Embark on graduate independent study opportunities within the Derner School of Psychology.

Graduate independent study offers psychology students the chance to delve into academic interests that may not be fully addressed within the regular curriculum. Participants have the opportunity to engage in rigorous research or undertake projects of original merit under the guidance of a faculty mentor.

Eligibility and Credit

Graduate students in psychology are eligible to enroll in up to 6 credits of independent study toward their master’s degree. Students must familiarize themselves with the regulations governing independent study by consulting their academic advisors. Permission forms can be obtained from the psychology department office located in Blodgett Hall, Room 212.

Process and Approval

Students interested in pursuing graduate independent study should engage in discussions with a faculty member or the department chair. Requests initiated by the advisor or faculty member undergo approval by the department chair before proceeding to the dean for final approval.

Faculty members must provide the following information on behalf of the student:

  1. Requirements indicating successful completion (e.g., case studies, papers)
  2. Readings or literature review, if applicable
  3. Workload credit sought by the faculty member
  4. Number of course credits and weekly or semester work hours
  5. Evaluation method

Requests for independent study should demonstrate an equivalent workload to that of a regular course. For instance, a 3-credit Independent Study request should illustrate 45 additional hours of work, in addition to assignments, research, and/or readings, consistent with the expectations of a standard course.


Independent Study is graded and may not be taken on a pass/fail basis. Students can enroll in Independent Study courses ranging from 1 to 3 credits. Requests exceeding 3 credits require approval from the Office of the Provost.

Required courses cannot be taken as independent study, except in cases where a required course is unavailable in the student’s final semester, or when two required courses coincide in the student’s last semester.

Graduate Program Contacts

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