EXPERIMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY CURRICULUM
Program Advisor: Dr. Kate McLean
The Experimental Psychology program is designed to provide in-depth research experience within a specific area of psychology (cognitive, developmental, neuroscience, or social). The curriculum balances required content courses with research experience. Each student is paired with a faculty mentor who works closely with the student to develop expertise within the chosen domain of psychology. The mentor will also advise the student in his/her selection of courses. Students are expected to complete the 48-credit (minimum) program in two years. A concentration within the Experimental Psychology program in Measurement, Evaluation, and Statistical Analysis (MESA) is available, which may be completed in addition to all the minimum requirements listed below.
The Experimental Psychology program provides a solid preparation and foundation for students wishing to enter a psychology Ph.D. program. Our graduates have been admitted to psychology Ph.D. programs throughout the country, and have fared well in these programs. Students who obtain a terminal Masters degree in Experimental Psychology and prefer not to pursue a doctorate may use their graduate training to become community college instructors, statisticians, or research assistants, or use the degree in other settings. Because our Experimental Psychology program is designed to train students to conduct basic and applied research, we recommend that students interested in becoming counselors apply to our Mental Health Counseling program. The Experimental Psychology program will also aid students interested in pursuing a Ph.D. in clinical psychology.
Students are required to complete:
Students must complete seminars with at least two different numbers; seminars 541 and 543-546 are repeatable under different topics, with permission:
The Department of Psychology consists of approximately 30 full-time faculty members, all with doctoral degrees. Faculty interests and specializations cover a wide range of areas within psychology (see attached).
Prerequisites for admission to the program include completion of the following courses: Introductory Psychology, Statistics, and courses from at least three of the following areas: Cognitive Psychology, Physiological Psychology/Behavioral Neuroscience, Developmental Psychology, Social Psychology, and Abnormal Psychology. Research experience is strongly recommended.
Graduate Student Handbook, Department of Psychology
The Department of Psychology Graduate Student handbook presents comprehensive information about each of the three graduate programs. The Handbook includes information about academic requirements, goals and objectives of the programs, teaching assistantships, scholarship standards, thesis requirements, comprehensive examinations, registration and enrollment, internships, diversity recruitment policy, National Counselor Examination, Academic Grievance Policy and Procedures, and other important information.
Applicants must complete the Graduate Record Examination (the General Test is required, the Psychology Subject Test is recommended but not required) prior to or concurrent with application.
Application materials may be obtained at Western Washington University’s Graduate School website. Online submission of some application materials is now an option at the Graduate School’s website. If you have any questions or difficulties with the application materials at the website, please contact the Graduate School at e-mail or 360-650-3170.
Applicants are judged on the basis of undergraduate background, GRE scores, your answers to our Experimental Psychology Program Questionnaire, and letters of recommendation. For further information, contact Dr. Kate McLean, Program Advisor, Experimental Psychology Curriculum, Department of Psychology, Western Washington University, 516 High Street, Bellingham, WA, 98225-9172; phone 360-650-3570; e-mail Kate.McLean@wwu.edu
The Psychology Department priority application deadline is February 1. We will review later applications on a space-available basis until June 1. Because maximum student enrollment in the program is limited, all applicants are strongly encouraged to submit application materials by February 1. Students considering the program at WWU are invited to visit the attractive campus, which is located between Seattle, Washington and Vancouver, British Columbia.
Required application materials (to be sent directly to the Graduate School, NOT to the Psychology department):
If you would like to be considered for a Graduate School Assistantship, follow the instructions online at the Graduate School website: Graduate School Assistantship.Currently, teaching assistants in the Department of Psychology are usually assigned to the undergraduate research methods and statistics courses, and occasionally the introduction to psychology course. Responsibilities include but are not limited to the following: teaching laboratory classes where relevant, helping students understand the conceptual and computational components of statistics, helping students understand research methodology and design, and helping students become more competent scientific writers.
Tuition and Fees, Financial Aid, and Stipends
The current amounts for graduate tuition and fees for residents and non-residents can be obtained at the Graduate School website.
Teaching and research assistantships are available on a limited basis. Teaching assistantships include a substantial tuition waiver. To be considered for a graduate assistantship, please see instructions at the Graduate School website.
Students interested in applying for federal and state loans, grants or work/study should consult the Student Financial Aid Services Center, phone 360-650-3470. If you would like more information about Western Washington University, visit the Western Washington University website.
Graduate Faculty, Department of Psychology
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