Bachelor of Arts
Bachelor of Science

Psychology is the systematic and scientific study of human functioning.

Human psychology is the result of biological, developmental, emotional, cognitive, and social processes. Psychologists study these processes through the application of the scientific method and apply their findings to better understand human behavior.

The Curriculum

If understanding human thought and behavior is at the heart of a liberal arts education, the study of psychology is at the heart of that process. For those interested in the study of human thought, emotion, and behavior, a psychology major is ideal.

The Psychology major at Cal Lutheran is designed to expose students to the theoretical and empirical foundations of the discipline as well as the applications of established principles to behavior change. As a result of majoring in Psychology, you’ll be prepared for graduate work in the discipline as well as to apply the concepts and skills you’ll acquire in a variety of career settings.

Combine theory and observation

Our program is designed to expose you to the theoretical and empirical foundations of psychology, as well as the applications of established principles to behavior change. You will apply the major research methods used in psychology to answer questions and be able to interpret and evaluate the results and conclusions derived through these methods. Our faculty encourages students to become actively engaged in the learning process.

The four junior/senior capstone courses (Clinical Practicum, Applied Psychology, Introduction to Counseling & Psychotherapy and Research Practicum) involve students directly in the mental health field as they integrate and apply theory and concepts, and address ethical and practical concerns.

Psi Chi honor society

Qualified students may join the Cal Lutheran chapter of Psi Chi, the international honor society in psychology. Each year, several students receive support to present the findings of their research projects at undergraduate, regional, and even national conferences.

Opportunities for hands-on research

As a psychology student, you are asked as part of your course requirements to participate in a number of research studies. Doing this will provide you an opportunity to observe the empirical process of psychological inquiry from the inside. Your participation will also assist professors and other student researchers in forwarding the understanding of human behavior and experience – the main goal of psychology as a science!

Choose between a B.A. or B.S. degree

Students targeting work in community service centers, social work, clinics and business usually pursue the bachelor of arts degree in psychology. Those considering careers in the clinical and research arena typically seek the bachelor of science in psychology degree.

Emphasis Areas


Offered as a major (BA or BS) and a minor.

Recommended Minors

Want to add even more value to your degree? Consider one of these minors to gain a unique combination of skills and perspectives.

The Experience

In order to discover their purpose, students need to be given an opportunity to learn about what their community and their world need, in addition to learning about what their personal strengths and passions are. I try to give them a safe place in my work with them to talk about both.

Jodie Kocur
Assistant Professor

My favorite experience was becoming a Departmental Assistant. I loved working on psychology-related tasks and projects, getting to know fellow students and professors who have become great friends and mentors, and challenging myself to apply for the Honors Program, which I wouldn’t have heard of otherwise.

Charisse Palaad '17
Your Future

Your degree will be excellent preparation for graduate work in psychology, law, and business.

With a bachelor’s degree, you will find employment opportunities in psychiatric rehabilitation programs, as research assistants, and in the business world.

If you choose to pursue a master’s degree, you will be able to work in clinics and institutions, teach at a two-year college, or work as a school psychologist or counselor. For some clinical and research work, a doctorate is required.

Cal Lutheran offers master’s degrees in clinical psychology and counseling psychology with a specialization in marital and family therapy (MFT) as well as a PsyD (doctorate) degree in Psychology.

Our alumni study at:
  • Azusa Pacific
  • Boston University
  • California Lutheran University
  • Chapman University
  • Chicago School of Professional Psychology
  • John Hopkins University
  • New York University
  • Pepperdine University School of Law
  • Purdue University
  • UCLA
  • University of Hawaii
  • University of Southern California
  • University of Washington


Our alumni work for:
  • AmeriCorps
  • Applied Behavior Consultants
  • Aspen Center for Autism
  • Behavior Therapy & Family Counseling Clinic
  • Casa Pacifica
  • California Psych Care
  • Children’s Hospital
  • Denver Health Medical Center
  • Institute for Applied Behavior Analysis
  • Interface Children Family Services
  • Peace Corps
Career paths:
  • Alcohol/Drug Counselor
  • Behavior Management Consultant
  • Career Counselor
  • Case Management Specialist
  • Child Care Consultant
  • Developmental Therapist
  • Head Interventionist
  • Marriage and Family Therapist
  • Psychologist
  • Shelter Client Advocate
  • Special Education Teacher
  • Therapeutic Behavior Specialist
  • Youth Development Facilitator


of Cal Lutheran graduates find a job or enroll in graduate school within nine months

More Career Outcomes

The counseling and psychotherapy course in the psychology program taught me the skills I now use everyday as a clinical director. Working with the substance abuse population is very different from traditional marriage and family private practice. So when I started working with my first set of clients, all of the tips and tricks I learned from the program started to come back to me and I was able to put to practice the principles I had learned.

Bailey Borup '19
Psychology, Law and Criminal Behavior Applications Emphasis Major
Clinical Director, Altitude Recovery Community

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