Bachelor Degree Options

Choosing a BA or a BS degree?

A Psychology major may choose to obtain either a Bachelor of Arts degree (BA) or a Bachelor of Science degree (BS). The Psychology courses required for a BA and BS are identical.

The College of Arts and Sciences has different course requirements for those earning a BA vs a BS The BA requirements focus on culture and social behavior, liberal arts, and humanities whereas the BS requirements focus on mathematics and the natural and social sciences.

The Psychology faculty recommends the BA for most students. The BS degree is most appropriate for students planning research careers in areas of Psychology requiring a strong background in mathematics and science. 

However, even for students headed for research intensive careers, the BA degree supplemented by selected science and mathematics courses can be the best overall choice. Psychology advisors can help with decisions in individual cases.

Academic Advising for the Psychology Undergraduate Programs

The Department of Psychology at the University of Alaska Anchorage offers undergraduate and graduate degree and certificate programs aimed at preparing students 1) for advanced study in the social and health sciences and 2) to become members of the behavioral health workforce. The department also maintains the Psychological Services Center, a clinic that provides low cost mental health services to campus and community members. The department strives to offer degree and certificate programs that meet the needs of the state of Alaska. 

Admission Requirements
  • Complete the Admission Requirements for Baccalaureate Programs.
  • Complete the following Admission Requirements for the Bachelor of Art (BA) in Psychology.
    • Students wishing to declare psychology as a major must have earned a minimum GPA of 2.50.
Graduation Requirements
  • Complete the General University Requirements for Baccalaureate Degrees.
  • Complete the General Education Requirements for Baccalaureate Degrees.
  • All psychology majors are also required to take the exit examination, a standardized test of knowledge of psychology approved by the Department of Psychology. There is no minimum score required for graduation. This exam is taken in the UAA Testing Center, and a fee will be charged to students.
  • Complete the following major requirements:
    • All prerequisites for required Psychology courses must be completed with a minimum grade of C. Students who audit or are unable to earn a minimum grade of C in a lower-division (100- or 200-level) PSY course may repeat the course two additional times on a space-available basis. Students who audit or wish to repeat an upper-division (300- or 400-level) PSY course may repeat the course one additional time on a space-available basis. Students repeating a course are required to complete all components of that course during the semester in which the course is retaken. When repeating a course with a lecture and laboratory component, both components must be repeated.
Core Courses
PSY A111Introduction to Psychology3
PSY A150Lifespan Development3
PSY A200Introduction to Behavior Analysis3
PSY A260Statistics for Psychology3
PSY A260LStatistics for Psychology Lab1
PSY A261
A261L
Research Methods in Psychology
and Research Methods in Psychology Laboratory
4
PSY A345Abnormal Psychology3
PSY A370Behavioral Neuroscience3
PSY A375Social Psychology3
PSY A468
A468L
Learning and Behavior
and Learning and Behavior Laboratory
4
Psychology Capstone Requirement 13
Each capstone option is designed to synthesize and apply material from the psychology major. Choice of a capstone should be based, at least in part, on the student’s future career plans. Students planning to work in human service jobs following graduation should consider taking PSY A495A. Students planning on graduate work in psychology should consider taking PSY A412, PSY A428, PSY A499A or PSY A499. Students may elect to take all of these courses as upper-division electives.
PSY A412
History of Psychology
PSY A428
Evolutionary Psychology
PSY A495A
Psychology Practicum
PSY A499A
Developing Psychological Research
PSY A499
Senior Thesis
Psychology Electives9
Complete an additional 9 credits of upper-division psychology courses.
Writing3
WRTG A213
Writing and the Sciences
Mathematics and Statistics3
MATH A121
College Algebra for Managerial and Social Sciences
or STAT A200
Elementary Statistics
Biology3-6
BIOL A102
Introductory Biology
or BIOL A108
Principles and Methods in Biology
Additional Electives6-8
Complete any two-semester sequence in humanities, world language, or American Sign Language
Total57-62

A minimum of 120 credits is required for this degree, of which 42 credits must be upper-division. 

Concentration in Behavior Analysis

This concentration provides foundational knowledge and professional skills to apply the science of behavior analysis across a range of settings and client populations, including staff in the workplace, children and adults with intellectual and cognitive disabilities, and individuals with autism spectrum disorder.Completing the coursework below, in addition to required supervised practicum experience with a Board Certified Behavior Analyst, helps prepare students to apply for the Behavior Analysis Certification Board examination for becoming a Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst. Please go to UAA's Authorization by State website for information about licensure or certification in a state other than Alaska.

Concentration requirements:
PSY A200Introduction to Behavior Analysis3
PSY A400Strategies of Behavior Change3
PSY A495APsychology Practicum3
Complete a minimum of 6 credits from the following:6
PSY A447
Behavioral Treatment of Autism Spectrum Disorder
PSY A455
Interventions for Challenging Behavior
PSY A467
Organizational Behavior Management
PSY A478
Applications of Behavior Analysis
Total15
Honors in Psychology

The Department of Psychology recognizes exceptional undergraduate students by awarding them departmental honors in psychology. To graduate with departmental honors, the student must be a declared psychology major and meet the following requirements:

  1. Satisfy all requirements for a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Psychology.
  2. Maintain an overall and psychology specific GPA of 3.50.
  3. Complete one additional 3-credit Psychology Capstone option other than PSY A499.
  4. Complete PSY A499. The thesis project must be approved in advance by the Undergraduate Studies Committee and carried out by following applicable departmental guidelines.
  5. Students intending to graduate with departmental honors must notify the Departmental Honors Committee in writing on or before the date they file their Application for Graduation with the Office of the Registrar.
Honors Student Learning Outcomes

Students graduating with departmental honors in psychology will possess:

  • An advanced understanding and application of descriptive and inferential statistics and use of statistical software in data analysis.
  • A broad knowledge of psychology’s historical foundation.
  • The ability to conduct a critical review and analysis of existing psychological literature.
  • The ability to design and execute empirical research that tests clearly stated hypotheses or addresses clearly articulated research questions.
  • A clear understanding of research ethics and the responsible conduct of research in the field of psychology.
  • The ability to communicate effectively in writing, in poster format, and in oral presentations, including mastery of APA style.
  • The ability to draw conclusions from research findings, including recognition of the limitations, applications, and implications of the data, and a discussion of alternative explanations of the results.

The Department of Psychology at the University of Alaska Anchorage offers undergraduate and graduate degree and certificate programs aimed at preparing students: (1) for advanced study in the social and health sciences, and (2) to become members of the behavioral health workforce. The department also maintains the Psychological Services Center, a clinic that provides low-cost mental health services to campus and community members. The department strives to offer degree and certificate programs that meet the needs of the state of Alaska. 

Admission Requirements Graduation Requirements
  • Complete the General University Requirements for Baccalaureate Degrees.
  • Complete the General Education Requirements for Baccalaureate Degrees.
  • All psychology majors are required to take the exit examination, a standardized test of knowledge of psychology approved by the Department of Psychology. There is no minimum score required for graduation. The exam is taken in the UAA Testing Center, and a fee will be charged to students.
  • Complete the following major requirements:
    • All prerequisites for required psychology courses must be completed with a minimum grade of C. Students who audit or are unable to earn a minimum grade of C in a lower-division (100- or 200-level) PSY course may repeat the course two additional times on a space-available basis. Students who audit or wish to repeat an upper-division (300- or 400-level) PSY course may repeat the course one additional time on a space-available basis. Students repeating a course are required to complete all components of that course during the semester in which the course is retaken. When repeating a course with a lecture and laboratory component, both components must be repeated.
Core Courses
PSY A111Introduction to Psychology3
PSY A150Lifespan Development3
PSY A200Introduction to Behavior Analysis3
PSY A260Statistics for Psychology3
PSY A260LStatistics for Psychology Lab1
PSY A261
A261L
Research Methods in Psychology
and Research Methods in Psychology Laboratory
4
PSY A345Abnormal Psychology3
PSY A370Behavioral Neuroscience3
PSY A375Social Psychology3
PSY A468
A468L
Learning and Behavior
and Learning and Behavior Laboratory
4
Psychology Capstone Requirement 13
Each capstone option is designed to synthesize and apply material from the psychology major. Choice of a capstone should be based, at least in part, on the student's future career plans. Students planning to work in human service jobs following graduation should consider taking PSY A495A. Students planning on graduate work in psychology should consider taking PSY A412, PSY A428, PSY A499A, or PSY A499. Students may elect to take all of these courses as upper-division electives.
PSY A412
History of Psychology
PSY A428
Evolutionary Psychology
PSY A495A
Psychology Practicum
PSY A499A
Developing Psychological Research
PSY A499
Senior Thesis
Psychology Electives9
Complete an additional 9 credits of upper-division psychology courses.
Writing3
WRTG A213
Writing and the Sciences
Mathematics and Statistics6-8
Complete two of the following:
MATH A121
College Algebra for Managerial and Social Sciences
or MATH A151
College Algebra for Calculus
MATH A221
Applied Calculus for Managerial and Social Sciences
SOC A462
Social Science Statistics
STAT A200
Elementary Statistics
STAT A253
Applied Statistics for the Sciences
Biology7-16
BIOL A102
Introductory Biology
or BIOL A108
Principles and Methods in Biology
Complete at least two of the following courses:
BIOL A111
Human Anatomy and Physiology I
BIOL A112
Human Anatomy and Physiology II
BIOL/CPLX A200
Introduction to Complexity
BIOL A240
Introductory Microbiology for Health Sciences
BIOL A242
Fundamentals of Cell Biology
BIOL A252
Principles of Genetics
BIOL A273
Experiential Learning: Ecology and Evolution
BIOL A288
Principles of Evolution
BIOL A311
Experiential Learning: Animal Physiology
BIOL A320
Vertebrate Biology
BIOL A321
Experiential Learning: Vertebrate Biology
BIOL A412
Behavioral Endocrinology
BIOL A413
Neurophysiology
BIOL A414
Chronobiology
BIOL A415
Comparative Animal Physiology
BIOL A417
Applied Kinesiology and Exercise Physiology
BIOL A418
Fish Physiology
BIOL A423
Ichthyology
BIOL A427
Marine Invertebrate Biology
BIOL A430
Marine Mammal Biology
BIOL A441
Animal Behavior
BIOL A442
Experiential Learning: Animal Behavior
BIOL A452
Human Genome
BIOL A455
Experiential Learning: Bioinformatics
BIOL A461
Molecular Biology
BIOL A464
Metals in Biology
BIOL A463
Molecular Biology of Cancer
BIOL A466
Fish Ecology
BIOL A467
Wildlife Ecology
BIOL/CHEM A471
Immunology
BIOL A472
Biogeography
BIOL A473
Conservation Biology
BIOL/CHEM A474
Ecotoxicology
BIOL A477
Tundra and Taiga Ecosystems
BIOL A480
Ecological and Conservation Genetics
BIOL A481
Marine Biology
BIOL A482
Spatial Ecology
BIOL A483
Exploration Ecology
BIOL A484
Experiential Learning: Exploration Ecology Field Study
BIOL A486
Evolutionary Ecology
BIOL A487
Comparative Anatomy of Vertebrates
BIOL A489
Population Genetics and Evolutionary Processes
Experimental and Scientific Foundations6-7
Complete two of the following:
ANTH A205
Biological Anthropology
ANTH A452
Culture and Human Biodiversity
ANTH A455
Culture and Health
CHEM A103
Introduction to General Chemistry
CHEM A104
Introduction to Organic and Biochemistry
CHEM A105
General Chemistry I
CHEM A106
General Chemistry II
CHEM A321
Organic Chemistry I
CHEM A322
Organic Chemistry II
CHEM A441
Principles of Biochemistry I
CHEM A442
Principles of Biochemistry II
CS A109
Computer Programming (Languages Vary)
ECON A201
Principles of Macroeconomics
ECON A202
Principles of Microeconomics
ECON A333
Experimental Economics
ECON A456
Behavioral Economics
ECON A459
Industrial Organization and Public Policy
Total64-76

A minimum of 120 credits is required for this degree, of which 42 credits must be upper-division.

Concentration in Behavior Analysis

This concentration provides foundational knowledge and professional skills to apply the science of behavior analysis across a range of settings and client populations, including staff in the workplace, children and adults with intellectual and cognitive disabilities, and individuals with autism spectrum disorder. Completing the coursework below, in addition to required supervised practicum experience with a Board Certified Behavior Analyst, helps prepare students to apply for the Behavior Analysis Certification Board examination for becoming a Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst. Please go to UAA's Authorization by State website for information about licensure or certification in a state other than Alaska.

Concentration requirements:
PSY A200Introduction to Behavior Analysis3
PSY A400Strategies of Behavior Change3
PSY A495APsychology Practicum3
Complete a minimum of 6 credits of the following:6
PSY A447
Behavioral Treatment of Autism Spectrum Disorder
PSY A455
Interventions for Challenging Behavior
PSY A467
Organizational Behavior Management
PSY A478
Applications of Behavior Analysis
Total15
Honors in Psychology

The Department of Psychology recognizes exceptional undergraduate students by awarding them departmental honors in psychology. To graduate with departmental honors, the student must be a declared psychology major and meet the following requirements:

  1. Satisfy all requirements for a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Psychology.
  2. Maintain an overall and psychology specific GPA of 3.50.
  3. Complete one additional 3-credit Psychology Capstone option other than PSY A499.
  4. Complete PSY A499. The thesis project must be approved in advance by the Undergraduate Studies Committee and carried out by following applicable departmental guidelines.
  5. Students intending to graduate with departmental honors must notify the Departmental Honors Committee in writing on or before the date they file their Application for Graduation with the Office of the Registrar.
Honors Student Learning Outcomes

Students graduating with departmental honors in psychology will possess:

  • An advanced understanding and application of descriptive and inferential statistics and use of statistical software in data analysis.
  • A broad knowledge of psychology’s historical foundation.
  • The ability to conduct a critical review and analysis of existing psychological literature.
  • The ability to design and execute empirical research that tests clearly stated hypotheses or addresses clearly articulated research questions.
  • A clear understanding of research ethics and the responsible conduct of research in the field of psychology.
  • The ability to communicate effectively in writing, in poster format, and in oral presentations, including mastery of APA style.
  • The ability to draw conclusions from research findings, including recognition of the limitations, applications, and implications of the data, and a discussion of alternative explanations of the results.