Courses & Requirements

A Bachelor of Arts degree (120 credits) consists of Core Curriculum (24 credits) and at least one major (36–60 credits), as well as minors and/or elective courses of the student’s choosing.

The Psychology major is 41 credit hours: 32 credits from the psychology core requirements and 9 credits from one of the concentrations. The core requirements consist of courses in psychology and meditation from the Buddhist and Shambhala traditions, as well as courses in Western psychology. Students pursue further study in one of five concentrations: Contemplative Neuroscience, Psychological Science, Psychology of Health and Healing, Somatic Psychology, or Transpersonal and Humanistic Psychology.

Other requirements include a contemplative community retreat offered every fall semester and a community-based field placement within the Boulder/Denver area.

Program Vision

The BA Psychology program offers an innovative approach to the study and practice of psychology, guided by the principle that psychological health and well-being are innate. The Psychology program creates and supports a learning environment that values personal experience and insight as essential to embodied achievement. Through various modes of inquiry, such as contemplative practice, empirical research, theoretical analysis, oral and written narrative, group dynamics, and community engagement, the field of contemplative psychology nourishes individual and collective transformation. The program develops the whole person through experiential learning that broadens and sharpens intellect, deepens intuition, nourishes compassion, and embodies confidence. Drawing from meditative wisdom traditions and contemporary practices of diversity, the curriculum provides fertile opportunity for understanding complexity, while fostering reciprocal learning across deeply valued difference.

Major Requirements

Gateway

  • PSYB101 Introduction to Psychology (3)
  • PSYB314 Psychology of Mindfulness Meditation (3)
  • PSYB301 Research Methods and Statistics (3)

Take twice for 2 credits

  • PSYB343W Contemplative Community Retreat (1) OR COL299 Special Topics workshops (1)

Milestone: Mindfulness Track

  • PSYB325 Awakening Compassion: Working
    with Others (3)

Milestone: Science Track:

  • PSYB368 Psychology and Neuroscience of Emotion (3)
  • Self-Selected Courses (choose one course from each set)

Set A:

  • PSYB304 Somatic Intelligence (3)
  • PSYB329 Approaches to Healing (3)
  • PSYB354 Transpersonal Psychology (3)
  • PSYB359 Learning from Trauma (3)

Set B:

  • PSYB345 Developmental Psychology (3)
  • PSYB357 Cognitive Science (3)
  • PSYB373 Social Psychology (3)
  • PSYB420 Abnormal Psychology (3)

Concentrations

Choose one of the following concentrations (9 credits):

Contemplative Neuroscience

This concentration provides a foundation for integrating neuroscientific approaches into the study of contemplative mind. Students' development in this area joins training in cognitive neuroscience with meditative experience. Topics include important findings from functional brain imaging studies on embodiment, perception, emotion, consciousness, mind wandering, and contemplative experience beyond mindfulness. Students use contemplative practice as laboratory for investigating their own mind and brain while employing a variety of complementary psychological research methods, including phenomenology, experimentation, task performance, and experience sampling.

Required Courses:

  • PSYB301 Research Methods and Statistics (3)
  • PSYB462 Contemplative Neuroscience (3)

Choose 3 credits"

  • PSYB357 Cognitive Science (3)
  • PSYB368 Psychology & Neuroscience of Emotion (3)

Concentration Total: 9 Credits

 

Psychological Science

The Psychological Science concentration emphasizes the study of human experience and activity through systematic observation. Topics include development from infancy through adulthood, individual differences, embodiment, perception, emotion, consciousness, thinking, social influence, self, and other aspects of mental life. In addition to theoretical study, methods of obtaining and evaluating empirical evidence are explored, ranging from behavior assessment to contemplative phenomenology.

Required Course:

  • PSYB301 Research Methods and Statistics (3)

Choose 6 credits:

  • PSYB234 Perception (3)
  • PSYB345 Developmental Psychology (3)
  • PSYB371 Personality Theories (3)
  • PSYB373 Social Psychology (3)
  • PSYB420 Abnormal Psychology (3)

Concentration Total: 9 Credits

 

Psychology of Health and Healing

The Psychology of Health and Healing concentration emphasizes body-mind synchronization as the key to inner harmony and wellbeing. Students explore a diversity of ancient and modern healing methodologies and learn experiential techniques for balancing the spiritual and somatic aspects of health.

Required Course:

  • PSYB329 Approaches to Healing (3)

Choose 6 credits:

  • PSYB208 Embodying Process and the Individual (3)
  • PSYB209 Herbal Medicine (3)
  • PSYB239 Nutrition (3)
  • PSYB303 The Psychology of the Five Elements I (3)
  • PSYB323 The Psychology of the Five Elements II (3)
  • PSYB333 Hakomi Somatics (3)
  • PSYB359 Learning from Trauma: Understanding Its Effects and Building Personal Resources (3)

Concentration Total: 9 Credits

 

Somatic Psychology

The Somatic Psychology concentration emphasizes the practice of making meaningful connections between emotional process and the body’s expressions, sensations, and symptoms. Coursework includes three learning domains: 1) the historical and developing theory of body psychology; 2) the research and science regarding body psychology; and 3) the increase of body/self-awareness developed through experiential and movement-oriented classes.

Required Course:

  • PSYB304 Somatic Intelligence: The Neuroscience of Our Body-Mind Connection (3)

Choose 6 credits:

  • PSYB208 Embodying Process & the Individual (3)
  • PSYB255 Body-Mind Centering (3)
  • PSYB303 The Psychology of the Five Elements I (3)
  • PSYB328 Gestalt: Presence (3)
  • PSYB333 Hakomi Somatics (3)

Concentration Total: 9 Credits

 

Transpersonal and Humanistic Psychology

The Transpersonal and Humanistic Psychology concentration helps students synthesize two major forces in Western psychotherapy and appreciate their unique contributions to the understanding of mental health. These include the recognition of spiritual longing for wholeness as essential to psychological growth, and the acknowledgment of the importance of the client-therapist relationship in the healing process.

Required Courses:

  • PSYB350 Humanistic Psychology (3)
  • PSYB354 Transpersonal Psychology (3)

Choose 3 credits:

  • PSYB225 Family Systems (3)
  • PSYB328 Gestalt: Presence (3)
  • PSYB330 Jungian Psychology (3)
  • PSYB355 Dynamics of Intimate Relationships (3)
  • PSYB430 Exploring Dream Psychology (3)

Concentration Total: 9 Credits

No Concentration Option

Students may elect to not have a thematic concentration. There are no required courses. Nine credits are to be selected from within PSYB.

Capstone:

  • Capstone: Mindfulness Emphasis
    PSYB415 Maitri: Working with Emotions (3)
  • Capstone: Science Emphasis
    PSYB462 Contemplative Neuroscience (3)

All Students:

  • COL450 Internship (3)
  • Capstone I (3)
  • Capstone II (3)

Total Credits: 41

Online Major Requirements

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