Why Choose EIU?
Numerous opportunities exist for psychology students to earn credit towards the major and graduation by assisting faculty members in various phases of research including library research, data collection, data entry, and data analyses. Advanced students are encouraged to conduct their own research project under the direction of a psychology faculty member.
All undergraduate psychology majors participate in either individual or collaborative empirical research studies when they take Research Methods (PSY 3805, which is a required component of the psychology curriculum). A number of opportunities are available for students to disseminate the results of their research endeavors. Each semester, the Department hosts a Research Methods Poster Forum where students share their PSY 3805 research findings with other students, faculty, and administrators. Also, every spring, over a dozen students participate in the annual regional Mid-America Undergraduate Psychology Research Conference (MAUPRC), of which EIU’s Psychology Department is a host school. Students travel to Indiana or Kentucky to present the results of their own research projects; there, they are joined by almost 100 other presenters from about 20 other schools in the region, representing about 5 states. They are routinely joined by about a half dozen EIU Psychology faculty.
The undergraduate internship program in psychology involves preparation for and completion of an internship in a site such as human services, human resources, child and/or adolescent services, or the criminal justice system. Academic credit for both the orientation to undergraduate internship prerequisite course (PSY 4274) and the internship itself (PSY 4275) is generic; it does not count either toward the major or toward general education requirements. The orientation course covers the “nuts and bolts” of setting up an internship, including ethical issues pertinent to the sites in which students intern, the enrollment process, the dual supervision requirement, matching interests to site, and interviewing skills relative to acquiring an intern position. In addition, some time is spent exploring the connection between the internship experience and future academic and/or occupational goals. Completion of an undergraduate internship has improved some students’ chances of admission to certain applied graduate programs. In other cases, completion of an internship has led to employment in a school-based, substance disorders treatment, domestic violence, mental health, or human resources setting upon graduation.
In the Coles County area, there is a wide range of undergraduate internship sites available to psychology students. Some of the general areas in which to intern include women’s services, children’s services, mental health, public health, hospital settings, day-treatment programs, developmental disabilities agencies, chemical dependency treatment programs, educational settings, family law and forensic settings, sexual assault victim services, and domestic violence programs. Industrial psychology sites, typically in human resource departments, are also available. On occasion, students choose to intern in other parts of the state when a summer internship is secured.
EIU Psychology Majors have a number of opportunities available to them for engaging with other students and faculty, beyond the classroom. One such opportunity is by joining the Psychology Club, available to all students, and Psi Chi (the International Honor Society in Psychology). EIU’s Psi Chi chapter has been continually active for 45 years; it allows students opportunities to interact with department faculty and other students, similarly committed to pursuing careers or graduate training in psychology-related areas.
Spring 2014 Psi Chi Inductees.