What is distinctive about a psychology major at Illinois College?
The goals of the psychology department are to give students a broad background, a wide variety of concepts, self-awareness, and self-understanding. Students majoring in psychology at Illinois College will gain a solid foundation in rigorous course work, useful and practical field experiences, and exposure to research and its processes. Using these assets and experiences, students develop their knowledge skills for the understanding of behavior, especially human behavior.
What opportunities are available for students?
Membership in the Psychology Club allows students of all majors to learn about this fascinating field of study. Members share ideas about prospective jobs, careers, and field studies in psychology. They also sponsor campus events and notify students of various conferences and seminars.
Psi Chi is the psychology national honors society with the goal of stimulating, maintaining, and encouraging excellence within the field of psychology. To be considered for membership a student must:
:: Be a declared major or minor in the department of psychology
:: Have a 3.0 grade point average in psychology classes
:: Rank in the top 1/3 of his or her class
The distinctive Illinois College BreakAway program finds opportunities for students to experience different cultures, environments, and ideas through short-term, experiential learning trips. Participation in a BreakAway will deepen students' experiences in class, lab, and textbooks while taking them on an unforgettable journey.
Student/Faculty Research: Students can work directly with the Psychology faculty on research projects. Sometimes, students can step into a professor's ongoing research project. Professor Jeremy Turner's research is designed to lead to methods to help people suffering from tinnitus, or ringing in the ears. Many students have participated in his research lab. Professor Elizabeth Rellinger Zettler also collaborates with students in research every year. Her students often are invited to present their research at national conferences. Clarissa Edge ('09), Alex Spaulding ('10), and Professor Rellinger Zettler presented research at the 22nd Annual Convention of the Association for Psychological Sciences in Boston in 2010.
Field study and internship opportunities exist throughout a psychology major's college career. Recent placements have included those with Big Brothers/ Big Sisters, Pathway Services, Community Counseling, the Youth Attention Center, the Wells Center, Rape Intervention Crisis Services, and numerous other local, county, and state organizations. A student's faculty advisor and the Career Center, located in Baxter Hall, are Illinois College's main resources for matching a student's interest with their field study or internship.
Over the past few years, students have conducted research in the following areas:
:: Cognitive Styles and Learning Behaviors
:: Relationship Attachment to Parents and Peers
:: Behavior Analysis
:: Preschoolers Point of View
:: Depression and Self-injurious Behavior
:: Brain aging
John Campbell '08 was one of eight students nationwide to win a 2008 Psi Chi Award for his research paper "Psychosocial Correlates of Self-injurious Behavior Suicidality, Eating Disorders Body Dissatisfaction, and Sexual Orientation." He also presented a research project at the Annual Conference of the American Association of Suicidality in Boston.
What opportunities are available after graduation?
Illinois College psychology majors are currently employed as college professors, clinical psychologists, social workers, occupational and physical therapists, counselors, directors of counseling services, and human resource managers. Many majors choose to pursue graduate studies at universities such as Illinois State University, Ball State University, DePaul University, Boston University, University of Missouri at Saint Louis, Western Illinois University, and Vanderbilt University. They have been accepted to Doctoral and Masters programs in counseling, education, school, and experimental psychology, social work, law, and occupational and physical therapy. Graduate Programs of recent Psychology Majors.