Psychological and Brain Sciences First Year Courses

The Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences (PBSC) offers two areas of concentration: Psychological Science and Neuroscience. The capstone for all PBSC students is an intensive, senior research experience guided by a faculty member. 

Psychological Science

Psychological Science is dedicated to identifying and understanding basic and complex processes involved in human and animal behavior. These include sensation and perception, learning and memory, language and thought, motivation and emotion, development, personality, psychopathology, and social interaction. These processes are investigated from a variety of levels of analysis; from the genetic and neuronal, to physiological and cognitive systems, and to whole organism responses and group interactions. By its very nature, Psychological Science has relevance to a wide range of practical, human problems. 

Psychological Science offers two introductory courses: PSYC 109, a topics course designed for non-majors (not offered every term), and PSYC 150, Introduction to Psychological Science (offered every term). For entry into the major, students must pass PSYC 150 and PSYC 200, Research Methods with a C– or better.

Advanced Placement

Colgate course credit for PSYC 109 is awarded to students receiving a score of 5 on the AP Psychology exam. 


Please see the Neuroscience program page for more information.


Introduces students to the scientific study of human behavior. Topics include biological foundations of behavior, learning, cognition, sensation and perception, development over the life span, emotion and motivation, personality, social thinking and behavior, and the causes and treatment of psychological disorders.