Doctoral Degree Course Descriptions

PSY 749 Personality Theory (4 units)

Examination of major theoretical approaches to understanding personality development, structure, and functioning. Considering different models, this course focuses on how personality theories are built, the elements of such theories, and the relationship between personality theory and intervention. Limitations of each theoretical conceptualization and the impact of these limits on application and research are explored. Students are encouraged to recognize their own assumptions about personality and to organize those assumptions into an evolving conceptualization.

PSY 765 Behavioral Medicine and Health Psychology (4 units)

Historical perspectives of the evolution of health psychology; understanding the scientist/practitioner model of health psychology; biological overviews of health and disease; health assessment, consultation, interventions and evaluations; interdisciplinary collaboration; insights into the medical culture and expectations; ethical, legal and professional issues; core competencies for behavioral summary. Prerequisites: PSY 606, 607.

PSY 770 Behavioral Neurobiology (4 units)

An introduction to behavioral neurosciences with an exploration of the physiology underlying human behavior. Particular attention given to functional neuroanatomy, neuroendocrine functions, psychosomatic disorders and psychoneuroimmunology. Consideration is also given to the design of psychological interventions and educational/training programs based upon recent research and theory regarding the neurophysiology (mind/body interactions) underlying human behavior.

PSY 771 Neuropsychological Assessment (4 units)

An overview of the tools and processes of neurological evaluation including a review and demonstration of major testing batteries and approaches, such as Halstead-Reitan and Luria-Nebraska. Training is given in the administration and interpretation of mental status examinations and brief screening procedures, as well as the use of standard psychological assessment instruments (WAIS-III, Wechsler Memory Scale) for neuro-diagnostic purposes. Prerequisites: PSY 880, 881, and 882.

PSY 772 Social Bases of Behavior (4 units)

A focus on the social influences of individual and group behavior with an emphasis on perception, cognition, identity, attitudes, conformity, aggression, and interpersonal relationships. Exploration of the relationship between individuals and their social contexts, both cross-culturally and historically. In-depth discussions of these issues relevant to clinical, group, and organizational interventions.

PSY 774 Cognitive Bases of Behavior (4 units)

A comprehensive exploration of numerous psychological theories related to the development of and organization of thought and memory. Ways in which cognitive processes influence the individual’s perceptions of reality, emotional experiences, motivation, and behavior. A consideration of various contemporary research studies concerning the development of intervention strategies useful for clinical, group, or organizational change.

PSY 784-786 The Nature of Psychological Inquiry (Series Overview)

This year-long sequence of courses highlights the fundamental issues and variety of approaches to psychological inquiry. Attention is given to the history and systems of psychological inquiry, to the wide-range of quantitative and qualitative methods of inquiry being engaged by practicing psychologists today, and to the strategies of psychological inquiry that might be engaged by students as they prepare their dissertation proposals. The focus of these three courses is on applied research and the interplay between theory, research and practice, so that students enrolled in these courses might become successful “reflective practitioners” who consistently reflect on their own practices, while contributing to the accumulating wisdom of their field. This course sequence must be taken in order.

PSY 784i The Nature of Psychological Inquiry I: History and Systems (5 Units)

This first quarter of the Psychological Inquiry sequence focuses on the fundamental issues being addressed by men and women who have been concerned with the human condition. Enduring schools of psychological theory and accompanying schools of psychological inquiry will be identified, along with the philosophical orientations and historical context that produced and sustained each school. Several seminal psychological theorists will be featured and their approach to psychological inquiry will be carefully examined, using primary texts as a guide and source of classroom dialogue. Students will be expected to prepare a refined essay that focused on one psychological theme or one psychological theory. This paper constitutes one half of the research requirement for advancement to doctoral candidacy.

PSY 785i The Nature of Psychological Inquiry II: Methods (5 units)

This second quarter of the Psychological Inquiry sequence provides students with several options with regard to the methods of psychological inquiry. Students select two psychological inquiry modules from a set of at least four. The student’s choices are based on his or her research and career interests, as well as his or her background in modes of psychological inquiry. Modules will vary from year to year depending on student interests (identified during PSY 784), but will typically include some of the following: statistics, computer modeling, qualitative methodology, quantitative methodology and research design, and program evaluation.

PSY 786i The Nature of Psychological Inquiry III: Strategies (5 units)

This final quarter of the Psychological Inquiry sequence focuses on integration and application. Students select a specific topic for extensive inquiry (usually related to their anticipated dissertation project). They prepare a proposal regarding how they will address this topic, making use of the methodologies they have studied in PSY 785 and the perspectives they have gained regarding the history and systems of psychological inquiry in PSY 784. Students will be expected to prepare a refined document that demonstrates a command of the concepts and methodologies offered in the previous two courses in this sequence. This paper constitutes one half of the research requirement for advancement to doctoral candidacy.

PSY 801 Supervised Internship (10 units)

Supervised field work in a practice setting totaling 1500 hours over no more than a two-year period. This experience is designed to help students integrate their academic, theoretical, and professional understanding while strengthening their application and intervention skills.

PSY 805 Supervised Predoctoral Internship (10 units)

Supervised work in an individual or organizational setting totaling 1500 hours over no more than a two-year period. This experience is designed to help students integrate their academic, theoretical, and professional understanding while guiding them in strengthening competencies in six role areas vital to graduates in their professional careers: teacher, researcher, scholar, leader, interventionist, and advocate.

PSY 806 Advanced Psychopathology (4 units)

In this course, students will study the important dimensions of personality functioning and pathology, with a concentrated focus on differential diagnosis, etiological variables, and treatment implications. Prerequisites: PSY 606, 607.

PSY 810 Theoretical Foundations of I-O Psychology: Individuals (4 units)

This course covers the theoretical basis of industrial-organizational psychology across a range of topics, particularly as it relates to individuals within an organizational context. Attention will be given to such issues as behavior, motivation, attitudes, cognitive skills, and personality. Discussion will include the application of theoretical issues to career development, adult learning, growth, and change.

PSY 811 Theoretical Foundations of I-O Psychology: Groups (4 units)

This course covers the dynamics that operate in the formation and maintenance of task-oriented groups. Attention is given to such issues as leadership, decision-making, problem solving, communication, morale, conflict management, and planning. Consideration is also given to theories emphasizing behavioral analysis as well as unconscious processes among group members.

PSY 813 Theoretical Foundations of I-O Psychology: Organizations (4 units)

An examination of the seminal works in organizational psychology covering such areas as human relations, group relations, and social-critical theory. Attention is also given to social, political, economic, and cultural influences on contemporary organizations.

PSY 815 Attitude Theory (4 units)

An examination of the relationship between attitudes and organizational change. Emphasis will be placed on the impact of attitudes on diagnosis of organizational problems, and the relationship between behavioral intentions and individuals’ behavior at work. Specifically, this course will focus on attitude theory, formation, measurement, change, and how attitudes relate to behaviors.

PSY 817 Decision Theory (4 units)

In this course consideration is given to methods for encouraging effective individual, small group, and institutional decision-making within a context of institutional complexity, turbulence, and conflicting priorities. The focus will be on task, method, and relationship dimensions of decision making, as well as on organizational mapping and learning through the use of systemic, computer-based analytic tools. This course also examines the prescriptive and normative emphasis of decision theory, as potentially applied to the areas of employee selection, choice behavior, vigilance behavior, and human performance. An understanding of the inferential procedures used by individuals in making decisions will be explored through one or more of the following models: the Brunswickian lens, Bayesian inference, and cognitive information processing.

PSY 820 Measurement and Assessment: Individuals (4 units)

An examination of the psychometric bases for measuring normal human behavior with attention given to the assessment, interpretation, and communication of individuals’ distinguishing characteristics appropriate to a variety of work-related purposes. Emphasis placed on interviews, tests, and appraisal techniques that deal with such areas as knowledge, skills, abilities, performance, interests, attitudes, and personality. Topics to be covered include identifying, developing, selecting, and using the appropriate means for assessment, as well as the guidelines for interpreting and communicating the results in writing or face-to-face. This course will stress the “whole person” approach to the individual assessment process. Also covered will be technical procedures, such as test development, selection, standardization, validity, and reliability.

PSY 821 Measurement and Assessment: Groups (4 units)

This course examines the psychometric bases for measuring group processes and behavior, including the assessment of such constructs as leadership, group dynamics, group interaction, and group effectiveness. Research and evaluation strategies for assessment of group performance, functioning, and diagnosis will be studied.

PSY 822 Measurement and Assessment: Organizations (4 units)

Coverage in this course deals with the methods for diagnosing, measuring, and assessing institutional behavior, including organizational climate and character, analysis of transition, change management, and those internal and external factors which affect organizations. Both qualitative and quantitative assessment tools are considered. This course seeks an integration of theory, research, and consultation is assessing organizational behavior.

PSY 825 Interventions: Individuals (4 units)

A integration of theory and research regarding the states of adult and career development using programs, tools, and procedures for exploring the life and career aspirations of individuals and the means of linking these aspirations to organizational intentions. Programs and interventions which assist individuals in an organizational setting are emphasized, including life and career planning, outplacement and transition counseling, training and development, professional growth contracts, career ladders, performance appraisal and skills development.

PSY 826 Interventions: Groups (4 units)

This course applies group theory and research findings toward the improvement of group functioning and performance. Attention is also given to designing and implementing interventions, such as process consultation, team building, communication enhancement, and group relations training.

PSY 827 Interventions: Organizations (4 units)

This course applies organizational theory to the role of the professional consultant in the design and implementation of organizational interventions. Attention is given to issues of change (dynamics) and stabilization (statics); stages of organizational life; changes in structure, process, and attitude in such areas as personnel selection, training and development; socio-technical consultation; job redesign; organizational learning; and appreciative inquiry.

PSY 840 Organizational Case Conference (3 units)

This seminar provides in-depth supervision in a group setting and explores the professional and personal issues emerging from students’ roles as teachers, leaders, interventionists, and advocates. Students present cases, and class discussion centers on issues concerning their work in the field. The focus is on such topics as diagnosis, change, stabilization strategies, and reflective practice. This course meets at various times over 3 quarters.

PSY 846 Personnel Selection, Placement and Classification (4 units)

This course examines the theory and techniques involved in matching an individual’s needs, preferences, skills, and abilities with the needs and preferences of organizations. Specifically, this course will integrate theory and research on human abilities; test theory, development, and use; classical and decision theory models of selection; alternative selection devices; and legal and societal considerations that impact upon the selection, placement and classification processes. Attention will also be given to the interactions of human behavior and task environments, ranging from detection and identification of simple events to problem solving, decision making, and control of complex work environments.

PSY 852 Clinical Psychopharmacology (4 units)

Examination of the effects of psychoactive substances, with particular focus on their utilization as an exclusive or concomitant therapy in the treatment of emotional and behavioral disorders. Effects of substance abuse are explored, as is the relationship between psychologists and physicians in the management of psychiatric medication for patients. Prerequisites: PSY 606, 607, 770.

PSY 854 Adult Learning (4 units)

An integration of needs theories, cognitive theory, and reinforcement theories with their influences on goal setting, job design, incentive systems, participatory decision making, and organizational effectiveness. Attention is also given to training theory, instructional design theory, training development, and delivery of training. The course will focus on the affective, cognitive, and psychomotor impact of adult learning. It will also cover theory and research on the different ways in which adults learn with programs, tools, and procedures for training, professional development, personal goal setting, job design, incentive programs, and organizational change efforts.

PSY 870-872 Advanced Psychotherapy Series

This series of three courses over one academic year is designed to present students with an in-depth review of a number of theoretical and technical models of psychotherapy. A wide array of treatment approaches in presented, with an emphasis on theoretical underpinnings, the role of assessment in determining therapists’ strategies, specific interventions, and the evaluation of treatment outcomes. Various topics are covered including: psychodynamically-oriented psychotherapy, cognitive-behavioral approaches, brief therapy, integrative models, and special focus modules in selected areas, such as object relations theory, self-psychology, narrative therapy, treatment of severe personality disorders, and therapy for trauma victims. 4 units of credit is granted for each of the 3 courses in the series. This course sequence may be taken out of order. Prerequisites: PSY 610, 611.

PSY 870 Advanced Psychotherapy I: Psychodynamic Theory (4 units)

PSY 871 Advanced Psychotherapy II: Treatment of Severe Trauma (4 units)

PSY 872 Advanced Psychotherapy III: Cognitive-Behavioral Theory (4 units)

PSY 880-882 Psychodiagnostic Assessment Series: Assessment of Adults

This sequence takes place over three quarters, integrating interviewing, testing, cognitive and personality evaluation, differential diagnosis, treatment planning, case presentation, and report writing. Emphasis is on administration, scoring, and interpretation of a full diagnostic battery to assess normal and pathological development, personality functioning and disorder, and effects of pharmacological and psychotherapeutic intervention. This course sequence must be taken in order. PSY 685 is recommended before taking this series if the student has no background in statistical concepts.

PSY 880 Psychodiagnostic Assessment I (5 units)

Introduction to the structure and preparation of psychological reports. Administration and scoring of a variety of assessment techniques (e.g., WAIS-III, Wechsler Memory Scale-Revised, Bender-Gestalt, Trail-Making). Test results are analyzed, interpreted, and synthesized with additional data (e.g., history and clinical observations), and presented in a psychological report. The focus is on cognitive functioning in particular with an introduction to objective personality assessment measures.

PSY 881 Psychodiagnostic Assessment II (5 units)

Continues to build upon the battery approach to psychodiagnostic evaluation through in-depth focus on objective personality tests, such as the MMPI-2 and MCMI-III. Projective assessment begins with instruction on the TAT, H-T-P, Sentence Completion Test, and the Rorschach, utilizing the Comprehensive System. Prerequisite: PSY 880.

PSY 882 Psychodiagnostic Assessment III (5 units)

Completion of instruction and practice with the Rorschach and other projective tests. Emphasis is given to administration and interpretation of a full diagnostic battery. Comprehensive learning and skills are solidified through in-depth presentation of clinical and diagnostic material and writing of a comprehensive report. Prerequisites: PSY 880, 881.

PSY 890 Clinical Case Conference (4 units)

This seminar provides in-depth clinical supervision in a group setting. Students present clinical cases and the class discusses issues of assessment, treatment interventions, countertransferences, ethical concerns, and other relevant clinical material. The course is taken during co-enrollment in a clinical field placement setting and meets on alternate weeks over three quarters.

PSY 895 Dissertation Research Design (5 units)

This course is a practical pro-seminar on the nature and range of dissertation research. It emphasizes problem identification, steps in the research process, ethical considerations, and completion of a research proposal. Students should have a potential research topic area in mind before enrolling in this course. Class meetings are scheduled over two consecutive quarters.

PSY 896-899 Dissertation Research (15 units total)

Students work independently, with the guidance and collaboration of their dissertation committees, to execute an in-depth research project on an applied psychological topic and report their findings in dissertation format. The final dissertation is a major project that exhibits doctoral-level competence in the identification, analysis, and treatment of a complex psychological phenomenon, issue, or problem.

PSY P41 Psychodiagnostic Assessment: Child (4 units)

Developmental and structural approaches to the assessment of children through psychological tests and clinical interviews. The issues of normal and deviant development which may result in mental retardation, learning disabilities, psychoses, depressive and neurotic disturbances, or behavioral disorders are explored through the use of a full battery of tests measuring social and emotional functioning, intelligence, and achievement. Also explored are the nature of referral questions, the diagnostic process, and the eventual reporting to clients, families, schools, and agencies.

PSY P72 Mental Health Issues and the Elderly (4 units)

Special areas of knowledge related to mental health of older adults including biology of aging, psychological and neuropsychological assessment of the elderly, interaction of physical and mental disorders, psychiatric syndromes, ethical and social issues, and adaptation of psychotherapy, family therapy, cognitive-behavior therapy, and psychopharmacology to older clients.

PSY P75 Special Studies: Clinical (2-4 units)

Various topics concerning contemporary trends, theories, movements or methods in clinical psychology may be studied. This course may be repeated for credit with change in topic area and advance approval by the Academic Council.

PSY P76 Special Studies: Organizational (2-4 units)

Various topics concerning contemporary trends, theories, movements, research, or applications in the field of organizational psychology may be studied. This course may be repeated for credit with change in topic area and advance approval from the Dean of Academics.

PSY P87 Geriatric Psychology (2 units)

Focus on mental health of older adults including biology of aging, psychological and neuropsychological assessment of the elderly, interaction of physical and mental disorders, psychiatric syndromes, ethical and social issues, and adaptation of psychotherapy, family therapy, cognitive-behavior therapy, and psychopharmacology to older clients.