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Experimental Psychology: Social Psychology

Overview of Social Psychology at Texas Tech

Core Faculty: Professors Clyde Hendrick, Darcy A. Reich, and Kenneth DeMarree

The specialization in social psychology encompasses basic and applied work with an emphasis on basic social processes at the individual, interpersonal and group levels. Students have the opportunity to develop expertise with a variety of methodological techniques including experimentation, scale construction, social psychophysiology, and social cognition paradigms. Affiliated faculty from other Psychology programs and from Business Administration, Sociology, and Human Development also contribute to the degree programs of some students.

Orientation of the Social Psychology Program

The Social Psychology program is committed to Lewin’s maxim that there is nothing so practical as a good theory. Thus, there is an emphasis on basic research and theoretical development at the same time that social psychological theories are applied to research in areas such as clinical and counseling psychology, law, public opinion, and politics. Likewise, it is believed that rigorous training in methodology will prepare students to grapple with basic and applied problems that will emerge in the future.

The research emphases of the program cover a broad spectrum of topics in social psychology, including social cognition and attitudes, group processes, interpersonal process, and close relationships. The emphasis on social cognition is consistent with the contemporary state of the field of social psychology, but at Texas Tech it is well-balanced by strong interests in relationships and groups.