Psychology students are encouraged to develop high-quality research projects in and out of the classroom, which often culminate in symposium and conference presentations, as well as professional publications.
Psychology majors—especially those considering graduate study in psychology—are strongly encouraged to pursue additional research opportunities. They may gain research experience beyond their required coursework in a number of ways.
The psychology faculty maintain active research laboratories and seek to involve students in their projects. Typically, research assistants work with faculty on research for academic credit (0.25- or 0.50-credit practicum projects), although some students might serve as paid laboratory managers when funding is available. Students can also earn credit for research with independent research projects and senior theses. In research labs, students gain first-hand experience with research design, data collection, analysis, and dissemination of research.
Interested students should read our individual research blurbs and contact individual faculty to discuss the potential to engage in a faculty-student collaborative research project.
Students selected for the Richter Scholar Program work one-on-one with a faculty member on research during the summer after their first year. A few students complete Richter projects in psychology every year (for either 4-weeks or 8-weeks) and these students sometimes continue to work with their faculty mentor throughout their undergraduate career.
Students who want to learn more about large-scale projects may take advantage of opportunities at research universities in the Chicago area, either as paid research assistants or as research interns under the supervision of Lake Forest College faculty. For example, Lake Forest students have joined labs at Northwestern University, the University of Chicago, and Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science.
A few of our strongest students each year pursue senior thesis research. Although occasionally this research is part of a faculty member’s research program, it is typically a student-generated research project. Students interested in senior theses start formulating research ideas in the spring of the junior year, find a faculty member who is willing to advise them on their project, and conduct the thesis research itself throughout the senior year.
Students routinely serve as co-authors on professional and undergraduate publications, co-presenters at national and international conferences, and sole presenters at Lake Forest College’s Student Symposium.
Where Can You Go With Student Research?
Our students have co-authored research publications, as undergraduates, in journals such as
- British Journal of Psychology
- Journal of Cognitive Psychology
- Journal of Community Psychology
- Journal of Computational Social Sciences
- Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition
- Journal of Medical Internet Research
- Journal of Medical Internet Research: Human Factors
- Memory & Cognition
- Psi Chi Journal of Psychological Research
- Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology
- Review of Educational Research