Most of the major problems facing the people of the world today — hunger, overpopulation, the continuing threat of war, prejudice, pollution, drug addiction — are people problems; people have created them, and it will be people who must and will find solutions to them. Psychology, as the scientific study of mind and behavior, will help provide the answers to many of these pressing problems.
Psychology’s attempt to understand the human condition takes many approaches. Some psychologists study brain chemistry and its relation to behavior, while others study the behavior of individuals in groups (for example, in a religious cult). Still others are engaged in providing counseling or psychotherapy to people who are mentally ill or who are having difficulty in coping with the demands of life. With a faculty of 34 individuals, all of whom hold doctoral degrees, the department is able to offer a program of study which provides a solid foundation in the general concepts and methods of psychology, as well as courses and programs for students in many of the more specialized areas of this large and exciting field.
The Department of Psychology has limited the number of credits required for a major in psychology so that students may develop minors or a second major in another department. The core program in general psychology is designed to ensure that all majors develop a sound basic background in psychology which will provide effective preparation for advanced study as well as contribute significantly to a liberal education.
A very important kind of learning takes place when students become personally involved in psychological research. Students are encouraged to become active participants in their own research projects and/or to cooperate with a faculty member in his or her ongoing research. It is also recommended that students seek participation in one of the available off-campus field experiences which are available.
In addition to its undergraduate-degree programs, the department also offers three graduate programs, an MS in experimental psychology with an optional specialization in measurement, evaluation, and statistical analysis (MESA); an MS in clinical mental health counseling; and an MEd in school counseling. Complete descriptions of these programs may be found in the Graduate School section of this catalog.
JAMES M. GRAHAM (2006) Chair and Professor. BA, Purdue University; MA, Pepperdine University; PhD, Texas A&M University.
CHRISTINA A. BYRNE (1997) Associate Professor. BS, Virginia Commonwealth University; MS, PhD, University of Georgia.
JEFFREY B. CARROLL (2012) Associate Professor. BS, PhD, University of British Columbia.
ANNA C. CIAO (2014) Associate Professor. BA, Trinity University; MA, PhD, University of Hawaii-Mánoa.
ALEXANDER M. CZOPP (2008) Professor BA, St. Mary’s College of Maryland, MS, PhD, University of Kentucky.
BRIANNA C. DELKER (2017) Assistant Professor. BA, Columbia University; MS, PhD, University of Oregon.
JENNIFER DEVENPORT (2003) Associate Professor. BA, Boise State University; MS, PhD, Florida International University; MLS, University of Nebraska.
TINA DU ROCHER SCHUDLICH (2006) Professor. BA, University of Michigan; MA, PhD, University of Notre Dame.
ANNE A. FAST (2018) Assistant Professor. BA, Providence College; MS, University of Washington-Seattle; PhD, University of Washington-Seattle.
JANET M. FINLAY (1999) Associate Professor. BS, University of Victoria; PhD, University of British Columbia.
ANTONYA M. GONZALEZ (2018) Assistant Professor. AB, Washington University in St. Louis, MA, PhD, University of British Columbia.
JEFFREY W. GRIMM (2001) Professor. BA, Whitman College; MS, PhD, Washington State University.
DIANA GRUMAN (2003) Associate Professor. BA, Whitman College; MEd, Western Washington University; PhD, University of Washington.
TODD HASKELL (2006) Associate Professor. BA, Dartmouth College; PhD, University of Southern California.
IRA E. HYMAN, JR. (1991) Professor. BA, Duke University; MA, PhD, Emory University.
KELLY J. JANTZEN (2007) Professor. BA, PhD, Simon Fraser University.
JOSHUA S. KAPLAN (2018) Assistant Professor. BA, Colorado College; PhD, Oregon Health & Science University.
JEFF KING (2007) Professor. BA, University of Oklahoma; MS, PhD, Pennsylvania State University.
BARBARA J. LEHMAN (2005) Professor. BA, Drew University; MA, PhD, Claremont Graduate University.
KRISTI M. LEMM (2000) Professor. BA, Columbia University; MS, PhD, Yale University.
BRENT S. MALLINCKRODT (2018) Professor. BA, University of Missouri; MA, PhD, University of Maryland.
MICHAEL J. MANA (1999) Associate Professor. BS, Washington State University; MA, PhD, University of British Columbia.
JENNIFER E. MCCABE (2019) Assistant Professor. BA, Gonzaga University; Phd, University of Iowa.
KATE C. McLEAN (2007) Professor. BA, Mills College; PhD, University of California-Santa Cruz.
ANNE RIGGS (2016) Assistant Professor. BA, University of California at Berkeley; MS, PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison.
JACQUELINE ROSE (2008) Assistant Professor. BS, University of Calgary; MA, Queen’s University; PhD, University of British Columbia.
CRISTINA SAMPAIO (2006) Professor. PhD, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
DAVID N. SATTLER (2000) Professor. BA, San Diego State University; MA, PhD, Michigan State University.
CHRISTIE K. NAPA SCOLLON (2018) Associate Professor. BA, MA, Southern Methodist University; PhD, University of Illinois.
AARON J. SMITH (2017) Assistant Professor. BA, MA, PhD, University of New Mexico.
SHAUN M. SOWELL (2018) Assistant Professor. BA, MA, University of Alaska Fairbanks; PhD, University of Louisville.
LAWRENCE A. SYMONS (2000) Associate Professor. BA, MA, University of British Columbia; PhD, University of Western Ontario.
JOSEPH E. TRIMBLE (1978) Distinguished University Professor. BA, Waynesburg College; MA, University of New Hampshire; PhD, University of Oklahoma; RF, Radcliffe Institute, Harvard University.
Psychology is a highly impacted major, with the number of fully qualified students interested in the major exceeding the available seats. The Department of Psychology is deeply committed to student access to a quality education and seeks to maximize students’ access to the psychology major, while limiting wait times and maintaining a high quality of education and a reasonable time to degree.
To become a psychology major, students must first declare the psychology pre-major. Because current student interest outstrips available resources, completion of the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission to the pre-major. Rather, students will be accepted on a space-available basis using the process outlined below. Once students have been accepted to the psychology pre-major, they may enroll in PSY 301. Students are fully admitted to the psychology major following the successful completion of PSY 301 and the other major requirements.
- Minimum Requirements: Students intending to declare a major in psychology must first apply to the psychology pre-major. In order to apply, students must meet the following minimum requirements. Note that meeting these requirements does not guarantee admission to the Psychology pre-major; admission to the pre-major is granted on a space-available basis:
- Completion (including classes currently enrolled in) of at least 90 credits
- At least 20 of those credits must be in psychology, including
- PSY 101 and three courses from PSY 210, 220, 230, 240 and 250, or transfer credit for those courses, as indicated on the Transfer Equivalency Report
- At least 5 credits taken at Western
- Achieved a Western GPA (based on at least 12 credits) of 2.60 or higher. In the absence of a Western GPA, a GPA of 2.60 or higher from an equivalent four-year institution (based on at least 12 credits) or a cumulative GPA from a completed Associates degree may substitute for the Western GPA.
- Applying for the pre-major: For students who have met the minimum requirements, admission to the pre-major will be determined each quarter on a space available basis after ranking candidates by GPA, from high to low. Number of admissions and GPA information from recent quarters will be posted on the Department of Psychology website at www.wwu.edu/psychology/premajor.
- The GPA used will be the highest of either:
- the student’s cumulative Western GPA (in the absence of a Western GPA, a cumulative GPA from a completed Associates degree may substitute for the Western GPA), or
- an average of the student’s grades from completed courses of PSY 210, 220, 230, 240, and 250 obtained at each of the schools attended (advanced placement classes are not included in the calculation; running start classes recorded on a community college transcript are included).
- The application to the psychology pre-major is submitted via an online portal: bit.ly/WWUPSYPre-major. The Department of Psychology website application deadlines and notification dates are posted annually.
- Students will be notified of the outcome of their well in advance of the registration Phase I for the subsequent quarter.
To declare a major in psychology, a student must have the following:
- Successfully completed or be currently enrolled in PSY 301;
- Achieved a Western GPA (based on at least 12 credits) of 2.70 or higher. A GPA of 3.0 or higher in Western Psychology courses, including PSY 301, may substitute for the overall 2.70 GPA.
Beginning of the third week of each quarter, an email is sent to students currently taking PSY 301 with instructions on how to declare the major. Professors teaching PSY 301 also make an announcement in their class. Student should declare the major prior to the Phase I date of registration for the following quarter.
In special cases, it may be possible to declare the major at other times as well (for example, you may not have the required GPA at the normal time for declaring, but you do achieve that GPA at the end of the quarter. You will then be able to declare at that time).
If you have met the requirements for declaring the major (see the section above), visit the Psychology Department office (Academic Instruction Center 434) and fill out the application for the major form.
Other Departmental Information
Students seeking to complete a BA/BS in psychology within four years should have completed an introductory psychology class (e.g., PSY 101 or a comparable course at another school) and 15 major required credits in psychology by the start of their junior year.
For concentrations leading to the Master of Education or the Master of Science degrees, see the Graduate School section of this catalog.
ProgramsUndergraduate MajorUndergraduate MinorGraduate
- Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Non-Thesis, MS
- Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Thesis, MS
- Psychology — Experimental, Thesis, MS
- School Counselor, Non-Thesis, MEd
- School Counselor, Thesis, MEd
Courses numbered X37; X97; 300, 400 are described in the University Academic Policies section of this catalog.
Courses numbered X37; X97; 300, 400, 500 are described in the University Academic Policies section of this catalog.Page: 1