The thesis committee consists of your faculty advisor and another faculty member from the psychology department. The second committee member may be from a different department if this is relevant to the student’s thesis topic. Graduate students may not serve as advisors or committee members, although they may assist students with their research projects.
For honors students who declare Psychology as their primary major beginning May 2016 or later, the answer is yes. All psychology majors, including honors students, are now required to take Psych 392A, Junior Writing!
If you declared the Psychology major prior to May 2016, you can still substitute two Psychology Honors courses (including those that count toward the Psychology Departmental Honors requirements) for this requirement, and therefore you do not need to take a Junior Writing course.
Sometimes students cannot find sufficient 300-level and above honors courses. In this case there are several alternatives:
- Take an upper-level Five College psychology course. With a syllabus or detailed course description, a Departmental Honors advisor can let you know if the course will meet the Psychology Departmental Honors course requirement ahead of time.
- Take Psychology 365 or 580 with the optional 1-credit service learning colloquium.
- Take a 500-level (or above) psychology course at UMass. With a syllabus or detailed course description, a Departmental Honors advisor can let you know if the course will meet the Psychology Departmental Honors course requirement ahead of time.
NOTE: You cannot take an Honors Independent Study credit to add onto a regular 300-level psychology course and have it count as a Psychology Honors Course.
Look at the postings outside Tobin 503 for Undergraduate Research Assistants. Often these turn into successful thesis projects. You can also take Psych 295H, Departmental Honors Seminar (offered in the Fall only) to learn about research programs going on within the department. Another option is to look at the listing of faculty research interests and contact a faculty member who is conducting work that is of interest to you, and see that person in his or her office hours.
- Dr. Erik Cheries, Tobin 407, office hours Thursday 3:00-4:00, email
- Dr. Berni Leidner, Tobin 639, office hours Wednesday 3:00-4:00, email
- Dr. Joonkoo Park, Tobin 414, office hours Monday 10:00-11:00, email
- Dr. Rebecca Spencer, Tobin 419, office hours Monday 1:00-2:00, email
- Dr. Jeff Starns, Tobin 434, office hours Thursday 2:00-3:00, email
- Dr. Lori Astheimer, Tobin 539, hours please see advising page, email
It is usually appropriate to meet with the Honors director or an Honors Faculty advisor when you are taking Psychology 241. This course is the prerequisite for research assistantships and upper-level psychology honors courses. If you are planning to study abroad or go on exchange, you should meet with a Departmental Honors faculty advisor earlier than this in order to plan your schedule for completing the thesis.
Check the website for Commonwealth Honors College and the Departmental Honors website.
Commonwealth Honors College has some excellent scholarship opportunities. Check their website.