Front of Social and Behavioral Sciences Building (SBSB)

Mission Statement

The mission of the Psychology Department at Cal State San Marcos is to provide excellence in undergraduate and graduate education in the science of psychology.  We affirm the definition of psychology as the scientific study of behavior in both humans and animals.  Psychology covers a wide range of topics in behavior, from the inner workings of the brain and body to the ways social environments exert their influences. 

Our degree program emphasizes psychology as an empirical science and the development of skills that include written and oral communication, computer literacy, quantitative and qualitative research methods, critical analysis of complex problems, knowledge of human behavior and characteristics, increased self-understanding, and insight into the behavior of others.  We believe that multicultural perspectives are integral to the study of human behavior.

Central to fulfilling our instructional mission is a faculty composed of excellent teachers who are active scholars.  Psychology faculty members regularly contribute to scientific knowledge in their respective fields, in both basic and applied research areas. 

Active collaboration with students is an important feature of our scholarship and pedagogical practice.  We fulfill our mission by immersing students in the psychological laboratory, in order to master the skills in critical thinking, research methods, and communication that are necessary for the scientific study of behavior.  We define the psychology laboratory broadly, including on-campus research environments and field research sites in the local community (hospitals, clinics, educational settings, community service organizations, business and industry, and zoological parks).  Field experiences forge strong ties between the Psychology Department and the region, and serve our mission for student community involvement.

The psychology major prepares students for careers in a variety of psychology-related settings including research laboratories, mental health agencies, hospitals, academic institutions, business, industry, and public organizations.  Our students are also well-prepared for graduate training in fields such as experimental, clinical, and counseling psychology, teaching, social work, medicine, law, business and management, and public administration.  The structure of our program and the specific experiences, knowledge and skills promoted prepare our students for the tasks and challenges they will face in the broader community.