“I love all aspects of teaching and learning, but my favorite moments happen in the classroom, as we unfold an idea together, layer by layer. There are moments that I like to call 'lift'-when an idea is so captivating that we are all transported, all of one mind for a moment. The sensation of being suspended by an idea together is absolutely magical! A love of learning adds such a rich dimension to life, because it makes every day full of curiosity, wonder, and discovery. More than anything else, this is what I hope each student will find at K.” - Siu-Lan Tan, Associate Professor of Psychology

Program Information

Professors: Batsell (Chair), Boatwright, Érdi, Fletcher, Gregg, Hostetter, Langeland, Liu, Perry, Tan

Psychology, broadly defined, is the study of animal and human behavior as well as human experience. The discipline involves the use of scientific methods in the discovery of facts and confirmation of theory as well as applications to problems. The major, therefore, includes a focus on the understanding and use of research skills and techniques. Psychology is a diverse field with important connections to biology, education, philosophy, and sociology. Increasingly, psychologists may be found in business, industry, education, government, and medicine, as well as in the more traditional areas of research and mental health.

Given its diversity and connections to other disciplines, psychology is a reasonable choice of major for students who seek a broad liberal arts undergraduate education. Psychology is also a practical major for those who seek careers immediately after graduation in fields where interacting with other people is primary—management, criminal justice, or human services, for example.

Psychology majors may choose to pursue advanced degrees in three general directions: one, as scientists, leading to careers in higher education or research settings; two, as practitioners, leading to roles as clinicians, school psychologists, industrial psychologists, and health psychologists; and three, as professionals in other fields such as law, medicine, and business administration.

Psychology Department News

SCORE Shows Scores Matter

TanThumb The world premier of a documentary that prominently features Kalamazoo College Professor of Psychology Siu-Lan Tan occurred at the Hamptons International Film Festival. For SCORE: A Film Music Documentary Siu-Lan was one of some 60 live interviews compiled for the … Continue reading

More in a Summer: A “Quality” Internship at MDEQ

erinThumb [By McKenna Bramble ’16] With a major in biology and a concentration in environmental studies, Kalamazoo College student Gabrielle Herin ’18 is interested in all of us – individuals and institutions alike – reducing our environmental impact. In order to … Continue reading

The Psychology of Film and TV Music

iuLanTan Thumbnail Professor of Psychology Siu-Lan Tan convened and co-chaired a symposium titled “Film, Television, and Music: Embodiment, Neurophysiology, Perception, and Cognition” on July 6, at the 14th International Conference for Music Cognition and Perception held at the Hyatt Regency in San … Continue reading

Scores Make Waves

anThumb Answer this question, “What’s the best movie you ever saw?” and chances are your answer will be accurate  for a slightly different question: “What’s the best movie you ever heard?” Professor of Psychology Siu-Lan Tan, a leading figure in the … Continue reading

Pro Voice: “You are not in her shoes.”

Throughout Winter Quarter 2016, students in the Kalamazoo College “Feminist Psychology of Women” course have interviewed a range of individuals associated with Planned Parenthood Mid and South Michigan. “ProVoice: The Abortion Monologues — You Are Not in Her Shoes,” a … Continue reading

Finding Strengths

ylaFletcherTHUMB Kalamazoo College Assistant Professor of Psychology Kyla Fletcher has been awarded a grant by the National Institute for Minority Health and Health Disparities (part of the NIH) to study African-American partner relationships and share “what goes right” in terms of … Continue reading

Does Good Need Memorable?

anThumb BuzzFeed’s Reggie Ugwu wrote an explication of a new vocal phenomenon he calls “Indie Pop Voice” (“Selena Gomez’s ’Good for You’ and the Rise of the ’Indie Pop Voice’”). The trend refers to many singers’ creative reshaping of vowel sounds. … Continue reading

Kalamazoo College alumni Annie Gough ’15 and Eric Silverstein ’14 selected as Challenge Detroit Fellows

Annie Gough ''15 Kalamazoo College alumni, Annie Gough ’15 and Eric Silverstein ’14 have been selected as two of 30 Fellows to participate in Challenge Detroit, an urban revitalization program focused on attracting and retaining talent in Detroit in an effort to spur revitalization. Gough and Silverstein were chosen … Continue reading

A Stories Story

toriesThumb “Tacos for Dragons” is just one of the many books featured in filmmaker Danny Kim’s new documentary “The Stories They Tell.” The saga of the unlikely pairing of dragons and tacos is the labor of two seemingly unlikely co-authors, one … Continue reading

Psych SIPs at MUPRC

sychMajorsThumb Five senior psychology majors presented their Senior Individualized Projects at the 28th annual Michigan Undergraduate Psychology Research Conference [MUPRC] held on the campus of Albion College. Grace Barry presented the talk “The association of narrative structure and psychological well-being in … Continue reading