Psychology studies the mind and behavior. The major in Psychology introduces students to the main concepts, theoretical perspectives, empirical findings, and historical trends in the field. Students gain the ability to think scientifically, creatively, and critically about human behavior and mental processes; to acquire the basic skills for conducting research in these areas; and to develop a general understanding of psychology as both a natural science and a social science. Students grapple with overarching themes and persistent questions in psychology, such as the interaction of heredity and environment, variability and continuity of behavior and mental processes within and across species, free will versus determinism, the relation between mind and body, and applicability of general theories and measures to specific societal and cultural contexts. Topics of inquiry include cognition, sensation and perception, language and memory, child development and education, personality and individual differences, social interaction and group dynamics, intergroup relations, and the connection between the individual and society.

Students complete the major with realistic ideas about how to implement their psychological knowledge, skills, and values in occupational pursuits in a variety of settings. The NYUAD Psychology Program provides a solid preparation for graduate programs in basic and applied psychology, other psychology-related fields, and graduate programs in business, education, health, and law.

Major in Psychology

The Psychology major consists of thirteen courses. These include four required courses that provide the foundation for more advanced courses in psychology; four elective courses that cover broader subareas of psychology; two advanced electives that go deeper into specific areas of research and inquiry and that emphasize the scientific research and writing process; and the research seminar followed by a two-course capstone research experience. To ensure that students receive a broad training in psychology, students must complete two basic electives from the Social and Developmental Psychology series and two electives from the Cognition and Perception series.

Study abroad for students majoring in Psychology occurs in the spring semester of the third year, during which the Program in Psychology offers a special experience at an NYU global network site for students majoring in Psychology. The option for students majoring in Psychology to enroll in a second semester abroad is competitive, granted by permission of the Program in Psychology and the Dean of Science, and requires registration in the course Capstone Project in Psychology 1 at the student’s chosen site.


12.5 courses, distributed as follows:

  • 4 Required courses:
    • Introduction to Psychology
    • Research Methods in Psychology
    • Biopsychology
    • Statistics for Psychology
  • 2 Electives from the Social and Developmental Psychology series
  • 2 Electives from the Cognition and Perception series
  • 2 Advanced electives; at least one must have a lab component
  • .5 Research Seminar in Psychology (half course)
  • 2 Capstone Project in Psychology