Course Exam—PSYC 375

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PSYC 375 (History of Psychology) is a three-credit, senior-level psychology course that examines the history of psychology from the time of the early Greeks until the present.  This course covers the origins of philosophy, religion, mental illness, and science.  It also covers concepts such as structuralism, functionalism, and behaviourism, and psychoanalysis.

Students should note that a 200-level psychology course.  It is recommended that this course be taken by students who have successfully completed several psychology courses and are in their third or fourth year of undergraduate studies.  This course has a challenge for credit option if interested and is offered as both an individualized study and a grouped study.

History of Psychology is made up of six units that each have an associated quiz worth six percent, for a total of thirty-six percent. There is also a midterm examination weighing thirty-two percent and a final examination for thirty-two percent.  To receive credit for PSYC 375, students must achieve a composite course grade of at least a “D” or fifty percent, and a grade of at least fifty percent on the final examination.

Melissa Degenstein-Roelofs began studying at Athabasca University in May of 2019 and she is currently enrolled in the Bachelor of Arts program, majoring in Psychology and minoring in Anthropology.  With her transfer credits from Lethbridge College she is approximately halfway done.  She introduces herself for us, stating “I’m twenty-three years old and from Lethbridge, Alberta.  I originally started my post-secondary education at the Lethbridge College, but when I realized I wanted to get my bachelor’s degree I switched to AU.  I was working at a cell phone Kiosk until August; this semester I have decided to take some time off and focus on school, as well as my volunteer position as the Undergraduate Representative for the Canadian Psychological Association.  In my spare time, I typically am doing yoga, binge-watching something on Netflix, or hanging out with my cats and rabbit!”

When asked to explain PSYC 375 to students, she states “The History of Psychology is a very interesting look at essentially how psychology came about; it shows the connection between scientists and philosophers throughout the eras and how their work is connected to the modern discipline of psychology; it also covers the first psychologists themselves and many prominent psychologists of the twentieth century.  The textbook is one of the best-organized textbooks I have worked with.  It is organized into eras and schools (romantic era, structuralism, gestalt psychology etc.,) and every chapter covers the prominent people of said era or school.  I learned a lot about the history of psychology but also a lot about the history of science and philosophy.”

As for the structure of the course, Melissa explains that “This course has a lot of information, if you do not read the textbook and take good notes, you will not pass.  The learning objectives are a great note and study guide for the exams.  Also, make sure to read the commentary left by the tutor in the learning objectives because they can give helpful information that the textbook may have left out that you may want to add to your notes.  There are quizzes for each of the units that have a multiple choice and a written component.  There is a midterm exam and a final exam, both of which have multiple choice questions and a written component.  This course has no other assignments outside of the exam and the quizzes.”

When asked if she would recommend History of Psychology, she states “In my opinion, this class was a bit tougher than other classes I have taken.  The information is not hard to grasp — but there is a lot of it.  You have to really pay attention to the learning objectives when reading through it to make sure you are taking notes effectively.  This class is a requirement in the psychology program, and I think its an important class for those studying psychology and want to make a career out of it, but if you are just wanting to take some psychology classes for fun, I would not recommend it.”

As for tips and tricks to completing this course, Melissa explains that students should “Read the textbook and make sure you read the learning objectives before you begin the reading as it can really help your mind focus on what the important information is.”

Melissa did not communicate with her tutors often while completing PSYC 375, however, she states that “My tutor was a very quick marker, and her feedback on the written components of the quizzes was very useful as a guide to any important information I may have missed.

Whether PSYC 375 is a degree or program requirement of yours, or the topics discussed above are of interest to you, this course will have you learning a lot of interesting material surrounding the topic of the history of psychology.

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