Graduate Bulletin

Spring 2021

Facilities of the Department of Psychology

Faculty in each area maintain active laboratories with state-of-the-art equipment for research and graduate training.  Faculty, students, and postdoctoral associates have access to the Psychology Department's large volunteer pool of human subjects.  In addition, the program supports the development of teaching and professional skills.

The  Clinical  Program's research interests of the core faculty center on depressive disorders (child, adolescent, adult), anxiety disorders (child, adolescent, adult), autism spectrum disorders, personality, child maltreatment, close relationship functioning (e.g., discord and aggression among couples, romantic competence among adolescents and adults, relationship education), lesbian, gay, and bisexual issues (among youth and adults), emotion regulation processes (e.g., cognitive, interpersonal, neurobiological), and emotion and attention processes in normal and pathological conditions. Faculty labs are equipped with state-of-the-art facilities including equipment for observational research (e.g.,digital cameras and DVDs), psychophysiological equipment (e.g., heart rate, blood pressure, respiratory rate,) as well as electrophysiology (EEG, ERP). The clinical area also utilizes a number of other on- and off-campus facilities for clinical research and training, including the Social, Cognitive, and Affective Neuroscience Center for neuroimaging, and the Krasner Psychological Center, a training, research, and service unit that provides psychological services and consultation to the community and as well as a site for graduate practica. Within the Krasner Psychological Center, an Anxiety Disorders Clinic provides assessment and treatment of various anxiety disorders such as obsessive-compulsive disorder and social anxiety disorder. The University Marital Therapy Clinic provides therapy for couples and individuals in the community who are experiencing relationship difficulties. Personnel at the Marital Clinic also provide forensic assessments for child custody and therapeutic visitation for the Supreme and Family Courts of Suffolk County, NY. Affiliations have been established with the University’s Health Sciences Center, numerous other local hospitals, and local public schools.

The  Cognitive Science  Program offers broad training in cognitive science through its affiliations with the Departments of Linguistics and Computer Science, and in cognitive neuroscience, in cooperation with the Integrative Neuroscience Program, the Department of Neurobiology and Behavior, and Brookhaven National Laboratory's Medical Department. Laboratory facilities include a state-of-the-art research dedicated 3T fMRI scanner housed in our new NSF-funded SCAN (Social, Cognitive, and Affective Neuroscience) center, electrophysiology (EEG, ERP) labs, multiple eyetrackers for psycholinguistics and visual cognition studies, rooms equipped to study electronic communication and human-computer interaction, sound-isolated chambers for perception and psycholinguistics experiments, multimedia workstations for presenting stimuli and collecting data, and computer-controlled choice stations for testing human and non-human subjects. Faculty research is particularly strong in language, memory, attention, visual cognition, perception, and decision making. Most research programs are funded by agencies such as the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, and the Department of Defense.

The  Integrative Neuroscience  Program provides opportunities to learn the neurobiology, genetics, anatomy, physiology and neurochemistry underlying a comprehensive array of behaviors and human disorders, including Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, autism and depression.  The broad range of faculty expertise within the program introduces students to social, affective, cognitive and clinical neuroscience at all levels of analysis, from molecular/genetic to human brain imaging and behavioral and cognitive testing  and at all ages across the lifespan.  In addition to gaining core knowledge, students also develop the cutting edge research expertise which is essential to successful careers in neuroscience. Students have access to facilities for histological and neuroanatomical analysis, behavioral analysis, and animal models of human diseases, molecular and genetic analysis, human electrophysiology and fMRI imaging.  Students have the opportunity for research training with core faculty or with affiliated faculty in the Departments of Neurobiology, Psychiatry and Neurology as well as at Cold Spring Harbor Labs. The curriculum supports the development of broad content knowledge, while research training provides development of skill expertise. In addition, the program supports the development of teaching and professional skills.

The  Social and Health  Program offers predoctoral training for students who are interested in a research career in social psychology, health psychology, or the interface between these two disciplines (e.g., application of social psychological theory to health problems). Areas of particular strength in the faculty’s research in social psychology include the study of attachment, close relationships, and social rejection in adults and children; social cognition; social-cognitive development; social identity, prejudice, and stereotyping; academic achievement; and the representation and processing of social experience, motivation, and self-regulation. Health psychology focuses on identifying, evaluating, and enhancing the psychosocial and behavioral factors that promote health, prevent disease, or affect adjustment to illness. Faculty research topics in health psychology include the impact of stress on health; the role of social support in dealing with health problems; coping with breast cancer; reproductive health; and behaviors that promote or impair health; and aging and health. Social and Health Area faculty have affiliations with the College of Business, Department of Psychiatry and other departments in the University, and they collaborate with researchers and clinicians in the Stony Brook School of Medicine, Dental School, and University Hospital. Students in our graduate program work collaboratively with faculty members on research projects of mutual interest. A variety of courses are offered so that students can fulfill requirements by selecting the courses that best fit their interests and needs. Students may also take courses in other departments of the university, such as Political Science, Public Health, or Women’s, Gender, and Sexual Studies. In addition, students have the opportunity to receive training in methodological and quantitative techniques such as structural equation modeling and meta-analysis and they may elect to complete a quantitative minor. Seminars are offered on topics such as career issues, teaching methods, and grant writing. Another important feature of our program is its cultural and ethnic diversity. We strive to integrate cultural and ethnic concerns into all aspects of graduate training.