May 26, 2024  
2023/2024 University Catalog 
2023/2024 University Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Psychology, Emphasis in Industrial and Organizational Psychology, B.A. in Liberal Arts and Sciences

(SIMS Code: 778312)

Also Offered at SDSU Imperial Valley

Emphasis in Industrial and Organizational Psychology

This emphasis offers students an opportunity to complete a four-course sequence (within the scope of a bachelor’s degree in psychology) that will facilitate students’ competitiveness in the job market and admission to graduate programs in industrial and organizational (I/O) psychology or related fields. Students will learn about theories, research, and practice in industrial and organizational psychology. Advanced courses will provide students with opportunities to complete applied projects and written assignments.

A minor is not required for this major. However, depending on career goals, students may wish to consider minors in areas such as biology, business, public administration, recreation, social work, statistics, and others.

Preparation for the Major

(20 units)

With the exception of PSY 201 , these prerequisite courses may not be taken for credit/no credit (Cr/NC).The minimum grade in each class is C (2.0) or better, except for PSY 280  which requires a grade of B (3.0) or better.


Psychology majors may use PSY 280  to satisfy Mathematics/Quantitative Reasoning General Education requirement.

Note Also

A college level statistics course will be accepted from another department (CIV E 160 ; ECON 201 ; LING 270 ; POL S 201 ; SOC 201 ; STAT 119  or STAT 250 ) combined with PSY 281  in lieu of PSY 280 .

Language Requirement

Competency (successfully completing the third college semester or fifth college quarter) is required in one language other than English to fulfill the graduation requirement. Refer to section of catalog on “Graduation Requirements .”

Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement

Completing one of the approved upper division writing courses (W) with a grade of C (2.0) or better. See “Graduation Requirements ” section for a complete listing of requirements.

Requirements for the Major

A minimum of 31 upper division units in psychology to include


All majors must complete PSY 301  or PSY 410  or both. PSY 301  is suitable for most psychology majors, including those planning to enter the job market after graduation, those undecided about career plans, and those planning to pursue graduate work in related fields such as counseling.

Students planning to pursue graduate work in psychology (research degrees) should take PSY 370  and PSY 410  as early as possible.


Students enrolling in these courses must have earned a grade of B (3.0) or better in PSY 280  or its equivalent. Students unsure of their statistical or computer competence may wish to take PSY 301  before enrolling in PSY 370  or PSY 410 .


All majors must complete three courses or nine units; one course selected from groups I, III, and IV:

Additional Psychology Units

An additional 5-6 elective units selected from 300- to 500-level psychology courses and WMNST 325 * to satisfy the 31 units required for the psychology major.


*  WMNST 325  for SDSU Imperial Valley students only.

Recommendations for Psychology Electives

Employment with the B.A.

Electives should be selected in accord with general career goals. Students interested in health and human services may take courses that focus on psychological health and well-being or issues related to child development. Those interested in business may take courses that focus on industrial, organizational and consumer issues or that emphasize computer skills, measurement, data analysis, or some combination of these.

Masters Programs in Counseling

At SDSU, a Master of Science degree in Counseling is offered by the College of Education and a Master of Social Work degree is offered by the College of Health and Human Services. For these programs students have considerable latitude in the selection of psychology electives, but it is important to develop an appropriate profile of volunteer or work experience.

Graduate Programs in Psychology

Most masters or doctoral programs in psychology require students to have strong research profiles. SDSU psychology majors can accomplish this by completing PSY 370 , PSY 410 , and becoming involved as early as possible in faculty-sponsored research.