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Pre-Occupational Therapy

Course Descriptions

  This coursework is recommended for students who are interested in the Doctorate of Occupational Therapy program at Duquesne University. Please check other professional programs for their admissions requirements, as they can vary from school to school.

Psychology Courses:

PSY 101 Introduction to General Psychology (4 SH). Principles of human and animal behavior. The study of individual, group and institutional behavior in context. Offered every semester.

PSY 201 Statistical Methods and Analysis (formerly Research Methods and Analysis) (4 SH). An introduction to the experimental methodology, descriptive data analysis, statistical inference, and philosophy of science that are most germane to psychology. A laboratory is included. Prerequisites: PSY 101, MTH 131 (or permission of instructor).

PSY 211 Motivation (4 SH). Examination of the ultimate and proximal factors that arouse, sustain and direct behavior.

PSY 221 Childhood and Adolescence (4 SH). A topical approach to principles of human growth and development, with an emphasis on both childhood and adolescence.

PSY 241 Organizational Psychology (4 SH). A study of the interaction of individual and structural characteristics which influence productivity and human dignity in all organizational settings. Primarily utilizing case-study methods.

PSY 281 Principles of Learning and Memory (4 SH). Analysis of the variety of mechanisms by which our behavior and our representations develop from experience. Prerequisite: PSY 101.

PSY 291 Adulthood and Aging (4 SH). An examination of the theories and research regarding development and change from young adulthood through old age.

PSY 301 Psychological Assessment (4 SH). This course explores issues related to the assessment of human functioning within a variety of areas, including intelligence, academic achievement, personality and other dimensions of psychological adjustment. The course will focus on major assessment strategies and instruments within each of these areas, as well as principles underlying the construction and effective use of assessment instruments. Alaboratory is included. Prerequisite: PSY 201.

PSY 341 Behavioral Neuroscience (4 SH). Analysis of how nervous system activity underlies sensory, perceptual and higher cognitive activities including motivation, memory, language, thought, and mental illness. A laboratory is included. Prerequisite: PSY 101 or BIO 201. (Also listed as NS 341 and BIO 433.)

PSY 351 Cognition (4 SH). Memory, problem solving, language and intelligence considered from information processing and alternative views. Prerequisite: PSY 101.

PSY 401 Abnormal Psychology (4 SH). An examination of the theoretical and empirical approaches to understanding abnormal human behavior with an introduction to the nature, causes and treatment of various psychological disorders. Prerequisite: PSY 101.

PSY 431 Developmental Psychopathology (4 SH). An overview of problems and processes that lead to abnormal development in childhood and adolescence. Included is an in-depth examination of early psychological disorders. Prerequisites: PSY 101 or 221.

PSY 590-594 Field Experience/Internship (1-4 SH). Working in a psychology related field under the supervision of a person with at least a master’s degree in psychology or a related discipline. Regular contact with the Westminster College internship instructor is required. A reading list developed prior to actual internship activities, a journal and a paper integrating the readings, internship experience and other college course work are required. Prerequisite: junior level standing.

PSY 601 Psychology Capstone: Senior Studies I (2 SH). Senior Capstone seminar which addresses psychological research, its strengths, weaknesses and applications beyond psychology. Students must register for Senior Studies I concurrently with Advanced Research I (611, 621, 631, 641, or 651). Students will prepare and review proposals for senior theses and begin preliminary research. Prerequisites: PSY 201 and junior level standing. Offered Spring Semester.

PSY 602 Psychology Capstone: Senior Studies II (2 SH). Continuation of Senior Studies I. Students must register for Senior Studies II concurrently with Advanced Research II (612, 622, 632, 642, or 652). Students will conduct, revise, review and formally present senior theses. Prerequisite: PSY 601. Offered Fall Semester. Successful completion of this course and the Advanced Research II course satisfies the Liberal Studies Capstone requirement.

PSY 631-640 Advanced Research Seminar (2 SH). When registering for PSY 601 and 602 students must co-registerin one of the following two-course sequences:
PSY 631, 632 General Experimental Research I and II.
PSY 633, 634 Developmental Research I and II.
PSY 635, 636 Social Psychology Research I and II.
PSY 637, 638 Applied Psychological Research I and II.
PSY 639, 640 Experimental and Personality Research I and II.

PSY 650 Research Scholars (2 SH). The research scholars program is for those exceptional students who choose to do a more extensive, two to three semester capstone research projectvin psychology. Students eligible for this program must have a 3.5 GPA overall, a 3.5 GPA invpsychology, have taken at least three psychology courses, obtained a letter of reference fromva faculty member, and must submit a writing sample to the chair of the department. Studentsvaccepted into the program begin their projects in the spring of their junior year and defend a thesisvin the spring of their senior year. Students must show concurrent enrollment in PSY 601 and 602.

PSY 660, 670, 680, 690 Honors Research (1-4 SH). Students enrolled in Honors Research participate in PSY 601, 602, and PSY 631-640. Students must have a 3.5 GPA in three or more psychology courses and complete a departmental application for admission to the program.

Supporting Courses:

BIO 201 Cell Biology and Genetics (4 SH). This course serves as an introduction for students who have chosen biology or molecular biology as a major or minor. A combination of lectures, laboratory exercises, and assignments will introduce students to ways of observing and thinking about fundamental concepts and processes in the following areas of biology—biochemistry, cell structure and function, metabolism, genetics, and biotechnology. Various resources will be utilized to reinforce biological concepts, learn new laboratory skills, and improve critical thinking skills. Multiple sections offered every Fall Semester; one section offered every Spring Semester.

BIO 202 Evolution, Form and Function (4 SH). BIO 202 is the second in a series of three foundational courses in biology, designed to serve as an introduction for students who are taking a biology or molecular biology major or minor. Using explorative lectures coupled with investigative laboratories, BIO 202 will focus on evolution, the structure and physiology of plants and animals, and animal development. Concepts and practices of experimental design, data analysis, and interpretation of results will be reinforced and extended through integrated laboratory activities. Prerequisite: completion of BIO 201. Offered Spring Semester.

BIO 335 Anatomy and Physiology I (4 SH). First of a two-coursesequence studying the anatomical and physiological principles of the human body, including a survey of the major organ systems of the human body and their relationship to health and disease. Emphasis is placed on cells, tissues, and the musculo-skeletal nervous,, and endocrine systems. Alaboratory is included. Prerequisite: C- or better in BIO 202. Offered Fall Semester, alternate years.

BIO 336 Anatomy and Physiology II (4 SH). Second of the two-coursesequence studying the anatomical and physiological principles of the human body. Emphasis is placed on the cardiovascular, respiratory, digestive, urinary, immune, and reproductive systems. A laboratory is included. Prerequisite: C- or better in BIO 335. Offered Spring Semester, alternate years.

MTH 131 Applied Calculus (4 SH). A one-semesterstudy of applications of differential and integral calculus with emphasis on polynomials, exponential functions, logarithmic functions, business and economics applications. This course is for individuals with a good high school background in mathematics. This course does not provide the background for a student to continue on to Calculus II. Not available to students who have credit for MTH 150, MTH 152, or MTH250. Prerequisites : Cor better in MTH130 or permission of the instructor or department chair.

MTH 150 Calculus I (4 SH). This course will focus on the fundamentals of differential calculus. Topics considered include functions, limits, continuous functions, differentiation and integration of functions with one real variable, applications of differentiation and the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus. Students will be introduced to some basic calculus proofs. This course is suggested for all students who expect to continue for any advanced degree including finance, law, and medicine.

PHI 240 Biomedical Ethics. This course will deal with fundamental moral issues that surface in regard to the medical community and to practices therein, beginning with an examination of the theoretical foundation for making moral choices. Initial focus will be on the divergent religious and philosophical positions that have been put forward to justify medical moral choices. Included will be an examination of both consequentialist and non-consequentialist positions, including Divine Command Theory, Utilitarianism, Kant’s categorical position, Buddhist compassion, and others. Once students are grounded in these differing theoretical perspectives, we will examine specific issues from alternative perspectives, giving students an opportunity to compare and contrast divergent positions.

PHY 141 Foundations of Physics I (4 SH). The first semester of an introductory study of physics (mechanics, heat, electricity, magnetism, waves, light and modern physics) without calculus. Basic principles used in both semesters are introduced in the first semester. Some emphasis will be given to applications of physics to biological systems. A laboratory is included. Prerequisite: a good background in high school mathematics including algebra and trigonometry. Offered Fall Semester.