BA in Psychological & Brain Sciences
The Bachelor of Arts in Psychological & Brain Sciences offers rigorous training in research design, statistical methods and psychological theory. Students are immersed in the study of abnormal, developmental and social psychology, as well as cognitive neuroscience. And they have the flexibility to choose electives and independent study to suit their interests.
More broadly, students learn how to approach and solve issues within communities and societies, making psychology a widely applicable degree to pursue a variety of career paths.
Cognitive Neuroscience Concentration
Psychological & Brain Sciences majors may choose an optional concentration in cognitive neuroscience. Students may pursue honors while fulfilling the requirements for a concentration. Students in the concentration study neuropsychology, memory and cognition, and have the option to join special graduate seminars. Students also complete an internship or an independent research project with a faculty member.
- Complete four of the following: PSYC 3118, 3121, 3122, 3124, 4106W, 4107W, 8250*, 8289*
- Complete PSYC 3591 or 4591 with a member of the faculty of the Cognitive Neuroscience area.
- Regularly attend meetings of the Cognitive Neuroscience Vision Seminar and Brownbag series.
- Graduate with a 3.3 average in Psychological & Brain Sciences (PSYC) courses.
In addition, Psychological & Brain Sciences majors concentrating in Cognitive Neuroscience with the intention of pursuing graduate training are encouraged to complete 4-8 credits of biology and a higher-level course in statistics and to acquire some skill in computer programming.
*Graduate course. Open to students with consent of instructor.
Declaring a Major
When you declare a Major in Psychological and Brain Sciences, we strongly recommend that you discuss your plans with an advisor in your area of interest. To be assigned such an advisor during the Major Declaration process, please do the following:
- Get the major declaration form, available at: https://advising.columbian.gwu.edu/forms
- Fill out the major declaration form with the courses that you have taken and will take toward the major. The list of courses should add up to a major in Psychological and Brain Sciences: http://bulletin.gwu.edu/arts-sciences/psychological-and-brain-sciences/…
- If you would like to discuss your courses with an advisor, contact one of the PBS faculty listed below in your preferred area of interest to schedule an appointment. If you are undecided, please contact the Department and an advisor will be assigned to you.
- Applied Social Psychology: The Applied Social Psychology Program uses social psychological theories, such as attitudes, social cognition, social influence, and decision making to understand and address areas related to social and health behaviors using rigorous scientific methods. These areas include the influence of prejudice and discrimination on health disparities and inequities, the effect of social pain on substance use, and the role of cognitive dissonance on promoting physical exercise and healthy eating. Advisor: Dr. Ellen Yeung.
- Clinical Psychology: The specialty of Clinical Psychology involves engaging in research, assessment, intervention, or consultation to understand, prevent, or ameliorate behavioral and mental health problems. Areas of focus include adjustment issues and traumatic stress reactions; emotional and psychological problems; interpersonal or social problems; behavioral problems (e.g., substance abuse), and intellectual, cognitive, and neurological conditions. Advisor: Dr. Christina Gee.
- Cognitive Neuroscience: The cognitive neuroscience field is concerned with building fundamental theories about human cognition and behavior and understanding how they are implemented by the brain. Cognitive neuroscience is also concerned with the development of experimental and computational methods that link neurobiology, cognition and complex behavior. Advisor: Dr. Gabriela Rosenblau.
- Undecided: If you have not identified a specific content area, please contact the PBS department and a general advisor will be assigned to you.
- After a PBS advisor approves your declaration form, please return it to: https://advising.columbian.gwu.edu/forms
If you do not want to meet with an advisor, complete your major declaration form and send it to the PBS Director of Undergraduate Studies (Dr. Jody Ganiban). After reviewing the form, the PBS Director of Undergraduate Studies will send it back to you. Please return the approved form to: https://advising.columbian.gwu.edu/forms
The general requirements stated under Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, Undergraduate Programs.
|Research Methods in Psychology
|Introduction to Statistics in Social Science (or equivalent)
|Two survey courses (6 credits) selected from the following:
|or PSYC 2011W
|One survey course (3 credits) selected from the following:
|One course (3 credits) selected from the following:
|Psychology of Adolescence
|or PSYC 3126W
|Social and Personality Development
|One course (3 credits) selected from the following:
|Cognitive Science in the District
|Neuroscience of Consciousness
|Memory and Cognition
|The Cognitive Neuroscience
|One advanced research lab course (4 credits) selected from the following:
|Research Lab in Sensation and Perception
|or PSYC 4107W
|Research Lab in Cognitive Neuroscience
|Research Lab in Clinical/Community Psychology
|or PSYC 4202W
|Research Lab in Applied Social Psychology
|or PSYC 4203W
|Research Lab in Developmental Psychology
|Four additional psychology (PSYC) courses (12 credits) numbered 2000 or above. Only 3 credits in PSYC 3591 or PSYC 4591 may be applied toward the major.