PsychologyThe Department of Psychology features a faculty with diverse training, expertise and teaching styles. The Psychology major is consistently one of the most popular majors at AU. This flexible major provides solid preparation for a variety of careers and graduate programs, and is easily combined as a double major with complementary areas such as Criminal Justice or Christian Ministries.
Psychology is the study of behavior and mental processes. It crosses many disciplines including biology, sociology and religion. Students elect to major or minor in psychology to prepare for working with people. By the time they graduate from the program, they will be prepared for graduate work in psychiatric social work, professional training in clinical or counseling psychology, working with families, personnel work in industry, pre-ministry, careers in the not-for-profit sector, working with handicapped individuals, or for careers in teaching and research.
The Department of Psychology occupies eight lab rooms, a reading room, and four offices in Hartung Hall, which is a state-of-the-art science building. A specially constructed room with one-way glass is available for observing or small group interactions. The John Roys Reading Room in the psychology department is available for study, seminars, or reference materials.
Recent graduates have acquired positions in halfway houses for people with mental illnesses, detention centers for juvenile delinquents, homes for people with mental or physical disabilities, ministry organizations, volunteer organizations, and general business. They have also continued their studies in graduate programs across the country.
Independent-study opportunities are available, including the chance to do original research and/or be involved in leading or facilitating assertiveness skills training programs for a variety of personnel, including Girl Scouts, individuals in an abuse shelter, or college leaders. AU students involved in the psychology program have had their work published in professional journals and have presented papers at professional meetings. To gain valuable experience, students are encouraged to work part time in the psychology department, to work for local mental-health facilities, and to pursue relevant summer employment or internships.