Program Website: Psychology – Hiram College
The study of psychology contributes to a liberal arts education by introducing students to the scientific method and to a body of knowledge about human and animal behavior. Investigation of psychology also requires learning to compare, contrast, and integrate various theoretical perspectives using empirical evidence. Completing the requirements for a major in psychology leads to a better understanding of behavior and thought, allows insight into interdisciplinary perspectives, fosters a greater appreciation of and respect for others, stimulates intellectual curiosity, facilitates personal growth, and encourages a feeling of social responsibility. A major in psychology prepares students for a variety of post-baccalaureate pursuits. Many of our recent graduates have gone on to continue their studies in graduate school where they have specialized in areas such as behavioral neuroscience, clinical, counseling, developmental, experimental, school, industrial, or social psychology. Some have entered directly into careers such as management, advertising and marketing, human services, rehabilitation, and recreational supervision. Others have enrolled in a variety of professional programs such as law, education, rehabilitation, and social work. In short, completion of a psychology major provides the background for a variety of challenging and exciting career paths.
Another opportunity within the psychology program is to pursue a 3:2 collaborative program in social administration with Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH. If a Hiram student meets the requirements of this program and is accepted, that student would spend three full-time years at Hiram College, followed by two full-time years at Case Western Reserve University’s renowned Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences. Upon successful completion of this 3:2 program, the student would receive a Bachelor of Arts degree from Hiram College and a Master of Science in Social Administration from Case Western Reserve University. For more information about requirements, please consult with faculty in the psychology program.
Michelle Nario-Redmond, (2007) Professor of Psychology and Biomedical Humanities; Chair
B.A., University of Tulsa;
M.A., Ph.D., University of Kansas
Andrew C White, (2017) Director of the Scarborough School of Business & Communication; Assistant Professor of Psychology and Sport Management; Director of Sport Management; Chair
B.A., Ohio Wesleyan University;
M.A., University of Windsor;
Ph.D., University of Minnesota
Evan A Wilhelms, (2022) Assistant Professor of Psychology
B.S., Baldwin Wallace College;
M.A., Ph.D., Cornell University
GENERAL PSYCHOLOGY ~ This course introduces you to the scientific study of behavior. We examine the role of heredity and environment in the development of the individual. We show how motivation, emotion, learning, perception, intelligence, personality, and the developmental, social and biological bases of behavior have all been studied scientifically. We also examine the implications of psychological research and theory for contemporary problems.
WORKSHOP ~ This workshop will provide the opportunity for students to examine a special topic in Psychology. Through readings, discussions and written assignments there will be opportunities to evaluate the topic at issue. Workshops may be taken Pass/No Credit only. Students may take no more than nine workshops for credit toward graduation. Workshops can be used as elective credit only.
CAREERS IN PSYCHOLOGY ~ This course will provide students pursuing the psychology major or minor with information and skills to prepare them for careers in psychology or other related fields by using a guided approach to individual skills discovery and career exploration. Students will develop an academic plan to provide a strong base in the breadth and depth of psychology, as well as in their liberal arts coursework, and learn to market their Hiram College experience for their future career plans. Coursework includes participation in class discussions, giving presentations, conducting informational interviews, developing a resume, and completing other written assignments. Students should have at least sophomore standing and be a declared psychology major or minor.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND ANALYSIS:SM ~ This course provides a thorough introduction to the research methods, analysis techniques, and writing style used in psychological science. Topics include a review of the scientific method and ethical concerns, problems of definition, measurement, reliability and validity, descriptive and inferential statistics, experimental designs and control procedures. Students will engage in hands-on experience in how psychologists conduct human behavioral research, with an emphasis on methods, computational analyses, and the interpretation of data for a scientific and a lay audience. Also listed as BIOL 21000.
Core: Experimental Scientific Method
PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSESSMENT:ES ~ The purpose of this course is to introduce the field of psychological assessment and testing. Throughout the course we will explore the history, roles, and issues involved in the field of psychological assessment. In particular, we will cover principles of psychometrics and statistics, the applications of assessment in various contexts, including a review of various types of psychological tests and measures, and finally an examination of the social and ethical issues involved in psychological assessment. We will cover both theoretical principles involved in the field of testing, as well as an examination of particular tests. While we will cover several tests, this course will not prepare you to actually administer psychological tests, which requires additional training or certification/licensure.
Core: Meaning/Ethics/Soc Responsibil
PERSONALITY ~ This course introduces students to the scientific study of personality, which is one of the most "molar" areas of psychology that examines how the major psychological processes of perception, motivation/emotion, thoughts, and memory of the self are integrated and interact together to shape our lives. This course takes a systems approach to examine (1) the various components of our personalities (e.g., our motives, abilities, traits, conscious resources, and models of self/others/world; (2) how those components are organized structurally; and (3) how those components are organized dynamically in terms of their interaction among themselves, with the outside world, and in regulating thinking and actions about the self. This course begins by reviewing what personality is, both as a system and as a field of science that continues to evolve; we then examine the purpose of different research designs and multiple measurement techniques and theoretical perspectives. The various parts of personality reveal the joint influence of our abilities and will, and our motives, emotions, and models of self and of others. Finally, we will examine how the parts are integrated and organized dynamically to influence the regulation of both conscious and unconscious behaviors.
PSYCHOLOGY AND FILM:ES ~ Multiple films attempt to depict topics from psychology, including developmental disorders, mental disorders, and historical figures in psychology. How accurate are these depictions? What are the ethical consequences following inaccurate portrayals of these topics in psychology? In this course students will learn concepts from the literature of psychology and use them to analyze and critique films presented in class.
Core: Meaning/Ethics/Soc Responsibil
PSYCHOLOGY OF CREATIVITY ~ Creativity is a process at the heart of innovation and progress. It has been written about for thousands of years, yet only in the last century has it been a topic of scientific inquiry. This course will examine the process and products of creativity from an interdisciplinary perspective. By studying creative individuals from the arts, sciences, and business, we will look for common features of creative individuals across fields. Furthermore, we will address related questions that interest current scholars: Can we “teach” creativity? What brain regions are implicated in creative processes? Are their different types of creativity? Why is there such historical tension between creative individuals and “mainstream” society? And finally, is there a link between creativity and madness. Prerequisites: PSYC 10100 or ENTR 20510 or instructor permission.
SPORT, EXERCISE, AND PERFORMANCE PSYCHOLOGY ~ Sport, exercise, and performance psychology encompasses the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors of people in performance contexts such as competitive sport, fitness, injury rehabilitation, theater, music, surgery, public speaking, and more. This course adopts a foundations approach to theory and research, while still addressing the practical application of mental skills training to performers. Course content will be relevant to professional practice among coaches, medical professionals, athletes, business professionals, musicians, politicians, and many others.
ANIMAL COGNITION ~ This course explores historical and current topics in animal cognition. Do animals think? Are they able to communicate, use tools, and learn about concepts such as time? Students will critically examine primary and secondary literature in the field of animal and comparative cognition, and integrate this information for class discussions. There is at least one field trip planned to an area zoo and/or humane shelter. This field trip will be the basis for a research paper to be completed by the end of the course.
DEVELOPMENT ACROSS THE LIFE SPAN ~ This course is designed for the student who wishes to gain a broad perspective on the entire range of human development, from conception to old age. We explore the common principles that describe developmental changes across all ages, as well as the differences in thought, emotion, and behavior from age to age. The theories of Piaget and Erikson are particularly useful to understand both the commonalities as well as the differences.
ZAMBIA: A DEVELOPING COUNTRY ~ This course is designed to prepare students for the subsequent 3-week experiential examination of comparative health and conservation issues from social, cultural, ethical, political, policy, educational, and environmental perspectives in the developing country of Zambia (INTD 25000). There will be comparison and contrast with these issues affecting health and conservation in the U.S. as a developed country. Prerequisite: instructor approval.
HEALTH PSYCHOLOGY ~ How you ever wondered if emotional stress increases your chances of getting or prolonging the common cold? Can psychological factors prolong life for those recovering from serious illnesses such as cancer or diabetes? Do homeopathic remedies offer any health benefits? Health psychologists study questions such as these and apply their findings in health settings. As scientist-practitioners, health psychologists bring science to bear on questions regarding lifestyle and psychosocial contributions to health and illness, especially health promotion, recovery from illness, and managing chronic illness. In addition to reading empirical literature, students will use their own health as the framework for understanding and applying the principles of health psychology. We will also spend some time tying what we learn in class to bigger picture issues ranging from health and wellness practices at Hiram to public policy on a national level.
DRUGS & BEHAVIOR ~ This course will examine the biological mechanisms of actions and behavioral effects of the major groups of psychotropic drugs. We will discuss factors that may underlie drug use and some of the controversies surrounding drugs and society.
SEMINAR ~ From time to time, the program will offer special topics in psychology, based on particular interests of program members or the availability of visiting faculty.
INDEPENDENT STUDY ~ Students may arrange to pursue topics of individual interest upon making an individual agreement with a faculty member who will develop a syllabus with a specific learning outcomes/expectations specified. Students may work under the supervision of faculty, independently, or in small teams assisting faculty with their research projects. Course level depends on the level of supervision required. this course is offered pass/no credit only. One 3-4 credit hour independent study can be counted toward the psychology major.
Prerequisite: PSYC 21000 (may be taken concurrently)
FIELD EXPERIENCE ~ In a placement at a social service, mental health, research, or childcare agency, the student will participate in the activities of the agency, supervised by the on-campus faculty supervisor as well as an agency supervisor. In a journal, students will reflect upon their experiences. In a formal paper, students will analyze and discuss the organizational structures and staff-client relationships. We expect that students who enroll in Field Experience (PSYC 29800) will have minimal background in psychology (perhaps only PSYC 10100) and/or want to observe at an agency that does not provide training or allow undergraduates direct interaction with clients. We expect that students who enroll in an internship (PSYC 49800) will have a more extensive background in the social sciences and will be trained by the agency to work with clients. Prior approval from the program faculty and permission of instructor are required. Students must arrange an internship prior to registration for the term in which they plan to complete their hours at the agency. Hours worked at the agency may be completed during any term. Forty (40) hours of work at the site of the internship agency are the equivalent of one (1) credit hour. Only one 3-4 credit hour independent study can be counted toward the psychology major. This course is offered pass/no credit only.
OZ:THE PRE-INVASION ~ Throughout Australia’s history, its residents, as well as the land and surrounding ocean, have been subject to various “invasions” – actual, metaphorical, and perceived. These include: invasive animal and plant species forever changing the landscape of the continent; environmental and human threats to the Great Barrier Reef; native lands being removed from the Aboriginal people; and most recently, changes in political policies and military presence in response to China’s increased influence and probable future dominance in the oceanic region. In many ways, Australia’s history reflects our American history, but with notable differences in sociocultural and political responses. This course serves as a pre-requisite to INTD 30130 “Invading Oz,” a study-abroad trip to Australia offered in the subsequent 3-week term and begins students’ examination of the similarities and differences between Australia and the United States. This course is cross-listed with POLS 30100.
Corequisite: INTD 30130
Kiwi Contentment (New Zealand Prequel) ~ Survey studies and cultural analyses indicate that in recent years New Zealanders routinely rate as being among the happiest people in the world. In this course, we will conduct an interdisciplinary examination of human happiness at two levels of analysis: individual and societal. We have identified the following key themes, around which the course will revolve: 1) the pivotal role of fairness in determining the effectiveness of the relationship between individual and societal wealth and happiness; 2) the role of social connections in determining the happiness of individuals, as well as that of their country; and 3) the relationship between individual/self-focus, materialism, and happiness. We will examine how New Zealand differs from the United States in these respects, despite having substantial overlap in key values: both are wealthy, democratic, market-oriented societies that cherish the concept of freedom, yet the two countries have taken very different trajectories since the late 1970s. This course serves as a prerequisite to INTD 30150 “Going to the Godzone,” a study-abroad trip to New Zealand offered in the subsequent 3-week term and begins students’ examination of the similarities and differences between New Zealand and the United States.
LEARINING THEORY METHODS AND APPLICATION ~ This course will begin with the findings and theories in operant and classical conditioning. Application of these techniques and other complex forms of learning will be applied to issues in learning and retention. Applied lecture activities and class projects will emphasize experimental design and data interpretation. This course may only be taken as 4 credit hours.
EXCEPTIONALITY:UD ~ This course examines the philosophical, historical, legal, and ethical foundations of services for individuals with special needs. The characteristics, etiology, and socio-psychological implications of exceptional conditions, including specific disabilities, gifts, and talents, are explored. Categorical and noncategorical classification systems; assessment, diagnosis, and evaluation; and educational adaptations and assistive technologies, are included. Participants will explore the impact on families of disabilities at different life stages, from infancy and early childhood to adolescence and adulthood. Also listed as EDUC 32400.
Core: Understanding Diversity Home
BIOPSYCHOLOGY ~ This course provides a solid background concerning the physiological bases of behavior, beginning with an examination of neuroanatomy and neurophysiology. Additionally, this course will review classic and current research concerning the somatosensory system, motivation, emotion, learning, memory, and psychopathology. This course will also provide insight and opportunities to engage in research methods used by biopsychologists. Applied lecture activities focus on the relations between physiology and behavior and will prepare students for further independent work. This course may only be taken as 4 credit hours.
SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY ~ This course examines psychological theory and research about how individuals think, feel, and behave in social situations. The course begins with an overview of the field of social psychology and details the scientific methods used to research social psychological questions. The course proceeds with a comprehensive survey of the primary domains of the discipline, beginning with social perception: how we understand ourselves, other individuals, and social groups. Next to be considered is social influence: how attitudes form and change, and the processes of persuasion, conformity, and group dynamics. Finally, the course will review social relations: the factors involved in human aggression, helping behavior, and interpersonal attraction. Throughout this class, cultural perspectives and intersections will be integrated with cognitive neuroscience, highlighting applications to current events and real problems with policy implications for health, business decisions, and the law.
ABNORMAL PSYCHOLOGY ~ This course is a survey of psychological disorders. For each disorder, we will review its characteristics, prevalence, risk factors, as well as various theoretical perspectives and the treatments they recommend. We will also explore other big-picture themes, including 1) the ways in which aspects of each disorder are part of normal, everyday experience, 2) the role culture plays in the manifestation of mental disorders, and 3) the application of what is learned in this class to real life.
INTRODUCTION TO COUNSELING AND CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGY:ES ~ In this course, students learn about various conceptualizations used in therapy and counseling, and gain experience with approaches designed to help individuals identify and pursue their goals and values. Through readings and videos, students will be introduced to various theoretical approaches, as well as some of the techniques that are used by proponents of each counseling theory. Students will also learn basic counseling skills, including hands-on practice with fellow students, and with friends/family members outside of class. We will also discuss ethical issues surrounding self-disclosure and confidentiality in both personal and professional settings. All students must show active participation, openness to constructive criticism, and self-reflection, including recording oneself doing interviews and watching the recordings.
Core: Meaning/Ethics/Soc Responsibil
DRUG USE AND ABUSE ~ This course explores current drug issues through psychological, biological, medical, social, historical, and cultural perspectives. This course discusses individual classes of drugs and their effects from the level of the single neuron to the person as a member of society, as well as ethical and legal issues related to substance use and abuse. Students will critically examine primary and secondary literature in the field of neuropsychopharmacology and integrate this information for class discussions and individual and group research.
SPECIAL TOPICS ~
STEREOTYPING AND PREJUDICE:UD ~ This course examines social psychological theory and primary research exploring the origins, functions, judgment, and behavioral consequences of stereotyping and prejudice in addition to measurement strategies. We will review studies that focus on how stereotypes and prejudice influence the social perceiver, and those that focus on the targets of prejudice, their reactions to stigma, stereotype threat, and discrimination. The course culminates with mechanisms for reducing prejudice, including theories that have led to recent interventions, criticisms of alternative approaches, and current directions in the field.
Core: Understanding Diversity Home
SENIOR SEMINAR ~ This course is the capstone course for psychology majors. In the senior seminar class, senior psychology majors are required to pull together what they have learned in their previous classes and use this integrating experience to demonstrate they are capable of doing what they should be able to do when they graduate from the program (e.g., think critically, perform research, and write in APA style). This process serves a dual purpose. First, it provides psychology majors with a final opportunity to practice and demonstrate the skills they will need to succeed after graduation on the job or in graduate school. Second, it provides the psychology program faculty with a final opportunity to assess whether or not it has been successful in its mission to produce competent psychology majors.
Corequisite: PSYC 48010
INTEGRATED RESEARCH IN PSYCHOLOGY ~ This course is designed to accompany the capstone course for psychology majors. Senior psychology majors are required to develop a research question from within a narrowed scope of inquiry as set by the instructor of the Integrated Research in Psychology (IRP) section in which they are enrolled. This course will guide them through topic development, written drafts of sections of their paper and a final paper. Students will also work closely with their IRP to develop a poster for a public presentation at the conclusion of the course.
Corequisite: PSYC 48000
INDEPENDENT RESEARCH~ Students may arrange to pursue topics of individual interest upon making an individual agreement with a faculty member who will develop a syllabus with specific learning outcomes/expectations specified. Students may work under the supervision of faculty, independently, or in small teams assisting faculty with their research projects. Course level depends on the level of supervision required. This course is offered pass/no credit only. Only one 3-4 credit hour independent study can be counted toward the psychology major.
INTERNSHIP ~ In a placement at a social service, mental health, research, or childcare agency, the student will participate in the activities of the agency, supervised by the on-campus faculty supervisor as well as an agency supervisor. In a journal, students will reflect upon their experiences. In a formal paper, students will analyze and discuss the organizational structures and staff-client relationships. We expect that students who enroll in Field Experience (PSYC 29800) will have minimal background in psychology (perhaps only PSYC 10100) and/or want to observe at an agency that does not provide training or allow undergraduates direct interaction with clients. We expect that students who enroll in an internship (PSYC 49800) will have a more extensive background in the social sciences and will be trained by the agency to work with clients. Prior approval from the program faculty and permission of instructor are required. Students must arrange an internship prior to registration for the term in which they plan to complete their hours at the agency. Hours worked at the agency may be completed during any term. Forty (40) hours of work at the site of the internship agency are the equivalent of one (1) credit hour. This course is offered pass/no credit only.