Undergraduate Research Courses (Research Based Instruction)
PSY 485, PSY 486C
PSY 485 and PSY 486C partner undergraduate students with a faculty member to work on faculty-led or student-led research projects. Conducting research provides students with skills and abilities that employers and graduate programs seek. NAU Psychology students who have completed undergraduate research experience report multiple benefits, not the least of which is preparation for graduate school and the development of specific skills employers are seeking. Above all, students’ participation in research gives them first-hand experience with how psychological knowledge is generated, enabling them to have even greater insight into the relevance of research methods and statistics to this endeavor. Further, writing, presentation, and professional development skills are also enhanced and refined with this experience.
485 (Undergraduate Research Experience)
Working with an NAU faculty member as part of their research program and/or being mentored as you conduct an independent research project, is a wonderful opportunity for NAU Psychological Sciences majors. NAU Psychology faculty researchers investigate a variety of topics, utilize a variety of research methodologies, involve diverse participant populations, and employ many kinds of research designs.
PSY 486C (Advanced Research Experience)
This course provides an opportunity for advanced work in research with a faculty member to fulfill the Psychology Capstone requirement.
Research Based Instruction Requirements Accordion Closed
- A general departmental guideline is that a student should have a 3.0 or higher GPA to participate in 485 courses.
- For PSY485 students must also have successfully completed PSY 230 (Statistics), and PSY 290, or 302W or 304W (Research Methods). If you are currently taking PSY 290, PSY 302W or PSY304W, you may apply.
- PSY486C students must have completed at least one semester of PSY485.
Course Credit and Time Commitment Accordion Closed
Only a total of 6 credit hours of individualized instruction (e.g., PSY 485, 497) can count toward the Psychology major.
Keep in mind that each credit hour of 485 carries a responsibility of approximately 3 hours of work each week. So, signing up for 1 credit hour is about 3 hours of work a week, 2 credit hours about 6 hours per week, and 3 credit hours about 9 hours per week.
Please do not pursue PSY 485 if you are unable to meet this time commitment. For students who are at the beginning of their Junior year, it is also wise to be mindful of the total number of PSY485 credits that count toward the major and plan accordingly.
PSY 485 can be a natural progression to PSY 486C.
Selection Process Accordion Closed
Selection criteria may include major, GPA, schedule, interests, commitment (some faculty prefer students make a two semester commitment), and availability (faculty mentors may require their research students be available for chunks of time throughout the week for weekly lab meeting, data collection, and other work).
We will attempt to match selected students with a faculty member who shares their interests. However, it is not always possible as there are a limited number of slots available to work on various research projects.
Please be aware that the general skills acquired in 485 may be more important in preparation for graduate school than the specific topic of research.