Department of Psychology

Program Overview

The goals of the psychology department at Wheeling University are to provide a strong curriculum that will help you learn the most current and empirically sound principles of behavior; to equip you for success in a variety of graduate programs and employment settings; to offer you opportunities for experience in human service, research and other psychology-related internships; and to help you realize the many ways through which psychology can address human social/ethical concerns. All of our efforts are grounded in the Ignatian tradition of the pursuit of excellence in the context of service among others.


  • The emphasis is on you as you develop intellectually, socially, emotionally and spiritually. The person is always at the center of what we do. Through internships, research and coursework, we help you discover your talents and learn how best to use them in psychology.
  • You will have access to more than $300,000 worth of equipment for supporting your studies and research. Our students regularly attend research conferences where they present their work, and have their projects published.
  • The evidence for how our majors are taught and able to perform comes from the Psychology ETS Exam (a national, standardized psychology exam). Wheeling University requires students to perform within the top 15 percent nationally on this exam as a pre-requisite to graduation. Recent graduates have scored in the top 1 to 2 percent nationally, placing Wheeling University among the best universities for studying psychology.
  • In addition to pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology, you may take coursework in specialty areas within the department. 
PSY 222 Child Psychopathology: A study of the central issues in childhood psychopathology including theoretical and methodological issues, descriptions of disorders, clinical and research data and social, familial and ethical concerns. We will emphasize the integration of the processes of normal development with the occurrence of problem behaviors and learn about the neurobiological, genetic, psychological, family, peer, cultural and gender influences on the cause and treatment of childhood disorders. As part of their coursework, students will become certified in the Child and Adolescent Needs and Strengths (CANS) assessment procedure.

PSY 250 Sport Psychology: An examination of sports from an empirical point of view with emphasis on behavioral/learning principles as they apply to the influence of sports on athletes and spectators.

PSY-314 Social Psychology: A study of the effects of the group on individual behavior, including the topics of aggression, persuasion, attitudes, compliance, obedience, attraction, and person perception.

Child/Youth/Elder Care
Community Services
Consulting Services
Court/Juvenile Services
Customer Services
Educational Services
Employee Relations
Government/Legislative Services
Law Enforcement/Police
Social Services
Special Populations Services
Substance Abuse Services

Andrew Scott Wensel Award: This award goes to the senior psychology major who shows the most promise as a researcher in psychology.

Outstanding Psychology Major: This award goes to the senior psychology major who has maintained the highest overall GPA as a psychology major.

The Maceiko Award: This award for service is given annually to the senior psychology major who best exemplifies the Jesuit value of service to others, both in the department and the wider community.

Fr. Jospeh Hayden, S.J. Award: This award celebrate the senior psychology major who managed to excel in the face of adversity.
We aim to acquaint students with the field of psychological service by providing internships in the local community, or in some cases, in the student's home community during the summer. Many of our students have been offered positions at the agency where they completed their internship. Recently students have completed internships in the following areas:

Adolescent Care Facilities
Athletic Teams
August Levy Learning Center
Autism Center, Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh
Family Services
Harmony House
Montessori School
Northern Regional Juvenile Detention Center
Northwood Health Systems
Oglebay Park Good Zoo
Physical Therapy Centers
Regional Jail
Upper Ohio Valley Sexual Assault Help Center
Wheeling Soup Kitchen
WTRF-TV Channel 7
YWCA Family Violence Program
PSYCHOLOGY CLUB: Psychology majors at Wheeling University form a close-knit group not only through their coursework, internships, and research projects, but also through their participation in the Psychology Club. All psychology majors are automatically members of the club. Each year the club sponsors fundraisers, speakers, field trips, and parties. Service is a major focus of the group; in recent years, club members have been involved in a number of projects with Wheeling's Family Violence Prevention Program, with the Habitat for Humanity program, and with people with developmental disabilities.

PSI CHI INTERNATIONAL HONOR SOCIETY IN PSYCHOLOGY: Since 1968, Wheeling University's Psychology Department has maintained a chapter of Psi Chi, the National Honor Society in Psychology. To be inducted as a member, students must have completed three semesters of college and nine hours in psychology courses, with a minimum of a 3.0 GPA in those courses. Students must also rank in the upper 35% of their class in general scholarship.