Department Profile

University of Illinois at Chicago

The University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), one of only 88 Carnegie level-one research universities in the nation, is the largest institution of higher learning in the Chicago area. The Department of Psychology at UIC is rated in the top 50 in the country in research productivity. In addition to a comprehensive catalogue of undergraduate courses, the department supports 5 graduate programs. There are over 30 faculty members in a department that is highly successful in attracting external funding including training grants. In recent years, our level of extramural funding (which provides support for state-of-the-art laboratories and research opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students) typically exceeds $2.5 million per annum. The campus is located minutes away from downtown Chicago, offering all the benefits and excitement of a major metropolitan area.


The Department has one of the largest number of majors of any program on the campus. Majors in both General and Applied Psychology (both BA) as well as a minor are offered. The Psychology Department has a chapter of the Psi Chi National Honor Society, as well as extensive opportunities for research experiences. The Psi Chi Chapter has won awards as the top midwest chapter in 2001 and the top chapter in the nation in 1997. Faculty have received over 60 teaching awards and annually provide over 150 independent study opportunities.


The department is committed to training the next generation of leading research scientists. Nationally and internationally recognized scholars provide first class opportunities for graduate research and education. Currently, the department supports over 100 graduate students. The Graduate Program consists of five major divisions: Biopsychology, Clinical Psychology, Cognitive Psychology, Community and Prevention Research, and Social Psychology. There are also opportunities for students to minor in two additional areas: Psychology and Law; and Statistics, Methods, and Measurement. Expertise in teaching is strongly promoted through the department’s teaching practicum.


The Biopsychology Division offers training in a variety of areas at the interface of Psychology and Neuroscience, providing students with an opportunity to use state-of-the-art behavioral, neurophysiological, neurochemical and neuroanatomical techniques. Current areas of faculty research include psychopharmacology, the neural bases of behavioral activation and of ingestive and sexual behaviors, the brain mechanisms underlying learning and memory, the functional organization of the prefrontal cortex and basal ganglia and the neurobiology of gustatory and visual systems. The Biopsychology Division is an integral component of the Laboratory of Integrative Neuroscience, an interdisciplinary group containing faculty from several UIC departments. Students are able to earn a Concentration in Neuroscience notation on their PhD degree by participating in extra departmental courses offered by the campus wide Committee on Neuroscience.


We offer an APA-accredited doctoral program in clinical psychology. Our mission is to educate innovative research-oriented scholars. We emphasize the integration of research and clinical work to produce leading clinical scientists who will advance theory, research, and application in areas of assessment, interventions, and the prevention of psychological and health-related problems. Within this context, practicum training provides experiences that enable students to learn empirically-based assessment and treatment approaches, as well as strategies for the prevention of behavioral problem and the promotion of health. Our educational philosophy emphasizes a scientific and socially responsible approach to clinical psychology, including a sensitivity to ethical issues as well as to gender, ethnic, and cultural diversity. We do not aim to train students for careers in private practice or full-time service delivery.


The Division of Cognitive Psychology promotes basic and applied research on human cognition and prepares students for careers in research and teaching. The faculty members’ research programs are linked through the theme of exploring complex cognitive processing, which includes the study of language, discourse processes, problem solving, memory, learning, expertise, and individual differences. Seminars are offered in several special areas, such as cognitive perspectives on individual differences, cognitive models of learning, cognition and instruction, working memory, quantitative approaches to cognition, bilingual language and memory, and reading processes. Students receive training in traditional experimental methods as well as in specialized methods such as analyzing verbal protocols and action sequences, tracking eye movements to study reading and image processing, and computer simulation.


Doctoral training in Community and Prevention Research prepares students for a variety of action research activities. Program graduates may pursue action research careers in academic settings (e.g., universities, teaching colleges) or in non-academic institutions (e.g., community-based organizations, policy institutes, governmental agencies.) The doctoral program provides training in the theories and methods of community and prevention research so as to strengthen students’ abilities in creative, critical thinking about important social issues (e.g., HIV prevention, violence against women, disabilities, the emotional intelligence of children). Experience working in community settings is a focus in both research and course work. Three guiding principles shape this program to facilitate the development of clear, incisive thinking about community issues: 1) Understanding the Societal Influences on Human Behavior, 2) Understanding Methodologies & Epistemologies of Community & Prevention Research, and 3) Developing Successful Preventive Interventions and Promoting Social Change


The social psychology PhD program at UIC trains students to become creative and productive social psychologists who can make significant contributions in both teaching and research. To meet this objective, we provide an education that includes: a broad knowledge of social psychology, a detailed understanding of some special area in social psychology, skill in teaching, expertise in quantitative methods and research design, a concern for application of theory and methods to real social problems, and a continuing involvement in research and publication on important theoretical and practical matters. We balance structured training-intensive seminars covering both classic and current theory and research as well as more specialized topics in the field-with individual flexibility to develop a program of study that best suits the individual’s interest and goals. Students also work within a mentorship model and apprentice with a faculty member on cutting edge research. Students are expected to be actively involved in either faculty-sponsored or independent supervised research continuously throughout their training. Faculty interest areas include adult attachment theory, child-witness testimony, decision making, distributive and procedural justice, defensive processing, groups processes, health psychology, personality, political psychology, prejudice, psychology and law, mentorship self-efficacy, social cognition, stereotyping and stereotype threat.

Fabricio E. Blacazar
Bette L. Bottoms
Rebecca M. Campbell
Daniel P. Cervone
Andrew R. A. Conway
Chris Fraley
Susan Goldman
Larry G. Grimm
Ben Hankin
Robert J. Jager
Jon Kassel
Christopher B. Keys
James R. Larson, Jr.
Michael W. Levine
David J. McKirnan
Bryant Marks
Robin J. Mermelstein
Robin L. Miller
Leonard S. Newman
Stellan Ohlsson
James Pellegrino
Michael Ragozzino
Gary Raney
Stephen Reilly
Olga Reyes
Stephanie Riger
Audrey J. Ruderman
Linda J. Skitka
Bonnie Spring
John Sweeney
Ed Trickett
Roger P.Weissber
Jennifer Wiley
Dave Wirtshafter



Department of Psychology
University of Illinois at Chicago
Chicago, Illinois 60612

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