B.S. in Psychology Overview


Psychology is not only a fascinating major, but also an applied science that prepares students for careers in virtually any industry. It also prepares you for life by teaching important skills like communication and critical thinking.


In addition to real-world learning through internships and service learning experiences, psychology majors conduct collaborative research alongside faculty scholars who also guide students through their undergraduate years as mentors. Psychology faculty and students have conducted research in a wide variety of subjects, including:

  • Social-emotional development
  • Perception of attachment style in romantic relationships
  • College student's stressors and coping strategies
  • Undergraduates' perceptions of the causes of depression
  • Prenatal alcohol exposure
  • Learning in early childhood
  • Ethics education
  • The long-term impact of service projects on students
  • Substance abuse
  • Moral development
  • Diversity and multiculturalism


Opening the Door to a World of Opportunities

When you earn a B.S. in Psychology, you acquire the skills and knowledge needed to pursue careers in many fields. Most psychology majors pursue careers in healthcare, criminal justice, forensics, education, business and the non-profit arena. Others continue their education to earn advance degrees in specific areas of healthcare, counseling and education.


Alvernia psychology graduates work in a diverse range of fields at organizations, such as:


  • Albright College
  • Astra Zeneca Pharmaceuticals
  • Berks County Adult Probation
  • Berks County Community Re-entry Program
  • Berks Psychiatry
  • Berks Visiting Nurses
  • Children's Home of Reading
  • Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP)
  • Emotional Wellness, LLC
  • Greater Reading Mental Health Alliance
  • Hamburg School District
  • Highmark Blue Shield
  • Hospice Life Choice
  • Olivet's Boys and Girls Club
  • Oley Valley School District
  • Montgomery County Intermediate Unit
  • New Story School
  • Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center
  • Pennsylvania Power and Light Corp.
  • Project Transition
  • Reading Area Community College
  • Reading Hospital
  • The Center for Pediatric Therapy
  • The Reading Symphony
  • Threshold Rehabilitation
  • Tweed Weber


Some psychology students return to school after graduating from Alvernia to earn graduate degrees. A sampling of schools where psychology alumni attend graduate programs:

  • Alvernia University
  • Lehigh University
  • Minnesota State University
  • New York University
  • Drew University
  • Northern Illinois University
  • Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
  • University of Scranton
  • Penn State University
  • Immaculata University
  • Temple University
  • University of Pittsburgh
  • Villanova University
  • Kutztown University
  • West Chester University



To earn the Bachelor of Science in Psychology, students must complete 123 credits, including 59 credits in the psychology major.

Psychology Course Requirements (29 credits)

  • PSY 101 Introductory Psychology
  • PSY130 Exploring Research
  • PSY 208 Human Development across the Life Span
  • PSY 230 Applications of Research
  • PSY 250 Introduction to Psychopathology
  • PSY 301 History and Systems in Psychology
  • PSY 314 Applications of Theories and Techniques
  • PSY 412 Practicum I
  • PSY 413 Practicum II
  • PSY 422 Ethical and Professional Issues I
  • PSY 423 Ethical and Professional Issues II

Psychology Electives (15 credits)

  • PSY 201 Psychology in the Real World
  • PSY 210 Educational Psychology
  • PSY 215 Multicultural Issues in Psychology
  • PSY 220 Close Relationships
  • PSY 270 Scientific Methods in Behavioral Science
  • PSY 303 Psychology of Personality
  • PSY 306 Group Dynamics
  • PSY 308 Psychology of Gender
  • PSY 312 Psychology of Play
  • PSY 330 Crisis Management in Mental Health Field
  • PSY 350 Industrial & Organizational Psychology
  • PSY 405 Social Psychology
  • PSY 408 Senior Seminar
  • PSY 420 Equine Assisted Psychotherapy
  • PSY 430 Forensic Psychology
  • PSY 440 Sports Psychology

To learn more about each course, please review our Psychology Course Descriptions.

Experiential Learning 

Through internships, students have opportunities to apply theories and knowledge learned in the classroom in a variety of professional settings. In addition to providing exposure to the activities and expectations of a real-world workplace, internship experiences help students develop their network of professional contacts.


All psychology majors must complete a two-semester practicum experience. A practicum is a real-world learning/working experience, during which you are placed in a position in the community that closely relates to your career interests. It’s similar to an internship, and occurs in your senior year.

Alvernia believes that real world experience is extremely important, as it can improve your confidence and introduce you to professionals in your intended field of employment. You can find out more about real world learning at There’s a lot to think about when you’re preparing for a practicum, but you’ll get the information and help that you’ll need, when you receive the Practicum Handbook.

Background Clearances

Research Opportunities

In addition to real-world learning, psychology majors can get a chance to participate with faculty members in research projects. Faculty members serve as mentors for students working on their senior theses, and students work collaboratively with faculty members on a variety of projects. You can visit the psychology faculty pages to learn more about research projects that might match your interests or visit S.U.R.F.


To determine the cost of this program, please visit our Tuition page.  For a personalized estimate, please contact an admissions counselor at 610-790-8269 or at

Financial Aid

Alvernia offers loan, grants, scholarships, and payment plans. Our admissions counselors can help you identify the aid that is available to you and for your program. For more information, visit our Financial Aid page.


All programs offered by Alvernia University are approved by the Department of Education of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools.



Learn More

For more information about Alvernia’s Psychology Program contact the Admissions Office at 1-888-ALVERNIA or 610-796-8269 or, or reach out directly to:


Ana Ruiz, Ph.D.
Psychology & Counseling Department Co-Chair
Upland Center, Room 126D


Di (Dee) You, Ph.D.
Psychology & Counseling Department Co-Chair
Upland Center, Room 126A


Alumna counsels patient
Internship Leads to Full-Time Job
Recent psychology graduate Brittany Millard was offered a full-time position with the Greater Reading Mental Health Alliance following an internship in her senior year.
Psychology student Hailey Butler in front of a building
Student Helps Children with Autism
Hailey Butler's internship at the New Story School provided a rich experience working with children diagnosed with autism.
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