psychology majors students at Wheaton College looking at a computer
psychology student at Wheaton College working with lab rats


Why Study Psychology?

As a student in the Wheaton College undergraduate psychology program, you’ll learn the traditional theoretical, empirical, and applied areas of psychology and clinical psychology and gain insights into how to understand human behavior. We’ll teach you how to conduct psychological research and how to evaluate the important theories and presuppositions in psychology from a Christian perspective. You’ll be prepared to meet academic standards required for graduate work in any number of areas, including psychology, neuroscience, medicine, law, theology, etc. You’ll also be exposed to principles of human behavior that promote success in any area of life, from the job market, to parenting and beyond!

Why Study Psychology at Wheaton?

Psychology major informs you in human behavior in a way that can transform all your life endeavors, whether personal relationships, vocational direction, business relationships, or political and public policy stances. Service organizations and community agencies often prefer employees with Psychology degrees or related training.

An education in psychology is also critical preparation for professional fields in psychology such as counseling, academic research, applied research, organizational psychology, neuroscience and related fields. Many of our majors are pre-health science students who recognize that psychological education can help them be better clinicians by helping them better understand human behavior.

Conduct research with faculty from our undergraduate, masters and doctoral programs. This high-level experience is rare among liberal arts colleges and can lead to placement in prestigious summer research internships and graduate programs.

Our experienced faculty have more than 253 years of combined experience and have published 14 books and more than 120 professional articles.

  • Internships provide experiential learning to help consolidate and comprehend the material learned in our courses. They also aid decisions about the future vocational use of your psychology training.
  • At Wheaton, you’ll have the opportunity to become a member of the local chapter of Psi Chi, the International Honor Society in psychology. Psi Chi offers a variety of monetary awards for research and attending conferences, as well as educational and social activities for all psychology students throughout the school year.
  • Scandrette Lecture - This annual lecture focuses on the Integration of Psychology and Christianity. It generally takes place during the spring semester and is designed to address issues of interest to Christian psychologists.
  • Global Programs and Studies  – semester study abroad programs, summer study abroad programs, spring break co-curricular trips.

What Will I Learn?

The BA in Psychology will entail the study of the mind and behavior. A degree in psychology is excellent preparation for a variety of careers involving serving others and investigating human behavior.

Students in any major can complete a Psychology minor by taking 20 hours of undergraduate psychology courses offered by the School of Psychology, Counseling and Family Therapy.

The School of Psychology, Counseling and Family Therapy offers an undergraduate Honors Program for students who meet the academic qualifications and are approved by Psychology faculty.

The Neuroscience Certificate provides students with multidisciplinary training in the structure and function of the nervous system. It provides a strong foundation for graduate training in neuroscience or psychobiology, as well as clinical psychology, psychiatry, pharmacology, or psychiatric-mental health nursing.

The psychology programs at Wheaton College Graduate School will prepare you to become a competent mental health professional with a distinctively Christian perspective and a heart for service. We offer four graduate psychology programs:

Consult the course catalog for full listing of current courses available in this field.

Possible Careers for Psychologists

Overall employment of psychologists is projected to grow 19 percent from 2014 to 2024, much faster than the average for all occupations, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The Center for Vocation and Career will be happy to partner with you in exploring the many options available to you with this flexible major.

A psychology education may be applied to a wide variety of endeavors such as retail management, human resource management, teaching, or law enforcement.

Many community agencies (police departments, community mental health facilities, halfway houses, etc.) need people with training in psychology to work as staff or assistants. Employment also is available within psychiatric divisions of general hospitals or in mental health institutions. The Center for Vocation and Career will be happy to partner with you to explore all the career options available to you with this flexible degree.

Recent graduates have gone directly into graduate programs to pursue the following advanced degrees:
  • Doctor of Medicine (M.D.)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Clinical Psychology (Ph.D.)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Cognitive Neuroscience (Ph.D.)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Developmental Psychology (Ph.D.)
  • Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology (Psy.D.)
  • Master of Arts in Biblical Exegesis (M.A.)
  • Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling (M.A.)
  • Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy (M.A.)
  • Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.)
  • Master of Science in Industrial/Organizational Psychology (M.S.)
The most recent graduate school placements pursued:
  • Pennsylvania State University
  • Fuller Theological Seminary
  • Denver Seminary
  • Chicago School of Professional Psychology
  • University of Minnesota
  • Regent University
  • University of Washington Medical School
  • Columbia University
  • University of Chicago
  • Wright State Medical School
  • DePaul University
  • Duke University School of Law
  • Loyola University Chicago
  • Vanderbilt University
  • Georgetown School of Law
  • The Ohio State University
  • Washington University in St. Louis
  • University of Chicago School of Medicine
  • Wheaton College Graduate School
  • Harvard University
The curriculum in the School of Psychology, Counseling, and Family Therapy provided me the freedom to explore the many facets of the world of psychology, while also being able to hone in on my specific areas of interest — family psychology. The faculty are some of the best examples of servant leaders on campus. I feel prepared for the next step because of the constant encouragement from the department to chase after my goals. — Bornell Nicholson '15
My internship allowed me to experience residential treatment of addiction in teens . . . instilled in me an appreciation for the courage of those seeking recovery . . . and prepared me for my first full-time job in a community mental health organization after graduation. — James Entner '04
The research opportunities in the department were among the most helpful experiences at Wheaton for preparing me for graduate school in psychology. The opportunity to work closely with experienced faculty on interesting research sparked my interest in the field and prepared me well for where I am now. — Doug Addleman '15
Without a doubt, the faculty at Wheaton have significantly helped my development as a young psychologist. Wheaton faculty have helped foster spaces where I was encouraged to grow into my best person, to strive towards excellence, and to foster charitable communities. . . . The curriculum encouraged me to think deeply and critically about the world, and to prayerfully engage it to create growth. — Jon Tsen '16
Amy Sparks '19 Spotlight Image Square
Amy Sparks '19
PhD student in Clinical Psychology program at University of Central Florida
A Supportive Department
"What makes the psychology department at Wheaton so excellent is the many relationships you foster with professors... They always had the door open for me."
Daniel Omura '19 Spotlight Image Square
Daniel Omura '19
student at IUPUI's(Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis) addiction neuroscience PhD program
Lessons in Christian Psychology
"[The psychology department faculty and staff] gave me the tools necessary to not only be successful in the areas of psychology and neuroscience but also to navigate those fields and other life situations with nuanced Christian world view."
HyeRim Ryu '19 Spotlight Image Square
HyeRim Ryu '19
student in MS in Marriage and Family Therapy program at Northwestern University
Psychology and Philosophy
"In particular, my experience as a psychology major has helped develop my conviction that relationships, among other things, are at the core of an individual’s well-being."
Kayley Goertzen '19 Spotlight Image Square
Kayley Goertzen '19
student in the two-year Masters in Occupational Therapy program at Colorado State University
Seeking Restoration
"The professors helped me look at the world through lenses of multi-causality, hope, lament, and deep compassion."
Lindsey Freier '19 Spotlight Image Square
Lindsey Freier '19
Student in Industrial Organizational Ph.D. program at Bowling Green State University
Strong Relationships
"Wheaton professors want to invest in students as individuals, not only on an intellectual level, but also on a personal and spiritual level."