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Do psychology majors need to take any other math classes besides statistics in college?

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7 answers

Ariana’s Answer

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It depends on the college you attend and whether it's a B.A. or B.S. degree. I pursued a B.A. in Psychology at University of California, Santa Barbara and I was required to take a Statistics class as well as two Calculus classes. If you're interested in pursuing a Psychology major, don't let the math pre-requisites deter you. Many colleges offer tutoring services and can provide additional help. I utilized a campus tutoring service for one of my Calculus courses during university which was really helpful in successfully passing the class.
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Paige’s Answer

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Hi Ray! I was a psychology major in college and was only required to take a statistics course. Other higher level psych courses will require and expand upon that statistics knowledge. Other than that, I was not required by my major to take any more math courses. However, your school may have additional distribution requirements (depends on the college/university) and mandate you take other math classes.

Paige recommends the following next steps:

  • Schools will list the mandatory classes for each major on their department websites
That's a relief. Thanks, Paige! Ray K. Translate
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Lauren’s Answer

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Hi Ray! I was a psychology major and only had to take statistics. That varies from school to school, so I'd double check websites and ask admissions folks if you're not sure!
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Emmi’s Answer

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Hello! You will want to think about what you want to do with your psychology degree! If you want to work with individuals, doing mainly therapy and counseling and not research, you will need to take the required stats classes so you can interpret research papers and publications that directly impact your work with your clientele. If you want to do research, I would encourage you to take as many stats classes as possible, and learn some basic stats programming, such as R or stata.
The future of research is trending towards the complex analysis of large data sets, and if you intend to be a successful practitioner or researcher, you will need to be able to interpret the results of large data sets and make inferences from large and complex sets on your own.
Interdisciplinary skills will serve you very, very well in the job market. Flexibility and breadth will make you a much more desirable candidate and open up many more opportunities for you. Believe me when I tell you I understand your reticence. I hated stats! But I wish someone had given me the advice to stick with it - you never know where you will find yourself and what skills will serve you. Statistics is a worthwhile magic and I wish you the best of luck!
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Pamela’s Answer

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Hi Paige! I took Psychological Statistics (statistics) and Introduction to Psychological Testing (simple statistical math), which both had math in them. Ask your advisor if you need any math courses.
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Andrew’s Answer

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Typically, Statistics (Introductory/Elementary Statistics) is a major requirement in Psychology. What it means is that a psychology major should successfully complete statistics and the associated math prerequisites for it.

On the other hand, mathematics is the language of science, in which statistics is one of its branches. Therefore, a deeper knowledge in mathematics will help in deepening your competency and proficiency in statistics.
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Tessa’s Answer

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Hi Ray,
I finished a degree in Psychology, and yeah Statistics is what we considered the math of psychology.
I think if you are mindful of the math classes, you can look at the whole curriculum of the course. In our country, there are general subjects for college that should be taken up by all like Algebra, Calculus. Hope this is helpful! Thanks!
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