Degree Requirements

The specific requirements for our majors and minor depend upon the year you started at Duke (year of matriculation). To view full details of requirements, choose one of the following options:

Eleven (11) courses in psychology are required for the AB degree in psychology. Of the 11 courses, at least 9 must be taken at Duke; others, if approved, may count toward the 34 credits needed for graduation but will not count toward the major. Only two independent study courses, whether research-directed (393, 394, 493, 494) or non-research directed (391, 392, 491, 492), may count toward the major. Please direct all questions about these requirements to psychologyDUS@duke.edu.

FOUNDATION (To be completed by the end of junior year)
  •  PSY 101 Introductory Psychology  

(AP or IPC counts as PSY 11, which can be used toward Trinity requirements but not for the major)

  •  Methods and Statistics:  PSY 204L and PSY 205L.
BREADTH of at least three survey courses covering major areas in the discipline
  • One of Biological (106/107) or Cognitive (102)
  • One of Abnormal/Health (105), Developmental (103) or Social (104)
  • One additional from either category listed above.
DEPTH/SPECIALIZATION
  • Seminar (First-year seminars and FOCUS courses do not count)
  • 300 + level Course taken in addition to seminars listed as 300+. Independent Study and Distinction Thesis Workshop do not fulfill this requirement (PSY 391, 392, 393, 394, 491, 492, 493, 494, and 496).
  • Additional Courses to bring the total to 11. May include up to two Independent Study courses (whether research- or non-research directed), the PSY 496 Distinction Thesis Workshop, and/or a fourth survey. Any other PSY course may be used except for FOCUS courses, first-year seminars or the PSY 203 practicum.

Download AB 2020 Checklist

Sixteen (16) courses in psychology are required for the BS degree in psychology. At least 14 of those courses must be taken at Duke; others, if approved, may count toward the 34 credits needed for graduation but will not count toward the major. Only two independent study courses, whether research-directed (393, 394, 493, 494) or non-research directed (391, 392, 491, 492), may count toward the major. Please direct all questions about these requirements to psychologyDUS@duke.edu.

FOUNDATION (To be completed by the end of junior year)
  • PSY 101 Introductory Psychology  

(AP or IPC counts as PSY 11, which can be used toward Trinity requirements but not for the major)

  • Methods and Statistics: PSY 204L and PSY 205L
BREADTH of at least three survey courses covering major areas in the discipline
  • One of Biological (106/107) or Cognitive (102)
  • One of Abnormal/Health (105), Developmental (103) or Social (104)
  • One additional from either category listed above.
DEPTH/SPECIALIZATION
  • Seminar (First-year seminars and FOCUS courses do not count)
  • 300 + level Course taken in addition to seminars listed as 300+. Independent Study and Distinction Thesis Workshop do not fulfill this requirement (PSY 391, 392, 393, 394, 491, 492, 493, 494, and 496).
  • Additional Courses to bring the total to 11. May include up to two Independent Study courses (whether research- or non-research directed), the PSY 496 Distinction Thesis Workshop, and/or a fourth survey. Any other PSY course may be used except for FOCUS courses, first-year seminars or the PSY 203 practicum.
QUANTITATIVE STUDIES AND NATURAL SCIENCE ELECTIVES

Quantitative Studies (QS) and Natural Sciences (NS) Electives: 5 elective courses from an approved list (see Quantitative Studies and Natural Sciences Elective) that meet the following criteria: (a) classes come from at least two external departments, and (b) at least 3 of the 5 are at or above the 200 level. Any PSY course that carries the NS code also qualifies for the 5 total, but PSY courses that are cross-listed with another department do not count as a second department. 

Download PSY BS Checklist 2020 

Eleven (11) courses in psychology are required for the AB degree in psychology. Of the 11 courses, at least 9 must be taken at Duke; others, if approved, may count toward the 34 credits needed for graduation but will not count toward the major. Only two independent study courses, whether research-directed (393, 394, 493, 494) or non-research directed (391, 392, 491, 492), may count toward the major. Please direct all questions about these requirements to psychologyDUS@duke.edu.

FOUNDATION (To be completed by the end of junior year)
  • PSY 101 Introductory Psychology  

(AP or IPC counts as PSY 11, which can be used toward Trinity requirements but not for the major)

  • Methods and Statistics

*If you have not taken a statistics or research methods course, we strongly recommend that you complete the New Integrated Courses in Psychology Methods and Statistics,  PSY 204L and PSY 205L.

If you already completed the research methods requirement with a course other than PSY 204L, you can fulfill the statistics requirement with one of the following courses: STA 101, STA 102, STA 111, STA 198L, STA 199L, STA 250, STA 432, or MATH 342. If you took PSY 204L you must take PSY 205L to complete the methods and statistics requirement.

If you already completed the statistics requirement with one of the courses listed above, you can fulfill the methods requirement with a PSY course numbered between 301 and 315. Offerings vary by semester. 

BREADTH of at least three survey courses covering major areas in the discipline
  • One of Biological (106/107) or Cognitive (102)
  • One of Abnormal/Health (105), Developmental (103) or Social (104)
  • One additional from either category listed above.
DEPTH/SPECIALIZATION
  • Seminar (First-year seminars and FOCUS courses do not count)
  • 300 + level Course taken in addition to seminars listed as 300+. Independent Study and Distinction Thesis Workshop do not fulfill this requirement (PSY 391, 392, 393, 394, 491, 492, 493, 494, and 496).
  • Additional Courses to bring the total to 11. May include up to two Independent Study courses (whether research- or non-research directed), the PSY 496 Distinction Thesis Workshop, and/or a fourth survey. Any other PSY course may be used except for FOCUS courses, first-year seminars or the PSY 203 practicum.

Download PSY AB Checklist 2018-2020

Seventeen (17) courses in psychology are required for the BS degree in psychology. At least 15 of those courses must be taken at Duke; others, if approved, may count toward the 34 credits needed for graduation but will not count toward the major. Only two independent study courses, whether research-directed (393, 394, 493, 494) or non-research directed (391, 392, 491, 492), may count toward the major. Please direct all questions about these requirements to psychologyDUS@duke.edu.

FOUNDATION (To be completed by the end of junior year)
  • PSY 101 Introductory Psychology  

(AP or IPC counts as PSY 11, which can be used toward Trinity requirements but not for the major)

  • Methods and Statistics

*If you have not taken a statistics or research methods course, we strongly recommend that you complete the New Integrated Courses in Psychology Methods and Statistics,  PSY 204L and PSY 205L.

If you already completed the research methods requirement with a course other than PSY 204L, you can fulfill the statistics requirement with one of the following courses: STA 101, STA 102, STA 111, STA 198L, STA 199L, STA 250, STA 432, or MATH 342. If you took PSY 204L you must take PSY 205L to complete the methods and statistics requirement.

If you already completed the statistics requirement with one of the courses listed above, you can fulfill the methods requirement with a PSY course numbered between 301 and 315. Offerings vary by semester. 

BREADTH of at least three survey courses covering major areas in the discipline
  • One of Biological (106/107) or Cognitive (102)
  • One of Abnormal/Health (105), Developmental (103) or Social (104)
  • One additional from either category listed above.
DEPTH/SPECIALIZATION
  • Seminar (First-year seminars and FOCUS courses do not count)
  • 300 + level Course taken in addition to seminars listed as 300+. Independent Study and Distinction Thesis Workshop do not fulfill this requirement (PSY 391, 392, 393, 394, 491, 492, 493, 494, and 496).
  • Additional Courses to bring the total to 11. May include up to two Independent Study courses (whether research- or non-research directed), the PSY 496 Distinction Thesis Workshop, and/or a fourth survey. Any other PSY course may be used except for FOCUS courses, first-year seminars or the PSY 203 practicum.
QUANTITATIVE STUDIES AND NATURAL SCIENCE ELECTIVES

Any one of  MATH 22, MATH 112,  MATH 122, STA 210, STA 340. Included in the matriculation plans for students matriculated between summer 2018 and spring 2020, this requirement is now optional. Notify the office of undergraduate studies at psychologyDUS@duke.edu if you wish to opt out. Opting out reduces your total number of required credits to 16. Students who already took STA 210 can use it as one of the remaining 5 NS course requirement below. 

Quantitative Studies (QS) and Natural Sciences (NS) Electives: 5 elective courses from an approved list (see Quantitative Studies and Natural Sciences Elective) that meet the following criteria: (a) classes come from at least two external departments, and (b) at least 3 of the 5 are at or above the 200 level. Any PSY course that carries the NS code also qualifies for the 5 total, but PSY courses that are cross-listed with another department do not count as a second department. 

Download PSY BS Checklist 2018-2020 

Steps for Completing an IDM Proposal with Psychology

Read this information entirely as it will likely answer many of your questions.

STEP 1. We ask students to craft a strong application reflecting Duke’s rigorous educational standards by clarifying how pursuing an Interdepartmental Major (IDM) degree will support their goals in a way that is not possible through pursuing any combination of individual degrees. The questions below are meant to guide you in this process. Your answers to these questions should help you discern your educational goals and compose a more convincing proposal. Your proposal will be considered incomplete without responses to these questions:

  1. Why is it necessary for you to complete an IDM? How specifically will blending these two majors in this way help you with your career goals? What are you considering doing and why will this help you get there? Why do this as opposed to majoring in just one of these disciplines and minoring in the other, double-majoring, or crafting a Program II?
  2. How will the courses you’ve selected support what you are proposing? Make a clear case.
  3. Because there is no guarantee that all the courses you want will be offered in time for you to take them, we recommend making a list of several sensible backup courses.
  4. One of the expectations for completing an IDM is that students will identify faculty members in both programs who will serve as their advisors for the IDM. We can help you narrow down possibilities, but you will be responsible for contacting them to explore the possibility of their serving as your IDM advisors. Have you already connected with faculty members who are willing to serve as advisors for your IDM?

STEP 2. Once you have justified pursuing an IDM degree with Psychology, you will fill out your proposal which includes the list of courses you plan to complete. An interdepartmental major must consist of a minimum of fourteen courses, split evenly between the two departments (e.g. seven course credits in each).

  • At least ten of the courses must be at the 200-level or above.
  • At least four of the seven courses required by each department must be taught within the department, as opposed to other departments at Duke (e.g., Sociol or Sta).
  • No more than two of the fourteen courses may be taken away, abroad, or at home during the summer. (Courses taken through “Duke in” programs count like regular courses at Duke.)
  • All courses must be among those normally accepted for each major.

PSY IDM Requirements Checklist (for planning purposes only; follow link below for official document):

For the BS IDM, at least two PSY courses, not including PSY 101, must be coded NS.

PSY 101, PSY 204L* , PSY 205L*

PSY 102, 103, 104, 105, OR 106, Course #: _________

3 PSY electives

 Course # and title: ______________________________   

 Course # and title: ______________________________

 Course # and title: ______________________________

*If you wish to take a different combination of statistics and research methods courses you will need to justify that in your application. Alternative courses must be approved by the Psychology DUS.

STEP 3. After completing Steps 1 and 2 above, you will be ready to complete the IDM proposal linked here. Make sure to follow the directions for obtaining signatures and submitting your final proposal to the email listed in the document. Read Trinity’s complete information on IDM program here.

If you need assistance with this process, you may set up virtual consultation with our Program Coordinator at https://calendly.com/natsilvaharwood or email us at psychologyDUS@duke.edu

Five (5) courses in psychology for a Minor in psychology.

PSY 101 (AP or IPC counts as PSY 11, which can be used toward Trinity requirements but not for the minor)

One of Biological (106/107) or Cognitive (102)

One of Abnormal/Health (105) or Developmental (103) or Social (104)

One PSY course numbered 200 or above

One Elective. Options include the following:

  • Any psychology course, including (PSY102, 103, 104, 105, or 106)
  • Up to two transfer credits
  • Independent Study (PSY 391-394 and PSY 491-494)
  • NOTE: PSY 89S and FOCUS courses do not count towards the minor degree in psychology