The PhD program in experimental psychology (which includes earning the M.S. degree, unless the student already holds a master’s degree from a psychology department that was based on an empirical thesis) follows an apprenticeship model in which the student is exposed to individualized research experiences within the laboratory of his or her major professor and, in many cases, other faculty as well. This research training is accompanied by an integrated concentration of courses that support development of an area of specialization. Throughout, major emphasis is placed on the role of the psychologist as a scholar – a person who can advance the science of psychology through original research.
Although five major areas of study are available to students in the experimental PhD program, the department has particular strengths in three areas: Behavior Analysis, Health and Social Psychology, and Neuroscience. Accordingly, the vast majority of students in the experimental PhD program major in one of these areas.