The Master's degree is in experimental psychology with possible emphases in engineering psychology, cognitive psychology, social psychology, biopsychology, or developmental psychology. To obtain a Master's degree, students must take a minimum of 36 credit hours with at least 15 credit hours in Psychology and at least 15 credit hours in courses numbered 500 or above. Students are also required to (1) complete a first year project; (2) take three of seven core courses (engineering, cognitive, perception, learning, biopsychology, developmental, and social); (3) take three required courses in quantitative skills (typically, the three courses in the Psychology Department that cover basic statistics, experimental design and ANOVA, and multiple regression); and (4) complete a research thesis. The department considers the master's degree to be a legitimate terminal goal for many students; most students who receive a master's degree in the program successfully find employment in a degree-relevant job.
At the Ph.D. level, students can select one of three emphases: engineering psychology, cognitive psychology, and social psychology. The engineering psychology emphasis is within the realm of human factors. The research conducted by the engineering psychology faculty has a strong orientation towards human-computer interaction. Other faculty interests in engineering psychology include information visualization, team cognition, training, and information retrieval. Students completing a degree in engineering psychology typically take positions in the computer industry working in the design and evaluation of user interfaces. The cognitive program has a joint emphasis on basic and applied research. As a consequence of the applied focus, several faculty members hold joint appointments in both cognitive and engineering psychology. In addition, students completing their masters and Ph.D.'s in cognitive psychology at NMSU often take applied jobs in usability engineering in the computer and telecommunications industries. Faculty interests in cognitive psychology include language processing, cognitive and perceptual development, and prospective memory. Like the cognitive program, the social psychology program has a focus on both basic and applied research. Social faculty research interests include discrimination and bias, social cognition, attitude formation, cultural and group influences on behavior, and gender. Recent social graduates have taken positions in both academia and industry.
Financial aid for graduate students is awarded on the basis of potential for research and teaching in the form of an assistantship. Up to 20 hrs. may be awarded for each of the fall and spring semesters. Up to 40 hrs. may be awarded over the summer. Students interested in assistantships should complete the Financial Aid Form and send it to the psychology department with other application materials.
To request more information contact Dr. Laura Madson.
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