The Department of Psychology was established in 1992. As the first four-year university in the area, the primary mission of the Department is to provide students of different levels with opportunities to obtain both broad and in-depth knowledge in various psychological disciplines. Another major mission is to connect with the local population to meet their needs. To fulfill the mission, the Department of Psychology starts by training the students from the neighboring areas. Additionally, collaborative relationships are established between the faculty members and local hospitals and medical professionals to support each other in clinical field and intervention programs. Finally, recent trends have called for an overarching goal of multi-disciplinary collaboration. Multi-disciplinary courses and research projects have been proposed and implemented. Both undergraduate and graduate students benefit from these approaches to be better equipped for future opportunities and challenges.
The Department of Psychology currently offers three levels of degrees: bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral. There are six areas of concentration in the doctoral program: cognitive, developmental, physiological, social, quantitative, and clinical. Doctoral students are required to select one area of concentration. The majorities of our Ph.D. students stay in academia and continue with research work. Students in the master’s program have the option of concentrating on one of the five disciplines. The exception is the clinical discipline, an accredited program which recruits students independently. Upon completion of the program, the students are qualified to take the exam for the certification of the clinical psychologist. Undergraduate students are afforded the opportunities to learn directly from the class instructions as well as the participation in various laboratories to explore their interests and cultivate their research skills.
Throughout the history of the Department, our faculty members have demonstrated strong research and teaching credentials. At present, there are nineteen full-time faculty members and two professors emeriti of the six specialties who provide the students with a broad and superb training in the field of psychology. Our low faculty-student ratio permits various small-size classes. Students of different levels thus benefit from working more closely with faculty members. In addition, several short programs and multidisciplinary programs are offered. For examples, programs focusing on aging population care, forensic psychology, and organizational psychology are implemented with the collaborative involvement from faculty members of other departments and colleges in the University.
Information of courses offered including the syllabi and various programs can be found in the university website.
The Department of Psychology currently employs 19 full-time faculty members from six major fields: physiological, social, developmental, quantitative, cognitive, and clinical. Each faculty member provides unique research expertise that graduate students are likely to pursue a research goal that fits their own interest. Individual and collaborative research works are frequently conducted. For specific research interests and detailed information of each faculty member and their publications, please refer to their individual website.
Past students have entered a variety of career paths depending on their propensities and further training. Some of our alumni chose the psychology career and have become clinical psychologists, human factors engineers, school counselors, and so forth. Others have relied on their understanding of human behavior and analytic or other extended abilities to be involved in careers such as case management, human resources, UI/UX design, product management, testing, advertising and marketing, R&D management, etc. Students are encouraged to seek for counseling from the Department to help identify their career directions. The Alumni Association of Psychology Department, founded in 2020, is also a helpful resource to assist with future career of the students.