Graduate Catalog 2019-2020 
    
    Sep 15, 2019  
Graduate Catalog 2019-2020

Psychology, M.A.


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Program Description

Honoring our roots in Humanistic Psychology, our mission is to provide a generalist graduate educational experience that allows our students to develop a finer conceptual understanding of the field of psychology in general, and of human science psychologies in particular; engage in a process of self-reflection and personal growth with consequent implications for life and vocation; and foster an ongoing commitment to contributing to the social good.


Within our generalist structure, students may choose informal concentrations or focus areas in various facets of theoretical and experiential psychology, and more specifically in Pedagogy (teaching), Pre-Doctoral, Social Justice, or Pre-Clinical concentration. Please refer to our website (www.westga.edu/~psydept) for additional information.

Admission

Along with general Graduate School requirements, we require a minimum GPA of 2.5 and GRE Quantitative score of 140 and a Verbal score of 146.  Following initial screening, we invite selected applicants for graduate study in psychology to have an interview as part of the admission process. Considering the humanistic orientation of this program, the potential for self-awareness, exploratory research, and some knowledge of the humanistic tradition in psychology is given considerable weight in selection of applicants and program planning.

 

Program Requirements


There are two options to complete requirements toward graduation:

Under Option I, students must complete a minimum of 33 hours of course work plus an acceptable original thesis. Thesis will result in a minimum of 3 additional hours for a total of at least 36 credit hours. Up to 6 hours of course work can be taken in graduate courses in departments other than psychology without special permission.

Under Option II, students must complete a total of 36 hours of course work. Up to 6 hours can be taken in graduate courses in departments other than psychology without special permission.

Under both options, students may accumulate six hours of credit for Independent Study, available in areas for which there is no existing coursework and following the Graduate School guidelines for Independent Study.

Under both options, students must pass an oral comprehensive exam based on course work and individual research or projects developed over the student’s course of study.  This requirement is fulfilled under Option I through the student’s oral defense of their thesis.  Under Option II, students must submit a written document as directed by their committee. 

Thesis Proposal


The nature of the thesis proposal will reflect the type of thesis undertaken by the student as approved by the thesis Chair.  Please refer to the program website for additional thesis guidelines.

Thesis Defense


Following approval of the masters thesis by the thesis committee, the student will give an oral presentation followed by a question-and-answer period led by the student’s advisor. The thesis defense is open to the public.

There are two required courses: PSYC 6000 - Foundations of Humanistic Psychology  , and PSYC 6021 - Psychology as Human Science  . All other courses are elective, giving students the freedom and responsibility to develop their own plans of study.  Ideally, a student’s individualized plan is developed in collaboration with a faculty mentor.  We assign incoming students to a program faculty mentor at admission based on apparent compatibility of interests and approach, and we also encourage students to invite faculty members to serve in that capacity.

 

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