West Valley College
14000 Fruitvale Avenue, Saratoga, CA 95070 • Phone (408) 867-2200

Psychology is the scientific study of human and non-human behavior as well as the neurophysiologic mechanisms that underlie sensations, perceptions, emotions, motivation, memory, cognitive, and motor functions constituting our mental processes and higher states of consciousness.

Psychologists are concerned with the human experience relative to culture, ethnicity, work, health, development, and psychopathology. The field involves both pure science and practical application to matters of everyday life. Those who pursue one of psychology's 55 sub-fields, as identified by the American Psychological Association, will find a wonderful variety of career options with the common goal of improving human life and understanding as well as the world in which we live.

Highlights

  • Exemplary instructional staff, with many years of experience, representing different specializations and areas of interest
  • A wide range of course offerings: Psychology of Addiction and Substance Abuse, Life-Span Developmental Psychology, Physiological Psychology, Psychology of Women, Experimental Psychophysiology, Social Psychology, and Abnormal Psychology
  • Transferable courses to the CSU and UC systems, as well as numerous private universities

Learning Outcomes

After completing courses or an A.A. degree in Psychology, a student will be able to:

  • Describe the major concepts, theoretical perspectives, empirical findings, and historical trends in psychology
  • Apply the scientific method and critical thinking skills to formulate valid hypotheses, operationally define constructs, and evaluate claims
  • Analyze data by selecting the appropriate methods, accurately evaluate and interpret the results, and communicate the results including the proper use of tables and graphs
  • Describe the anatomy and function of the major components of the nervous system, and the physiological basis of neuronal communication, including how drugs, stress, nutrition, interpersonal attraction and other exogenous factors affect the function of the nervous system
  • Specify how psychological principles are applied to real-life situations in business, industry, child rearing, and social interactions
  • Explain how psychosocial factors influence behavior and attitudes, and recognize the complexity of sociocultural and international diversity
Career Options Related Fields
Research Psychologist Behavior Analyst
Forensic Psychologist Child Development Specialist
Neuropsychologist Educational Therapist
Child Psychologist Human Services Specialist
School Psychology Marketing Specialist
Clinical Psychologist (Ph. D.; Psy. Doc.) Marriage and Family Counselor
College Professor Nurse Practitioner (LVN: RN)
Counseling Psychologist Personnel Analyst
Developmental Psychologist Probation Officer
Health Psychologist Psychiatric Technician/Aide
Industrial-Organizational Psychologist Public Survey
Psychometrist Social Science Counselor
Research Psychologist Sociologist
Sports Psychologist Ward Attendant
  Youth Supervisor

*Note: Some career options often require more than two years of study.
last published: 9/9/14 • validate xhtml css 508