Mission

 

We see psychology as a broad and diverse discipline that encompasses both natural science and social science perspectives. The members of the Bryn Mawr Psychology Department believe that all areas of the discipline benefit from a scientific, experimental, and empirical approach. The department's faculty represent most of the basic areas of scientific psychology, including abnormal, biological, cognitive, developmental, animal learning, and social psychology. The Psychology Department at Bryn Mawr is in the somewhat unique position of being part of both the Division of the Natural Sciences and the Division of the Social Sciences. Thus, issues of how mind, body, and culture interact to shape human experience are central to psychological inquiry at Bryn Mawr.

This scientific orientation of the Bryn Mawr Psychology Department is best exemplified by our introductory course, Psychology 105. This course deals with Psychology as a natural science. A survey of methods, facts and principles relating to basic psychological processes. Major topic areas include neural bases of behavior, learning and motivation, psychosocial development and abnormal psychology, human cognition, cognitive development, individual differences and social psychology. Lecture three hours, laboratory four hours a week. The laboratory provides experience with contemporary methods of research on both animals and humans. (staff, Division IIL) . This course meets the natural science laboratory requirement at Bryn Mawr.

For psychology majors, the course requirements are introductory psychology (with lab), statistics, four courses at the intermediate level, three courses at the advanced level, and one senior level course. As students become more advanced, they're encouraged to develop specialized interest in one or more core areas of the discipline.

Several courses include individual research projects conducted under the supervision of faculty members and laboratory coordinators. Students who seek it can be given enormous amounts of responsibility. In fact, it's not uncommon for seniors, even juniors, to see the results of their research presented at national conferences or published in professional journals.

By the time they've completed the program, psychology majors have become skilled at scientific investigation into a wide range of problems. Their abilities are valuable not only in psychology, but also in any number of professions including medicine, law, social work, education, research and health-related fields. Because the training is so broad based, psychology majors have also had successful careers in journalism, marketing, human resources, and other professions that demand a knowledge of human behavior.