Skip to main content

Mission and Values

The Social Psychology Program was established in 1953, making it one of the longest established and best known programs in the country. The objectives for graduate training emphasize scholarly excellence in all aspects of Social Psychology. The primary aim of the program is to train students who will excel in research careers in academic or other research settings, and who will be able to conduct research on social psychological processes in laboratory and non-laboratory settings. Faculty research interests are broad and include attitudes and attitude change, decision making, social cognition, emotions, stereotyping and prejudice, interpersonal processes, and group interactions. Members of the Social Psychology Program have close associations with the Clinical, Quantitative, and Cognitive Psychology Programs, as well as other schools and departments, such as the Schools of Business, Public Health, and Journalism and Mass Communication and Departments of Philosophy, Political Science, and Sociology.

We admit graduate students who best fit the program and permit research interest to develop over time. All students are assigned to a faculty member for research supervision during their first year. Independent research, including M.A. and Ph.D. work, may follow from or complement work of faculty. Students are free to explore their own research goals throughout their training. The Social Psychology Program encourages students to be involved actively in research on more than one project and with more than one faculty at a given time. Ph.D. dissertations should be largely completed during the fourth and/or fifth year, during which time students will continue to be heavily involved in independent and collaborative research.