Psychology Undergraduate FAQs

Declaration and Academic Requirements

I applied for admission to SFU as a psychology major.  Do I still need to contact a psychology advisor?

Plan designations made on your SFU application form are ‘intentions’ only. As students are not automatically declared into Psychology programs, you must declare a psychology plan by contacting the Undergraduate Advisor after you have commenced studies at SFU.

How do I declare into a Psychology plan?

We declare students via email when the required courses are complete. To declare, please attach your SFU Advising Transcript (sorted by both) to the Undergraduate Advisor (psycadvs@sfu.ca) and confirm which program you would like to declare into:

• You can declare into the PSYC Minor when PSYC100, PSYC102 and PSYC201 (C or better) are complete.
• You can declare into the PSYC Extended Minor, Joint Major and Majors when PSYC100, PSYC102, PSYC201 (C or better) and PSYC210 are complete.  Only PSYC201 has a grade requirement. 

NOTE - If you're waiting to declare into the PSYC Extended Minor, Joint Major or Major (PSYC210 currently incomplete) but have PSYC 100, 102 and 201* complete (*with a C or better), we recommend declaring into the Minor first and then switching to a Major. The reason why we recommend declaring into the Minor first is that upper division psychology courses are reserved for students declared in a psychology plan (eg. minor, major) until the beginning of the open enrollment period.

Finally, please note the deadlines for declaration are March 1 (Summer), July 1 (Fall) and November 1 (Spring). 

Do I need to take PSYC 201W if I have PSYC201?

No. You do not need to retake PSYC201W if you have transfer credit for PSYC 201 (C or better). For prerequisite and declaration purposes, they are the same.

May I use a course from another Department toward my requirements for my Psychology program?

No. The Department of Psychology does not allow courses from other departments to be used towards psychology plan requirements.

The course requirements for my major changed this year. How do I know which prerequisites apply to me?

The SFU Calendar in effect when you took your first course at SFU regulates your degree. Additionally, the Calendar in effect when you declared a psychology plan regulates your psychology plan. Thus, the prerequisites that applied to you when you began your degree are still applicable to you. The Academic Calendar is available here to see which plan you will follow.

Course Repeats

How many repeat courses may I complete at SFU?

You are permitted a total of five repeats at SFU, and you may repeat a specific course only once.  Our department does not grant exceptions to this university policy.  Repeats taken at other institutions before arriving at SFU are not counted, however if you repeat a course at SFU which you already took elsewhere that does count as a repeat.  The course repeat policy can be found here.

If I Repeat a course, how are my GPAs calculated?

The higher mark is used to calculate your GPAs. The other mark remains on the transcript, but is not calculated in GPAs. Note that a mark from another institution cannot replace an SFU grade.  The policy can be found here.

Registrations and Withdrawals

If a course is full, is there a wait list?

The Psychology Department activates waitlists when the course is full.

When can I register in upper division psychology courses?

Registration in upper division psychology courses is restricted.  Students who have declared a psychology plan (eg. minor, major) can register on their registration date.  Students who have not declared a psychology plan can register when open enrollment begins.

May I register for a course if I do not have the prerequisites?

Some courses do not allow for prerequisite waivers, please refer to the class notes. Students may request a prerequisite waiver from the instructor teaching the course.  If you have requested the waiver by email, please forward the professor’s email as well as your advising transcript to the Undergraduate Advisor.  All prerequisite waivers are entered into goSFU on the open enrollment date.  A prerequisite waiver does not guarantee students a seat in the course.

How do I add a course, or swap a tutorial, during week 1 of classes?

All adds, drops, swaps etc. are done by the student via goSFU.  For help with goSFU, click here

How do I add a course, or swap a tutorial, during week 2 of classes?

If a space becomes available in week 2, and if you have been attending classes, you may contact the Undergraduate Advisor via email to inquire about being added into the course. – Note that adds in week 2 are not possible for all courses. Any adds in week 2 are handled on a first-come first-served basis.

How can I drop a course?

Students may be able to drop a course on the goSFU during the first few weeks of classes.  Students must consult the current Undergraduate Schedule for the course add/drop deadlines, refunds, penalties, and notations.  Information on withdrawal due to extenuating circumstances can be found here.

Can I enroll in two remote courses that have a time conflict?

Students must receive instructor permission from both instructors if they want to enrol in a PSYC or COGS course that has a schedule conflict with a course in which they’re already enrolled. Conflicts are typically caused by time of lectures, tutorials, or exams. To complete the time conflict form, click here. 

Please make note of the registration deadlines and review information regarding remote classes (synchronous/asynchronous) here.

Elective Grade System

For information about the P/CR/NC Elective Grade System, please refer to the general FAQ here.

The following program requirements courses CANNOT be taken with the Elective Grade System (P/CR/NC):

PSYC 201W - Introduction to Research Methods in Psychology
PSYC 300W - Critical Analysis of Issues in Psychology
PSYC 301 - Intermediate Research Methods and Data Analysis
PSYC 457 – Behavioral Neuroscience Undergraduate Honours Thesis Proposal
PSYC 459 – Behavioral Neuroscience Undergraduate Honours Thesis
PSYC 490 – Honours Project
PSYC 499 – Honours Project

Program requirements that are NOT listed above can be taken with the Elective Grade System.

If I am an intended or declared PSYC Minor, Joint Major, Major, or Honours, can I use the P/CR/NC grading scheme?

No, you can not choose this grading scheme for PSYC courses.

If you chose the EGS before Fall 2022, you are unaffected.

How will post-graduate and professional programs assess a grade of P, CR, or NC on my transcript?

Unfortunately, we do not know how post-graduate programs, including professional schools, will assess a "P, CR, or NC" grade on a transcript. You will receive academic credit for any course with a "P" and "CR" grade, but it will not count towards your GPA. You will not receive credit for any course with a "NC" grade, and it will not count towards your GPA.

As such, we highly recommend you check with the specific program that you are applying to.

Transfer Credit

How many credits can I transfer?

Under a Bachelor of Arts, students can have a maximum of 60 transfer credits, including a maximum of 15 upper division credits.  Refer to the SFU Calendar for further information regarding transfer credit. 

How can I find out whether a course will transfer to SFU?

The BC Transfer Guide is an accurate source for evaluated coureswork taken at BC institutions. Students who have completed courses at universities or colleges outside of BC can contact Admissions in Student Services to ask whether and how a course has been articulated at SFU.  Students transferring courses to SFU should be prepared to submit the detailed course syllabus for each course they wish to transfer to SFU.

What does it mean if I received transfer credit labeled PSYC 2XX? PSYC 3XX?

If a course did not have the same content as a course at SFU, you may still be able to obtain transfer credit. PSYC 1XX or 2XX means you have been given lower division credit, and PSYC 3XX or 4XX means you have been given upper division credit in the Psychology Department.

What does it mean if I received transfer credit labeled GE 1XX?

GE is general credit.  The course did not map into a department at SFU, but you have nevertheless been given lower division credit towards your degree.

May I take a course at another institution if I am already registered or have completed courses at SFU?

Yes. If you want the credit to transfer back to SFU, you must apply for a Letter of Permission before taking the course.  A Letter of Permission may take 6 to 8 weeks to process.  Many schools require that you have an approved Letter of Permission prior to allowing you to register at their school.  

Appeals

How do I appeal a grade?

Before commencing an appeal, you must read the policies and procedures related to grades and appeals.  Please be aware that if you request a grade appeal, your course work may receive the same grade, a lower grade or a higher grade after re-evaluation.

Briefly, the steps are:

    1. Discuss your concerns with the course instructor.

    2. If you feel that the grade was unfairly awarded, you may submit an appeal in writing to the Associate Chair, Undergraduate Studies, Psychology Department.  You must submit all original marked assignments.

    3. If you feel the Department’s decision was inappropriate, you may submit an appeal in writing to the Dean, Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences.  The decision of the Dean is final, subject only to an appeal to Senate.

What if I feel I’ve been treated unfairly for any reason?

For concerns regarding grade appeals or any other matter, you may wish to contact the Ombuds Office.

Graduation

How do I apply for graduation?

Students can apply for graduation via goSFU. If you have withdrawn your application, or if it has been denied, you must re-apply online.   Please see convocation information and student deadlines.

You would apply for graduation in your final term, assuming completion of all programs/courses you're currently enrolled into. At the end of the term, your application will be reviewed.

You can see your graduation application status by reviewing the Convocation FAQ here.

How do I complete an official graduation check?

For course planning/graduation checks, please complete the following steps:

    1. Compare your advising transcript with the checklists found on the PSYC website hereThe advising transcript only counts completed courses. 
    2. If you are declared into your PSYC programs, the Academic Progress Report (APR) on goSFU is a fairly accurate tool for most students. Use this tool to cross reference/cross-check/double-check with your transcript and checklist. The APR assumes completion of all enrolled courses.

After completing the two steps above, if you have additional questions, we are happy to see you. To make an appointment with us:

    • Please confirm you have completed steps 1 and 2
    • You can book an appointment via Advisor Link here