Advising

Student Responsibilities

Before meeting with the Psychology advisor, students must:

  1. Go to My Illinois State, log in, and click on the Academics tab. Under Academic Progress, click on Academic Requirements, and print the information.
  2. Review the Requirements for the Major in Psychology (see below) and graduation requirements in the Undergraduate Catalog.
  3. Prepare a written academic plan for review with the Psychology advisor.
  4. Make an appointment to see the Psychology advisor and bring all of this information with you to your scheduled appointment.

Requirements for the Major in Psychology

The Major in Psychology consists of a fixed number of psychology courses plus courses in other disciplines that complement psychology. Students are required to complete 37-41 credit hours of psychology courses for the Major in Psychology, depending on students' Undergraduate Catalog. Additional courses in English prepare students to write reports; courses in Mathematics prepare students for data analysis; and Philosophy and the lab sciences courses enhance students' analytic reasoning skills essential in the field of psychology.

The department has identified 10 objectives for psychology courses to enhance the teaching of psychology. These objectives are identified and explained in the Psychology Course Objectives. Students should choose courses that focus on an area of interest or enroll in a variety of courses for a broad base in psychology.

The Major in Psychology and graduation requirements depend upon the Undergraduate Catalog that was in effect the year in which students are admitted to Illinois State. The Academic Progress Summary identifies which catalog year students should follow. Click on the appropriate link below to review their specific requirements:

Major Checklist

Students should use the Major Checklist to keep track of their progress toward completing the Major in Psychology. Click on the link to download either version of the Major Checklist. 2014-16 Major Checklist (MS Word) or (PDF)

The Microsoft Word version is an interactive document that can be periodically updated and saved as a MS Word file. Adobe® Acrobat® is needed to access the PDF version. If the PDF version does not download to the computer, click on Adobe Reader to download a free copy of the software. The PDF version is not an interactive file. The checklist can be printed and the paper copy retained in order to update course information.

Standards for Progress in the Major in Psychology

In order to remain in the Major in Psychology, students must meet the standard for progress by the time they have completed 75 hours. After completing 75 hours, academic records for students in the Major will be reviewed. Students not fulfilling all of the standards for progress that are identified below will be dismissed from the Major in Psychology.

  • Maintain a 2.0 or higher cumulative Illinois State grade point average;
  • Maintain a 2.2 or higher Psychology Major grade point average based on all courses taken at Illinois State for the Major; and
  • Earn a grade of C or better in:
    • PSY 111, 138, 200, and 231;
    • MAT 120, or 121, or 144, or 145; and
    • a lab science course.

Psychology Course Override

The Department of Psychology is not accepting course override requests at this time.

 

Override requests are available online through MyIllinoisState.

 

  1. Log in to MyIllinoisState
  2. Click the Academics tab.
  3. Under "Course Manager, select "Course Permit Request (Override)."

Please review the Department of Psychology's course override policies and procedures before submitting a request for an override.

PSY 200 Careers in Psychology

Psychology majors are required to take PSY 200 Careers in Psychology. PSY 200 should be taken during the second semester of students' freshman year or their sophomore year. This course is designed to acquaint students with the requirements of the Major in Psychology. Students will be instructed on how to design a plan of study to meet academic and career-preparation goals. This course will also identify which careers are possible with a bachelor's degree in psychology and how to pursue graduate study in psychology.

Advisor Responsibilities

The Psychology advisor is responsible for assisting students with academic problems and helping students make decisions based on available options. The advisor will not tell students what courses they need to take each semester in order to graduate. Specifically, the Psychology advisor can:

  • Update students' academic record to identify the elective courses that count toward the Major. After their sophomore year, students should ask the advisor to update their plan of study, at least annually, to reflect elective courses in students' official academic record.
  • Advise students about enrolling in a course at another college or university. The advisor can verify if the course will meet Illinois State's requirements and if the hours can be transferred to Illinois State.
  • Assist students when they anticipate a disruption in their academic career for any reason.

Cumulative Planning Guide

Freshman Year

  • READ your Illinois State Undergraduate Catalog. The general information is helpful, and the specific information on the graduation requirements is essential. You, not University staff, ultimately are responsible for your meeting the multiple graduation requirements.
  • CONSULT the department's Psychology Major Page
  • DECIDE, tentatively,whether you want a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science degree and plan your curriculum accordingly.
  • READ the course descriptions in the Undergraduate Catalog for the various academic disciplines. Enroll in a range of courses that sound appealing to you. Your final major and minor choices should be disciplines you enjoy and can master successfully.
  • KEEP up with each course syllabus and study for exams. A low grade point average (GPA) may be hard to raise.
  • CONSIDER if you are eligible for one of the Honors Program as described in the Undergraduate Catalog.. If so, speak to an advisor.
  •  SEE an advisor at least once a semester. Bring questions about careers as well as academic concerns. Advisors can refer you to helpful resources if unable to answer questions directly.
  •  READ the e-mail messages sent to your University e-mail account.

Sophomore Year

  • TAKE additional courses in potential majors for continued evaluation.
  •  VISIT the Career Center (Student Services Building) to learn about future occupations.
  • TAKE PSY 200 Careers in Psychology
  • SPEAK with professors and advisors about career. Advisors have more time available to meet with you outside of scheduled registration periods.
  • ATTEND Student Psychology Association and Psi Chi meetings for general information about the major and possible careers
  • APPLY to the Department of Psychology for the major (only if you have not already been declared a Psychology major.) Applications are only accepted during September, February, and May through July.
  • REVIEW your Academic Progress Summary and Progress Toward My Degree each semester. Request and pick up your summary fro the University Registrar (Moulton Hall) and/or check My Illinois State for Progress Toward My Degree. Discuss any discrepancies in the Summary with an advisor.
  • ASK an advisor about Career Enhancement Certificates(CEC) that are offered by the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences

Junior Year

  • DECIDE, tentatively, whether you want to go directly to graduate school after graduation or enter the job market with your Bachelor's degree.
  • TALK with an advisor about internships,job, or volunteer experience, and research opportunities which may qualify your for academic credit.
  • JOIN the Student Psychology Association, if you have not done so yet. Think about joining the American Psychological Association (APA) as a student member.
  • JOIN Psi Chi, if you are eligible
  •  DISCUSS with professors, professionals, and advisors the work environment and job tasks that interest you in order to narrow your goals.
  • ASSESS whether your goals are realistic based on your GPA. If necessary, consider related goals.
  • DECIDE whether you want a minor and/or a Career Enhancement Certificate.
  • CONISDER registering for a research apprenticeship in the spring semester of your junior year or for the fall semester of your senior year. Honors Program students should register for research no later than for the fall semester of their senior year.
  • ACQUAINT yourself with a few professors. You may need recommendations.
  • KEEP up your GPA

Summer Between Junior and Senior Year

  •  SECURE a job or internship related to your future goals, if possible
  •  IDENTIFY graduate programs that interest you. Consult the APA's Graduate Study in Psychology, which is available in Milner Library. Talk with professors in your area of interest.
  •  REVIEW for the GRELSAT, etc.

Senior Year

FALL Semester for Students Applying to Graduate School

  • REGISTER to take the GRE General Test in September.
  •  ATTEND the GRE session in Psychology that is offered by Psi Chi, if relevant.
  • COMPLETE all required and elective 300-level courses in the major, including your capstone experience and research.
  • SEND for and complete graduate school applications
  • HAVE recommendations and transcripts sent to prospective graduate schools
  • APPLY for graduation after your last semester registration. Review the degree audit report that is sent to you. See an advisor for any irregularities in the report.
  • ARRANGE for updated transcripts to be sent in early January to prospective graduate schools.

FALL Semester for Students Planning to Enter the Job Market

  • COMPLETE required and elective 300-level courses in the major.
  • USE the Career Center to assist you in your job search strategies.
  • ATTEND career fairs both on and off campus beginning early in the fall semester
  • SEEK recommendations from professors and employers
  • APPLY for graduation after your last semester registration. Review the degree audit report that is sent to you. See an advisor for any irregularities in the report.

SPRING semester, Senior Year

  • TIE up academic ends, keep up your GPA, but take it easy as much as possible. The real world will hit soon!
  • SEE professors or advisors, if you choose, for information and/or advice regarding final decision making.