Questions and Answers about Psychology at DePauw
Overview: The Psychology department at DePauw University consists of faculty members representing diverse areas of Psychology such as clinical, developmental, social, industrial/organizational, learning, cognitive, and physiological. Committed to the importance of teaching, the faculty have won several teaching awards and are readily accessible to students.
- What does studying psychology involve?
- Ten courses are required for the major, including the introductory
course, courses in statistics and research methods, and a senior
research course. Various minors are available, each requiring five
courses. Students are encouraged to take substantial work (e.g., a
minor or minors) in other departments such as Sociology and
Anthropology, the physical and natural sciences, Math and Computer
Science, Economics, Communications, etc.; selection of these courses
depends on the area of interest in Psychology and the student's career
- What will a major in psychology prepare me to do?
- A student should not think of a major in Psychology as occupational
training. To function as a professional Psychologist, one must obtain
a graduate degree in the field; about ten percent of our graduates
follow this route. Another twenty percent use their degree as a
background for other graduate work, such as Law or Medicine. Thirty
percent go into business settings, and the remainder pursue a variety
of careers, often in social service areas. Students with a degree in
Psychology find employment in mental health agencies, personnel
departments, advertising agencies, financial institutions, management
trainee programs, etc.
While many Psychology majors will not enter a career in Psychology, we
believe the department's curriculum has much to offer those students.
Many of our courses offer a useful perspective on human behavior,
while others provide training in statistical analysis (including
computer use), research design, and technical report writing. The
senior research program offers opportunities for improving skills in
problem solving and in the presentation and defense of ideas. All of
these skills transfer readily to public service, business and various
- Will I get a chance to do anything hands-on in psychology while I'm at DePauw?
- Yes. We believe experience is a very good teacher as well as a means
of determining what career you want. Several courses include
laboratories or projects that give students a taste of what
Psychologists (and other professionals) do. There are also
opportunities for field experience in local public service agencies,
or to do research with a professor. Students are encouraged to arrange
at least one Winter Term in a professional setting to try out their
tentative career plans.
- How successful are psychology majors?
- This question is easiest to answer in regard to graduate school
success. DePauw is ranked fifth in the country among 867 four-year
private undergraduate institutions as a baccalaureate source of
Ph.D.'s in Psychology; in Indiana, we're only slightly behind Indiana
University and Purdue--schools twenty times larger than we are. On
campus, the department is a large source of students going to law
school. While success in other areas is difficult to measure,
interviewers from many business and agencies have made a point of
welcoming interviews with Psychology majors. If you have additional
questions, call (765) 658-4566 to talk to a psychology professor.