Behavioral Neuropsychology


Discover the biological meaning behind behaviors, delve into research with your classmates, and help solve the mysteries behind the mind-body problem. Start your journey into this cutting-edge field at St. Ambrose.

Our graduates work at the Veterans Administration, Lutheran Social Services of Illinois, Families First Counseling Services, Quad Cities Autism Center, and U.S. District Court, Southern District of Iowa.


Ambrose Advantages

  • Local Internship Possibilities
  • Strong Mentor Relationships
  • Meaningful and Formative Experiences

John Stachula in front of class

student in class

Julie Kettman with three students

Through unique courses, research experiences, and immersive internships, St. Ambrose prepares you to reach your goals – and beyond. Our Psychology faculty have diverse expertise in research and clinical practice to help you grow, hone, and apply your skills, whether you want to pursue an advanced degree or directly enter the workforce.

Read Our Behavior Psychology Fact Sheet (pdf)


More Information About the Behavioral Neuropsychology Program

What will I learn?

Behavioral Neuropsychology explores several subjects - including psychology, biology, and chemistry - and weaves them together to determine behavior. You'll study the organization and function of the nervous system and its relationship to behavior, cognition, and disorders.

Our faculty has diverse experience in psychological research and clinical practice, which allows us to offer unique courses, research experiences, and internships that go far beyond traditional undergraduate programs.

Throughout your education, you will benefit from strong relationships with psychology faculty members who share their expertise in experimental, clinical/counseling, neuroscience, and forensic areas. Best of all, they believe their job is to teach and mentor.

Starting in your first year, you meet with a faculty member at least once a semester – or as often as needed – to discuss your goals and ways to enhance your education. Their guidance continues through your senior year, as you prepare for a career or graduate school.

What are some unique learning opportunities I will have?

There are so many! Here's just a few:

  • Gain hands-on research experience through the SAU Summer Research Institute.
  • Our internships and field experience go beyond shadowing professionals. With more than 90 health and human services organizations in the Quad Cities, you have a variety of placement options.
  • Next, shoot even higher. Behavioral Neuropsychology majors have completed the prestigious University of Iowa Interdisciplinary Summer Undergraduate Research Program in Neuroscience.
  • Join Psi Chi, the International Honor Society in Psychology.
  • Join the Psychology Club, which holds joint meetings and events with the SAU Psi Chi Chapter.This gives you the ability to make a larger impact.
  • Get involved and support organizations in the community, such as the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).
  • St. Ambrose hosts a large number of conferences and lectures on topics that will expand your learning and worldview.
Study Abroad

You've heard people say it before: "College will be the greatest time of your life!" With Study Abroad, you can add even more to your college years.

You can study in another country in a semester-long or short-term study abroad program (with a few offered during spring and winterim breaks). No matter the duration, these trips deepen your professional education while earning credit toward graduation.

There are also opportunities through an exchange program, an overseas internship, or volunteering. The limits for Study Abroad are only ones you set for yourself! SAU students have studied in Italy, Costa Rica, Australia, Korea, United Kingdom, Spain, Ecuador, Japan, Germany, Peru, Cyprus, Croatia, Belize, Canada, Chile, and more.

SAU students returning from their Study Abroad locations talk about their time away as life-changing - personally, emotionally, culturally, and academically. Click here to search our Study Abroad programs, and for general information click here.

What are some possible job outcomes?

Largely a research field, you can become employed right out of college or pursue a graduate program. But because Behavioral Neuropsychology involves chemistry, biology, genetics, and environment, your opportunities are equally as broad!

Jobs include working in research labs, bioinformatics, neurotoxicology, conducting behavior evaluation, and many others.

Your job may also involve working directly with patients in a clinic setting.

Faculty

Andy Kaiser, PhD, Professor and Chair

Robin Anderson, PhD, Professor
Jennifer Best, MSEd, Visiting Asst. Professor
Carol DeVolder, PhD, Professor
Judy Correa Kaiser, PhD, Professor
Julie Jenks Kettman, PhD, Assoc. Professor
Katrina Okerstrom-Jezewski, Asst. Professor
John Stachula, PhD, Professor
Katie Trujillo, PhD, Professor

Degree Requirements

Bachelor of Science Degree in Behavioral Neuropsychology (34 credits)

All courses are 3 credits unless otherwise noted.

Required:

PSYC Core
PSYC 105 Introductory Psychology
PSYC 215 Research Methods
PSYC 255 Brain and Behavior
STAT 213 Applied Statistical Reasoning for the Sciences

Behavioral Neuropsychology Core
PSYC 330 Psychology of Learning OR 340 Cognitive Psychology
PSYC 360 Behavioral Pharmacology, 3 credits OR PSYC 402 Psychology of Sensation and Perception
PSYC 403 Behavioral Neuroscience

Electives (Choose 3 courses)
WI-PSYC 314 Human Motivation
PSYC 321 Psychology and Law
PSYC 323 Personality Theories
PSYC 324 Abnormal Psychology
PSYC 325 Criminal Behavior
PSYC 326 Abnormal Child and Adolescent Psychology
PSYC 327 Psychology and Treament of the Juvenile Offender
PSYC 328 Psychology and Treatment of Trauma and the Victim
PSYC 332 Psychology of Tests and Measurements
WI-PSYC 342 Theories of Counseling
PSYC 343 Family Systems and Counseling
PSYC 348 Supervised Psychology Practicum
WI-PSYC 350 Health Psychology
PSYC 425 Professional Development and Integration in Psychology, 4 credits

Capstone
WI-PSYC 404 Experimental Design in Psychology, 4 credits

Non-departmental Requirements
BIOL 199 General Biology I: Foundations of Living Systems, 4 credits
BIOL 200 General Biology II: Foundations of Living Systems, 4 credits
BIOL 230 Human Anatomy and Physiology I, 4 credits
CHEM 105 General Chemistry I, 4 credits
CHEM 106 General Chemistry II, 4 credits
CSCI 140 Foundations of Computer Science OR 195 Programming I OR 281 Discrete Functions
MATH 171 Elementary Functions, or higher (MATH 191 is strongly recommended for graduate school)

WI=writing intensive

Plan to Graduate

This is the suggested plan of study to graduate in four years with a degree in Behavioral Neuropsychology. This plan assumes the student has not satisfied the foreign language requirement (three years of foreign language in high school).

Some courses need prerequisites. Check the online course catalog.

Year One

FallCreditSpringCredit
ENGL 101 Composition 3 Oral Communication 3
MATH 171 Elementary Functions 3 STAT 213 Applied Stats/Science 3
Foreign Language 101 3 Catholic Intellectual Tradition 3
PSYC 105 Introductory Psychology 3 Foreign Language 102 3
KIN Activity 1-2 *Liberal Arts Perspective 3
New Student Seminar 1 **Experiential Learning
KIN 149 1
Total Credits 15-16 Total Credits 15

Year Two

FallCreditSpringCredit
Liberal Arts Perspective: Natural Science (Rec. BIOL 101, CHEM 101) + Lab (Gen Ed) 3-4 *Liberal Arts Perspective (Gen Ed) 3
PSYC 215 Research Methods 3 PSYC 255 Brain and Behavior 3
Catholic Intellectual Tradition (Gen Ed) 3 BIOL 200+Lab 4
CSCI 140, 195, or 281 3 PHIL/THEO 300 Level (Gen Ed) 3
**Experiential Learning 3 WI Course (200 or 300 any department) 3
*Liberal Arts Perspective (Gen Ed) **Experiential Learning
Total Credits 15-16 Total Credits 16

Year Three

FallCreditSpringCredit
PSYC 340 or 330 3 PSYC 300-Level Elective 3
PSYC 403 Behavioral Neuroscience 3 PSYC 360 or 402 3
*Liberal Arts Perspective (Gen Ed) 3 BIOL 230+Lab 4
CHEM 105 General Chemistry+Lab 4 CHEM 106+Lab 4
Catholic Intellectual Tradition 3 **Experiential Learning
**Experiential Learning
Total Credits 16 Total Credits 14

Year Four

FallCreditSpringCredit
WI-PSYC 404 Capstone 4 **Experiential Learning
Elective/Second Major or Minor 3 PSYC 300 or 400 level 6
300-level PSYC Electives 9 Electives/Second Major or Minor 9
Major Field Test (Required for Graduation)
**Experiential Learning
Total Credits 16 Total Credits 15

*Liberal Arts Perspective. History category must be from 2 different departments
**PSYC 294/394 Research Practicum (if taking Research course for credit PSYC 105- Must talk to Psych Advisor); Volunteering, Psychology Club, Exploration of Graduate School)
***WI-PSYC 342 and WI-PSYC 314 have an additional pre-req

WI=writing intensive

Scholarships and Grants

Undergraduate Scholarships

For academic/merit-based awards, eligible students are matched to the qualifying award; some of them are listed below.

For need-based support, eligibility is determined by the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The SAU school code is 001889.

You may also qualify for a scholarship or grant due to your talent in the fine arts or athletics, contact the Admissions Office so we can help be sure you're getting what you need. (You're also encouraged to seek outside scholarships and begin that search early.)

First-Year Scholarships

Amounts are for first-year students entering St. Ambrose in the 2020-21 academic year.

There is no need to apply for the scholarships or grants below; students automatically are eligible if they meet specific criteria. The Admissions Office calculates the award amount by using unweighted high school GPA and ACT/SAT scores.

Your scholarship will automatically renew each year of your undergraduate studies, for up to four years, as long as you maintain satisfactory progress toward an undergraduate degree, a minimum 2.0 GPA, and remain a full-time student. 

FOR STUDENTS LIVING ON CAMPUS

On Campus (Merit-Based Scholarships)

Ambrose Advantage Scholarships
Criteria: Iowa resident, Pell Grant eligible, 2020 high school graduate, min. unweighted GPA 2.8, admitted to SAU and FAFSA filed by Mar. 15
Award: Full Tuition

Trustee Scholarships
Criteria: unweighted 3.9 GPA and minimum 29 ACT or 1340 SAT score
Award: $25,000/year and invited to compete for a full tuition scholarship

Presidential Scholarships
Criteria: minimum unweighted 3.8 GPA and 28 ACT or 1310 SAT score
Award: $22,500/year

Academic Scholarships
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score
Award: $14,000-$20,000/year

University Grants
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score
$12,000/year

On Campus (Additional Institutional Scholarships)

Fr. Welch Alumni Scholarships
Criteria: parent is a St. Ambrose graduate
Award: $1,000/year

Freeman Pollard Diversity Awards
Criteria: ethnically diverse student; FAFSA required. Additional aid available.
Award: $1,000/year on campus


FOR STUDENTS LIVING OFF CAMPUS

Off Campus (Merit-Based Scholarships)

Academic Scholarships
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score
Award: $12,000-$15,000/year (Iowa resident) or $13,000-16,000/year (non-Iowa resident)

University Grants
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score
Award: $10,000/year

Off-Campus (Additional Institutional Scholarships)

Fr. Welch Alumni Scholarships
Criteria: parent is a St. Ambrose graduate
Award: $500/year

Freeman Pollard Diversity Awards
Criteria: ethnically diverse student; FAFSA required. Additional aid available.
Award: $500/year

International Student Scholarships

At SAU, our international students can qualify for university scholarships and grants based on academic achievement, merit, and their performance and abilities in fine arts and athletics.

Below, you'll find a quick summary of financial awards, and we continually look for ways to make an Ambrosian education even more affordable and attainable. Recently, we began offering athletic scholarships for Marching Band and Esports.

If you have any questions or want to apply, please contact the International Student Admissions office. 

Institutional Scholarships (2020-21)
There is no need to apply for the scholarships or grants below; students are automatically are eligible if they meet specific criteria, although some may require a certain GPA to stay eligible.

Academic Scholarship – $14,000-$20,000/year

Athletic Scholarships
We have many international student-athletes who are contributing and growing their skills as valued team players. As a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), St. Ambrose can award athletic scholarships to student-athletes. The amount varies and is based on performance and ability. These scholarships allow you to earn a college education while competing in the sport that you love. At Ambrose, we embody the value of developing both the mind and body.

To qualify for an athletic scholarship you must be eligible to play a sport at St. Ambrose. You can read about those qualifications here. The NAIA also has a complete website on how to register for eligibility at playNAIA.org

To learn more about all of our athletic teams and opportunities – including Esports – click here

Fine Arts Scholarships

These scholarships are based on your performance and ability in art, music, or theatre, and you may qualify for the Michael Kennedy Theatre Scholarship. Audition or portfolio required. Contact the Admissions office to apply or for more information. 

See below to learn more about outside scholarships and we encourage you to begin your search early.

Transfer Scholarships

Amounts are for transfer students entering St. Ambrose in the 2020-21 academic year. 

St. Ambrose scholarships are awarded for fall and spring semesters only and renewable up to 120 credits of undergraduate study, which includes credits transferred to St. Ambrose from prior attendance. For example: If you transfer in with an AA/AS degree, you would receive a scholarship for two additional years at St. Ambrose.

Scholarships

Phi Theta Kappa
Criteria: awarded to all Phi Theta Kappa National Honor Society members transferring from a community college
Award: $15,500

OR

Transfer Academic Scholarships
Criteria: based on GPA
Awards (non-Iowa residents):
3.5-4.00 GPA $15,000 
3.0-3.49 GPA $14,000
2.5-2.99 GPA $13,000 
2.0-2.49 GPA $11,000 

Awards (Iowa residents):
3.5-4.00 GPA $13,000 
3.0-3.49 GPA $12,000
2.5-2.99 GPA $11,000 
2.0-2.49 GPA $10,000 

Fr. Welch Alumni Scholarships
Criteria: parent is a St. Ambrose graduate
Award: $1,000 per year (on campus); $500/year (off campus)

Dual Admission Scholarships
Criteria: participant in SAU/community college dual admission program
Award: $1,000 maximum

Freeman Pollard Diversity Awards
Criteria: Ethnically diverse student; FAFSA required. Additional aid available by application
Award: $1,000/year (on campus); $500/year (off campus)

Federal and State Aid

Iowa Tuition Grant
Criteria: based on financial need, Iowa residents only. File FAFSA as soon as possible after Oct. 1, deadline July 1.
Award: $6,000

Federal Pell Grant
Criteria: based on financial need; file FAFSA as soon as possible after Oct. 1
Award: $6,195 maximum

Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
Criteria: based on financial need, priority to Pell Grant recipients. File FAFSA as soon as possible after Oct. 1.
Award: $400 maximum

Federal Work Study
Criteria: based on financial need. File FAFSA as soon as possible after Oct. 1
Award: $1,850

Athletic Scholarships

As a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), St. Ambrose can award athletic scholarships to student-athletes.

These scholarships allow you to earn a college education while competing in the sport that you love. At Ambrose, we embody that value of developing both the mind and body.

How do I qualify for an athletic scholarship?
You must first be eligible to play a sport at St. Ambrose. You can read about those qualifications here. The NAIA also has a complete website on how to register for eligibility at playNAIA.org

With more than 29 varsity athletic teams and state-of-the-art facilities in which to play them, the Fighting Bees of SAU are bold contenders on any field. Watch this video

Fine Arts Scholarships

How do I qualify for a fine arts scholarship? 
Scholarships are awarded based on performance and ability in art, music and theatre. Review the various requirements below:

Outside Scholarships

There are many opportunities to receive scholarships from outside sources, here are a few websites to begin researching your options:

Another tip: Next time you're on campus, check out the bulletin board outside Bee Central where we post more flyers and applications for outside scholarships.


Katie Powers '07


Katie began her health sciences career by majoring in Behavioral Neuropsychology and continuing to graduate school in the SAU DPT program. It was at Ambrose where she discovered her fit and passion and gained the skills and confidence to land her dream job as a physical therapist at Genesis Pediatric Therapy Center, in Bettendorf, Iowa.

Read Katie's Story
Katie Powers headshot mobile sized Katie Powers headshot

Katie Powers

BS in Behavioral Neuropsychology '07; Doctor of Physical Therapy,Physical Therapist, Genesis Pediatric Therapy Center, Bettendorf,Class of 2008


At SAU, Katie completed three, 10-week clinical rotations, which put her education to the test and boosted it, too. Through our DPT program, she discovered her fit and passion, and gained the skills and confidence to land her dream job as a physical therapist at Genesis Pediatric Therapy Center, in Bettendorf, Iowa.

See My Story

Apply Visit Info

Contact


Andy Kaiser, PhD, Chairperson

Psychology Department
McMullen Hall 113
518 W. Locust St.
Davenport, IA 52803
563-333-6479
KaiserAndrewJ@sau.edu

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