The Department of Psychology exemplifies St. John's University's core values (Truth; Love; Respect; Opportunity; Excellence; and Service) and its Vincentian mission. The department is committed to academic excellence, operates in accord with accepted ethical principles and with respect for individual rights and dignity, is committed to service to the community, and demonstrates through its research, teaching, and clinical training an appreciation of the importance of cultural diversity.

We offer the following graduate programs:

The Psychology Department offers an undergraduate major and minor in Psychology. We also offer a combined B.A./M.A. in Psychology, as well as combined degrees with Criminology and Justice and Business Administration. 

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Department Objectives

  • to provide students with a sound preparation in psychology, appropriate to their level (i.e., undergraduate or graduate)
  • to stress the scientific foundations of the discipline, so that students gain an understanding of the psychological, social, and biological processes underlying normal and abnormal behavior
  •  to foster students' ability to think critically and to integrate psychological theory and  research into solutions to solve social problems and to seek social justice.
  • to intensify the discovery and understanding of the interaction of human behavioral patterns. In its professional programs, the department has the added objective of fostering the highest standards of professional practice and ethical conduct

The Psychology Department faculty continually strives to contribute to the scientific and professional literature through publications in psychological journals and books and presentations to professional and scientific organizations. They strive to keep current with  psychological knowledge in areas outside of their research interests. In addition, the faculty place a  priority on seeking external funding for their research and for student training. The faculty  use their professional knowledge and skills in the service of the profession, of the university, and of the community at large. This is accomplished through such things as participating in the activities of professional societies, taking an active part in the committees of the department, college and university, and sharing their expertise with other professionals and with the public.

Courses for the graduate programs are organized into clearly defined sequences. Mastery of basic knowledge is followed by experience through its use and application in formal, practicum and laboratory settings. A consideration of the ethical dimensions of the psychologist's conduct, as well as sensitivity to issues of cultural and ethnic diversity are stressed throughout training in both clinical and research areas.

Department Contacts

For general questions:

Tamara Del Vecchio, Ph.D., Chair
Diane Spitz, Administrative Assistant to the Chair
Marillac Hall, Room 409
[email protected]


For questions about the undergraduate program:

Robin Wellington, Ph.D., Undergraduate Program Coordinator
[email protected]

For questions about the graduate programs:

William Chaplin, Ph.D., Director of the Master of Arts (M.A.) in Psychology
[email protected]

Samuel O. Ortiz, Ph.D., Director of the Master of Science (M.S.) and Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) in School Psychology
[email protected]

Wilson McDermut, Ph.D., Director of the Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology
[email protected]

Additional Information

The minor in Psychology requires the successful completion of 16 credits including:

PSY 1000CIntroduction to Psychology3 credits
PSY 2030 & 2030LStatistical Methods for Social Sciences4 credits
Psychology Electives9 credits

Students interested in minoring in psychology and who are also interested in applying to graduate school in this discipline should consider the following elective courses:

  • PSY 2040 & 2040P Research Methods in Psychology
  • PSY 2150 Physiological Psychology
  • PSY 2200 Abnormal Psychology
  • PSY 3800 History & Systems of Psychology