Courses

Psychology offers a broad array of courses across many different areas within the field. To help our students get the most out of our courses, we have designed a structured course progression.  

Students start with an Introductory Course, followed by Foundational Courses that provide a more in-depth survey of one of the major sub-areas of psychology, and eventually choose Advanced Courses in various specialized areas (which have Introductory and Foundational Courses as prerequisites). In addition to these, students also gain hands-on experience with research by working in a lab for credit and/or taking a Methods Course, and take a Sophomore Tutorial that provides an intimate learning opportunity to develop critical thinking and writing skills. Students may also be required to take additional courses specific to their track, and have the option of taking an Honors Thesis Tutorial in their senior year.

See the Requirements Chart for more information about the specific requirements. 

It is not clear on my.harvard which of your courses are counting for concentration credit, so if you're unsure about what's counting, e-mail the Undergraduate Office at psychology@wjh.harvard.edu to ask!
 

Recommended First Courses
 

At a minimum, all students should take the Introductory Course Science of Living Systems 20, Psychological Science as early as possible. Students who received a qualifying score on the AP or IB psychology exam can choose to begin with a Foundational Course.

Students planning to complete the Life Sciences (Cognitive Neuroscience and Evolutionary Psychology) track should also take one of the following courses in their first year: Life and Physical Sciences A, Life Sciences 1a,  Life Sciences 1b or Life Science 50A. 

Click on the tabs below the "Courses" header to see details on courses by area.

 

Letter Grades versus SAT/UNSAT
 

All courses taken for concentration credit must be taken for a letter grade - with the exception of PSY 985, 990, 992, or 993, which are only graded SAT/UNSAT. The only other exceptions are approved Non-Departmental Courses graded exclusively SAT/UNSAT, like certain Freshman Seminars.