The Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences features four undergraduate academic programs:

  • Department of Criminal Justice and Political Science
  • Department of History (Africana and Diaspora Studies, Social Studies Education)
  • Department of Psychology
  • Department of Sociology

The division also has one graduate program features a Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Behavioral Sciences.

Upon graduation, our students help shape the world as researchers, clinicians, and policy makers in a wide range of fields that include law and government, mental health, and teaching. Few universities can be truly great without a strong behavioral and social sciences division, and our strength remains in our disciplines that form a solid foundation for graduate study, and advancement through interdisciplinary cooperation and research across campus and the world. Teaching remains most important to our faculty where our small undergraduate class sizes enhance overall student learning, while all faculty are encouraged to represent the division on our march to take the university to the community and beyond through service.

Criminal Justice

The Criminal Justice major involves the study of crime, offenders, victims and the function of law enforcement, courts and corrections. Courses examine in-depth subjects including policing, court processes, institutional and community corrections, juvenile justice, comparative criminal justice practices, research, statistics, and ethical issues within the criminal justice system. The Criminal Justice major has prepared and educated students for careers in law enforcement, the legal system, and corrections since the 1970s.

To satisfy the requirements for the Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminal Justice, a student must complete a minimum of 120 semester credit hours. The required courses include 48 semester credit hours of Criminal Justice courses and 9 semester credit hours of support courses. The required courses in Criminal Justice are CJE 101, 215, 220, 320, 325, 330, 335, 340, 345, 350, 410, 415, 430, 433, and 434. The remaining 3 semester credit hours are a Criminal Justice elective to be selected on the basis of the student’s area of interest and includes CJE 321, 322, and 332. Required support courses are SOC 203, SOC 305, and ENG 216 or BUA 204.

History (Africana and Diaspora Studies)

A specialization in History provides the student with a global perspective on the social, political and intellectual development of civilizations, allowing an opportunity to reflect on the past, gain a historical perspective on the present, and acquire a knowledge and understanding of human behavior. A specialization in History includes courses that deal with Africa, Asia, Europe, North America, and South America. The History curriculum is designed to prepare our graduates to contribute to an expanding society; enhance critical thinking skills; develop an appreciation and understanding of history research methodologies; to make students aware of the contributions of diverse cultures to our global society and to internalize and integrate this information into their total knowledge base; and to prepare students for advanced professional studies as well as varied career opportunities.

Political Science

Political Science involves the systematic study of politics and the political system. The Political Science program here at Kentucky State University has a highly developed academic curriculum that prepares students for law school, for graduate study in political science, public administration, or to gain entry into career positions in both the public and private sectors. A degree in Political Science will enable the student to demonstrate acquired knowledge, and develop critical thinking skills necessary to assess, prevent, and resolve various political and social problems.


Psychology involves the scientific study of a vast array of physical, mental, and social phenomena related to the actions and experiences of human beings. Psychologists study phenomena such as perception, memory, thought, behavior, and the psychological, social, physiological, and development process that underlies these phenomena. In addition to its commitment to scientific truth, psychology requires the application of knowledge and critical thinking/reasoning skills to assess, prevent, and resolve individual, organizational, and social problems. The Kentucky State University psychology program prepares the its majors with a solid, well-rounded education which serves as a useful foundation for the pursuit of careers in research, business, law, medicine, social work, and the other helping professions. Our majors are prepared to pursue further study in psychology and related fields at the graduate level.

We are also offering a Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Behavioral Sciences, which accepts applications for the fall semester only.  This program takes a multidisciplinary approach to the area of forensic psychology by providing students with background in theoretical perspectives from psychology, sociology, and criminology, basic and applied research methods, and statistical techniques.  Students will develop competencies relevant to the science and practice of psychology, and to the study of the intersection of behavioral and social science and law.  This program is relevant to graduates of psychology, criminal justice, sociology, social work, public administration, political science, and other areas of study that have application to the justice system broadly defined.  Application forms must be submitted to the Kentucky State University Office of Graduate Studies by April 1st for fall enrollment.  Classes will be held during evening hours.  Students may attend on a part-time or full-time basis.  Please contact Dr. Mara Merlino ( for additional information about the program requirements or the application procedure. Admission is a two-step process.  You must first submit your application materials to the Office of Graduate Studies to be admitted to graduate study.  The information about the application process and the forms you will need are available »


Sociology is the scientific study of societies and social structures. It examines the behavior of large and small groups in various contexts and seeks improved understanding of the principles and dynamics of human relationships. The sociology program at Kentucky State University offers a contemporary curriculum of sociology and related professional courses. The program builds upon a liberal studies foundation and is designed to provide students with several program and career options.

Social Studies Education

A degree in Social Studies Education is designed with the student-teacher in mind where, upon completion, the student earns both a Bachelor’s of Arts and high school teacher certification. The degree requirements for this specialization are truly cross-disciplinary, and span History, Sociology, Geography, Political Science, Economics, and Professional Education.

Acting Chair

Dr. A. Christopher Hayden


Dr. A. Christopher Hayden,
Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences

  • Kentucky State University
    400 E. Main St.
    Frankfort, Ky. 40601
  • Phone: (502) 597-6893
  • Email:

Mrs. Aster Haile
Administrative Assistant