Undergraduate and Graduate Research Information

Undergraduate Research Participation

Research is a fundamental component of psychological science. Learning about psychology involves learning about the research process, and research participation provides a hands-on opportunity to become familiar with how research is conducted. This option gives you experience as a participant in actual psychology experiments. You will also have the opportunity to learn more about yourself and your behavior in these studies. There are many different kinds of studies conducted in our department. For example, you might be asked to complete questionnaires, to view videos, to listen to music or conversations, to interact with others in a group, or to make judgments on a computer.

All studies are reviewed and approved in advance by the Roger Williams University Institutional Review Board. When you arrive at each study, the investigator will explain that particular study to you and you will have a chance to ask any questions you may have about participation. If you decide to participate in the study, you will be given a written explanation of the study and asked to give your consent to participate. Even after you have consented and have started to participate, it is always up to you to decide whether to continue.

The sign-up procedure uses a web-based system called Sona Systems which allows you to sign up for studies on-line. The procedure for signing up for experiments is detailed in the document which can be linked below. If you have additional questions after reading this document check the Frequently Asked Questions, located on the Sona Systems webpage.

A complete explanation of research requirements can viewed in the Instructions for Research Participation

The Master’s Thesis

Approximately a third of our graduate students have elected to complete a master’s thesis.  The vast majority of them have completed a thesis project while also completing a practicum placement.  Many of our students have presented their thesis projects at regional and national conferences and conventions including at the American Psychological Association Convention, the Association for Psychological Science Convention, the American Psychology-Law Conference, the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers conference, the Eastern Psychological Association Convention, and the Massachusetts Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers.  Students intending to apply for doctoral training are strongly encouraged to complete a master’s thesis.

Our students are well represented at national and regional conferences and conventions where they present the results of their thesis projects and other forms of faculty-student research collaborations.  Some have published their thesis projects in peer-reviewed journals in forensic and legal psychology, including Criminal Justice and Behavior, a prominent journal in the field with a high rejection rate and a very impact factor, the Open-Access Journal of Forensic Psychology, Legal and Criminological Psychology, and Applied Psychology in Criminal Justice.

The Graduate Thesis Project Form is necessary for all graduate students completing a thesis project. Please download and complete the information onto the form.