Thompson Rivers University
Thompson Rivers University

Bachelor of Arts, Psychology

Program Description

The Psychology major is designed for students wanting to specialize in one discipline (Psychology). TRU-OL offers many courses that fulfill both lower- and upper-level degree requirements, but students may need to complete some degree requirements through classroom or distance courses from other recognized post-secondary institutions and transfer the credit to this degree program.

Students in this program must complete a Directed Studies course (see below)

What Can You Do With This Credential?

In Oslo, Norway where he is a full-time coach, Lee Davidson juggles fatherhood and work with his studies in the Bachelor of Arts, Psychology program. Davidson plans to blend his interest in psychology with his experience in sport.

Naomi vanGinkel Wilde plans to use her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology to help provide her with the foundations required to go on to graduate studies and pursue a career working with special needs and gifted children.

Program Requirements

Admission Requirements

Open admission.

Students who plan to complete a credential through TRU-OL must submit a Program Admission form to OL Admissions by email, mail or fax. Contact Student Services with any questions regarding this.

Residency Requirements

A minimum of 15 TRU credits (distance or on-campus).

Degree Requirements

120 credits total, including 45 upper-level credits, with a grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 over all courses required for the credential, as follows:

General Education Requirements

These may be met with lower- or upper-level university courses; refer to the general education requirements for arts and science degree programs.

6 credits in English (university-level composition and literature). Technical business writing courses do not meet this requirement.
6 credits in humanities other than English
3 credits in mathematics (including statistics) and/or science
PSYC 1111, Introductory Psychology I (3) or equivalent
PSYC 1211, Introductory Psychology II (3) or equivalent
PSYC 2101, Statistics in the Social Sciences (3) or STAT 1201, Introduction to Probability and Statistics (3) or equivalent

Lower-Level Requirements

PSYC 2111, Introduction to Research in Experimental Psychology (3) or equivalent

3 credits of a second-year psychology course (may be PSYC 2161 or 2131)

A C average or higher is required in lower-level psychology courses (including introductory psychology and statistics courses).

Upper-Level Requirements

27 credits of upper-level psychology courses (may include PSYC 3151, 3451, 3461, 3611, 3621, 3991)

3 credits of Directed Studies (PSYC 4991)

A grade of C or higher is required in each upper-level course, including Directed Studies, used to meet the 30 credits taken in the discipline of the major (Psychology).

Elective Requirements

15 credits of upper-level elective courses

45 credits of lower- or upper-level elective courses

Directed Studies

Directed Studies consists of concentrated study of a topic in the discipline of the major selected by the student in consultation with an Open Learning Faculty member. It is open to students who have fulfilled the general education requirements, all the lower-level requirements of the major, and a minimum of 15 credits of upper-level courses in the subject of the major. As registration procedures differ for Directed Studies courses, students are required to consult with their program advisor before registering.

Students seeking a Bachelor of Arts, Psychology Major, offered through Thompson Rivers University, Open Learning (TRU-OL), are required to complete a Directed Studies course.

Students who are ready to register in a Directed Studies course are required to consult with their program advisor about registration procedures.


An upper-level course in statistics is strongly recommended for students who intend to pursue a post-graduate degree in psychology.

30 credits of the degree requirements (with no more than 15 credits at the upper level) may be applied studies, e.g. fine and performing arts studio courses and technology courses. Education, business and administrative studies courses are reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

Degree requirements may be met with credits earned by prior learning assessment and recognition (PLAR).

Students are responsible for consulting with a program advisor to ensure that the courses they select are appropriate for their program of study and educational goals. Students who proceed without approval may find that a particular course does not meet requirements and may be subject to transcript assessment fees.


Email Student Services for more information.