Program Planning Tips

for Psychology Majors,
Neuroscience and Behavior Majors,
and prospective majors

(1) Review Major Requirements. The requirements for your program are described in About the Psychology Curriculum, available via the Undergrad InfoPack for Current Students at www.columbia.edu/cu/psychology/dept/ugrad/infopack.html

(2) Use Major Requirement Checklists. Go to Major Requirement Checklists via the InfoPack and fill out the appropriate checklist for your program to see what courses you still need to take. Always bring a completed Checklist with you when you visit an advisor. You must submit a checklist to the Undergraduate Curriculum Assistant in 406 Schermerhorn, prior to your final semester. Before declaring a psychology major, you must complete a Major Declaration Checklist and obtain departmental approval.

(3) Study Psychology Course Offerings. The Index to Courses is your starting point in learning about psychology course offerings. The Week-at-a-Glance schedules for Fall 2014 and Spring 2015 will help you find courses that fit your schedule. The Year-at-a-Glance table provides an overview of courses being offered in 2014-15. A more detailed Table of All Courses lists all courses in the psychology curriculum, and the requirements they meet. Clicking on a course number will bring up a description of the course, and a link to a sample syllabus for the course.

(4) Use the Online Directory of Classes. The Psychology Course Listings are updated daily and provide links to faculty web pages, course descriptions, syllabi, and textbook requirements.

(5) Note Prerequisites and Permissions. Read course descriptions carefully, noting the required prerequisites and permissions. With the exception of PSYC W1450, psychology lab courses now require a statistics course as a prerequisite. Most psychology seminars require instructor permission. You may join the wait list of any seminar, but you are advised to write to the instructor for permission PRIOR to registration. CAUTION: the fact that you are allowed to register for a Barnard class does not mean you have been admitted to the class; class rosters must often be reduced after the first class meeting. Faculty contact information and office hours are available from the Psychology home page.

(6) Specific Recommendations:

  • Consult online syllabi before selecting your courses.
  • Register at your first opportunity; some courses will close out early.
  • Complete statistics (PSYC 1610) and lab (PSYC 14xx) requirements, in that order, by Fall of junior year.
  • Participate in research by Fall of senior year.
  • Apply for Honors Program in Spring of sophomore year. Deadline will be in early May 2014.
  • Take the prerequisites and obtain instructor permission PRIOR to registering for seminars.

(7) Consult a Faculty or Peer Advisor. Your Faculty Advisor will serve as an important contact for psychology-related questions, including class choices, research opportunities, fields of study, and post-graduation plans. Your Peer Advisors are also available to help with class choices and schedule planning. They have good ideas about things like getting involved in a research lab. You may set up an appointment with one of them by email, or meet them at our various Open Houses, Majors Fairs, and Forums.

(8) Consult a Program Advisor. For approval of transfer credit and for definitive answers to questions about major requirements or other administrative aspects of the degree see your Program Advisor or the Undergraduate Curriculum Assistant in 406. If you completed a psychology course at another institution but have not yet received SIGNED departmental approval for transfer credit toward the major, you should apply for it at your earliest convenience. Follow the transfer credit instructions on the web, show your collected materials to the Undergraduate Curriculum Assistant in 406, and then meet with your Program Advisor.

(9) Don't miss our Special Events! Dates will be posted on the InfoPack page and email announcements will be sent to all majors. Our special events include, but are not limited to:

(10) Visit Psychology Major Q & A: See the Advising Q & A page for more information about the major.

About the Program Planning Tips Web Page: Are you looking at a printed page? The online version of this page is available via the InfoPack for Current Students or at www.columbia.edu/cu/psychology/dept/ugrad/planning.html

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This page was modified by pr2454 on September 25, 2014 2:54 PM .
It is maintained by Lois Putnam and Paulo Ribeiro.

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