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School of Education, Health and Human Behavior
School of Education

Robert J. McLaughlin Honors Academy in the Undergraduate Psychology Program


Purpose of the Honors Academy
The Robert J. McLaughlin Honors Academy provides experiences for the highly motivated student that will broaden and enrich the student's perspective of psychology. We are now offering two tracks: 1) begin your thesis work over the summer and finish during the fall semester; or 2) begin your thesis work in the fall semester and finish during the spring semester.


Selection of Participants
During the fall and spring semesters, eligible students may apply to the Academy. To be eligible to apply to the Academy the following are required:

1. A declared major in psychology.
2. At least a 3.50 GPA overall and in Psychology.
3. Completed at least 6 credit hours in Psychology at SIUE.
4. A grade of 'A' in either PSYC 220 or PSYC 221 and at least a 'B' in the other of these two courses.

Interested and eligible students should contact Dr. Elizabeth McKenney, coordinator of the Honors Academy. The application form is available here in .doc format. DO NOT fill it out by hand. Please download the application, save it, and type your information into the Word document. Applications will not be accepted until the Monday following Spring Break, and are due the first Friday in April by 12:00 p.m. Please print your typed application, put it in a manila envelope, and put the completed packet in Dr. McKenney’s mailbox located in AH 0118. Dr. McKenney will look over the applications and send out acceptance (or rejection) emails shortly thereafter.

Requirements for Graduating with Psychology Honors

1. Complete the Honors' section of PSYC 494 (Capstone in Psychology). This involves developing, completing, and presenting an independent research project supervised by a faculty member.

2. Maintain a 3.5 GPA overall, and in Psychology.

3. Participate in research under faculty supervision for at least one semester (this must be done for at least 3 hours course credit under PSYCH 491 - Research in Psychology) before graduating.

4. Complete at least one semester of field study (must be done for at least 3 hours course credit under PSYC 493 - Field Study in Psychology) before graduating.

Evaluation of Academy Members
Members of the academy who successfully complete the above four steps, as well as all other requirements for graduation, will be recommended for graduation with honors in psychology. Students granted these honors will have the distinction permanently registered on their transcripts.

Recommended Courses for Academy Members

Members of psychology's honors academy are often interested in graduate study. For students planning to attend graduate school, PSYC 422 - Data Analysis with SPSS, and a technical writing course are recommended.

Recent Honors Theses

Track 1 Student Examples

Stefanie Schieber: Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: Personal Experience and Knowledge of the Disorder

Co-chairs: Drs. Gregory Everett and Christopher Rosnick

Samantha Boschert: Exposure to “Awe Inspiring” Nature and Stress Recovery

Chair: Dr. Christopher Rosnick

Track 2 Student Examples

Ashleigh Lupton: Self-Esteem and Conscientiousness as Predictors of Eating Behaviors

Chair: Dr. Eunyoe Ro

Jessica Burash: Protective Factors Against Distractions in Performance on a Math Test in College Students

Chair: Dr. Thadeus Meeks

Madison Schoen: How Parenting Styles Experienced in Youth Correlate with Adults' Resilience

Chair: Dr. Paul Rose

Anna “Nicki” Connolly: Differences in Leadership Styles between Military and Non-Military Men and Women

Chair: Dr. Joel Nadler

Kyle Shive: Meditation and Decision-Making Competency

Chair: Dr. Jonathan Pettibone

Molly Wickenhauser: Negative Life Events and Depression/Anxiety: The Roles of Intrusive Thinking, Rumination, and Gender

Chair: Dr. Christopher Rosnick

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