PSYC 3850 Community Psychology

Spring 2022 

To be registered in this course, first book an appointment with an Applied Studies Instructor through MyExperience then submit the Academic Proposal and Work Placement forms.

MyExperience Booking instructions
How to Apply



The purpose of this class is to introduce students to Community Psychology and help them discover how psychological principles are carried out within the community setting.  As such, it will be delivered in conjunction with the Applied Studies office and include two parts:

  • An in-person class (if restrictions don’t allow for that, then Zoom) - Tuesday from 9-10:15 am
  • a volunteer or paid placement (remote or on-site) within a particular community setting for a total of 96 hours (~8 hours per week)


Grade Distribution

  • 70%      Course Work, assigned by Dr. Mather
  • 20%      Work Placement Supervisor Evaluation, assigned by Placement Supervisor
  • 10%      Monthly Reports and Learning Plan, assigned by Applied Studies Instructor

Grade Scale: The A range will begin at 85%, the B range at 75%, and the C range at 65%.


Format for the Course Work (70% of your final grade)

  1. Oral Presentation: You will give a one-hour presentation on your work placement. Areas covered may include but are not limited to: description of the agency, the purpose of the agency, your role, how that role contributes to the day-to-day working of the agency, your interactions with clients, how the agency fits within the mosaic of social services, the social, financial and organizational structure of the agency.
  2. Written Paper:  You will write a paper (APA Format, 15 text pages, minimum 15 references) on larger issues related to our work placement, generally entitled “Why does your organization need to exist?” You will write and submit an outline, first draft, and final draft, due at different times during the semester. The final draft will be due near the end of the final exam period.
  3. Reflective Journal:  You will keep a Reflective Journal as you move through the semester and are expected to write a minimum of one entry per week.  Some of the Journal will reflect on your interactions at the workplace (What is your role? How effective were you? Did your interaction assist the clients? What did you discover about the clients, and about yourself? Do the agency’s formal aims match its day-to-day implementation?  How has this experience helped shape your future aims?). Other Journal entries will come from the class experience (What is Community Psychology?  How do the agencies that class members work at fit within the community?   How do you and the community at large view them? What are the values of and problems for not-for-profit agencies?   How do practical and academic experiences mesh and complement one another?). A self-evaluation will be the final Journal entry.

    Journals will be collected for informal evaluation and feedback halfway through the semester and then due near the end of the exam period.


How the 70% is divided amongst these three components will be decided during the first class meeting via a group discussion.


Format for the Work Placement (Paid or Volunteer) (20% of your grade)

  • Your volunteer or paid work placement needs to be with an organization that is approved by the Applied Study Instructor and the course instructor, Dr. Mather.
  • The commitment to the organization must be at least 96 hours over the semester (approximately 8 hours per week).
  • Your work placement can be in-person, done virtually, or a mix of both.
  • Any placement-related questions should be directed to an Applied Studies Instructor by emailing


Potential Placements include, but are not limited to

  • Southern Alberta Self-Help Association (SASHA)
  • Lethbridge Family Services (LFS)
    • Lethbridge Immigrant Services
    • DaCapo Digital Services
  • Sik-Ooh-Kotoki Friendship Society
  • Opokaa'sin Early Intervention Society
  • Boys & Girls Club
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters
  • University of Lethbridge
    • Career Services
    • International Centre
  • Schizophrenia Society
  • Alzheimer Society
  • Salvation Army
  • Lethbridge YWCA
  • Red Cross
  • Family Centre


Students are also welcomed and encouraged to approach other local organizations for which they may have a particular interest.


Format for the Monthly Reports and Learning Plan (10% of your grade)

You will submit a Learning Plan and Monthly Reports to your Applied Study Instructor.

Monthly reports are due on the 5th of the month and the guidelines are as follows:

  • Minimum 750 words in length
  • Summary of hours completed
  • Reflection on progression of Learning Objectives
  • Demonstrates analysis of skill development (provide examples)
  • Makes connections between academic training and practical experience (demonstrate with examples)
  • Reports should be edited for appropriate grammar and spelling


The Learning Plan will be due ~6 weeks into the semester and it will entail

  • Identifying previous work placement experiences
  • Identifying previous academic experiences, including courses completed
  • Setting learning objectives for both the work placement and academic aspects of this course