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What makes people behave as they do? How does the human mind work? And how can we use this knowledge in today's world?

As a Union College psychology major, you will explore such questions as you engage in the scientific study of behavior and mental processes. You will enjoy small classes, enriching internship opportunities and collaboration on research with faculty.


The Department of Psychology offers a broad range of courses. After taking Psychology 100, students choose from courses in such areas as social psychology, developmental psychology, educational psychology, personality, abnormal psychology, psychotherapy, cognitive psychology, statistics, experimental methods and neuroscience.  

"My professors are so accommodating and knowledgeable that I find myself in their offices simply to pick their brains."
- Maura Driscoll

By junior year, students begin to take advanced seminars in their areas of interest. They also do independent field work and research one-on-one with their professors, both for course credit during the academic year and through paid research internships in the summer. Many students do one or more independent projects for course credit in the form of independent fieldwork, research or thesis.

There are no more than 45 students in introductory courses, 20-25 students in basic courses and 8-14 students in seminars. The department emphasizes a collegial model of learning, in which students become active participants with faculty. Each year, several students co-author published papers and/or give presentations of their work at national and regional psychology conferences. 

Special learning opportunities

Internships give students practical experience in the field. Recently, students have worked in a center for autistic children, a battered women´s shelter, advertising agencies, biofeedback clinics, employee assistance programs and residential facilities for emotionally disturbed children, and on a suicide phone line.

Others have run groups for shy teenagers at a local high school, worked in day care centers or elementary schools and consulted at local businesses.


Students often combine psychology with other majors or minors such as biology, economics, mathematics, sociology or political science. As a result, our majors go into a wide variety of fields. Many, either immediately after graduation or within a few years, enter graduate programs. Some of them enroll in professional schools for medicine, dentistry, law, education or nursing; others pursue business-related programs for master's degrees in business or health care administration.

Many majors seek advanced degrees in clinical or counseling psychology or related fields such as social work and speech pathology. Each year several majors enter graduate programs leading to the doctorate in various areas of academic psychology.

Meet some of our faculty

George Bizer

George Bizer

Ph.D., Ohio State University
Special interests: Social psychology with a focus on attitude formation and strength

Cay Anderson-Hanley

Cay Anderson-Hanley

Associate Professor
Ph.D., University at Albany, SUNY
Special interests: Clinical psychology with interests in health psychology, gerontology and clinical neuropsychology

Joshua Hart

Joshua Hart

Associate Professor
Ph.D., University of California, Davis
Special interests: Personality and social psychology, with an emphasis on processes related to close relationships, self-esteem, worldviews

Daniel Burns

Daniel Burns

Ph.D., University at Binghamton, SUNY
Special interests: Cognitive psychology with special interests in memory

After Union

Lectrice of English, Rennes, France

Psychiatric social worker, Bellevue Hospital Center

Ph.D. student in social psychology, University of Iowa

Account Executive, Indeed.com

Clinical trial coordinator, Mount Sinai Medical Center

Ed.M. student in psychological counseling, Teachers College Columbia University

Careers by field:

Life at Union outcomes graphic

     Interactive: Career paths