of effective organizations. Students will learn key issues of organizational communication research such as communication channels, networks, organizational climate, interpersonal relationships within organizations, and organizational cultures. They will also learn how to apply the theoretical/conceptual knowledge to their present and future organizational life through case studies and communication audits.

ECN 256 Managerial Economics (Intermediate Microeconomics)

This intermediate-level course in microeconomics builds upon the introductory two-semester sequence and, in conjunction with ECN 225, prepares students to upper-level economics.  This course completes the theoretical background on microeconomics and introduces students to more advanced topics, with an emphasis on the practical relevance and application of theory. The essence of the course is, in particular, the study of the interaction between rational individual decision-making (e.g. consumers, firms, the government) and the working of economic institutions like markets, regulation and social rules. Topics covered include an introduction to game theory, strategic behavior and entry deterrence; analysis of technological change; the internal organization of the firm; economic efficiency; public goods, externalities and information; government and business.

ENV 210 Natural Disasters, Catastrophes, and the Environment

As long as humans have walked the planet, they have faced dangers from the environment, such as earthquakes, floods, and volcanoes. Today's technology creates new possibilities for disasters, including climate change, killer smog, and nuclear accidents. Students in this course will study the science behind natural disasters as well as examine society's preparedness for and response to these problems from an interdisciplinary perspective. It will look at both historical and recent events and consider what disasters await us in the future. Students who have already taken SCI 110 must obtain permission to enroll.

ENV 240 Environment and Health

Modern human society has generated various biological, chemical, and physical hazards that threaten human health, as well as the quality of the air, water, soils, and ecosystems. This course first presents the origin and characteristics of these hazards. It then evaluates how the hazards affect the environment and human health and the disproportionate nature of these effects. It also explores the strategies and approaches that have been developed to manage risks and mitigate impacts. The course considers these issues in regional and global contexts, with a particular focus on Switzerland and Europe.

ENV 372 Sustainability Science

This seminar-style course will examine the emergent field of sustainability as well as the science it employs to understand and manage the interactions between human society and the natural world. It will trace the development of our understanding of sustainability and its importance in the contemporary world. It will examine key processes driving global change in areas such as biodiversity, climate, energy use, pollution, population growth, public health, and urbanization, as well as provide an overview of the tools we use to measure sustainability. Lastly, it will explore some of the innovative approaches people are employing to address contemporary problems and effect a transition to a more sustainable society. Students in the course will apply their learning in a project that develops a solution for a particular sustainability problem on campus, locally, or somewhere on the globe.

FRE 320 Writing the Self: French Autobiography and Autofiction

In the mid-70s, while the literary critic Philippe Lejeune was trying to define the autobiographical genre, several writers were, through their writing practices, questioning that very same genre, offering new ways to write (about) the self. Since then, the word autobiography has been replaced by autofiction, a genre that has become so popular in France that it has lost the meaning his initiator, Serge Doubrovsky, had theorized shortly after his first autofiction was published. This course explores the evolution of the auto- biographical genre since the mid-70s and tries to answer questions such as how one writes about oneself, what it means to write about oneself, the (im)possibility to write the self through the study of writers such as Georges Perec, Serge Doubrovsky, Annie Ernaux, Camille Laurens.

FRE 325 Representation of the Shoah in French Literature and Cinema

In L'écriture ou la vie, Georges Semprun wondered how survivors could tell their stories, readers could imagine the Shoah, an event that 70 years after it took place constitutes an epistemological and ontological caesura in the sense that it brings forth the fundamental issue of representation and its limits, the (im)possibility of language and images to convey it, the expression of our (in)humanity. Through diverse books and films, this course examines the relation between words, images on the one hand and things / reality on the other, between text and hors texte, and explore how some writers have not so much tried to represent the Shoah as reflect on the way the Shoah can be written and filmed.

HIS 211 The Human in History: Biography and Life Writing

The study of history is about the role of human beings in changing times. Over the last two hundred years the idea of the role of humans in history has developed from the ‘hero’s’ perspective of agency to an understanding of the interplay between the individual and the wider environment and society. This course explores how these changing examples have been represented in biographical and autobiographical writings, and what these different perspectives mean for our interpretation of the role of human beings in history. Starting with the autobiography of Benjamin Franklin and excerpts from various biographies of this Founding Father of the United States, this course also serves as an introduction to the history of historiography and life writing in a western context, and enables students to further contextualize their own experience and research.

HIS 325 Human Rights in History

The idea of universal, inalienable rights has become one of the most influential concepts in modern history. Human Rights have become an inspiration to oppressed groups and individuals around the globe, a rallying cry for a global civil society, and also a controversial source of legitimation for political and military interventions. The course asks about the reasons for the stellar rise of the concept of Human Rights from ''nonsense on stilts'' (Jeremy Bentham) to such a powerful driving force in contemporary politics. Also, it asks whether Human Rights are the result of a specifically European or Western or Christian legacy. Students in this course will discuss some key thinkers from the Enlightenment to the present within their historical contexts, and analyze not only the philosophical and theoretical framework for Human Rights as a factor in history, but also have a closer look into the consequences of Human Rights influenced politics in general.

POL 302 Political Philosophy

This course is designed to familiarize students with the major currents of political philosophy. It covers a broad range of central thinkers from the major philosophers of ancient Greece up to the proponents of modern-day liberalism. The course situates political philosophies in their historical context of emergence and thereby provides an overview of the history of the central ideas which are at the heart of thinking about politics, society and justice. The reading of primary and secondary sources serves as the basis for in-depth class discussions and a critical engagement with the normative underpinnings of societal organization.

POL 315 War and Contemporary Politics

The relationship between strategy, defense, and the dynamics of the nation state is examined in light of international political developments since 1939 and the consequences of armed conflict for the configuration of power in the international system. The course will focus on some of the conflicts of the second part of the 20th century and will go on to examine asymmetric and hybrid war, especially cyberwar after 9/11 and its impact on the political stability of the international system in the 21st century.

Capstone Requirement (3 credits)

One of the following:

PSY 497 Senior Research Seminar in Psychology

This seminar provides students with a capstone experience in synthesizing their theoretical and methodological knowledge in the form of a high-quality research paper. Some of the major areas of research and theories in the field of communication and media studies will be reviewed and discussed in class as students work on their own research project. At the end of the semester, students will present their final research paper to an audience of students and professors. Students will also be encouraged to submit their paper to an appropriate conference venue around the world. (Prerequisite: Senior status)

PSY 498 Internship in Psychology

Internship project in a related field to be coordinated with the Division Chair and faculty advisor.

PSY 499 Senior Thesis in Psychology

Thesis proposals to be coordinated with the Division Chair and faculty advisor.

Faculty

Adjunct Professor, Psychology

Ph.D. Università della Svizzera Italiana, Switzerland
M.S. Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, Italy
B.A. Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, Italy

Office: Kaletsch Campus, Faculty Office 8
Phone: +41 91 986 53 04
Email: abova@fus.edu

Antonio Bova