Honors Program in Psychology
The honors program in Psychology offers students the opportunity to work independently and in depth on a project during the senior year. These projects usually involve 3 course credits, one in the fall semester and two in the spring. Most theses are empirical; however, there is also an option to write a "theoretical" thesis (a conceptual survey of empirical and/or theoretical work) or a "practical" thesis. The latter is a new option, and would involve one course credit of practical work, such as at a battered women's shelter or mental health hospital, and 2 course credits devoted to a conceptual survey of literature related to the practicum experience.
Information regarding the research interests of faculty members of the Psychology Department can be found here or on their individual web pages. During the spring semester, juniors will receive an information packet that will include more details about each faculty members areas of interest and expertise. In some cases, specific research projects that a faculty member would like to see carried out are described, and specific course prerequisites necessary to pursue honors work in a given area are listed. Students should read the descriptions and talk with all faculty members whose research areas they find exciting. They will be asked to submit a list, specifying order of preference of possible thesis advisors, to the Department Chair. An online form is available for your convenience (the link is only active during the Spring Semester when students are asked to indicate their preferred advisors). The faculty meets as a group to make decisions about which students will be accepted into the honors program and who their advisor will be. The general criteria that the faculty uses in making its decisions are:
- background in the area
- ability to work independently
- appropriate writing skills
- high level of motivation
It is advantageous and sometimes necessary to have had a course with the professor in whose research area one is interested. Also note that a College-wide grade average of B+ or better is a prerequisite for being accepted into the Honors Program.
Click here to access the Honors Program Interest Form.