Psychology is an empirical and STEM discipline which relies on data to answer questions about the brain, mind, and behavior. We encourage all of our majors to get involved in the wonders of research and the generation of new knowledge. To fully explore your interests in psychology, the Department of Psychology at ASU has a number of activities that are specifically designed to encourage and support honors students in Barrett.
An Honors Thesis in Psychology is expected to be a project of original empirical research that adds to knowledge in the discipline. Students in the honors program complete theses on a wide range of topics using a range of methodologies and the projects evolve from a blend of student interest and faculty expertise. The Department recommends that Barrett students participate in the Psychology Honors Sequence.
HONORS THESIS SEQUENCE
We offer a structured, intensive sequence for advanced students to help pursue an empirically-based Honors Thesis in Psychology. The Honors Thesis Sequence is the core of the psychology honors program. Beginning each January, the sequence spans one calendar year and consists of a two-semester sequence which is offered Spring and Fall. The seminar helps provide structured support for the cohort of students who are working on their theses with Psychology faculty. Seminar activities include professional tool skills in writing and defending a thesis and preparation for applications to graduate or professional schools. Doing a thesis in psychology is also excellent preparation for any number of professional roles because of its analytic, scientific, and communicative demands.
Enrollment in the sequence is limited with applications welcomed from all qualified, well-prepared psychology majors. Expectations for student preparation are more fully described in the program brochure and Honors Thesis Application. Applications for the Psychology Honors Thesis Seminar are due in mid-November for admission to the sequence in the January.
As described in the application materials, if a student applies to complete a Psychology Honors Thesis outside the Honors Sequence, they have the same expectations for preparation and committee structure as for students applying to the sequence, and they should used the application document to receive permission to enroll using the PSY prefix. Alternative honors projects can be completed using the prefix of HON.
The department offers a small number of sections of some courses that are designed for honors students. These are smaller, separate seminar courses that are limited to honors students or by instructor permission (footnote 19 courses). When available, we particularly recommend that you seek out an honors section of Statistics (PSY 231 instead of PSY 230), as well as enrollment in the honors section of PSY 351 (Social Psychology) which is periodically offered.
In the thesis sequence, you will be immersed in a research project that you have designed so it is essential that you acquire firsthand research experience in preparation for the thesis sequence. Research opportunities abound through our department's labs and you will undoubtedly find an ongoing study that will suit your inquisitive nature across the field of psychology including research in behavioral neuroscience, clinical psych, cognitive science, developmental psych, quantitative methods or social psych.
Currently available research opportunities can be found here. If you don't see a research lab that quite matches your interests, visit our Research Lab pages and don't hesitate to directly contact the faculty member who directs the lab's research projects. Course credit (PSY 399, 499) is available for students who serve as research assistants in various psychology labs and many labs accept volunteer research assistants.