Information for First Year Students

Introductory Psychology will be the psychology course of choice for most students as you start your career at St. Lawrence.  This course provides a foundation in the field and is a prerequisite for all other psychology offerings.

You can take PSYC 101: Introductory Psychology with or without lab.  "WL" following the course number indicates “with lab”, and "NL" indicates “no lab”.   When you view the fall course schedule, you will notice that each professor has a PSYC 101WL and a PSYC 101NL section, both of which are taught at the same time and place because the lecture portion of the course is the same for both sections. Those who are registered for PSYC 101WL will register separately for one of the eight laboratory sections.

Which Introductory Psychology course should you take? St. Lawrence’s distribution requirements include a natural science course, which must be taken with a laboratory.  PSYC 101WL fulfills the requirement of a natural science with laboratory.  However, PSYC 101WL and NL are treated equivalently if you eventually wish to major or minor in psychology or to use the course as a prerequisite for an upper-level psychology course.  Taking Introductory Psychology without lab will not negatively affect your performance in the upper-level courses. 

If you scored a 4 or 5 on the Advanced Placement exam in Psychology, you may earn credit for PSYC 101NL. You may also earn credit for PSYC 101NL by taking a college course in high school.  If you have earned credit for PSYC 101NL, you may register for one of our 200-level psychology offerings in your first semester.  However, first-year students who plan to do this are urged to contact the department chairperson.

STAT 113: Applied Statistics is required for the major and minor in psychology. Students are required to take this course prior to the required research methods course in psychology (PSYC 205), which many students take in the second semester of their sophomore year. Therefore, STAT 113 is a good choice for a first-year student who is considering psychology as a major or minor.  You are also required to take a second Psychology course before you can enroll in PSYC 205.

The Biology and Psychology departments jointly offer a Neuroscience major. If you have an interest in this program, you should take the BIOL 101-102 and CHEM 103-104 sequence during your first year and plan to take PSYC 101NL at some point during your first year.  Note that you don’t need to take PSYC 101WL, i.e., with lab, because you will already be taking labs in your other courses that fulfill the University’s distribution requirement.  As noted above, taking Introductory Psychology without lab will not negatively affect your performance in the upper-level courses. 

We offer a combined major with Environmental Studies, and you might consider double majoring in Psychology and Business in the Liberal Arts.  For more information on each, see the websites for the Environmental Studies or Business in the Liberal Arts majors.