WELCOME TO THE DEPARTMENT OF PSYCHOLOGY
Psychology is a broad and exciting field of science, and students are attracted to psychology for many reasons. You might want a career in a helping profession, such as clinical psychology, counseling, school psychology, social work, or family therapy, or a career in education. You might be excited by research and you want to study human behavior and the brain. You might want to learn to apply psychological principles in the workplace. Our undergraduate programs will provide you with both a broad education in psychology and focused training in your specific area of interest, whether it's the mental-health field, neuroscience, cognitive science, or applied psychology. Our professors are productive researchers, and students gain hands-on research experience working with us. We also have a network of internship sites for students to gain professional experience in mental health, educational, and laboratory settings.
Our Psychology professors truly enjoy teaching and working with students. If you are excited to learn about the science and practice of psychology, then I encourage you to consider Psychology at Southern!
Dr. Larry Brancazio, Chairperson
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What We Offer:
- A general B.A. in Psychology that provides flexibility in course selection
- Specialized tracks designed for preparation for masters and doctoral programs:
- B.A. in Psychology with a concentration in Mental Health
- B.S. in Psychology with a focus on one of:
- Behavioral Neuroscience
- Cognitive Science
- Applied Psychology and Assessment
What You’ll Study:
Our courses cover a range of topics in psychology. You can take courses in developmental psychology, social psychology, abnormal psychology, cognition, and behavioral neuroscience, among many others. Juniors and seniors take small discussion-based seminars that focus on a topic in more depth, such as close relationships, psychopharmacology, psychology and the law, and psychological counseling and therapy. Psychology majors also take classes where they design experiments and analyze and interpret data, and have opportunities to work in a research lab or professional setting for course credit.
Every year, many of our students present their research at local and national conferences, sometimes as co-authors with their faculty advisors and sometimes as the lead presenters. We also have students who co-author articles that get published in psychological journals.
We have an active student Psychology Club and a chapter of Psi Chi (the national Psychology honor society), and they work closely with professors to organize guest lectures, informational sessions for students, and trips to professional conferences. We also have a student-run Journal of Student Psychological Research, where students can publish papers on their independent research projects.
What Can a Psychology Major Do?
Many psychology-based professions require a masters or doctoral degree, and we work hard to prepare our students to gain acceptance into competitive graduate programs. Our graduates have gone on to be successful in fields such as:
- Clinical Psychology
- Social Work
- Marriage and Family Therapy
- School Psychology
- Communication Disorders
- Research psychology, including research in autism, brain imaging, dyslexia, developmental psychology, and forensic psychology
- Biotechnology companies
- Human Resources
Research in Psychology
Our professors conduct research on many different topics, and some have been awarded federal grants from the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation to support our work. Psychology majors are collaborators on all of our research teams. Our projects include:
- Spoken language perception skills in children with autism spectrum disorder
- Effects of prenatal exposure to alcohol in rats, to understand these effects in humans
- Intervention studies to improve reading in young children at low-performing schools
- Identifying Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder in college-aged students
- Methods for detecting lying
- Alcohol use and mental illness in college-aged students
- Rodent models of alcohol addiction and autistic traits
- Individual differences in reading skill and attention in college-aged students
- Cooperation among reproductive competitors in fish
- Spoken language perception and lipreading skill
- Effects of media on body image in women
- Life, career identity, and relationship satisfaction in adults
- Social policy and community-based needs assessment
- Decision-making and effectiveness of delay of gratification
- Sleep patterns in college students
- Spirituality and sexual identity
- Engaging the elderly with video games
- Emotions and personality development
- Relationship violence and traits of offenders