Psychology is the science of mind and behavior.

The psychology curriculum at Lawrence is well-balanced to represent the breadth of the core areas of psychology, including clinical, cognitive, developmental, health, neuroscience, personality, and social psychology. The psychology department also provides in-depth study on specific topics, such as psychopharmacology, music, language, psychopathology, adolescent development, prejudice, and emotion.

  • How the brain functions
  • How people sustain social relationships
  • How people think, remember, solve problems, and create
  • How the mind shapes behavior, and how behavior shapes the brain
  • How mental disorders develop and are best treated
  • Deciphering people’s buying habits
  • Individual social behaviors in a group setting
  • How medicine and chemicals influence behavior
  • Improving lives individually (e.g., treating psychopathologies) and collectively (e.g., addressing large scale social problems)


Life After Lawrence

Lawrentians can enjoy careers in...

Mental health, law, medicine, social work, research, economics, finance, campaign managing, counseling, psychology, consulting, education (secondary and higher education), research administration, 

Recent employers include...

Thrivent Financial, Behavioral Dimensions, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center,  Medtronic, Pima County District Attorney’s Office, Compass Health Center, The Daily Press, Regional Parkinson’s Center, AmeriCorps

Lawrentians can earn advanced degrees in...

Psychology, clinical psychology, educational psychology, business/management (MBA), English, philosophy, nursing, medicine, social work

Recent schools include...

Yale, University of Wisconsin, Marquette, University of Chicago, Iowa, Ohio State, Northwestern, Washington University


Learn to think like a researcher

Our psychology major progresses from a broad overview in year one, followed by a rigorous two-term research methods sequence along with intermediate and advanced courses, culminating in your Senior Experience project. You’ll learn to think like a researcher, generate hypotheses, conduct original research, and analyze and interpret data.


Collaborate early and often with your professors

In your Research Methods class, you will engage in original empirical projects, closely mentored by your professors, building skills for later work in independent studies and your Senior Experience. Faculty-student collaborations regularly lead to poster presentations at regional/national conferences and peer-reviewed publications with student co-authors. 


Access extensive on-campus laboratory facilities

…in neuroscience, child development, acoustical analysis, animal and human learning, social, personality, and clinical psychology.


Get clinical training

After taking a course on psychopathology, you can take a course with a laboratory focused on clinical assessment and treatment (child or adult), after which you may earn further credit through a field course or internship working with youth or adults in a community mental health setting. These opportunities help prepare you for applied work in mental health fields and for graduate school in clinical psychology. 

Components of the Major

  • Principles of Psychology
  • Research Methods I and II
  • Two courses from the following areas: psychopathology; developmental psychopathology; developmental psychology; health psychology; social psychology
  • Two courses from the following areas: cognitive psychology; learning & conditioning; psychopharmacology; brain and behavior; perception
  • Elementary Statistics or Introduction to Probability and Statistics
  • One psychology course with a diversity focus
  • One lab course is psychology
  • At least one advanced psychology course requiring a literature review
  • Senior capstone course

More than 50 psychology classes are offered through the department. Explore more psychology classes and course descriptions.

The Chandler Senior Experience

The centerpiece of the capstone experience is an original senior project—your Senior Experience—allowing you to pursue your own interests in depth, encouraging autonomy and creativity. In consultation with the faculty mentor, you will choose one of the following types of papers: a critical review of past theory and research, an original empirical study report, a theory development paper, or a paper that integrates your own applied work (e.g., in an internship) with its wider scholarly contexts.

To prepare for your Senior Experience, you will take a senior capstone course where you and your classmates will meet in small independent seminar sections supervised by a faculty mentor. You’ll meet to discuss common readings, provide constructive criticism of each other’s work, and present work in progress to your peers.

Recent Senior Experiences include:


Justice For All: Depression and Suicide in Wrongfully Convicted African American Males

Motivating the Unmotivated: Transformational Leadership Style in the Services Industry and Employees’ Job Performance

Using Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy to Treat Sexual Deviancy and Reduce Recidivism in Adult Male Sex Offenders

Cognitive and Affective Empathy in Autism: Problems and Interventions

Choosing to Wake Up on the “Right Side:” Purposeful Appreciation, Sense of Control and Subjective Well-Being