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Honours in Psychology

Students who are interested in pursuing graduate study in Psychology are advised to complete the Honours BA Programme. This programme provides greater breadth and depth in the substantive and methodological areas of Psychology. Although not a requisite for advanced study in psychology, many universities strongly recommend the completion of an Honours degree and Honours thesis as an important part of preparation for graduate study in Psychology. In addition to meeting the general norms of the University
for an Honours degree, students who wish to take the Honours B. A. Programme in Psychology must meet specific regulations of the Psychology Department.

The Department of Psychology offers courses leading to the BA (Honours) degree. Faculty can provide expertise in the substantive areas of cognition, neuropsychology, history of psychology, human development, child development, social psychology, social cognition, clinical psychology, personality, quantitative and qualitative methods, and psychometrics.

1. Admission to Honours
Entrance into the Honours Programme is competitive and the number of spaces available is limited. Usually, students accepted to the Psychology Honours Programme have a GPA of 3.7 or higher. Given the workload of the Honours Programme, students with a GPA of less than 3.7 are encouraged to seek the advice of the Department Chair before applying.

Successful applicants will normally meet the following criteria:

  1. completion of PSYC 1013 and 1023
  2. completion of PSYC 2013, 2023, 3933, and 3946, with a minimum grade of B in each (prior to entry to the Honors Programme)
  3. satisfactory indication of interest in pursuing a research-based graduate degree or career involving research skills following graduation from St. Thomas
  4. satisfactory indication that a tentative arrangement for pursuing a thesis project has been made with a member of the Department.

As early as possible, students planning to apply to the Honours Programme
must discuss a course plan that adequately prepares them for the Honours thesis, and subsequent career goals, with either the Department Chair or a full-time Faculty Member in the Department of Psychology. Students interested in applying for the Honours Programme in Psychology should submit to the Chair of Psychology by January 31 of their third year:

(a) a letter of interest, which should include a summer contact address and telephone number
(b) indication that a tentative arrangement for pursuing a thesis project has been made with a Faculty Member in the Psychology Department
(c) a copy of a paper submitted for undergraduate upper division course work (i.e., for a 3rd or 4th year course in Psychology).

Thesis: Students admitted to the Honours Programme are required to complete an Honours Thesis, which is an independent research project undertaken in collaboration with a fulltime Faculty Member who serves as the project advisor. Topics for Honours theses are developed in consultation with a full-time Faculty Advisor, and the research may employ quantitative or qualitative methods. Honours students are required to present orally their
thesis proposals and completed thesis in a Proposal and Thesis Departmental Colloquium
. Proposal colloquia are typically held in late October, while completed thesis colloquia usually are presented in April (exact dates will vary from year to year).

2. Programme Requirements

1. Specific requirements:

1. a minimum of 54 credit hours in psychology
2. PSYC 1013 and 1023
3. PSYC 2013 and 2023 must both be taken in 2nd year
4. PSYC 3933 (Advanced statistics)
5. PSYC 3943 (Advanced Research)
6. PSYC 3963 (History of Psychology)
7. PSYC 4996 (Honours thesis)
8. at least one additional psychology course at the 3000 level
9. at least one additional 4000 level psychology seminar course

2. The Divisions referred to are as outlined in the Major section. At least 15 credit hours from the following division:


3. at least 3 credit hours from each of the following divisions:


4. The remaining credits can be taken from any of the divisions listed above, or from the following list:

2823, 2833, 2843 Special Topics
3823, 3833, 3843 Special Topics
4823, 4833, 4943 Special Topics: Seminar
4883 Independent Study

3. Degree Requirements
To be awarded the Honours degree in Psychology upon graduation, students must meet the following requirements:

  1. The programme must include 54 credit hours in psychology, and normally not more than 60 credit hours, including those specific course requirements outlined above.
  2. In addition to grade requirements for admission to the Honours Programme (students usually have a GPA of 3.7 or higher.), students must obtain a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.00 (B) in all psychology courses taken, normally with no grade less than C+ in any psychology course.

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