Psychology & Communications Double Major

Dec 24, 2017

Psychologists need communication skills to process information when conducting research or counseling patients. Psychology can also affect how people communicate. A double major allows students to develop skills in both fields.

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Information about a Double Major in Psychology and Communications

Psychology explores human behavior while communications studies look at how people exchange information. How a person chooses to communicate and what they say can help explain their behavior. Psychologists who opt to pursue clinical work may spend a great deal of time assessing what their patients communicate. How people choose to communicate can affect the nature of their communication, which can help reveal psychological factors that are affecting the individual. Pursuing a double major in psychology and communications can ensure that graduates have a keen understanding of the significance of different methods of communication, ways to foster effective communication and motivations for communication.

Admission Requirements for a Double Major in Psychology and Communications

Colleges and universities tend to favor applicants who have a strong GPA on their high school transcripts. They may also consider SAT test scores or other standardized test scores, such as ACT scores. Most schools expect applicants to complete a designated number of classes in specific subjects, which typically involves four English courses, three mathematics classes and three science credits, as well as other subject area requirements. Schools may also consider supplemental information, such as reference letters, when reviewing applications.

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Double Major in Psychology and Communications Coursework

In order to earn a double major in psychology and communication it is necessary to complete the course requirements for both majors. Key foundational courses that introduce students to communication theories and psychology theories will be required. As students progress in their studies they typically enjoy more elective options that allow them to concentrate their studies on specific areas of interest.

Psychology Introduction

Why do people behave the way that they do? An introductory psychology course helps students understand the theories that explain what influences human behavior. Students may also explore ethics and how they affect behavior. Theories about learning will be addressed, as well as other introductory psychology topics.

Introduction to Communication

What is communication theory? What did Marshall McLuhan mean when he said, 'The medium is the message?' An introduction to communication will provide students with a broad understanding of the principles of communication theory. Students will explore different types of communication and develop an understanding of how the method of communication impacts the message.

Mass Communications

Technological advances change the way that people can communicate with each other. Courses in mass communications or digital communication tools can help students develop a better understanding of the different technologies they can use. How technology shapes communication is covered, as well as the history of major changes in communication methods. Students also learn about how to determine what types of tools are most effective for specific types of content.

Statistics and Research

Students who study psychology may spend significant time learning about psychological research or conducting research. An introductory course in research and statistics prepares psychology students to effectively calculate statistical probabilities and process things such as survey results that are used in their research. Different methods of interpreting statistical data are also explored.

Multicultural Communication

Interacting with people in different parts of the world or people from different ethnic groups is more common now that it was decades ago. Courses that address multicultural communication introduce students to how culture affects communication. These students will develop the skills needed to effectively overcome cultural obstacles to communication so that they can successfully converse with people from different ethnic groups.

Marketing

Students will learn how to use communication to effectively promote products or services. They will learn to shape promotional messages that will appeal to specific audiences. Basic marketing principles and theories will be explored, as well as different types of technology that can be used for marketing.

How to Choose a Bachelor's Degree Program with a Double Major in Psychology and Communications

Several factors should be considered when choosing a college or university. There are public schools that offer both these majors, in addition to private institutions that are not-for-profit or for-profit, and students may want to consider the nature of the school because it can affect its cost. Location may also be a factor for students who want the option of living at home while pursuing their studies. Some schools may offer psychology programs with a specific focus, like addictions, or might have communications programs geared toward areas such as public relations, so that's another consideration.

Career Options for a Degree with a Double Major in Psychology and Communications

With a bachelor's degree in psychology and communications it's possible to use your understanding of human behavior and communications skills to become a public relations specialist, a speech writer or a social media copywriter. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) indicates that public relations specialists earned a median annual income of $58,020 in 2016, and from 2016 to 2026 they should see a 9% job growth rate in their field. Those interested in pursuing further studies may want to consider a career as a psychologist.

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