From cells to society, the study of psychology enables you to discover explanations for thought, feelings and behavior from different angles, using a variety of different lenses.

As an academic discipline, psychology helps you understand the human experience, including oneself and one’s interactions with others. As a psychology major, your courses will combine theory and empirical research to give you a better understanding and appreciation of the complex factors that influence observable behavior and thinking in people and other animals.

Working closely with faculty mentors, you will have the opportunity to participate in Oxy’s Summer Research Program, where you’ll present your research to peers and faculty, or you may become one of the psychology majors who have been co-authors on papers published in peer-reviewed journals. Recent student research topics range from loneliness and coping mechanisms among college students to the relationship between hunger and exercise in rats. Members of Oxy’s Thinking Lab study the building blocks of human thought—concepts—using tools from cognitive, developmental and educational psychology.

Studying psychology at Occidental is a springboard for many different careers and graduate programs. You’ll be well prepared for a career in fields such as clinical psychology, research, counseling, education, social work, medicine, forensic psychology, law and business. Other graduates have entered academia as professors at institutions such as Yale, USC, UCLA and Johns Hopkins, while others have secured positions at U.S. government agencies like the Department of Education, Department of Justice and Department of Veterans Affairs.