skip to main content columnskip to left navigation

Department of Psychology

College of Arts & Sciences

Major Concentrations

Students who plan to major in psychology should declare their major as soon as possible to facilitate communication from the Department of Psychology. The Psychology Major allows students to choose one of four concentrations: General, Child, Clinical, or Health Professions. The Health Professions concentrations incorporates all of the course requirements for application to medical school.

There are two degree types (the Bachelor of Arts [BA] and the Bachelor of Science [BS] degrees). A new concentration (Health Professions) was added fall 2017 and two concentrations (Behavioral Neuroscience and Cognitive Science) are being phased out. Students in the two concentrations being phased out have until summer 2020 to complete those concentrations. The available concentrations are listed below. Most psychology departments do not have a wide variety of major concentrations and our Department is proud to offer such diversity. A student may choose a concentration other than General if he/she feels strongly about a likely career path or is just interested in a particular broad area of psychology.

If students choose the General concentration, they may choose any minor offered by ETSU. The Child and Clinical concentrations each have a built in minor that is required. The Health Professions concentration does not require a minor. As soon as students decide which concentration they wish to pursue, they should declare their major and concentration so that DegreeWorks analyses will be correct.

From a practical point of view, the primary differences among the concentrations are the required allied courses associated with the each concentration. The concentrations are described below and links to advising check sheets are included underneath each description. Check sheets should be used with the assistance of an academic advisor in the planning and coordination of your degree. Please refer to the undergraduate catalog for specific degree requirements and your degree progress in DegreeWorks.

General Psychology

This is the most common degree awarded in the country, and will be excellent preparation for any career trajectory. Any minor offered by ETSU can be take with the General Psychology Concentration. Selection of a minor can be strategic to combine a particular subject of study with Psychology, or it can be an area of interest.

Health Professions

This concentration does not require a minor. It is designed to prepare students to apply to medical school or other health professions programs. This concentration includes all of the courses recommended by Medical Professons Advisement (MPA) for applying to medical school. Students should meet with an MPA advisor and a psychology advisor in the Center for Advisement and Student Excellence (CASE) as soon as they decide they would like to pursue a health profession. 

Child Psychological Science

This concentration is for those interested in early human development and/or those interested in working with children (either clinically or in educational or other settings). This concentration requires a minor in Early Childhood Education and Development.

  • BS Child Concentration
  • BA Child Concentration 

    The Child Psychological Sciences concentration requires several child-focused courses. As of spring 2018, they will be offered as follows: 

    ECED 2110 - Infant/Child/Toddler Development (3 credits) offered fall, spring (online and on-ground)

    ECED 2150 - Foundations of Early Childhood Development (3 credits) offered spring (on-ground)

    ECED 4010 - Observing and Assessing Young Children (3 credits) offered fall (on-ground)

    ECED 4517 - Family, School, Community, Involvement (3 credits) offered fall (on-ground), spring (on-ground), winter (online) and summer (online)

    ECED 4140 - Program Development for Young Children (3 credits) offered spring (on-ground and online)

    ECED 3150 - Creative Development of Young Children (3 credits) offered fall, spring (on-ground)


    HDAL 4127 - Divorce: Causes and Consequences (3 credits) (check with the Department of Counseling and Human Services to see when it is offered)

Clinical Psychological Science

This concentration is for those interested in pursuing careers in the helping professions (e.g., psychology, counseling, social work, medical professions). This concentration requires a minor in Sociology.

Behavioral Neuroscience (phased out by 2020)

This concentration is being phased out. Students enrolled in this concentration need to complete their coursework by summer 2020. The focus of this concentration is to understand the biological bases of behavior, particularly the importance of understanding the central and peripheral nervous systems in appreciating human experience. Biology is the required minor and note that Biology for Majors (BIOL 1110/11) is required regardless of degree type. New students should consider the Health Professions concentration, which incorporates much of the material that is required for the behavioral neuroscience concentration. 

 Cognitive Science (phased out by 2020)
 This concentration is being phased out. Students enrolled in this concentration need to complete their coursework by summer 2020. This concentration is suited for those students interested in philosophy and mechanisms related to human information processing (e.g., decision making, memory, schema formation, interpretation of information). This concentration requires a minor in Philosophy.



Senior Exit Exam

All graduating seniors are required to take an Psychology Exit Exam in the semester during which they will graduate in addition to the University-Wide Exit Exam. The Psychology Exit Exam is online and notice to take the exam is sent via email and mail to all eligible seniors. The test is taken TOWARD THE END of the semester, and notice is sent AFTER fall/spring break. DO NOT STUDY OR GIVE/RECEIVE HELP ON THE EXAM. DO NOT REVEAL THE ITEMS OR TOPICS TO ANYONE. You MUST take the exam, but it will NOT affect your GPA. It is NOT graded on an individual level. It is for INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY so the department is aware of what knowledge its graduating students have acquired in various areas. A student need only take the exam once, which should take approximately 15 minutes (unless it is the year of the Major Field Test, which takes substantially longer, and all affected students are notified of this when it happens), provide his/her name, and the Graduation Office will be notified that the student has taken the exam and thus satisfied this graduation requirement.

icon for left menu icon for right menu