Top 50 Social Media Friendly Psychology Schools 2013

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You’d think psychology schools would be at the forefront when it comes to social media. After all, it’s hard to miss the way social media is changing the way people communicate and interact with one another. However, the truth is that somehow the majority of academic institutions devoted to the study of human behavior and the mind seem to have overlooked the fact that more and more students are seeking information about schools through social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube before making their decision about which school to attend. After gathering social media data on over 250 psychology schools including online and departments across the United States from Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and LinkedIn, found that less than half had Facebook accounts dedicated to the school or department of Psychology. The participation rates on other platforms are even more dismal: Only 14.7% had LinkedIn accounts, 12.4% Twitter, and 6.6% YouTube. Still, we’d like to recognize the schools that are making an effort to engage prospective, current, and even past students on social media. This list represents the top 50 psychology departments and schools in the US that are active in social media and offer some kind of postgraduate training in psychology.

To keep things fair, we prorated the scoring according to the popularity of each social media platform among the schools we investigated. The highest possible score is 100, with a maximum of 57.9 points for Facebook, 15.5 for Twitter, 8.2 for YouTube, and 18.4 for LinkedIn. If your school made the list, congratulations!

You’re doing a better job of capturing prospective students’ attention through social media than most of your competition. We encourage all schools to use the Top 50 Badge from above, on your website or blog to let the world audience know about your achievement.

#1) The Chicago School of Professional Psychology

At The Chicago School, you’ll have real-world training opportunities right from your first semester. The school has three other campuses besides the one in Chicago—two in California and one in Washington, D.C.

#2) Adler School of Professional Psychology

The Adler School is committed to training socially responsible practitioners through a focus on community engagement and social justice. The school engages the community through more than 500 local partnerships that involve students directly in the community.

#3) Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology

At MSPP, students receive ample opportunities for field experience in addition to their academic studies. The school emphasizes personal growth and social responsibility among its students.

#4) Sofia University

Formerly known as the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology, Sofia University presents a holistic approach to psychotherapy. The school attempts to connect with students on multiple levels by integrating physical, intellectual, emotional, spiritual, relational, and creative aspects into its programs.

#5) Pepperdine University

Pepperdine’s mission focuses on diversity, with strategies including: to value each student, regardless of background, experience, or perspective; to recruit a diverse body of students, faculty, and staff; and to provide solutions to diversity challenges within the community.

#6) Forest Institute

Forest offers one thing that most schools don’t: a free-standing clinic where students can gain practical, real-world experience. The Robert J. Murney Clinic in Springfield provides opportunities for students to work with actual clients, applying the techniques they have learned in the classroom.

#7) Indiana University–Bloomington

Indiana University’s Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences seeks to obtain a thorough understanding of human behavior and the brain through cutting-edge experiments in molecular neuroscience, social behavior, and other aspects of brain science.

#8) Palo Alto University

Palo Alto University provides counseling and psychotherapy to members of the community through its training clinic, the Gronowski Center. The clinic offers an opportunity for students in the university’s doctoral programs to gain experience while being supervised by licensed psychologists.

#9) Pacifica Graduate Institute

All of Pacifica’s programs are strongly influenced by depth psychology and Jungian psychology, both of which seek to find the underlying subconscious motivation for human behavior issues.

#10) Michigan School of Professional Psychology

MiSPP integrates its roots, which are based on humanistic and existential psychology, with new theories and practice to produce graduates with the knowledge and skills needed to become competent practitioners.

#11) University of California–Berkeley

The faculty of the UC Berkely Department of Psychology strives to help students improve their critical thinking skills during the course of their undergraduate or graduate education in psychology.

#12) University of Wisconsin–Madison

The UW-Madison Department of Psychology was awarded the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2002 and the American Psychological Association’s Award for Innovation in Graduate Training in 2004.

#13) University of Michigan–Ann Arbor

The six Ph.D. programs in psychology offered at U of M-Ann Arbor prepare students for careers in a variety of settings, from university teaching positions to practicing psychology in a clinic to performing psychological research at a research facility.

#14) University of Central Florida

Graduate-level psychology programs at UCF incorporate experiential learning in the form of internships, practice, and opportunities to participate in psychological research alongside faculty members who have received international recognition for the contributions they have made to the field of psychology.

#15) Institute for the Psychological Sciences

IPS is a Catholic school that seeks to integrate the church’s understanding of marriage and family relationships with a sound psychological education and clinical practice to produce graduates who are fully prepared to work with clients upon completion of the program.

#16) George Mason University

George Mason’s focus on practice-informed research is designed to ensure that the college’s research focuses on problems real people want solved, which leads naturally to the school’s other focus: research-based practice that uses the lessons learned through research to help the patients who inspired that research in the first place—and others like them.

#17) University of Texas–Austin

UT-Austin has a new building with state-of-the-art equipment and laboratories, as well as over $4 million in annual grants to support faculty research projects. Each year, members of the faculty are recognized for their contributions to psychological research.

#18) University of Illinois–Urbana-Champaign

The University of Illinois Psychology Department is made up of nine divisions: behavioral neuroscience, brain and cognition, clinical/community, cognitive, developmental, quantitative, social-personality, industrial-organizational, and visual cognition and human performance. There is also a Department of Educational Psychology within the College of Education.

#19) Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis

Psychology students at IUPUI participate in real research, sometimes even in their first year of the program. The faculty use engaging teaching methods and work with students in small groups. Collaboration with students in other disciplines is encouraged.

#20) Portland State University

The PSU Department of Psychology encourages its students to connect with their professors for career advice and to seek out opportunities to participate in faculty research projects as a research assistant.

#21) University of Notre Dame

Several faculty members in Notre Dame’s Department of Psychology hold positions as editor or associate editor at scientific journals, providing students with valuable writing and publishing opportunities while participating in important scientific research in the field of psychology.

#22) Massachusetts Institute of Technology

MIT combines the disciplines of neuroscience, biology, and psychology to attempt to answer one question: How does the brain really work? Faculty members from all three disciplines work together to study memory, cognitive development, reasoning, and other facets of brain function.

#23) Roosevelt University

The department of psychology at Roosevelt University offers programs in psychology, clinical psychology, industrial and organizational psychology, clinical psychology, and clinical child and family psychology.

#24) Arizona State University–Tempe

ASU’s Department of Psychology encourages student-faculty collaboration to complete research projects and participate in interdisciplinary projects with other groups on campus. The department offers six areas of specialization for graduate psychology students.

#25) University of Georgia

The UGA Department of Psychology offers graduate programs in behavioral and brain sciences, clinical psychology, and industrial-organizational psychology. Counseling psychology and educational psychology programs are available through the College of Education.

#26) Biola University

Rosemead offers a Christian environment that integrates scientific psychological research with biblical teachings on human behavior. Rosemead graduates are prepared to teach, research, or minister to patients in a clinical setting.

#27) Duke University

Duke University’s Department of Psychology & Neuroscience seeks to shape society through scholarship. One way it does that is through innovative research on children’s social development, obesity, memory, and other aspects of human behavior.

#28) Alliant International University

CSPP offers a wide range of programs in psychology, including master’s and certificate programs in art therapy and international immersion programs in Japan, Hong Kong, India, and Mexico.

#29) Ohio State University

Ohio State faculty members currently hold editorships, associate editorships, and editorial board positions on dozens of scientific journals related to psychology, including Psychological Review, Personality and Social Psychology Review, Psychological Methods, and Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.

#30) Temple University

The Department of Psychology at Temple University offers Ph.D. programs in brain and behavioral sciences, clinical psychology, developmental psychology, and social psychology. There is also an interdisciplinary program in developmental psychopathology.

#31) University of Colorado–Colorado Springs

UCCS tries to limit the number of Ph.D. students accepted to ensure that each student will be able to receive funding of at least $18,000 per year through a research assistant, teaching assistant, or clinical service position.

#32) University of Maryland–College Park

The University of Maryland Department of Psychology has a distinguish staff, with nearly half having received awards from external sources. A full third of the department’s faculty members have held editor or associate editor positions at scientific journals.

#33) Virginia Commonwealth University

VCU graduate students work with licensed supervisors at the Center for Psychological Services and Development. Students also have opportunities for involvement at the Clark-Hill Institute for Positive Youth Development, Center for Cultural Experiences in Prevention, and Life Skills Center.

#34) Georgia State University

The GSU Psychology Clinic provides an opportunity for graduate students to gain practical experience while serving the needs of the community. Selected students are also permitted to assist with faculty research in their professors’ laboratories.

#35) Regent University

Regent University is committed to training Christian leaders who are prepared to impact the world by providing a Christian education that incorporates sound psychological practices. Students are provided with opportunities to serve on research teams, attend special lectures, and participate in international service trips.

#36) Nova Southeastern University

The Center for Psychological Studies has recently added several optional tracks and concentrations for Ph.D. and Psy.D. students. These include clinical neuropsychology, psychology of long-term mental illness, and clinical forensic psychology, among others.

#37) Cleveland State University

The faculty of the CSU Department of Psychology includes internationally recognized experts in various disciplines. There are five specialties in the MA degree, and the department has teamed up with the University of Akron to offer a doctoral program in Adult Development and Aging.

#38) University of Hartford

The University of Hartford Department of Psychology attempts to engage students in order to impart a thorough understanding of human behavior, emotion, cognition, and social interaction. There is a strong emphasis on helping students improve their critical thinking skills.

#39) Fuller Theological Seminary

The faculty at the Fuller School of Psychology is made up of committed Christians who integrate their personal faith with psychological training and experience to give students both the academic and spiritual support they need to become competent Christian therapists, clinical psychologists, and teachers.

#40) Argosy University

The College of Psychology and Behavioral Sciences offers 20 different programs in psychology, from certificate programs for practicing professionals to doctoral degrees. Some of the specialties offered include client-centered and experiential psychotherapy, pastoral community counseling, and sport-exercise psychology.

#41) University of Oregon

At the University of Oregon, student research is central to the Psychology Department’s doctoral program. Students are expected to formulate questions and perform the necessary observation and experimentation to determine the answers.

#42) University of Utah

Ph.D. students at the University of Utah start off with a concentration in cognition and neural science, clinical psychology, developmental psychology, or social psychology, but from there the lines tend to blur. Students are encouraged to pursue interdisciplinary research projects and interests.

#43) West Texas A&M University

West Texas A&M provides opportunities for students to conduct research and gain real-life experience through service learning. Students receive one-on-one time with faculty as they learn how to apply a variety of research techniques to challenging issues.

#44) Tufts University

The Department of Psychology at Tufts has an experimental focus. Students learn to ask questions and perform research to seek out the answers. The faculty includes researchers specializing in cognition, social cognition, cognitive and affective neuroscience, developmental psychology, experimental clinical psychology, and neuroscience.

#45) LeTourneau University

Students at LeTourneau apply the principles and theories of psychology while applying Christian values and morals. The school is known for individualized attention and provides hands-on training through off-campus study programs and psychology practicums.

#46) CUNY–Queens College

CUNY’s Ph.D. program is broken up into several different specialties, including animal behavior, basic and applied social psychology, behavior analysis, behavioral and cognitive neuroscience, clinical psychology, critical social/personality psychology, environmental psychology, human development, and psychology and law.

#47) University of South Florida

The USF graduate program is divided into three sections: clinical psychology; cognition, neuroscience, & social psychology; and industrial/organizational psychology. All of these are Ph.D. programs. There is no master’s program in psychology at USF because each grad student is expected to pursue a Ph.D.

#48) Purdue University

Purdue offers six a Ph.D. in Psychological Sciences in six areas: behavioral neuroscience, clinical psychology, cognitive psychology, industrial/organizational psychology, mathematical and computational cognitive science, and social psychology. Individualized programs focused on developmental psychology or learning and memory can also be arranged.

#49) University of Alabama

At the University of Alabama, psychology students are expected to be involved in research and community outreach as well as academic learning. There are seven Ph.D. and M.A. degrees and concentrations available through the graduate program.

#50) University of the Pacific

The University of the Pacific offers a B.A. in Psychology as well as two graduate programs. The Applied Behavior Analysis Track is a master’s program that doubles as doctoral preparation. The other graduate program is a doctoral preparation track focused on improving students’ chances of acceptance in a doctoral program at another school.

If your school didn’t make the list, there’s plenty of hope for 2014 when our rankings are updated again! A quick look through the stats above will show how few psychology schools have a really powerful social media presence. Even if you’re just getting started now, you’ve got a chance at making the list next year if you really hit the ground running. Note: If your school is on the list and you notice an error in the data, please let us know.

About the Author: Ann Steele

Ann SteeleThis website is co-authored by Ann Steele, a Marriage and Family Therapist in San Diego with extensive experience with children and adolescents. Ann Steele attended American School Of Psychology & Argosy University Online. She especially enjoys using music therapy for mental and emotional well-being.

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