2020-21 University Catalog 
    Apr 16, 2024  
2020-21 University Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Humanities and Social Sciences Department

Mark Neupert, Department Chair
Kathleen Adams, Program Director, Marriage and Family Therapy
Alishia Huntoon, Program Director, Extern Coordinator and Curriculum Coordinator, Applied Psychology-Online
Maria Lynn Kessler, Program Director Applied Psychology - Portland-Metro, Program Director Applied Behavior Analysis
Trevor Petersen, Program Director Applied Psychology-Klamath Falls
Professors: M. Clark, M. Kessler, M. Neupert
Associate Professors: K. Adams, D. Bailey, B. Bunting, A. Huntoon, R. Madden, S. Nathenson, T. Petersen, Y. Rowher
Assistant Professors: J. Borgen, K. Chapman, C. Fitzgerald, K. Garrett, C. Torgerson
Instructor: S. Machado

Degrees Offered

  • Master of Science
    • Applied Behavior Analysis
    • Marriage and Family Therapy
  • Bachelor of Science in:
    • Applied Psychology
    • Population Health Management

Minors Offered

  • Arts, Literature, and Philosophy (ALPs)
  • Medical Sociology
  • Psychology

Graduate Certificates Offered

  • Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)

Module Offered

  • Oregon Transfer (OTM)

The Humanities and Social Sciences Department offers a wide variety of classes that meet the general education requirements for all students. In addition, these classes meet the lower-division requirements for college transfer students in many pre-professional programs.

Department Goals and Objectives

  1. To provide coursework in the humanities and social sciences in order to prepare students for employment in a rapidly changing global market.
  2. To provide course offerings in multiculturalism and globalization.
  3. To assist students in developing critical thinking and problem-solving abilities and to develop scientific knowledge and inquiry skills.
  4. To assist students in developing ethical and cultural awareness.
  5. To prepare students to be responsible citizens and lifelong learners.
  6. To assist students in developing an aesthetic appreciation of the arts.

Applied Behavior Analysis

MariaLynn Kessler, Program Director
Dawn Bailey, Practicum Coordinator
John Borgen, VCS Coordinator
Participating Faculty: D. Bailey, J. Borgen, M. Kessler

Degree Offered

  • Master of Science in Applied Behavior Analysis

Certificate Offered

  • Applied Behavior Analysis Graduate Certificate

Oregon’s only master’s degree in applied behavior analysis, the MS-ABA curriculum focuses on providing a rigorous and thorough foundation in the science of behavior analysis. Students will be prepared to apply the principles of behavior analysis with diverse populations and in a wide variety of settings. Oregon Tech’s MS-ABA prepares students to meet national certification and Oregon licensure requirements.

Courses are taught on the Klamath Falls and Portland-Metro campuses and are available to students everywhere via Zoom (a synchronous videoconferencing program). The use of Zoom technology provides an alternative to fully online, asynchronous programs for students in all areas of the state who prefer the real-time, face-to-face educational experience.

Program Mission

The mission of the MS-ABA program is to enable students to become effective and ethical behavior analysts. Students will be prepared to apply principles of behavior analysis to enhance the lives of individuals across a wide variety of settings. The program emphasizes a foundation in theory, concepts, and principles, development of basic behavior analytic skills, and an emphasis on professional and ethical responsibilities. 

Program Objectives

  1. To produce competent graduates who can work effectively and ethically across settings and with diverse populations
  2. To enable students to obtain the knowledge and skills necessary for immediate employment in ABA and/or further graduate study in ABA and related areas
  3. To prepare students for national certification and Oregon licensure as behavior analysts

Licensure and Certification

MS-ABA prepares students to meet national certification and Oregon licensure requirements. The program includes the Behavior Analysts Certification Board® verified course sequence and an intensive practicum experience that meets national certification requirements for supervised experience

BCBA course sequence: the Association for Behavior Analysis-International has verified these courses as meeting the coursework requirements for eligibility to take the Board Certified Behavior Analyst® exam. (Applicants will have to meet additional requirements to qualify)

ABA Practicum: second year practicum placements provide students with the opportunity for supervised experience. Practicum placements may be paid or unpaid positions with approved ABA agencies and, in Klamath Falls, with Oregon Tech’s BIG ABA clinic and local schools


In order to ensure that students have the necessary preparation for success in the MS-ABA program, applicants must meet the Oregon Tech requirements for admission as well as the MS-ABA program specific requirements.

Applicants to the MS-ABA program at Oregon Tech shall meet the following requirements:

  • Bachelor’s Degree: Bachelor’s degree from an accredited four-year institution in Psychology or a related field.
  • GPA: Overall undergraduate GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale and 3.0 for the last 90 quarter credits (60 semester) credits of coursework.
  • Undergraduate Coursework: A grade of B or better in General Psychology, Research Methods, and Statistics.
  • Academic Standing: Be in good academic standing at last college or university attended.
  • GRE Scores: Graduate Record Examination scores for Verbal Reasoning at 150, for Quantitative Reasoning at 141, and for Analytical Writing at 3.5. GRE scores over five years old are not accepted.
  • Personal Statement and Resume: Applicants will be required to write a statement that addresses career goals and relevance to the program, evidence of aptitude for graduate work and evidence of potential for success in the field. 
  • Reference Letters: Applicants to the program will be required to provide three letters of reference (at least one academic and one professional) that address the applicant’s preparation, abilities, and character.
  • Background Check: Due to the sensitive nature of this program in regards to work with children and/or vulnerable populations, applicants must pass a criminal background check such as that conducted by the Oregon Department of Human Services (DHS).
  • The department and university can grant conditional admission to candidates not meeting all of the minimum requirements.

Applied Behavior Analysis

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is an evidence-based, data-driven, systematic approach to intervention. Practitioners of ABA apply principles of reinforcement and focus on applications that improve the quality of life for individuals. Behavior analysts provide services in a variety of settings including schools, clinics, rehabilitation settings, residential facilities, social service agencies, mental health facilities, businesses, and client homes. They work with diverse populations including individuals and families affected by autism, developmental and intellectual disabilities, brain injury, mental health, geriatrics, child abuse, and neglect.

Program Objective

Meet the demand for competent behavior analysts by providing BACB® approved course work to professionals seeking national certification and/or licensure as a behavior analyst in Oregon.

Marriage and Family Therapy

Kathleen M. Adams, Program Director
Participating Faculty: K. Adams, K. Garrett, C. Torgerson

Degree Offered

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy (MS MFT): A comprehensive 90 credit, three-year program, the MS MFT is offered on Oregon Tech’s Klamath Falls campus with a course schedule designed for working adults: most classes are offered in the evening, on the weekends, and blended delivery courses.

Program Mission Statement

Oregon Tech’s Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy program prepares graduates to become skilled Marriage and Family Therapists with multicultural competence, expertise in rural mental health care, medical family therapy and substance use disorders and addictions treatment.

In strong collaboration with local child and family service organizations, health care and mental health care providers, the MS MFT program supports and strengthens mental health care and child and family services in the under-served rural areas that are southern Oregon and northern California.

Program Objectives

Strong Curriculum

Oregon Tech’s MS MFT program delivers a strong, comprehensive curriculum designed to meet curriculum requirements of the Oregon State Board of Licensed Counselors and Therapists, and the Commission on Accreditation of Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE) programs. The MS MFT program prepares students to become leaders in the field, with particular focus on mental health care and child and family services in rural areas, medical family therapy, and, substance abuse disorders and addiction treatment.

Community Service

Oregon Tech’s MS MFT program supports and strengthens rural mental health care and child and family services, in southern Oregon and northern California.

Continuing Education

Oregon Tech’s MS MFT program provides contemporary, immediately applicable continuing education seminars and conferences to educate and instruct the general public, program staff in public and private service organizations, and students and professionals. The MS MFT program also assists other organizations in conducting similar activities.

Oregon Tech’s MS MFT is Unique

Integrated Behavioral Healthcare - Medical Family Therapy

MS MFT students develop the knowledge and skills required to become indispensable leaders in the rapidly developing multidisciplinary field of Integrated Behavioral Healthcare and Medical Family Therapy.

Mental Health Care in Under-Served and Rural Areas

Mental health care needs in rural areas, like southern Oregon, provide unique challenges that require unique approaches. Oregon Tech’s MS MFT students develop the expertise and skills required to excel as rural mental health care providers.

Substance Abuse and Addiction Treatment

Oregon Tech MFT students are well prepared to work with individuals, couples and families struggling with substance abuse and addiction. From a trauma and recovery informed perspective, students learn the advanced knowledge and skills required to work well with substance abuse, mental health, and co-occurring disorders; and the impact of the same on couples and families.

Community Involvement

Strong community collaboration allows students to work in area child and family service agencies, part-time, from the beginning of their studies. Additionally, a limited number of Graduate Assistantship are awarded for program support in community agencies.

Career Success

Committed to helping students excel in their careers, faculty in Oregon Tech’s MS MFT program mentor students beyond graduation, through completion of post grad clinical hours and licensing exams.

Career Opportunities

MFT’s are trained in both psychotherapy and in family systems, which allows them to focus on understanding client symptoms in the context of the relational interactions that influence behavior. Family-based therapy is a powerful model for change. Research has shown that family-based interventions such as those utilized by MFTs are as effective as–and in many cases more effective than–alternative therapies, often at a lower cost. MFTs apply a holistic perspective to health care; they are concerned with the overall, long-term well-being of individuals and their families. Whoever the client, MFTs view problems from a relationship perspective.


MFTs come from a wide variety of backgrounds including social studies, psychology, religious studies, the humanities, nursing, pastoral counseling, and education. The field is founded in multidisciplinary studies, the rich traditions of the humanities and social sciences, and in the practical approaches of psychology.

The application and selection process identifies candidates with strong academic skills, maturity, experience, and clinical and leadership potential. Successful applicants submit a personal essay, academic transcripts and recommendations from professionals familiar with applicant maturity and academic and clinical potential. Selected applicants participate in interviews with the Admissions Committee.

Applied Psychology

Alishia Huntoon, Program Director, Online, Externship Coordinator
MariaLynn Kessler, Program Director, Portland-Metro
Trevor Petersen, Program Director, Klamath Falls, Advising Coordinator
Participating Faculty: J. Borgen, C. Fitzgerald, A. Huntoon, M. Kessler, T. Petersen

Degree Offered

  • Bachelor of Science in Applied Psychology

The Bachelor of Science in Applied Psychology prepares students for careers that apply the principles of psychology in diverse settings. The program provides a strong core curriculum in order for students to understand the foundations, theories, and principles of each area of psychology. As an applied program, both core and elective courses have a skills-based focus, allowing students to identify personal strengths, apply knowledge to real-world situations, create and implement new ideas, and ultimately be prepared to enter the workforce or continue on to graduate programs. A diverse offering of elective courses allows for students to focus on one or many areas of psychology, creating a unique opportunity for students to have an in-depth and personalized psychology degree. Students should consult with their advisor about specific interests for guidance in regard to elective offerings. The Applied Psychology program also offers Capstone in Applied Psychology (CAP) courses. These CAP courses vary by term and give senior students the opportunity to synthesize knowledge learned throughout the degree program and apply core principles and theories of psychology to a selected topic. Through an Applied Experience, students have the opportunity to participate in externships, advanced research courses, or community work to prepare themselves for exciting and rewarding careers in psychology or for additional course work in graduate programs.

Mission Statement

The mission of the Applied Psychology Program is to enable students to apply core principles and theories of psychology and in-depth knowledge and skills in specific areas of psychology to communicate effectively, think critically, behave ethically and with cultural awareness, and work inter-personally with people from a wide variety of backgrounds.

Career Opportunities

Nationwide, college graduates with a bachelor’s in psychology perform a wide variety of jobs or attend a wide variety of graduate programs. Graduates may work in counseling, education, social service, management, public relations, public health, and other fields. All of these jobs are potentially available to graduates of Oregon Tech’s Applied Psychology Program. Many of Oregon Tech’s Applied Psychology graduates have found jobs in Oregon and beyond. Human service employers include county and state agencies, as well as a wide range of private and non-profit agencies. Graduates of Oregon Tech’s Applied Psychology Program benefit from the emphasis of hands-on training and applied experiences. Graduates have also completed a Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) and pursue careers in education, such as teaching, school counseling, and special education. Graduates have also been employed in industry and are following management training programs. Finally, graduates have pursued various master’s and doctoral programs in psychology and related fields.

Population Health Management

Sophia Lyn Nathenson, Program Director, Externship Coordinator
Kyle Chapman, Assistant Program Director, Advising Coordinator
Participating Faculty: K. Chapman, S. Nathaenson

Degree Offered

  • Bachelor of Science in Population Health Management

The Population Health Management (PHM) professions are auxiliary or complementary to clinical health care. The PHM B.S. degree program includes core courses in applied and medical sociology, in addition to electives in applied psychology, management, mathematics, communication, and health sciences. Students may choose one of three emphases: Health Counseling/Outreach, Care Management and Coordination, and Applied Health Data Analytics.

The PHM program begins with a foundation in sociological theory, methods and research.

PHM graduates will gain competence in social theory, research methods, statistics, program planning and evaluation, and training in working with diverse and under-served populations.

Mission Statement

The mission of the PHM program is to provide students with the best possible training for careers that improve health and well-being. As the United States health care system changes to adapt to a new demographic and health landscape, increasing emphasis is placed on preventative medicine and health maintenance. PHM graduates will help fill this pressing need, providing much needed health resources to hospitals, schools, governmental and non-profit organizations, and local communities. Such work empowers individuals through health programs and policy, to create a healthier future for our nation.

Career Opportunities

Students who graduate from the PHM program may work in a wide variety of settings, all with the intent of improving the health and well-being of individuals and communities. Careers include health coaching, health research, community health program and evaluation, education, and patient advocacy. The PHM degree is an ideal preparation for graduate study in sociology, epidemiology, public health and medicine.

Oregon Transfer Module (OTM)

The Oregon Transfer Module (OTM) provides a one-year curriculum for students who plan to transfer to a State of Oregon community college or university. The module allows students to complete one year of general education foundation course work that is academically sound and will meet the admission standards of the receiving school. Students should work closely with an academic advisor to ensure selection of appropriate course work. Upon transfer, students may be required to complete additional course work in general education or an academic major specific to the receiving institution. Students who transfer prior to the completion of the Oregon Transfer Module will have their courses individually evaluated by the receiving institution. Students must complete a minimum of 45 credits of lower division course work with a grade of “C-” or better in order to receive credit for the Oregon Transfer Module. A minimum of 12 credits must be earned at Oregon Tech. The following courses may be used to complete the Oregon Transfer Module:


Writing and Oral Communication


  • Two courses of college level composition

Oral Communication

  • One course of Public Speaking or Communication


  • One course of College level Math


Arts and Letters/Humanities

  • 3 courses of Arts and letters/Humanities
  • Oregon Tech only allows 3 credits of performance or studio-based courses in this category

Science/Math/Computer Science

  • 3 courses, including at least one biological or physical science with a laboratory

Social Science

  • 3 courses of Social Science