University of Virginia
Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
Ph.D. - Cognitive Psychology
Our goal is to train researchers in cognitive psychology and cognitive science. We help our students prepare for careers in pure research (typically in university settings), as well as applied research in industry, where the skills of cognitive psychologists are in demand. We take care to tailor programs of study to each student's interests: we encourage some of our students to deepen their mathematical training, others to study topics in neuroscience, computer science, linguistics. We also insure that our students learn how to teach, give lectures to colleagues, write well, and obtain funding for their research. All of our students become seasoned data-analysts, and many learn how to program computers.
We divide your studies into three phases; at the end of each phase, you submit a written report. During the first phase, which takes two years, you take core courses in cognitive psychology and statistics, and associate yourself with one or two faculty members as a research apprentice. Many graduate programs earmark each entering student as a "student of Professor X." In our program the choice is yours. We also encourage each student to do research in more than one lab. In each lab, you first attend weekly lab meetings to familiarize yourself with ongoing research projects. Eventually you develop your own research project, which culminates in a paper, the predissertation report.
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