Mission & Goals

Mission Statement

The mission of the Department of Psychology at Daemen College is to introduce students to the content and methods of psychological science. The psychology curriculum is designed to increase students' knowledge in foundational and contemporary topics in psychological science, to practice the principles of research design and data analysis, and to develop skills in a variety of domains that characterize well educated and ethical learners. We accomplish this through a combination of integrative collaborative student-faculty research opportunities, advising, mentoring, and community outreaches in the form of career field experiences and internships.

Student Learning Goals & Outcomes

The Department of Psychology at Daemen College endorses the APA Guidelines for the Undergraduate Psychology Major (APA, 2007) that are structured to provide knowledge, skills, and values consistent with both psychological science and a liberal education.

GOAL 1: Knowledge Base of Psychology

Demonstrate familiarity with the major concepts, theoretical perspectives, empirical findings, and historical trends in psychological science.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Characterize the nature of psychology as a discipline.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding representing appropriate breadth and depth in selected content areas of psychology.
  • Use the concepts, language, and major theories of the discipline to account for psychological phenomena.
  • Explain major perspectives of psychology (e.g., behavioral, biological, cognitive, evolutionary, humanistic, psychodynamic, and sociocultural).

GOAL 2: Research Methods in Psychology

Understand and apply basic research methods in psychology, including research design, data analysis, and interpretation.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Evaluate the appropriateness of conclusions derived from psychological research.
  • Explain different research methods used by psychologists.
  • Design and conduct basic studies to address psychological questions using appropriate research methods.
  • Follow the APA Ethics Code in the treatment of human participants in the design, data collection, interpretation, and reporting of psychological research.
  • Generalize research conclusions appropriately based on the parameters of particular research methods.

GOAL 3: Critical Thinking Skills in Psychology

Respect and use critical and creative thinking, skeptical inquiry, and, when possible, the scientific approach to solve problems related to behavior and mental processes.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Use critical thinking effectively.
  • Engage in creative thinking.
  • Use reasoning to recognize, develop, defend, and criticize arguments and other persuasive appeals.
  • Approach problems effectively.

GOAL 4: Application of Psychology

Understand and apply psychological principles to personal, social, and organizational issues.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify appropriate applications of psychology in solving problems.
  • Articulate how psychological principles can be used to explain social issues and inform public policy.

GOAL 5: Values in Psychology

Value empirical evidence, tolerate ambiguity, act ethically, and reflect other values that are the underpinnings of psychology as a science.

Learning Outcomes

  • Recognize the necessity of ethical behavior in all aspects of the science and practice of psychology.
  • Demonstrate reasonable skepticism and intellectual curiosity by asking questions about causes of behavior.
  • Seek and evaluate scientific evidence for psychological claims.
  • Tolerate ambiguity and realize that psychological explanations are often complex and tentative.
  • Recognize and respect human diversity.
  • Understand the limitations of their psychological knowledge and skills.

GOAL 6: Information and Technological Literacy

Demonstrate information competence and the ability to use computers and other technology for many purposes.

Learning Outcomes

  • Demonstrate information competence at each stage of understanding and conducting psychological research.
  • Use appropriate software to produce understandable reports of the psychological literature, methods, and statistical and qualitative analyses in APA or other appropriate style, including graphic representations of data.

GOAL 7: Communication Skills

Communicate effectively in a variety of formats.

Learning Outcomes

  • Demonstrate effective writing skills in various formats (e.g., essays, correspondence, technical papers, note taking) and for various purposes (e.g., informing, defending, explaining, persuading, arguing, teaching).
  • Demonstrate effective oral communication skills in various formats (e.g., group discussion, debate, lecture) and for various purposes (e.g., informing, defending, explaining, persuading, arguing, teaching).
  • Exhibit quantitative literacy.
  • Demonstrate effective interpersonal communication skills.

GOAL 8: Sociocultural and International Awareness

Recognize, understand, and respect the complexity of sociocultural and international diversity.

Learning Outcomes

  • Examine the sociocultural and international contexts that influence individual differences.
  • Explain how individual differences influence beliefs, values, and interactions with others and vice versa.
  • Understand how privilege, power, and oppression may affect prejudice, discrimination, and inequity.
  • Recognize prejudicial attitudes and discriminatory behaviors that might exist in themselves and in others.

GOAL 9: Personal Development

Develop insight into their own and others' behavior and mental processes and apply effective strategies for self-management and self-improvement.

Learning Outcomes

  • Apply psychological principles to promote personal development.
  • Enact self-management strategies that maximize healthy outcomes.
  • Display high standards of personal integrity with others.
  • Seek input from and experiences with diverse people to enhance the quality of solutions.

GOAL 10: Career Planning and Development

Pursue realistic ideas about how to implement their psychological knowledge, skills, and values in occupational pursuits in a variety of settings that meet personal goals and societal needs.

Learning Outcomes

  • Apply knowledge of psychology (e.g., decision strategies, life span processes, psychological assessment, types of psychological careers) when formulating career choices.
  • Identify the types of academic experience and performance in psychology and the liberal arts that will facilitate entry into the workforce, postbaccalaureate education, or both.
  • Describe preferred career paths based on accurate self-assessment of abilities, achievement, motivation, and work habits.
  • Identify and develop skills and experiences relevant to achieving selected career goals.


American Psychological Association (2007). APA guidelines for the undergraduate psychology major. Washington, DC.

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