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Psychology (BA)


Major Credits Required: 50-58 Credits

Psychology is the scientific study of behavior and mental processes. The psychology program at Hawai‘i Pacific University provides students with an understanding of the theoretical approaches and research methods applicable to both laboratory and real-world settings. The program emphasizes the role of the liberal arts and critical thinking in higher education, the student’s personal development, and an appreciation of individual differences and cultural diversity.

To achieve the mission of the psychology program, students study a range of topics that exposes them to a variety of methodologies and laboratory experiences that will enable them to evaluate, interpret, and solve problems in the workplace, at home, and in their community. Course topics may include human and animal learning, cognition and behavior, child and adult development, normal and abnormal behavior, addictions, neuroscience, and the applications of psychology to business, education, and health. The curriculum emphasizes active learning, fieldwork, and research within an international environment that prepares students for graduate study in psychology and/or a broad range of entry-level positions in psychology and the community.

To complete the bachelor's degree, students must complete a minimum total of 120 credits with a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0.


Students who major in psychology will:

  1. Demonstrate familiarity with the major concepts, theoretical perspectives, empirical findings, and historical trends in psychology.

  2. Understand and apply basic research methods in psychology, including research design, data analysis, and interpretation.

  3. Respect and use critical and creative thinking, skeptical inquiry, and, when possible, the scientific approach to solve problems related to behavior and mental processes.

  4. Understand and apply psychological principles to personal, social, and organizational issues.

  5. Value empirical evidence, tolerate ambiguity, act ethically, and reflect other values that are the underpinnings of psychology as a science.