As a Psychology student at New College, you will work closely with faculty who are experts in the fields of developmental psychology, social psychology, biopsychology, and cognitive psychology, plus you will develop skills related to lab and field experiments, field observations, participant interviews, data analysis, archival work, and video and audio analysis. All provide excellent preparation for graduate school and careers in the field.
With a broad range of offerings in biological, cognitive, developmental and social psychology, the Psychology AOC at New College combines the academic rigor and research emphasis you would expect from one of the nation’s top liberal arts colleges with a personalized approach that is designed to help our students learn and succeed. In fact, according to alumnae/i survey data, more than 90 percent of New College psychology students who apply to graduate school are accepted into master’s and Ph.D. programs, and many attend the nation’s top graduate institutions.
Perhaps the best feature of our Psychology program, though, is the way in which it helps sharpen your research, writing and analytic skills while building toward a capstone project (thesis) where, while working with your faculty advisor, you will examine in depth an area of special interest to you. In the past, our students have explored theories and data pertaining to such a wide range of topics as:
• How sensory processes impact people’s perception of art.
For additional examples of the broad range of research pursued by our students, visit our Senior Thesis page.
Additional benefits of the program include the opportunity to:
• Study marine mammals and lemurs.
Why are our graduates so successful? Because at New College, all of the classes in our Psychology program — from introductory courses to senior seminars and ultimately the senior thesis — are designed to be building blocks, helping you develop the skills needed to conduct advanced library and empirical research within the field. You also work closely with faculty who really get to know you, not just as a name in a class but as a person, which means they can write excellent letters of recommendation and direct you to graduate school programs and career paths that are the right fit for you. As a result, our graduates report that they enter graduate school and the workplace ready to excel and with hands-on research experience that far exceeds that of their peers from other institutions.
While the career paths taken by our graduates are as varied as the individuals themselves, popular fields include academic research and teaching, animal training and conservation, clinical and counseling psychology, social work, education at both the K-12 and college levels, medicine and law.
Students studying Psychology at New College are required to complete eight specific courses within the discipline, as well as at least two advanced-level courses in psychology and the psychology senior seminar. A senior thesis is also required.
Four of the following five courses must be taken:
A laboratory course in one of the following areas:
2 Advanced Psychology Electives
Other Recommended Courses:
Here’s a list of recent course offerings in Psychology, arranged by subfields:
Introductory Psychology Seminar: Animal Thinking and Communication
Introductory Psychology Seminar: Behavior in Social Context
Introductory Psychology Seminar: Memory Development
Introductory Psychology Seminar: The Sensory World of Animals
Introductory Psychology Seminar: Social Influence
Introduction to Statistics
Research Methods in Psychology
Psychology Senior Seminar
Animal Behavior Processes Laboratory
Sensation and Perception
Advanced Seminar in Experimental Psychology: Dolphin Behavior, Cognition, and Communication
Laboratory in Comparative Cognition
Cross-Cultural Perspectives in Child Development
Special Topics in Language Development
Laboratory in Developmental Psychology
Lab in Social Psychology
Psychology of Religion
Self and Identity
Stigma and Prejudice
Lab in Social and Personality Psychology
For a complete list of courses, click here.
Julia Skapik, ’01, spent a year at the FDA performing viral and vaccine neurovirulence research following her graduation from New College with a joint AOC in Psychology and Biology. Following that, she earned her MPH and MD from the Johns Hopkins Schools of Medicine and Public Health and completed her residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, where she is currently a clinical instructor. In September 2011, she was named as an AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow by the National Science Foundation. She is also the author of the chapter “Psychotic Disorders, Severe Mental Illness, and HIV Infection” in the Comprehensive Textbook of AIDS Psychiatry and was an editor and author of the sixth edition of the review book First Aid for Step 2 CK and the fourth edition of First Aid for the Wards. She previously served as Health Policy Action Committee chair for the American Medical Student Association and is a Christine Mirzayan Science and Technology Policy Graduate Fellow.
New College is proud of our many Psychology graduates. Here’s a sampling of what some of them are up to today:
• Debborah Colbert is the vice president of conservation and science at the Association of Zoos & Aquariums in Washington, D.C. Previously, she was the manatee care and training coordinator at Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium in Sarasota, Florida.
• Erin Hannon is an assistant professor of psychology at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV). She is the director of the UNLV Music Lab on Auditory Cognition and Development.
• Kimberly Jean Kroflich works for the State Attorney’s office in Brevard County, with special emphasis on the legal needs of children.
• Jill Lany is an assistant professor of psychology at the University of Notre Dame who specializes in early cognitive development with a focus on how infants learn words and grammatical patterns.
• Robert Lecusay is a research associate at the Laboratory of Comparative Human Cognition at University of California, San Diego.
• Alicia Thompson is the author of the novel Psych Major Syndrome.
• Melissa Williams is vice president for learning at the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago.
Sample of Graduate Schools Attended by NCF Students in Psychology
• Johns Hopkins Schools of Medicine and Public Health
|Each academic experience builds toward your senior thesis project. It’s required for graduation, and our students tell us that while it’s demanding, it’s also one of the most rewarding experiences of their lives. Here are some thesis projects in Psychology:
“Thinking about Thinking: Metacognition in Dolphins” by Judith Lobo
“Behavioral Lateralization in the Florida Manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris)” by Kara Tyler
“The Extent to Which Biologocal and Sociocultural Factors Account for Differences Between the Sexes in Humor Type Preference” by Emily Acle
“Relationships among Alexithymia, Altruism, and Interpersonal Trust” by Felix Acuna
“Stigma Against People with Depression, It’s Effect on Test Performance, and Role Models’ Influence on This Effect” by Katya Ariano
“What Are You Looking For? The Associations of Attachment and Romantic Relationship Ideals with Attraction” by Cheryl Askey
“Terror Management and Humor: Can Viewing a Cartoon About Death Reduce Death Concerns?” by Alisabeth Ayars
“My Dog Is Better Than Yours: An Examination of The Pain Attenuating Properties Associated With Exposure To a Familiar Dog, an Unfamiliar Dog, and a Plant” by Emma Jane Ballantine
“Grit and Graduation: A Meta-Thesis” by M. Faith Benamy
“Curiosity may not have Killed the Cat After All: The Potential Relationship Between Self-esteem, Self-compassion, and Curiosity” by Elizabeth Brewer
“Talking Back: Effects of Training Session Occurrence on Captive Dolphin Vocal Behavior” by Jennie Caskey
“Crossing the Threshold: An Examination of the Duration of Self-Regulatory Tasks within the Ego Depletion Paradigm” by Kelsey Cooke
“State Attachment, Anxiety Sensitivity, and Drinking Motives: The Effect of Priming State Attachment on Anxiety Sensitivity and Drinking Motives” by Corey Kennedy Costello
“What’s With the Flower Boys? Comparing Korean and American Perceptions of Femininity and Masculinity” by Rebecca Alice Furlow
“Empathy Enhancement in Text Based Computer Mediated Communication” by Sivens J. Glaude
“The Effects of Type-Face on Sarcasm Comprehension” by Joseph Winfield Juneau Haslam
“I Am Us: Overlapping Mental Representations of Self and Community” by Sarah Hernandez
“An Exploration of Facebook’s Ability to Buffer the Negative Effects of Cyberostracism on Self-Esteem” by Heather Jaffe
“Insight And Perception: The Relationship Between Diversity Attitudes and Perceptions of Campus Diversity” by Destiny S. Lyals
“The Effect of Diverted Disclosure on Cognitive Processing with Applications to Sexual Assault” by Katherine Howard Oglesby
“Owner Perceptions of Dog Emotions” by Kirstin Ohlsen
“Impacts of Foraging Behavior of Initial and Terminal Phase Sparisoma Viride on a Caribbean Coral Reef” by Samantha Ortiz
“Love Shouldn’t Hurt: How Battered Women Cope with Intimate Partner Violence and its Effects on Subjective Stress” by Paula Pulmano
“Using Drawing Tasks to Study Body Perception” by Andrew Fishman
“Counteracting Symptoms of Emotional Suppression with Artistic Expression” byKatherine Evarts
“Don’t Speak, I Know Just What You’re Saying: Gender Role Orientation, Self-Silencing, and Relationship Satisfaction” by Francesca Leyva
“What is Queer-Ness? A Prototype Analysis of Queer Identity” by Molly Swift
“Attitudes About Hispanics and Spanish-English Bilingual Education” by Rachel Barnard
“Parents’ Preference for Gender Stereotypes in Children’s Books” by Carla Abad
“Exchange of Self for others: Associations Between Social Awareness, Self-Compassion, and Satisfaction in Social Relationships” by Meg deCordre’
“The Role of Touch in the Theatergoing Experience of Visually-Impaired Adults” by Sarah Gregory
“Associations Between Self-Monitoring and the Creation of Humorous Advertisements” by Jeff Guertin
“Underwater Vibrotactile Frequency Detection in human Hairy and Glabrous Skin” by Jordan Martin
“I am Punk: A Prototype Analysis of Identity in the Punk Music Subculture” by Noelle Neemeh
“Bais in the Courtroom: The Effects of Attorney attractiveness and Gender on Juror Decisions” by Keytin Palmer
“Gaining a Better Understanding of Love and Relationships” by Stephanie Parrish
“Art in a Granzfeld: The Role of Context in the Perception of Art” by Mary Powell
“Self-Esteem and Interpersonal Perception” by Lior Reischer
“The role of Computer-Based Content in Cooperative, Competitive, and Individualistic Decision-Making” by Rachel Scherer
“Execitive Control and Language Mode in Monoligual and Biligual Young Adults” by Emma Ward
“Qualities of offline and online friendships: Jealousy and Relationship Satisfaction” by Catherine Zakoske
“Adult Literacy Practices and Associated Motivational Needs” by Kathryn A. Klein
“Domestic Cats: Coat Color and Personality, Do Calicos Really Have Catitude?” by Jacqueline Munera
“An Exploratory Investigation of Sleep Disturbance in the Pathogenesis of Depression” by Kristen Linnae Ponte
“Human Chemosensation and Wine Expertise: The Biology of Wine Tasting” by Laura Johanna Weinkle
“The Hard Reduction: Psychology and Neuroscience” by Caleb Kaufman
“Sight Singing with Individualized Real -Time Feedback: The Efficacy of Singing Coach in the Music Theory Classroom” by D’Ariel Barnard
“Shop ‘Til You Drop: A Working Memory Training Program for Older Adults to Improve Memory in a Grocery Shopping Transfer Task” by Melanie Bauer
“Photography and Self – Awareness: The Act of Being Photographed” by Elizabeth Bossom
“Creative Control: An Explanation of Species-Specific Enrichment in Mongoose Lemurs (Eulemur Mongoz) and Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops Truncatus)” by Hannah Brown
“The Effect of Interest Level on Susceptibility to Unconscious Nonverbal Mimicry” by Amanda Caizza
“Birth Order and Family Size as Indicators of Social Competence” by Anna MaryFolkers
“Introducing “Mathematics”: The Effectiveness of a Structured Educational Tool with Playful Aspects” by Elaine S. Fritschie
“The Mu Rhythm: An Electrophysiological Measure of Motor, Emotional, and Cognitive Empathy” by Robert Joseph Gougelet
“Gender Role Instillment Upon Children Through the Use of Children’s Literature” by Maria Andrea Siles
“Academic Satisfaction in College and Relatedness to Instructors, Parents, and Peers” by Rita Yelverton
“Effect of Props on Preschool Children’s Communicative Interactions in Scripted Play Events” by Gabrielle Yvonne deFiebre
“This Is Your Brain on Mindfulness: Dispositional Mindfulness and Neural Activity in Attentional Networks” by Natalie Paul
“Association of Commonly Studied Personality Variables with the Stress and Immune Response” by Benjamin Stork
“Fashion, Feminism, and Fascism: The New Woman and the Crisis of Modernity in France and Germany, 1920-1945.” by Kinley Paisley
“Synesthesia: An Exploration of the Behavior, Biology, and Individuality of Cross-Modal Experiences” by Blaine Farmer
“Social Learning in Cats” by Emily Brockmeier
“Do Children Who Know More, Care More? Environmental Knowledge and Scope of Justice” by Jennifer Dyer
“Self-Monitoring and Social Desirability as Factors Associated with Discrepancy Between Indicated Type and True Type on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator” by Katherine Filippi
“Who is Responsible for an Accident? Defensive Attributions and the Self-Determination Theory” by Kelly Maher
“Phonation Production and Synchrony in the Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)” by Caitlin M. O’Brien
“Depression: Experiences, Perceptions and Attitudes” by Krisztina Schlessel
“Mother-Child Reminiscing: Support for Socialization of Affect Regulation?” by Rebecca Weaver
“Synchrony Between a Mother-Calf Pair of Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)” by Wendi Fellner
“Basic Husbandry Training of Two West Indian Manatees (Trichechus manatus latirostris)” by Deborah Colbert
|Students studying Psychology at New College enjoy a wealth of on and off-campus resources to augment their academic program. These include discipline-specific laboratories, advanced software for data analysis, internship and off-campus research opportunities designed to provide real-world, hands-on experience in the field, and study abroad.
The New College Comparative Cognition Laboratory (NCCCL) offers resources for students to analyze animal vocalizations and behavior. Although the focus of the lab is on dolphins, students have also studied other species (e.g., manatees, lemurs, and birds) using the lab’s specialized acoustic processing software and video analysis equipment.
In addition to the Developmental/Social Laboratory and the NCCCL, Psychology students also have access to a new Social Sciences Research Laboratory in our Academic Center and to a small computer laboratory in Bonseigneur House (the Psychology Building), as well as to general use computer labs on campus.
Advanced Software for Data Analysis
Internships and Off-Campus Research