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Independent Research Opportunities

There are opportunities to acquire credit-bearing (usually PSY 370) and non-credit-bearing research assistant experience, apply for student research funds, present papers, and attend psychology conferences. Visiting faculty webpages can give you an idea of their research interests and current research projects. Also, the department maintains a subject pool for research purposes.

Our annual student research conference is jointly sponsored by the Kutztown University Chapter of Psi Chi and the Lehigh Valley Psychological Association.  Conference information can usually be found on the KU Psi Chi page.

Through the University Undergraduate Research Committee, student researchers can apply for funds to conduct research and to present their research at conferences. Students who are members of the International Psi Chi Honor Society are also eligible to apply for various research awards and grants in addition to presenting their work at the Psi Chi sessions held at EPA, APA, and APS. Finally, through the generosity of emereti faculty, the Psychology Department has the Keller-Sharp Research Fund available for student research support.

KU also has a relationship with the Research Scholars program at Lehigh Valley Hospital.  If you have an interest in obtaining research experience at LVH you must contact Dr. James Jackson: jackson@kutztown.edu. Some of these positions are fulltime paid positions during the summer; during the academic year you may be able to earn credit for PSY 305 or 370, but for course credit you will also need a supervising faculty member from KU.

PSY 370 Selected Research Topics (Independent Research) for 1-6 Credits

This course is designed to allow students to do independent research under the direction of a faculty member. The topic must be accepted by the department member with whom the student will work. PREREQUISITES: PSY 011, PSY 200 and PSY 270. May be repeated for credit, up to 6 credits.

Independent projects give students a competitive edge for entry into doctoral and master's degree programs. Undergraduate research is also a vehicle for improving critical thinking and writing skills that are valued by all employers. The specific requirements are determined by the faculty supervisor. In most cases, projects involve collecting, analyzing, and reporting original research data. In some cases, projects may consist of writing a theoretical or review paper.


In order to plan, students need to contact the faculty supervisor 2-3 months before they register for the course. In addition, the following is a list of the college and department requirements before registering for PSY 370:

1. The student must have a minimum of 12 s.h. in the discipline of the independent study.
2. The student must have a minimum QPA of 2.5 overall and within the major.
3. The student, in conjunction with the faculty member who is supervising the independent study, must prepare a project outline describing:
  1. The topic of the independent study

  2. Methodology/plan of action

  3. Equipment/resources needed

  4. Products expected of the student (e.g., paper, video, oral or poster presentation)

  5. Methods of evaluation

This outline must be submitted to the faculty supervisor, the department chair and the Dean along with the Registration form (which is available from the department secretary).

 Research Conferences

Prior KU students have attended and/or co-authored research presented at: