Joining a Research Team and Independent Research

SPU offers two distinct research experiences. To enroll for 2361 or 4970, see the descriptions below, speak with a faculty research advisor, complete the document Undergraduate Research Contract with your faculty research advisor and turn the contract in to Dr. Baine Craft.
School of Psychology, Family, and Community Laboratories doorway

“Research Experience in Psychology” (PSY  2361)

You will typically start out as a research team member by taking “Research Experience in Psychology” (PSY 2361) credits (one credit equals three hour per week commitment). Most researchers require that students commit to taking three credits and commit to two or more quarters. Research team tasks vary from project to project. Tasks include library literature reviews, data entry, coding participant behavior, conducting experiments, data analysis, and more. These valuable experiences are a good resume builder and also give you a window on a potential future career in psychology.

“Independent Research” (PSY 4970)

The School of Psychology, Family, and Community encourages you not only to participate and assist in the research of faculty members, but also to engage in your own independent research projects.

A special course designation (PSY 4970) has been set aside for this purpose. The prerequisites are PSY 1180, PSY 2360 or equivalent, and PSY 3588. In independent research, you carry out empirical research under the supervision of a psychology faculty member and synthesize the findings in a written research report. The objective is to apply skills in research methods and data analysis. Course credit is variable up to a maximum of three credits per term, and the course may be repeated for up to nine credits. This opportunity is open to junior and senior psychology majors.

Independent research is a highly valuable experience for undergraduates. Optimally, your findings will be presented as posters at local or national research conferences in psychology.

For more information on any of these opportunities, contact faculty directly or Dr. Brittany Tausen, Director of Undergraduate Research, as soon as possible.