BACHELOR OF ARTS (PSYCHOLOGY) – 3 Years NQF Level 7

PROGRAMME PURPOSE

The programme is intended to lead to a general academic Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology. Students choose between a specialized focus on either Counselling or Industrial Psychology. It is our goal not only to impart knowledge but to encourage students to be independent thinkers, to build character and establish integrity, and prepare students for service. As such, many of the modules are designed to challenge students to think critically and independently. At the same time students are also given opportunities to develop a passion for service which will empower them to deliver services in the community. The BA Psychology programme has been designed to provide a well-rounded, comprehensive, holistic and value-based education. Students are equipped with the necessary theoretical knowledge in psychology and experience in the use of statistics and research methodological tools to conduct empirical research. Graduates are provided with academic knowledge and meta-cognitive abilities needed for articulation into an Honours degree programme in Psychology. It also includes learning experiences intended to build character and attitudes fitted for the context of the work environment and the community at large, based on values which enhance human life. The main Work Integrated Learning (WIL) component of the programme is the PSY 299 Practicum module. This module aims to provide students with the opportunity to transfer the theory and insight they have gained in general modules to a practical setting by volunteering in a human services setting, facilitating the integration of theory and practice in the discipline of psychology.

DEPARTMENTAL MISSION STATEMENT

The Psychology Department’s mission is to transmit knowledge related to the nature of human psychological processes, together with the basic knowledge and skills for further study in psychology and to provide the competence necessary for successful careers.

QUALIFICATION OUTCOMES

Upon successful completion of the psychology programme graduates can expect the following:

  • Achieving a breadth and depth of knowledge and understanding of the core subfields of psychology: health and stress; positive psychology; human development; social psychology; personology; counselling skills and therapy; communities; abnormal psychology; psychometric theory and testing; and the history of philosophy and psychology including the major schools and paradigms.
  • Counselling stream students will gain knowledge on substance abuse, addictions and treatment; cognitive and neurological processes; human sexuality; family and marriage therapeutic interventions; and exceptionality, special education and related services.
  • Industrial psychology stream students will be equipped with content knowledge as regards behaviour at work including job analysis, employee selection, training and motivation, and performance appraisal; the principles of management and human resources management; industrial relations; performance and diversity management; and group dynamics.
  • Acquired skills whereby they are capable of independent and group learning.
  • The knowledge and skills to critically read academic books, journals and online material, and to carry out their own independent research.
  • The attainment of academic writing skills with special expertise in the APA referencing system.
  • The accomplishment of particular capabilities and skills necessary to succeed in their lives on a professional, personal, and community basis.

GRADUATE ATTRIBUTES

  • An understanding of a broad range of influential theories regarding individual, group and organizational cognition and behaviour from the perspective of various schools of psychology, and from a holistic Christian perspective on human functioning, potential and restoration. Graduates will have synthesized their own eclectic views based on this understanding on a range of key psychological topics.
  • Developed cognitive and affective abilities valuable in learning, reasoning and problem solving such as meta-cognition, intra- and inter-personal awareness, critical/analytical thinking, organization, adaptability/flexibility, effective communication, collaboration/team work, mnemonic techniques, self-regulation, and planning.
  • The ability to apply their knowledge of how people function and change in practical ways to better themselves and assist others in areas such as increasing motivation, managing stress, improving concentration, becoming better leaders, monitoring and managing emotions, and generally living healthier and happier lives.
  • Acquired skills particularly valuable in the work context, such as intercultural communication, conflict management, leadership and teamwork competency, ability to analyse and interpret numerical data, oral and literacy proficiency in academic and report writing, ability to analyse individual and group behaviour, systematic approaches to problem solving, higher-order analysis, computer literacy, and the ability to systematically evaluate or research given topics.
  • A commitment to conducting themselves with integrity, dependability, fidelity, attention to detail, perseverance, and a strong sense of work ethic; engaging with others with empathy, respect, confidentiality, and professionalism.

FURTHER STUDIES

The BA Psychology degree from Helderberg College places students in a favourable position for acceptance into an Honours programme in Psychology at other South African higher-education institutions. Completion of the Honours degree enables one to apply for an internship master’s degree in psychology. Completion of this degree enables students to write the National Board examination. Once this is passed, students may register with the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) to become a professional psychologist. Alternatively, after completing their Honours degree, students may apply for a research master’s degree in order to pursue a career as a lecturer or field researcher.
For further information, including, Graduate Attributes, employment opportunities, and a breakdown of the concentration and curriculum, please see pages 98 to 117 of our Prospectus.