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Frequently Asked Questions

Here is a list of our Frequently Asked Questions divided into 5 categories: General, Graduation, Graduate School, Transferring, and Our Psychology Department. A full list of these questions is also available in .pdf format. If you have a question that is not on the list, please email the psychology advisor.

  1. General
  2. Graduation
  3. Graduate School
  4. Transferring
  5. Our Psychology Department

1. I already graduated from UNR but I would like to come back and take some more classes. Can I do that?

Getting back into the university is EASY. Just go to Admissions & Records and apply as a "graduate special." Since you graduated from here, you do not have to pay an application fee, and the application is processed immediately (it's essentially a formality to get you back into the "active" column in the computer). Then you can immediately sign up for classes.

2. Can some classes "double-count" for more than one requirement? How does that work?

Yes. For example, ENGL 304 can fulfill both the "Diversity" requirement for the University and the "Humanities" requirement for the College of Liberal Arts (as long as English is not your major or minor). However, although the one class will cover both requirements, you will only receive 3 credits for it, not 6. The combinations that often occur in double-counting include:

  1. "Diversity" and "Capstone" (just look in the capstone and diversity table at the front of the course schedule -- anything that's in both columns will double-count),

  2. "Capstone" and major requirements (in Psychology, PSY 491 would fulfill one of your capstone requirements AND a Psychology elective or "Integrative and Seminar Course," depending on your catalog),

  3. "Diversity" and major requirements (in Psychology, PSY 433 would fulfill both your diversity requirement AND a Psychology elective),

  4. "Capstone" and minor requirements (see your minor advisor to make sure a particular course will count),

  5. "Fine Arts" and "Humanities" (the only one that works here is PHIL 202), and

  6. "Capstone," "Diversity," & "Humanities" (a TRIPLE-COUNT!! If a class you take fulfills #1 above AND meets the requirements for being a humanities course, then you may count it for all three).

3. Why would you want to double-count a course?

Essentially, what "double-counting" allows you to do is fulfill more requirements while taking less credits. So, if it looks like you are going to exceed the 128 total credits and the 40 upper division credits you need to graduate (e.g., you have taken lots of general electives or you transferred in and a lot of your credits transferred in as general electives), then you can save yourself some time and money. Students also double-count when they want to "free up" more credits so they can take more classes in their areas of interest.

4. I am planning on starting at UNR in the spring. Am I still supposed to attend orientation before the fall semester? Do they have orientation in spring?

There is an orientation in the spring, but it just isn't quite as big as the fall orientation (since more students start in the fall than in the spring). So, if you want to be part of a BIG group, and take part in more activities, do it in the fall; if you want to be part of a smaller group, do it in the spring! The orientation in the spring is usually about 2 hours long, and just covers the basics. If you have any questions about the Orientation program, please review the UNR New Student Initiatives website, contact their office at (775) 784-4306, or email them at orientation@unr.edu.

5. I am really having a hard time getting registered for a particular class--it's ALWAYS full! What can I do?

Just because a clas is full, doesn't mean that you won't be able to get into it. Try contacting the instructor a few days before the course begins, letting him/her know that you are interested in taking the class, and asking if it is ok for you to attend the first week of class in case any spaces open up. Also, keep in mind that students often add/drop/swap courses during the first few week of registration. This means that is would be a great idea to repeatedly check course enrollment totals on MyNevada to see if a new spot may come available.

6. What's the deal with capstones? Do I have to take one in Psychology? When do I take them?

Capstone courses are intended to be intensive experiences in critical analysis, designed to broaden our perspectives beyond their culture or discipline, and provide an opportunity for integration of previous courses in the major and in the Core Curriculum. It is recommended that students complete their core capstone courses in the University Core Curriculum during their senior year and after they have completed all other Core Curriculum requirements, including the Core Humanities sequence.

At least one capstone course must be taken outside the department of the student's major. For Psychology majors, this means that one capstone may be taken from the psychology department but DOES NOT HAVE to be taken from the psychology department.

Capstone courses are identified each semester in the class schedule. Students with questions about the appropriateness of a particular capstone course should see their advisor.

7. I graduated with my B.A. from UNR last year. Now I would like to return and finish another major. Is that possible?

Multiple majors are permitted only if they fall under the same degree title, regardless of college, and only if the student has been accepted to the additional programs (majors) by the college dean of the additional programs (majors). For example, a major leading to a B.S. degree could not be combined with a major leading to a B.A. degree. Similarly, students enrolled in programs leading to a named degree (e.g., B.S. in Chemistry) are not eligible for a dual or multiple major.

Students may complete a second major after graduation from the university provided all the requirements mentioned above are met. The second major will be posted on the student's transcript upon receipt of confirmation of completion of major requirements from the student's advisor, department chair, and dean.

NOTE: Students who have satisfied ALL requirements to graduate with a dual major have satisfied the Capstone requirement for both majors if they have satisfied the Capstone requirement for one of the majors. If the student retreats to the pursuit of a single major, then the original Capstone policy applies and at least on Capstone course must be taken outside the major department.

8. Can I replace a poor or failing grade in a course?

Students may repeat a maximum of 15 lower-division credits (100-200 level) to replace original University of Nevada, Reno grades. The course(s) must be repeated and completed at the University within the next two regular semesters in with the student is enrolled. If the course is not offered within the next two regular semesters, the student must take the course the next time it is offered. The most recent grade earned in the course will be used in the grade-point calculation. Students who wish to utilize the grade replacement policy must file an application in the Office of Admissions and Records. Students may not apply for a grad replacement for courses in which they received a sanction for academic dishonesty.

9. Does it matter what I minor in?

The purpose of the minor is to give the student some exposure to another field and to allow him or her to explore something else (besides their major topic) that they enjoy. Also, many students find ways to combine their major and minor in order to explore a field they are interested in. The list of approved minors can be found at the following link: www.unr.edu/degrees?I=minor .

10. What is the difference between a Double Major and a Dual Degree?

To distinguish between dual degrees and double majors, check the actual degree title (Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, etc.)

With a Double Major, you must complete the requirements for two majors (and their colleges). You do not need a minor. You will end up with one diploma that says, "B.A. in Psychology and Sociology", for example. If both majors offer a degree of the same name (e.g., both must be B.A.s or B.S.s), then you are pursuing double majors. Note: any combinations with Criminal Justice are automatically Dual Degress due to their special name degree, Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice. Also, a double major in Neuroscience and Biology is not permitted.

With a dual degree, you must complete the requirments for the two majors (and their colleges). You also must complete a separate minor. You end up with two diplomas, one that says, "B.A. in Psychology" and one that says, "B.S. in Biology", for example. Note: a dual degree in Neuroscience and Psychology is not permitted.

11. Can you tell me more about the University Studies Abroad Consortium (USAC)?

USAC was founded on the University of Nevada, Reno campus in 1982. Since that time students from over 700 universities worldwide have studied in USAC programs, including several hundred UNR students each year. Our location on the University of Nevada, Reno campus gives students immediate access to study abroad resources and guidance. For more information about USAC including: "Why study abroad?"; "What can I study?"; and "Where can I study?" check out their website at: www.unr.edu/study-abroad.


University of Nevada, Reno - Department of Psychology/296
1664 N. Virginia Street Reno, Nevada 89557