Mission Statement

Psychology is the scientific study of behavior and cognition. The baccalaureate degree program is intended to provide students with a broad understanding of behavior and mental processes as well as with skills needed to design, analyze, and interpret research. Knowledge gained through the psychology baccalaureate program is useful in a variety of areas such as business or the service sector; it also provides the foundation for further study of psychology at the graduate level. The associate degree program is intended to prepare students for further study of psychology at the undergraduate level. The minor program is intended to familiarize students with a range of topics and skills in psychology.

Psychology Scholarship Winners and Faculty, March 13, 2018.

Learning Outcomes

The successful student will:

  • Achieve greater awareness of human development and multicultural influences on development
  • Understand and discuss at an appropriate level of depth the primary theoretical perspectives in psychology
  • Achieve greater awareness of the causes, development, and treatment of abnormal behavior
  • Understand, discuss, and use scientific terms and concepts common in psychology research
  • Achieve the ability to critically read and evaluate psychological research studies

Job Opportunities for Psychology Graduates:

Graduates of psychology baccalaureate programs often find work outside of psychology in areas such as business, marketing, public relations, and retail. Graduates with a bachelor’s degree in psychology also find jobs related to psychology in areas including community and social services, education, and corrections.

What Are Our Rio Psychology Alumni Up To?

Breanna West 2017
Graduate Student in School Psychology at Marshall University
Ariel Kaye Roder 2016
Graduate Student in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Cleveland State University
Ada Deihl 2016
Behavioral Technician at Pathfinder Progress in Columbus, OH

Daniel Fraser 2016
Former Psychology Club President
Ohio Valley Bank Internet Call Center
Jaonna Gibson 2015
Graduate Student in School Psychology, Northern Kentucky University 
Josi VanMeter 2015
2015 Rio Outstanding Psychology Graduate
Case Manager, Woodland Centers, Meigs, OH
Also in training for Chemical Dependency Counseling (CDCA)
Nicholas Sharp, CDCA 2014
Alcohol and Drug Counselor, Recovery Council, Waverly, OH
Also in training for Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor Level 3 (LCDC 3)

Psychology & Social Work Lab

The Rio Psychology Lab is a tool for students and faculty who want to explore the wide world of psychological phenomenon. It’s located in the newly-renovated Wood Hall building.  Recently, a state-of-the-art Biopac system has been added to the lab.  The Biopac system utilizes the following combination of psychophysiological recording methods to allow students to record live physiological data:

  • EEG brain waves
  • Heart rate
  • Respiration
  • Blood pressure
  • Eye movements
  • Reaction time
  • Reflexes
  • Skin conductance

With this combination of recording methods, students can gain hands-on experience and conduct research in many areas of psychology. These areas include but are not limited to brain rhythms, bio rhythms, bio-feedback, visual and auditory evoked potentials, cognition, problem solving, relaxation and arousal, emotional processing, sensory adaptation, habituation, polygraphy (lie detection), and many more; the possibilities are limitless!  Students are encouraged to collaborate with faculty on new ideas, as well as help faculty with ongoing projects.

Dr. Chad Duncan is the lab director, a trained experimental psychologist, and cognitive researcher.  Dr. Duncan’s interests are focused in the field of Cognitive psychology, mainly trying to understand how cells in the brain communicate and process visual information.  He is always looking for students who are interested in helping, as well as those interested in pursuing their own ideas from any branch of psychology.

Dr. Duncan is currently investigating the “Illusion of Peripheral Acuity”, the role of visual feedback during exercise, and psychophysiological correlates of psychopathy, besides a few other side projects.

The illusion of peripheral acuity refers to the idea that humans can only see fine detail in the center of our visual field, and have very poor discrimination in the periphery. This is due to the anatomy of the eye, which enhances acuity in the center, but limits acuity everywhere else. Yet, most people don’t notice this difference and, in fact believe that they can see fine details everywhere in the visual field.  Dr. Duncan believes that the brain creates this illusion of acuity in the periphery through a combination of memory, filling-in, and top-down processes, and he is currently using EEG to find and identify the mechanisms involved.

Degree Requirements

Bachelor of Sciences – Major in Psychology (3541)
Bachelor of Sciences – Minor in Psychology (3530)

General Education must include:
PSY 11103 (TM) General Psychology3
BIO 11404 (TM) Principles of Biology4
PSY 21503 Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences3
Total General Education hours38

Psychology electives - Minimum of 6 credit hours must be selected from at least two of the following three groups:

Group I

Group II

Group III

Total minor credit hours18
Selected minor and personal electives69
Total hours needed to graduate125


Associate of Arts – Concentration in Psychology (3520)

Major Area courses:
PSY 21103 Human Growth and Development3
PSY 21503 Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences3
PSY 22804 Memory and Cognition4
PSY 26204 Research Methods4
PSY 25203 Behavior Modification3
Total major hours17
Personal elective hours7-8
Total hours needed to graduate64


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