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College of Liberal Arts & Education

Psychology

Detroit Mercy professor instructs psychology class

Turn Your Compassion for People into a Career
with an Undergraduate or Graduate Psychology Degree

You enjoy working with others, listening to them and want to help them through personal problems. You are fascinated by the reasons behind why people act and react to life's circumstances, and you want to understand yourself better.

Whether you are just starting out in your academic career, looking for a major, or you are looking for graduate school options, University of Detroit Mercy's Psychology program can take you from bachelor's to master's to doctorate. Detroit Mercy offers a choice of three undergraduate majors: psychology, developmental and industrial/organizational. The University also offers four graduate programs leading to advanced degrees or specialist certificate, preparing psychologists for professional practice. Close relationships with professional organizations provide you with valuable practicum internship experiences through onsite placements. The department's excellent reputation in professional communities also facilitates your employability.

The Detroit Mercy Psychology Clinic provides both a valuable community resource, serving approximately 300 individuals annually, and a clinical experience for our doctoral students under the supervision of licensed specialists.

Undergraduate Programs

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    Major - Psychology

    Degree: Bachelor of Arts
    Major: Psychology

    Psychology is the scientific study of behavior and mental processes. It differs from other fields that are concerned with the human condition in that it uses the scientific method. Psychologists attempt to understand the workings of individuals, animals and groups. Psychologists work in a variety of settings including universities and colleges, clinics and hospitals, business and industry, government agencies, law enforcement and the military. Psychology can be an academic or research discipline or an applied science.

    The psychology major is for students who intend to pursue careers in psychology. Such careers usually require at least the M.A. degree for entry-level employment. This major is designed to provide a strong foundation for graduate study.

    To obtain this undergraduate degree, the student must fulfill the requirements of the University core curriculum, the requirements for the 36-credit-hour program major and have completed a minimum of 126 credit hours. 

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    Major - Developmental Psychology

    Degree: Bachelor of Arts
    Major: Developmental Psychology

    The developmental psychology major is designed to prepare graduates for work in child and family programs such as child and adolescent development specialists, child or elder care providers, family services workers, parenting educators, child life workers and family relations consultants. In addition, students who complete the approved program can submit their transcripts to the National Council on Family Relations (NCFR) for provisional certification as a Family Life Educator.  

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    Major - Industrial / Organizational Psychology

    Degree: Bachelor of Arts
    Major: Industrial/Organizational Psychology

    The industrial/organizational (I/O) psychology major serves as an excellent generalist foundation for beginning a career in business. The dual emphasis on business and psychology means that organizations can hire graduates who understand both human nature and the dynamics of organizational life.

    Graduates can expect to work in jobs that involve performing tasks related to human resource assessment, selection and placement, performance appraisal, job analysis and re-design, leadership development, organizational effectiveness, and other activities related to human resources. These skills position graduates for leadership opportunities throughout their careers. Thus, the I/O major prepares students to become lifelong learners and proactive career managers, to maneuver effectively in their chosen career trajectories.

    Students will be prepared in the event they choose to earn an advanced degree, such as the Master of Business Administration or Master of Arts with a major in I/O psychology, both of which are available at Detroit Mercy. Other students may choose to use this degree as a preparation for graduate work in fields such as law and health care as well as psychology.

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    Minor - Psychology

    Credit Hours: 18

    The Psychology Minor Program is a minimum 18-credit-hour (6 courses) program designed to give students broad exposure to psychology as a scientific and professional discipline. This program is relevant to students pursuing academic majors which involve working with people, ideas, and/or social and communications systems including (but not limited to) nursing, biology, business, communication studies, law, philosophy, political science, social work, counseling, education, English, engineering and religious studies.

    Beginning with introductory psychology, students in the Psychology Minor Program are required to take courses from at least three of four content areas: Basic Processes, Development/Family Processes, Clinical Processes, and Social Issues/Group Dynamics.

    At the completion of the Psychology Minor Program, students are expected to be able to: discuss the role of psychology in interdisciplinary collaborations; demonstrate appropriate breadth of knowledge in selected psychology content areas; apply their broad knowledge of psychology to formulating career choices; and; appreciate the importance of lifelong learning for professional and personal development.

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    Minor - Developmental Psychology

    Credit Hours: 18

    This 18-credit minor provides students with an overview of psychology across the lifespan. The Developmental Psychology Minor educates students in infant and child development, middle childhood, adolescence, and old age, as well as the dynamics of families and family life. Adding this minor to the undergraduate degree complements and enhances any major by providing an understanding of developmental psychology and the scientific method.

Graduate Programs

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    Clinical Psychology (doctorate)

    Degree: Doctorate
    Major: Clinical Psychology
    Credit Hours: 96

    University of Detroit Mercy’s doctoral program in clinical psychology is a competitive course of study that trains you to provide psychological services to the community. Based on sound ethical standards and a thorough and contemporary understanding of research-tested psychological principles, your University of Detroit Mercy training emphasizes the inter-relationships among theory, research and clinical practice.

    Through sequential, gradual and cumulative training experiences, you receive the broad preparation essential to the practice of clinical psychology and for the development and execution of scientific research. The program consists of coursework, practice, research and scholarship.

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    Clinical Psychology (master's degree)

    Degree: Master of Arts
    Major: Clinical Psychology
    Credit Hours: 45

    The overarching goal of the program is to prepare students to become competent, practicing master’s level psychologists who are also prepared to pursue additional graduate study in psychology.

    The program is designed to academically prepare students to apply for the State of Michigan’s Limited License in Psychology (LLP). Note: additional requirements for the LLP are completed by students after graduation from the program and do not fall under the purview of the program.

    In keeping with the present climate in psychology, the program is broadly eclectic in its philosophical orientation and emphasizes scientifically-informed practice. In assessment and diagnostic procedures, contemporary psychometric methods are typically taught. In therapeutic practices, students will receive some exposure to several major theoretical perspectives, including psychoanalytic, behavioral and cognitive behavioral.

    University of Detroit Mercy's program has several unique features that create a distinctive learning experience for students. These include:

    Coursework combined with Doctoral Students in Clinical Psychology and Specialist Students in School Psychology
    This combined course format enhances class discussions and provides opportunities for master’s students to gain knowledge of options for more advanced graduate study in psychology.

    Part-time Curriculum
    The Master of Arts with a major in clinical psychology is a 45-credit-hour program that offers training in basic theory and research, diagnostic techniques, therapeutic practices and professional ethics. Students receive foundational training in child and adult clinical psychology. The program is designed to be completed on a part-time basis (6 credit hours per semester) for eight semesters year-round. Thus, students graduate approximately two years and nine months after beginning the program.

    Excellent Practicum Experience
    As a program that has been in existence for many years, the M.A. program with a major in clinical psychology has many well-established practicum training opportunities throughout Southeast MichiganStudents may elect to complete their clinical training in various settings, including hospitals, community mental health centers, university-based counseling centers and correctional facilities.

    Solid Faculty
    Students in the program generally take courses from full-time faculty with wide-ranging expertise. Our full-time faculty includes eight doctoral-level clinical psychologists and three doctoral-level school psychologists, in addition to six faculty members who are doctoral-level I/O, developmental, or experimental psychologists.


    Graduate Successes

    Students who graduate from the Master of Arts with a major in Clinical Psychology fill a variety of professional roles, ranging from clinical practice to research positions to doctoral studies. In fact, 33% of May 2016 program graduates matriculated into doctoral programs in various areas of psychology.

    Application Deadline
    The Master of Arts with a major in Clinical Psychology is a terminal master's degree. It does not lead to admission into the American Psychological Association (APA)-accredited doctoral clinical psychology program nor the National Association of School Psychology (NASP)-accredited specialist program in school psychology at University of Detroit Mercy. Although coursework in the programs overlap with one another, the degree requirements for each program and the policies that govern them are independent from one another. Students wishing to pursue the doctoral degree or the specialist degree after completing the Master of Arts degree with a major in Clinical Psychology are encouraged to apply to programs at University of Detroit Mercy, as well as those offered by other universities.

    Application deadline is March 15 for Fall semester program entry.

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    Industrial / Organizational Psychology (master's degree)

    Degree: Master of Arts
    Major: Industrial / Organizational Psychology
    Credits: 42

    The Master of Arts program in Industrial/Organizational Psychology prepares students to function as “master’s-level I/O psychologist practitioners” (SIOP, 2000). Graduates are employed as external or internal consultants and perform quality professional human-resource and organizational development services in a variety of work settings. The program provides career-advancement opportunities for human resource professionals, or entry-level positions for those embarking upon their careers. Although this program is a “terminal master’s” degree program, a small number of graduates continue their education in I/O doctoral programs.

    The Psychology Department faculty is dedicated to implementing an Industrial/Organizational Psychology program that focuses intensively on psychological theories, principles and research and their application to human behavior in the workplace. Areas emphasized include, leadership and organizational development; multicultural and gender issues in the workplace; performance assessment and selection; talent management, training and development; job design; performance evaluation; work-life balance; and workplace ethics.

    The faculty is committed to teach, mentor, counsel, and assist each student individually to reach his/her degree objectives successfully and in a timely fashion.


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    Specialist in School Psychology

    Degree: Specialist in School Psychology
    Credit Hours: 66

    The Specialist in School Psychology (SSP) program is part of the Department of Psychology, within University of Detroit Mercy's College of Liberal Arts & Education. This program is a three-year, 66-credit hour program of full-time study. This includes a three-semester (i.e., September-June), 600-hour practicum during the second year, and a three semester, full-time 1,200 hour internship in a school setting completed during the third year.

    Students are awarded a Master of Arts with a major in school psychology upon successful completion of 30 hours (end of year 1). The Specialist in School Psychology is awarded upon completion of the entire program. This includes attaining a passing score (>147) on the Praxis II examination in School Psychology.

    Students interested in the LLP (Limited License Psychologist, obtained via the State of Michigan Board of Psychology), or the BCBA (Board Certified Behavior Analyst) will need to have specialized supervision during their internship. Students should seek guidance from faculty if they wish to pursue these additional designations.

    This program is fully approved by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). 

     Program Objectives

    The Program is designed to provide a strong and broad-based knowledge of both psychology and education, and to prepare students to apply that knowledge within school settings.  Objectives are as follows:

    1. Graduates recognize the dignity and intrinsic worth of all individuals, and demonstrate respect for human diversity  and individual differences.

    2. Graduates are able to deliver a full range of school psychological services, including:

    (a.) Assessment of individuals as well as systems,
    (b.) Intervention design, and
    (c.) Provision of both direct and indirect services.

    3. Graduates are advocates for children on both the individual and the group levels.

    4. Graduates communicate clearly and effectively and demonstrate appropriate, respectful conduct in their professional interactions with others.

    5. Graduates adhere to legal and ethical standards in their professional practice.

    Program Philosophical Models

    The program philosophy may be conceptualized as a foundation of several important but complementary concepts, embedded within an overall scientist-practitioner orientation.
    1. Evidence-based practices
    2. Consultation-based services
    3. Behavior analytic intervention design
    4. Social-cognitive/eco-behavioral orientation

    Program Foundational Skills and Knowledge

    The School Psychology Program at University of Detroit Mercy is designed to prepare school psychologists who have a strong and broad-based knowledge of psychology and education, and enable them to apply that knowledge within the school setting. The nationally recognized standards for training and practice, established by the National Association of School Psychologists, are articulated in the Standards for Training and Field Program in School Psychology.  This document also specifies 10 domains of knowledge requisite to the practice of school psychology; these domains are further elaborated upon in School Psychology: A Blueprint for Training and Practice.  The 10 domains are:

    • Data-Based Decision-Making and Accountability
    • Consultation and Collaboration
    • Interventions and Instructional Support to Develop Academic Skills
    • Interventions and Mental Health Services to Develop Social and Life Skills
    • School-Wide Practices to Promote Learning
    • Preventive and Responsive Services
    • Family–School Collaboration Services
    • Diversity in Development and Learning
    • Research and Program Evaluation
    • Legal, Ethical, and Professional Practice

Accreditation & Outcomes

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    Accreditation Status

    Doctor of Philosophy with a major in Clinical Psychology

    University of Detroit Mercy's clinical psychology doctoral program is currently accredited by the Commission on Accreditation, American Psychological Association (APA), 750 First Street, N.E., Washington, D.C. 20002-4242.


    Specialist in School Psychology

    Accreditation Letter & Student Outcomes (best viewed in Google Chrome)

    University of Detroit Mercy's Specialist in School Psychology program has received National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) approval/recognition of SL-Full, 2012.

    Since 1988, NASP has been pleased to provide a national review and approval service for graduate programs in school psychology. NASP program approval/national recognition is an important indicator of quality graduate education in school psychology, comprehensive content, and extensive and properly supervised field experiences and internships, as judged by trained national reviewers. In addition, programs obtaining NASP approval allows for a streamlined process for program graduates to obtain the Nationally Certified School Psychologist (NCSP) credential. Thus, NASP approval/national recognition confers multiple advantages to programs, program graduates, the profession of school psychology, and, most importantly, to the children, families, and schools that we serve.

    Specialist level (60+ graduate credits) and doctoral level programs in school psychology are reviewed and approved by NASP by providing evidence of consistency with the NASP Standards for Graduate Preparation of School Psychologists. The NASP standards provide the foundation for program review and approval.   NASP is one of the specialized professional associations (SPAs) of the Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), previously the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), and conducts program reviews as a part of the CAEP unit accreditation process. CAEP accredits units (e.g., Schools of Education), not programs, but does provide "national recognition" status (full or with conditions) to NASP-approved programs in CAEP-accredited units. NASP also conducts reviews of school psychology programs that are not in CAEP units and that submit materials for review by NASP on a voluntary basis.

Meet Our Faculty

Steven Abell, Ph.D., ABPP
Professor of Psychology & Interim Department Chair

Linda Slowik, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Psychology & Department Chair

Kristen Abraham, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Psychology & Director of Clinical Psychology M.A. Program

Libby Balter Blume, Ph.D., CLFE
Professor of Psychology

Victor Barry Dauphin, Ph.D., ABPP
Professor of Psychology. Director of Clinical Training of the Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology

Sharla N. Fasko, Ph.D., NCSP
Associate Professor and Director of the School Psychology Program

Harold Greene, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology

Erin Henze, Ph.D., NCSP
Associate Professor of Psychology

Elizabeth Hill, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology

Steven Huprich, Ph.D.

Professor of Psychology

Rachel Lee, Ph.D., BCBA, NCSP
Assistant Professor of Psychology

Judy McCown, Ph.D.
Associate Professor

Cheryl Munday, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology, Director of the Detroit Mercy Psychology Clinic, and Affiliated Faculty, Program for Research on Black Americans, Institute for Social Research

John Porcerelli, Ph.D., ABPP
Associate Professor

Margaret Stack Ph.D., ABPP
Associate Professor of Psychology

Carol Weisfeld, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology

Kathleen Zimmerman-Oster, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology and Director of Industrial/Organizational Psychology M.A. Program

Administrative Support

Valerie Williams
Administrative Assistant

Lynn McLean
Psychology Clinic Manager
Administrative Assistant-Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program

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