Undergraduate Research in Psychology

There are many research opportunities available to undergraduate students in the Department of Psychology. Research can be conducted on a volunteer basis, or students can earn academic credit for their research by registering for a course that includes an independent research component.

These courses provide students with valuable learning experiences that are quite different from those found in the typical classroom. In these courses, students typically read background literature in a specific area, learn methods and experimental techniques associated with that area and assist in the collection, summary and analysis of data. To receive academic credit for their research activities, students must be registered for PSYC 397, 493, 494 or 499. PSYC 397 is pass/fail only. Registration in these courses requires the permission of the faculty member with whom the student will be working. Students completing PSYC 397 may also be interested in continuing their studies in the form of an Honors thesis (PSYC 499). Students interested in doing an Honors thesis should speak to their faculty supervisor about this possibility.


How can I get involved in research?

  1. Learn about the research being conducted in the department by looking at the table below. Click on the faculty member's name to go to their profile and learn more about their research.
  2. Contact faculty members doing research that interests you to determine what opportunities are available for a given semester. Permission to conduct research as a part of these courses typically involves an application and an interview with the faculty member who is in charge of the laboratory.
  3. Fill out an Independent Study form (pdf, 331kb) (also found in the advising office S4-230B) and get it signed by the faculty member and return it to the advising office to be registered.


Binghamton's Undergraduate Research Center

The links on this page will help undergraduates learn more about the opportunities in their field for research, creative activity, and scholarly investigation. Undergraduates can explore the opportunities offered here at Binghamton, read profiles of our student and faculty researchers, artists and scholars, and learn how to become involved.

Information about sources of funding for undergraduate research is available also.


Ongoing Research in Psychology

Psychology Faculty Area Research Interests
Chris Bishop BNS Neuroplasticity, Parkinson's disease and psychopharmacology
Nicole Cameron BNS Neuroendocrinology, female reproductive function, maternal care, sexual behavior
Meredith Coles Clinical Nature and treatment of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and social phobia in adults and children.
Cynthia Connine Cognitive Psycholinguistics, spoken word recognition, speech perception, phonological representations in reading, the relationship between lexical representations for spoken and written words, bi-lingual speech perception, non-literal language processing, cross-language processing (Chinese, German, Spanish).
Terrence Deak BNS Response and adaptation to psychologically stressful events
Patricia M. Di Lorenzo BNS Neurophysiology of the chemical senses
Peter J. Donovick Clinical Human neuropsychology, traumatic brain injury, biopsychology, gene-environment coaction
Peter C. Gerhardstein Cognitive Infant visual perception and attention, and their influence on infant memory
Brandon Gibb Clinical Information-processing biases (attention, interpretation, and memory) that increase risk for depression; development and impact of these biases; developmental psychopathology, psychiatric genetics; integrating cognitive and genetic models of depression risk.
Jennifer Gillis Clinical Assessment and treatment issues for individuals with autism spectrum disorders.
Albrecht Infhoff Cognitive Word recognition; attention and eye movement control in reading; eye-voice coordination; subvocal speech
Matthew Johnson Clinical Changes in marriages and family functioning.
Celia Klin Cognitive cognitive processes that are involved in using and understanding language.
Kenneth Kurtz Cognitive Concepts and category learning, similarity and analogy, neural network models of cognition, knowledge representation, education and transfer of learning, machine learning
Sarah Laszlo Cognitive Computational modeling and human electrophysiology, language comprehension, reading development
Mark F. Lenzenweger Clinical Schizophrenia and schizotypy, severe personality disorders, neurobiological bases of psychopathology, personality, and temperament, Behavioral and quantitative genetics, Classification and psychiatric diagnosis (e.g., DSM systems), quantitative/statistical methods, longitudinal research methodology, psychometric theory and objective personality assessment.
Richard Mattson Clinical Improve the conceptualization and assessment of satisfaction in relationships and explore the causes and consequences of dysfunctional relationship communication.
Ralph Miller BNS; Cognitive Information processing in animals, evolutionary psychology
Vladimir Miskovic Cognitive; Clinical Affective neuroscience, emotion-cognition interactions, aversive conditioning, fear and anxiety
Raymond Romanczyk Clinical Autism Spectrum Disorders, Attention Deficit and Learning Disabilities, Applied Behavior Analysis, Behavior Therapy, Technology Application to Human Services, Large Scale Service Delivery Systems
Lisa Savage BNS Animal models of memory disorders, psychopharmacology
Linda P. Spear BNS Developmental psychobiology, psychopharmacology
Norman E. Spear BNS; Cognitive Memory processing, developmental psychobiology
Gregory Strauss Clinical Schizophrenia; emotion regulation; the interaction between cognition and emotion; social cognition
Cyma Van Petten Cognitive Language processing, focusing on sentence comprehension and the interface between semantic processing and spoken word identification. Memory, with an emphasis on executive processes that contribute to memory and the role of prefrontal cortex.
David Werner BNS Alcohol action, tolerance, addiction, neuropsychiatric disorders, neuroplasticity, neuropharmacology, molecular genetics
Deanne Westerman Cognitive Human memory


Limits on Independent Study

Although students are strongly encouraged to enroll in one or more of these courses during their college career, formal course work is also an important component of an undergraduate education in psychology. To assure that students have a well-rounded background in psychology upon graduation, the following guidelines have been set for the amount of independent research that can be applied to the psychology major requirements:

No more than 12 credits of independent research (PSYC 395, 397, 490, 492, 493, 494 or 499) can count toward the major in psychology.
Of these, eight credits may substitute for one of the required 400-level psychology courses, and an additional four credits may count toward the psychology electives section of the science and math electives.
Additionally, Harpur College placed an overall limit on the number of independent research courses that may count toward the 126 total credits required for graduation. These limits also affect internships, teaching practica (PSYC 391) and PENR classes. Limits on Independent Research courses are explained below:

Independent Research (PSYC 395, 397, 490 and 492) - 16 credits

Internships- 8 credits

Teaching practica (PSYC 391) - 8 credits

PENR courses - 8 credits

OVERALL LIMIT (Independent Research + Internship + Teaching Practica + PENR) cannot exceed 20 credits



Students may not take more than 16 credits of Independent Research with the same faculty member.
PSYC 493 and 494 (Assessment, Intervention and Evaluation II and III) and PSYC 499 (Honors Program credits) are not counted toward Harpur's limit on Independent Research.

Last Updated: 6/18/15