Psychology Department Honors Project
The honors project offers many advantages for students. Students interact with their faculty supervisor regularly, become more knowledgeable about the research process, and are intellectually challenged outside the classroom. Students completing the honors project will graduate with honors in psychology. This project may also satisfy part of the requirements for the University Honors Program.
Students can graduate with honors in psychology if they have an overall GPA of at least 3.50 and complete an honors project.
The honors project can usually count for honors in psychology and toward a designation from the University Honors Program, provided the student meets all the criteria for each program with the project.
The student must find a chair for their project who is a full-time faculty member in the psychology department and who is willing to supervise the project.
An honors project must be an empirical study for which the student has primary responsibility. The student should be the principal investigator, responsible for data collection, analyses, and write-up of an APA style paper. The paper should contain an abstract, an introduction section, a method section, a results section, a discussion section, and references. All measures used should be in an Appendix. Example honors projects are located in the main office of the psychology department.
All honors projects must be reviewed by UNI’s Institutional Review Board.
Students should be aware that there might be funding available for their projects through the Undergraduate Research Award.
Procedure for Completing the Project
- The student asks a faculty member to be their advisor on the project. Credit for the project will be received through the faculty advisor under course 400:193g.
- The student consults with the advisor to choose two additional faculty members to complete the honors project committee. The committee may contain one person from outside the department or all committee members may be from the psychology faculty. All committee members must be full time faculty members at UNI.
- After the honors project is completed to the satisfaction of the project advisor (this may take several drafts) the student will give the document to the committee and arrange a defense date. The committee should have at least a week, preferably two, to read the document before the defense date.
- The defense may be open to the public or for committee members only (this decision is up to the student and advisor) and involves a short presentation (12-15 minutes).
- After the committee members have asked the student questions, he/she will be asked to leave the room. The advisor and committee members will discuss whether the project is worthy of honors and whether there are other changes to be made (there always are). The student will be asked back in and told the committee’s decision. The student will then work with the committee/advisor to make any final changes.
- Once the final document is approved by the committee, the student will get (from the psychology department main office) an honors cover page and get all the committee members to sign it. The student will turn this signed form and a final copy of the honors project in to the departmental office.
- Whether the defense is public or private, the student must present the work in some public setting, such as a poster or talk at the CSBS Research Conference, at another conference (SIOP, MPA, APA, as examples), or as part of Honors Research Day.
For further information on the psychology honors project, please contact Elizabeth Lefler, 273-7637.