The Psychology Major
In Psychology, students become engaged in our discipline by doing research. Research experience begins early on in PSYC 1100 (General Psychology I), where students conduct experiments and serve as participants in actual research projects conducted by faculty and graduate students. In PSYC 1101/1103 (General Psychology II/General Psychology II Enhanced), students discuss research in relation to broader psychological concepts in small discussion groups.
We then ask our majors to take PSYC 2100WQ (Principles of Research in Psychology), where they not only learn about good experimental design and data analysis techniques, but also put this knowledge to practice by designing their own experiments, collecting and analyzing the data, and preparing research poster presentations for a research event that we conduct each semester called "An Evening of Psychological Science: The Next Generation," which is attended by our faculty, graduate students, and many UConn administrators and dignitaries, and which is patterned after an actual poster session at a scientific conference.
Students are then prepared for encountering, evaluating, and interrelating research findings in relation to topical areas covered in our upper-division content courses, which paves the way for the actual Senior Year Experience of engagement in discovering new knowledge in psychological science. Specifically, we encourage our seniors to enroll in PSYC 3889 (Undergraduate Research), in which they assist faculty and graduate students with conducting ongoing psychological research in our laboratories and other research settings.
Having been fully incorporated into actual research, we then encourage them to enroll in PSYC 3899 (Independent Study), in which they propose, design, execute, analyze, and write up their own psychological research project under the supervision of a faculty member. (Psychology Honors Students will then go one step further by enrolling in PSYC 4197W, Senior Thesis in Psychology, where they conduct their Honors Thesis in psychological research.)
Students interested in Field Experience may download the PSYC 3880: Field Experience packet.
This progression from early involvement in psychological research, to learning about experimental design and analysis, to conducting simple experiments, and then gaining an understanding of how research relates to content areas, provides a solid foundation upon which our seniors can then participate fully in the research process and thereby forward new knowledge in psychological science while, at the same time, become fully immersed and engaged in our discipline.
Effective 2006-2007, students have a choice of six "tracks" when declaring their major in psychology:
The track name will appear as a subplan on the student's final transcript.
Download a PDF of the 6 tracks here.
Download the Psych Guide.