University of Vermont

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Department of Psychological Science

Welcome to the Department of Psychological Science

Faculty and staff in our department share a common mission: to create, evaluate, disseminate, and apply psychological knowledge and skills to understand and improve the lives of individuals, organizations, and communities.

We aspire to contribute nationally and internationally via our excellent teaching, research and clinical offerings, a student-scholar focused mentoring program, and a faculty actively engaged in research and scholarship across the domains of biobehavioral, clinical, developmental, and social psychology, as well as human behavioral psychopharmacology.

Our mission with respect to Graduate Education is to train the researchers, practitioners, and teachers of psychology who will create the future of this field and who will benefit humankind by increasing knowledge about the nature and causes of human behavior, by treating mental and emotional disorders, and by preventing such disorders.

The department expects to be an important player in the university's new Neuroscience, Behavior, and Health Spire of Excellence, which promises to bring new multidisciplinary research and educational opportunities over the next few years that will help deepen our understanding of the causes and treatment of human diseases with significant behavioral causes or components.

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Undergraduate Research Profiles

Megan Kurmin and Hannah Ward

Undergraduate psychological science majors Megan Kurmin (left) and Hannah Ward are involved in cutting-edge research investigating the body's physiological responses to stress and trauma. They are also involved in activities such as the College Peer Relationships Project and the Emergency Medicine Research Associate Program.

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Winter Blues: Lack of Sun Often Leads to Depression

Winter Blues: Lack of Sun Often Leads to Depression

Even on yet another cloudy day in Vermont, walking into Dr. Kelly Rohan's office offers a glimmer of hope. "This is not a coincidence, I take my surroundings very seriously given my line of work," Dr. Rohan said. Two windows, bright yellow walls, and stunning pictures of the Greek Islands act as a substitute to sunshine. Since 2008, she has conducted a winter blues study with nearly 200 locals impacted by SAD.

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Graduate School Discussion Panel

Graduate School Discussion Panel

The Psychology Department hosted a panel discussion regarding applying to graduate programs in psychology. Discussion topics included the following:

  • Is Graduate School for you?
  • What type of program should you apply to?
  • How can you best prepare to be admitted?

Panelists included UVM Psychology Professors Liz Pinel and Matt Price, social psychology graduate student James Hodge, and UVM Social Work Professor Susan Comerford.

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What Can I Do with a BA/BS in Psychology?

advising in psychology

Wondering what you can do with your psychology degree after you graduate? Watch a panel discussion with individuals who discuss what they were able to do with their psychology degrees after undergraduate graduation.

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Could Playing Tchaikovsky and Other Music Improve Kids’ Brains?

kids playing violins

Children who play the violin or study piano could be learning more than just Mozart. A University of Vermont College of Medicine child psychiatry team has found that musical training might also help kids focus their attention, control their emotions and diminish their anxiety.

James Hudziak, M.D., professor of psychiatry and director of the Vermont Center for Children, Youth and Families, and colleagues including Matthew Albaugh, Ph.D., and graduate student research assistant Eileen Crehan, call their study “the largest investigation of the association between playing a musical instrument and brain development.”


Psychological Science Welcomes Sylvia Perry to the Faculty

Sylvia Perry

Sylvia Perry, Ph.D, has joined the general/experimental faculty in the Department of Psychological Science. Her research investigates how individual difference factors interact with situational factors to affect intergroup contexts, educational and healthcare settings, and people's sense of belonging and psychological well-being.


Professor Perry's webpage

Experimental Psychology Graduate Student Leigh Ann Holterman Receives NSF Graduate Research Fellowship

Leigh Ann Holterman

This prestigious fellowship is awarded to graduate students who demonstrate outstanding intellectual merit and who have the potential to have a broad and significant impact in their respective fields. Holterman’s work is focused on understanding the social and physiological factors that contribute to different outcomes in the peer relationships of school-age children.


Office of Undergraduate Research Funding Opportunities

Office of Undergraduate Research

The Office of Undergraduate Research (OUR) provides several different funding opportunities for undergraduates currently enrolled at the University of Vermont. The Mini Grants provide up to $500 for research expenses. Students may use the funds to cover the costs related to research and creative projects, such as disposable /consumable media for the lab or studio, printing, specialized software, admission fees, rental of equipment, or participant incentives.


Spotlight on Research:
Matthew Price

Price lab ipad

In Matt Price's lab he has developed and evaluated a wide range of technologies including mobile applications, websites, and sensing devices to understand trauma events, how to identify who is at greatest risk for future problems, and how to best help them.


Garavan and Addiction Working Group Part of Worldwide Brain Study

Hugh Garavan

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has announced the increased funding of a global initiative to pool data about the human brain. A piece of this funding will allow Hugh Garavan, UVM associate professor of psychiatry and adjunct associate professor of psychological science, and a co-developer of the ENIGMA Addiction Working Group, to direct the meta-analyses of more than 9,000 genetic-neuroimaging datasets in an effort to understand better the biological underpinnings of addiction.


Professor Garavan's webpage

Next Up...

Full Faculty Meeting

January 28, 2015
1:30 - 3:00 pm

John Dewey Hall room 100

Department Colloquium

Chitra Raghavan, Ph.D.

John Jay College of Criminal Justice,
City University of New York

Coercive Control, Gender, and Sexual Orientation: Furthering Our Understanding of Intimate Partner Violence Across Differing Contexts

February 25, 2014
1:03 p.m.

John Dewey Hall room 314

Undergraduate Research

Last modified January 28 2015 02:55 PM

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