COVID-19 Psychological Science Updates

We recognize that these are unprecedented circumstances that require significant flexibility, grace, and compassion. The Department of Psychological Science is committed to ensuring that all students have the support to succeed in this environment. Our understanding of human behavior, and how we, and others, use evidence to critically inform our understanding of the world around us has perhaps never been so important as it is today. We are re-imagining how we teach, and how we could teach. And this work is well underway. Our faculty, staff, and students have responded to the challenge with dedication and creativity. We are energized by the chance to keep interacting with you, and to rethink how we can learn together.

This is a deeply challenging moment for all of us.  While each one of us is experiencing the challenges of this moment in a unique way, we hope we can all be there for each other as a community of supportive faculty, students, and staff.  If you have personal concerns, questions, or ideas, we want to hear from you. 

Please consider reaching out to us in one of these ways: 

  1. First, you are always welcome to contact individual faculty directly.  We are all ready to listen, to be flexible, and to help whenever we can. 
  2. Second, the student liaisons would love to hear from you, and they are ready to relay your concerns to the faculty (anonymously if you prefer).  Our student liaisons are Journey Simmons, Mirenna Scott, Tanya Shah, and Zane Chung-Mehdi.
  3. And third, we’ve established a department support line for the pandemic, where you can share any concerns or ideas, of any kind, that you’d like the faculty to be aware of. The support line also serves as a channel where you can raise personal issues, that for any reason you may not feel comfortable raising via other means.  A subcommittee of three faculty (Eric Hurley, Pat Smiley, and Shlomi Sher), have been charged with advocating for compassion and fairness, and will jointly review requests for individualized consideration and/or accommodations.  Personal matters will be kept confidential, and issues raised will be handled discreetly or brought to the larger department faculty as appropriate (depending on student request).  

 ***To contact the subcommittee via the support line, just click on the email link here: PsychSciSupportLine


Resources for Coping During COVID

Senior Thesis Announcements

Yesterday, we met as a department (faculty, staff, and student liaisons) to discuss some options for senior thesis. A few important things came out of that meeting:

1.  We are extending the thesis deadlines. Structure is important now, perhaps even more so than before, and we encourage you to work backwards from these deadlines to set additional targets and dates with your advisor (i.e., for data collection, drafts). As of today, 4/3/2020, the following deadlines apply:

  • Your FINAL thesis will be due on Monday, May 11th at 4pm
  • Presentations will be held on Friday, May 15th

2.  For this semester only, the department will accept P/NC for major requirements. This includes thesis seminar (190B) and senior thesis. The decision to pursue this option should be made in consultation with your advisor. Please note that the department will continue to evaluate P/NC policies moving forward, both in response to student feedback and in relation to college policy. College-wide decisions in the coming weeks may override department-level decisions. 

The feelings/attitudes that are shared by everyone in the department are as follows: We recognize that these are unprecedented circumstances that require significant flexibility, grace, and compassion. During the department discussion, it was clear that each and every one of your advisors is prepared to work with you to create an individual thesis plan that allows you to finish with a product that reflects all of your hard work, without sacrificing your well-being. Some of you will finish with theses that look very much like what you imagined at the beginning of the semester. Some of you will need to make small changes to make thesis feasible. And some of you will need to make significant changes to your approach or the form of your final product. We are ready and willing to work with you to adapt as needed.

We are also working to be consistent and streamline communication with you about changes as the situation evolves.