Department of Psychology

The Department of Psychology, housed in the Psychology, Public Health, and Human Service Studies Building, represents Elon University’s largest liberal arts major, with more than 20 full-time faculty, over 400 majors, and around 350 minors. At the heart of the program is an emphasis on psychology as a basic and applied science. Rooted in the scientific method, emphasis is placed on developing in students a love of learning built upon abilities to gather information systematically; to think critically, logically, and creatively about that information; and then to communicate one’s conclusions effectively to a diverse range of audiences. As a socio-cultural discipline, emphasis is placed on developing in students an informed and sensitive appreciation for the complex causes of human behavior, and the knowledge and skills to have a constructive impact on human affairs from the level of individual and family functioning to policies governing broader social institutions.

Large enough to offer a range of courses, internships, and research opportunities normally associated with a larger university, yet small enough to provide close personal mentoring, the psychology program puts into practice an educational philosophy that the field is best understood by studying psychology, and by actively doing psychology. Graduates interested in careers in psychology are well positioned to be competitive candidates for graduate training; graduates interested in other careers are well grounded in the analytical skills and the psychological-mindedness necessary for success in a wide range of occupations.

Our curriculum is based on the American Psychological Association undergraduate learning goals and objectives and we are continuously planning, assessing, and modifying our course offerings in order to ensure that students are prepared for a career in psychology or related field. We offer a solid grounding in research methodology as well as basic and advanced courses in major subfields of the discipline (behavioral neuroscience, cognitive psychology, developmental psychology, and social psychology). We also offer many special topics courses such as Psychopathology, Criminal Behavior, Cross-Cultural Psychology, Educational Psychology and Psychology of Leadership. Along the way, we hope students will explore experiential learning opportunities in psychology, including study abroad, internships, and the closely mentored opportunities in independent research. We also encourage students to get involved in psychology-related student organizations, including the Psychology Club, which is open to all majors and minors, and Psi Chi, The International Honor Society in Psychology.

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