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Washington State University Factsheets

Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology (Experimental)

Faculty working with Students: 32
Students: 29
Students receiving assistantships or scholarships: 96.55%
Priority deadline:
  • Fall December 1
Campus:
  • Pullman: Yes
Tests required:
  • GRE Quantitative
  • GRE Verbal
  • GRE Analytical

Degree Description:

Students can matriculate in Pullman or Vancouver.  The doctoral program in experimental psychology at Washington State University is designed to produce highly skilled, innovative, and productive experimental psychologists in terms of research and teaching. Each student will build his/her program of study around one or more specialty areas.  Graduates will be highly knowledgeable about their specialty areas, have a strong background in general experimental psychology, be able to identify significant research problems, be conversant with a wide variety of strategies for generating and testing hypotheses that emerge from these problems, and be able to effectively communicate these ideas.  It is expected that graduates will leave Washington State University well equipped to become successful professionals in competitive research and teaching positions in academia, as well as competitive research or applied positions in government and industry.

Admission Requirements:

To merit consideration for the Experimental Program, the applicant must have completed at least 18 credits in Psychology and earned at least a 3.00 cumulative GPA.  Applicants with less than these numbers will not be considered for admission regardless of circumstances.

For those who meet the above requirement, evaluation of the application is based on: undergraduate GPA (3.0 minimum); graduate GPA (if any); GRE scores (subject test is not required-Verbal plus Quantitative score usually averages around: If took GRE prior to August 1, 2011, score = 1160; If took GRE after August 1, 2011, score = 312.); transcripts; letters of recommendation; clinical, research and/or teaching experience; the variety and difficulty of coursework completed, with the expectation being that the student has completed a large number of upper-division courses both within and outside of the major; extracurricular activities and jobs related to psychology; and a demonstrated ability to function independently and responsibly.

The department actively recruits students from cultural groups that have been under-represented in professional psychology.  To be considered for admission to the Department of Psychology’s Graduate Programs, all of your completed application materials must be received by our December 1st deadline.

Student Learning Outcomes:

All graduates will be able to:

 

  1. To produce highly skilled, ethical, creative, and productive research psychologists in one or more specialty areas, the program aims to provide a variety of experiences that will help  students to:
    • Become independent, self-motivated, ethical researchers with the ability to recognize problems in their field of expertise and formulate solutions to the problems.
    • Develop a comprehensive knowledge of previous and current research in their field of expertise.
    • Generate viable questions and identify significant research problems within their field of expertise, and be conversant with a wide variety of strategies for generating  and testing hypotheses that emerge from these questions/problems.
    • Apply sound research methods to problems in their field of expertise and describe the methods effectively.
    • Perform statistical analyses of research data and present the results in a way that makes clear sense of the data and conclusions to be drawn.
    • Discuss the solution to the research problem or the support or lack of support for the hypothesis in a way that effectively describes the contribution of the research  to the area of study.
    • Communicate information clearly and effectively in written and oral form according to professional standards.
    • Achieve a mastery of knowledge in the general field of experimental psychology and the highest level of expertise in a specific, defined area of this field.
    • Develop a general knowledge of different psychological methods, analyses, and data presentation tools to best answer a research question and convey this  information clearly
  2. To produce highly skilled, ethical, creative, and effective instructors capable of teaching general psychology and/or teaching in one or more specialty areas of psychology, the  program aims to provide a variety of experiences that will help students to
    • Become independent, self-motivated, ethical teachers with the ability to utilize appropriate teaching techniques and technologies in order to develop effective and  engaging lecture material, class activities, and assignments relevant to the class being offered.
    • Communicate information clearly and effectively in oral and written form and create a positive learning environment that encourages student understanding and  utilization of the information presented.
    • Develop effective quizzes and examinations to successfully evaluate learning in a manner that is fair to all students enrolled in the class.
  3. To enable students to become successful professionals in preparation for competitive research and teaching positions in academia, as well as research or applied positions in  government and industry, the program aims to provide a variety of experiences that will help students to:
    • Achieve professional competency.
    • Present research to local, regional, national, and audiences through publications in professional (peer-reviewed) journals and conference posters/papers.
    • Participate in professional organizations, becoming members, attending meetings, and taking leadership roles where appropriate.
    • Broaden their professional foundations through activities such as teaching, fellowships, and grant applications.
    • Secure employment

Student Opportunities:

The Experimental Psychology program emphasizes several major specialty areas: Biological, Cognition, Health, Industrial/Organizational, and Social.  The specialty areas provide a broad intellectual context in which specific interests in that area can be pursued.

Career Opportunities:

College professor, statistician; applied research scientist; consultant

Career Placements:

Professorships/faculty positions:  St. Michaels College, VT; Colorado State, Pueblo; U of Colorado, Colorado Springs; University of Great Falls, MT; Washington State University, Tri-Cities; Washington State University, Pullman (3); Washington State University, Spokane (2); MacMurray College; Port Angeles College; SE Oklahoma State; Lincoln Land College.

Post-doctoral Research Associate:  Vanderbilt University; Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth; University British Columbia; Research Associate Sleep and Performance Research Center, WSU, Spokane; CUNY in New York City; Wright Patterson Air Force Base (3); US Navy; NASA, internship with American Psychological Association; WSU Spokane; UCSF School of Medicine; Dartmouth School of Medicine.

Industry/Administration:  Senior biostatistician, Division of Hospital Medicine, Children’s Hospital, Los Angeles; Assistant Director Child and Family Research Unit, WSU Extension, statistician for military.

Faculty Members:

Barry, Christopher, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Self-perception (e.g., narcissism, self-esteem) and personality features in children and adolescents as they relate to youth delinquency and aggression, as well as the association of social media behavior with self-perception and adolescent mental health.

Barry, Tammy, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Child externalizing behaviors
Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD)
Aggression and disruptive behavior disorders in children and adolescents

Blume, Arthur, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Burns, G Leonard, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

– Internal and external validity of sluggish cognitive tempo relative to attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder,
– Oppositional defiant disorder and callous/unemotional traits within and across cultures.

Craft, Rebecca Miriam, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Research focus on sex differences in the effects of psychoactive drugs.

Ehrlinger, Joyce Margaret, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

My research focuses on understanding the sources and consequences of inaccuracy in metacognitive as well as social judgment

Fales, Jessica, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

1) psychosocial risk and protective factors for youth with chronic pain, 2) individual and family-based cognitive-behavioral interventions for pain and 3) the impact of persistent pain on social development and functioning in adolescence.

Fournier, Lisa, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

When carrying out complex actions, we often need to momentarily suspend the execution of one action plan to execute another. We investigate how action plans are represented in working memory and how managing multiple action plans affects the execution of each plan. We combine theories of action planning, perception and memory to understand how action plans are represented, and how they interact to control behavior.

Gartstein, Maria, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Infant Temperament, Developmental Psychopathology, Cross-cultural Differences

Hinson, John M, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Cognition, Affect, Decision Making, Sleep

Jones, Kristen

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Kwon, Paul H, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Resilience to stress among individuals from stigmatized groups, particularly sexual/gender minorities and ethnic minorities.

Ladd, Benjamin, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Magnan, Renee Elizabeth, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Marcus, David, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

(a) psychopathy and other externalizing disorders; (b) interpersonal factors in psychopathology and psychotherapy; and (c) cognitive factors in health anxiety.

McLaughlin, Ryan, PhD

Serves as: co-chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

We employ a systems-level neuroanatomical approach to understand the effects of exogenous and endogenous cannabinoids on stress, emotional behavior, and cognitive functioning, and the extent to which this is altered following exposure to chronic stress, alcohol, and/or other drugs of abuse.

Morgan, Michael Monte, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Neural Mechanisms of Morphine Tolerance

Parks, Craig David, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Individual Differences in Cooperative Choice
Hostility Toward Cooperators and Collective Goods
Psychological Influences on Energy and Resource Consumption

Penningroth, Suzanna, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Probst, Tahira, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Quock, Raymond, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Pharmacology of Medical Gases in Suppression of Chronic Pain and Opiate Withdrawal
Role of Nitric Oxide in Drug-Induced Analgesia and Anxiolysis

Rangel, Bertha

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Roll, John, PhD

Serves as: co-chair or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Human behavioral pharmacology, the development and refinement of behavioral interventions for addiction and other psychiatric disorders, as well as technology transfer issues.

Schmaling, Karen B, PhD, ABPP

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

psychosocial factors in chronic illness; depressive disorders; couple/relationship factors; diversity and university faculty

Schmitter-Edgecombe, Maureen, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Clinical and Cognitive Neuropsychology, Everyday Functioning, Gerontechnology, Cognitive and Health Interventions

Scott, Walt, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Strand, Paul S., PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Child Emotional and Social Development; School Readiness

Tragesser, Sarah, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

VanDongen, Hans, Ph.D.

Serves as: co-chair or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Sleep Research

Walker, Brendan, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Molecular, genetic and epigenetic contributors to maladaptive behavioral dysregulation in alcohol dependence and neuropsychiatric disorders

Whitney, Paul Michael, PhD

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Wright, Bruce, M.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Adult psychopathology, Clinical health psychology

Contact Information:

Psychology Department