Department of Psychology


The Department of Psychology offers a science-based program emphasizing sound methodology and theory along with applying and testing theory against practical problems of everyday life. We offer a B.A., B.S., several concentrations, and a minor at the undergraduate level as well as a masters and Ph.D. in Human Factors/Industrial-Organizational Psychology. Our faculty also participates in the Neuroscience track of Wright State's interdisciplinary Biomedical Sciences Ph.D. program and the Integrated Applied Science and Math Ph.D. program. We cover the full range of psychology at the undergraduate level. The B.A. degree provides a broad survey of psychology as both a science and a field of practice. The B.S. degree is designed specifically to prepare you to pursue graduate work. The psychology minor is one of the most popular minors on campus. Our undergraduates have gone on to be successful in clinical and experimental psychology graduate programs, as well as in a wide range of other fields – including neuroscience, medicine, and law. Through the honors program, you can actively collaborate with faculty on research projects. You will have the opportunity to present  research at professional conferences and to co-author publications with our faculty.

The graduate program in Human Factors and Industrial/Organizational Psychology is a research-based program that offers degrees at the master’s and Ph.D. level. The master’s program with a thesis requirement feeds into the PhD program.  We also offer a course-based masters with no thesis requirement. As a graduate student, you can major in Human Factors or Industrial/Organizational Psychology . The program is designed to prepare you to pursue research careers in either academic or applied/industrial settings.

Learning Outcomes for Psychology Majors

Consistent with the learning outcomes identified by the American Psychological Association, as a Psychology Major you have learned each of the below skills.  Each skill below can be a line you add to your resume.

Knowledge of human behavior

  • Understanding of thoughts, motivations, and feelings of individuals and groups
  • Knowledge in how to assess human behavior and respond appropriately in work and non-work situations

Strong research skills

  • Ability to collect, analyze, and interpret data
  • Ability to critically evaluate published and non-published information
  • Ability to problem-solve
  • Experience in using available resources to define goals, identify problems, and develop potential solutions

Strong ethical principles

  • Familiarity with ethical principles relating to work practices
  • Familiarity with ethical principles relating to the protection of information, including how to safeguard privacy and confidentiality

Ability to communicate information effectively both verbally and in written form

  • Can communicate information in a concise and clear way
  • Can communicate technical (including statistical) information clearly to non-specialists
  • Can translate data into easily interpreted graphs and figures

Ability to work effectively in teams, both as a member and as a leader

  • Can work effectively with people from diverse backgrounds
  • Experience in taking initiative on group projects
  • Can follow directions or an established protocol
  • Responsive to positive or negative feedback

Strong self-management skills

  • Ability to define and achieve goals in unclear situations
  • Ability to develop and complete projects from idea conception through final presentation of results or work products
  • Ability to manage multiple, simultaneous demands relating to school, work, and family

Wright State 8

Action Items for Every Psychology Major

  • WS8-1: Identify and define your professional and personal goals related to psychology
  • WS8-2: Develop an elevator speech to describe your interest in psychology to others
  • WS8-3: Be a critical consumer of psychological information
  • WS8-4: Apply basic stats and research methods to real-world issues
  • WS8-5: Speak and write both clearly and persuasively
  • WS8-6: Dedicate time and talent to a professional organization (e.g. Psi Chi, Psych Club, MPA)
  • WS8-7: Complete 2-3 learning experiences (e.g. Independent research, internship, volunteer with psychology agency)
  • WS8-8: Develop professional mentors and role models

photo of debra steele-johnson Message from the Department Chair

The Department of Psychology at Wright State University is in the student success business. As excited as our faculty members are about their research in the science of psychology, they are equally excited about teaching—both undergraduate and graduate students—in the classroom and in research labs. We invite you to join us in exploring how and why people think, feel, and act in all aspects of their lives. A psychology degree helps graduates to be more effective employees (in psychology-related occupations but also occupations in many other fields, such as medicine, law, hospitality, management, and sales). A psychology degree helps graduates have better relationships with others at work and at home and have greater insights about themselves so that they can achieve their full potential. Welcome to the Department of Psychology at Wright State University.

Debra Steele-Johnson, Ph.D.