Augustana College - Rock Island, IL

  • BS

Augustana College offers a major and minor in psychology, in a program that has adopted a developmental approach for its curriculum. This entails identifying skills, such as writing and critical thinking, and enhancing them with assignments of increasing complexity and rigor over as students progress in the major/minor. The major set of core courses is supplemented by electives so that students can customize their learning experience. All students engage in experiential learning by completing a clinical placement or research with a faculty mentor. The nine full-time faculty all have the Ph.D. and represent all major areas of psychology, including neuroscience and clinical, cognitive, social and developmental psychology. Besides teaching and research, the faculty view advising as an important part of their work. All psychology students complete a series of tasks designed to help them reflect on their education and development; these tasks then become a porfolio used to direct conversations with each studentÕs advisor. Augustana students complete Senior Inquiry, a focused, topical capstone project that draws from the studentÕs comprehensive learning experience and demonstrates benefit to a community. In the psychology department, students develop a research proposal and complete a research project, concluding with a formal oral presentation of results. Students typically work in small groups with a faculty member to design, conduct and analyze a research project. In fall 2008, the newly renovated Emmy Carlsson Evald Hall opened as a spectacular academic building for the departments of psychology, education, accounting, business administration and economics. The building houses smart classrooms, offices, computer labs and study areas, as well as the Great Room for gatherings and a large veranda with a view towards the Mississippi River. Outside the classroom Many students of psychology participate in Psychology Club and/or are members of AugustanaÕs chapter of Psi Chi, the national honor society in psychology. In all, Augustana offers more than 150 student organizations and interest groups on campus. Augustana participates in several undergraduate, graduate and professional research conferences and encourages students to present their research as part of their professional development. Examples include the Tristate Undergraduate Psychology Conference; the annual convention of the Midwestern Psychological Association; Midbrains: The Undergraduate Neuroscience Conference of the Upper Midwest; and the Undergraduate Research Symposium in the Biological Sciences and Psychology held by the Midstates Consortium for Math and Science. Future goals Many of AugustanaÕs psychology majors continue with graduate study in psychology, while others go on to law school, medical school, physical or occupational therapy, and even business or social service agencies. Because psychology as a discipline informs so many fields, the opportunities for graduates are wide openÑespecially combined with a strong foundation in the liberal arts and sciences.

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