Fundamentals of Psychology
Undergraduate Certificate Online Program

The undergraduate certificate program in the Fundamentals of Psychology serves as a means to help students grasp a better understanding of themselves and others. Students will have the skills and knowledge to be able to identify patterns, influences, and causes of various behaviors and interactions. Knowledge of human behavior is very beneficial and is widely applicable to a variety of professional fields.

Designed For You

The California Coast University online Undergraduate Certificate in the Fundamentals of Psychology program was designed for complete flexibility for the student. All courses are self-paced and completed 100% online.

  • Low tuition with interest-free payment plans as low as $100/month.
  • Flexible programs designed to fit into your busy schedule. Self-paced study with no group projects, set meeting times, or exam dates.
  • The program is not structured in semesters, quarters, or terms. It is designed to allow students to begin their online studies at any time of the year.
  • CCU offers a tuition discount for Active Duty Military, Veterans, Law Enforcement, Firefighters, Government Employees, and CCU Graduates.
    We also offer a 10% discount for Corporate Partner employees. For more information on how to become a Corporate Partner, see our Corporate Partnership Information Page.
    *Employment verification is required. Offer good for students who enrolled after April 2018 and were offered discount at time of enrollment. Offer is not retroactive for students already enrolled. Discount and/or prices subject to change and/or cancellation at any time without notice. This offer cannot be combined with any other discount(s).
View Program Outcomes:

Upon successful completion of the program, students will be able to:


Explore The Program

The Undergraduate Certificate in the Fundamentals of Psychology degree program consists of 4 total courses.
The required courses are comprised of: 4 Core .
There are 12 total semester units in this program.

4 Core Courses

The online Undergraduate Certificate in the Fundamentals of Psychology degree program is comprised of the following 4 courses. Click on course title to expand and read more.

ID Course Name Units
PSY 102 Introduction to Psychology  3

Introduction to Psychology introduces the methods and findings of contemporary psychology. Emphasizing the need for scientific and critical thinking, topics include a survey of biology and behavior, sensory process, human development, perception, learning and motivation. Emotion, personality, psychological disorders, therapy, and social interaction are also examined to provide students with a solid understanding of the facts, principles, and theories which make up the field of psychology.

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Define psychology.
  • Review brain function and explain how it affects behavior.
  • Discuss learning and memory.
  • Summarize growth and development principals.
PSY 220 Developmental Psychology  3

Developmental Psychology introduces students to the scientific study of patterns of change and stability that occur as we move through the process of human development from conception to death. Various theories of development will be presented and an emphasis on physical, emotional, cognitive, and psychosocial changes throughout the lifespan will be discussed.

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Define the lifespan perspective.
  • Identify the emotional and cognitive changes that occur during each developmental period.
  • Examine the physical and psychological changes that occur during a person’s lifetime.
  • Review the social and personality characteristics of each age group.
PSY 380 Personality Theories  3

Personality Theories presents an in-depth look at a number of classical and current personality theories, providing an explanation and interpretation of personality development from several different theoretical approaches. Classic theory is integrated with the latest research and current topics, preparing students to apply theoretical approaches to better understand the particular individuals and personalities they may encounter in their professional and personal lives.

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Describe the major classic and current personality theories.
  • Examine the research methods used in personality research.
  • Assess the role of early experiences in personality formation.
  • Utilize personality theories to help understand human behavior.
PSY 408 Abnormal Psychology  3

Abnormal Psychology offers students an integrative approach to the study of psychopathology, drawing on contributions from various disciplines and theoretical stances. Through clinical case studies, the psychosocial and psychophysiological factors of abnormal behavior are examined, along with the exploration of prevention efforts and research-based advancements in the field.

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Differentiate between normal and abnormal behavior and characterize various disorders.
  • Analyze the causes, symptoms, and treatments of abnormal behaviors.
  • Examine the basics of the DSM system and how it’s used.
  • Summarize issues related to mental health and treatment.

Prerequisites to Admission:

The applicant should meet the following prerequisites in order to be admitted to the program: An applicant must be at least 18 years of age and have successfully obtained a high school diploma, GED, or its equivalent.

FAQ About Coursework

Required units may be satisfied in the following ways:

  • California Coast University has developed comprehensive Study Guides, for each course, that are designed to coordinate and sequence the learning materials within the required textbook. The following points will help to illustrate how the Study Guides are designed:

    • Study Guides are based on specific college level textbooks, which may be obtained from local bookstores, the publisher, or the University's Rental Library.
    • Each Study Guide is organized with a complete syllabus, along with instructional materials to guide the student chapter by chapter through the corresponding textbook.
    • Each Study Guide contains an overview and summary of all textbook chapters, along with a listing of important keywords (with definitions), and self-tests (with answers) on key points.
    • Study Guides include 4 unit exams equally spaced throughout the instructional materials, one writing assignment per unit, and the final examination.
    • Examinations are designed to test the student on the information contained within the preceding chapters.
    • All tests have no time limit and may be completed as open book tests.
  • Transcripts of previously completed academic work are evaluated and credit may be transferred to meet existing coursework requirements. The following guidelines are utilized when accepting transfer credit for a certificate program:

    • The University will accept transfer credit from applicable courses completed at colleges or universities accredited by an agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or foreign equivalent.
    • Certificate students may receive transfer credit for up to 6 semester units of previously completed coursework. Students may transfer up to 9 semester units of credit completed at California Coast University.
    • To be eligible for undergraduate academic credit, transfer grades must be equivalent to a letter grade of C (2.0 GPA) or higher.
  • During the admissions process, all professional experience is reviewed to determine if an applicant has sufficient occupational experience to warrant completing a Challenge Examination in lieu of a Study Guide for a particular course. The following factors are considered:

    • An applicant may be offered an opportunity to complete a Challenge Examination if the candidate's occupational expertise appears to be comparable to the objectives identified for a particular course.
    • Successfully passing a Challenge Examination will demonstrate an acceptable level of competence for that course.
    • If a student does not pass a Challenge Examination they are assigned a Study Guide for completion.
    • The maximum amount of Challenge Examinations allowed for each program level are: Associate 4; Bachelor's 10; Master's 2; Doctorate 0; and Certificates 1.