Research Information for Undergraduates
Our Department offers students many ways to develop core expertise in specific areas of psychology and do hands-on research. Students can work with our leading researchers in projects based in the lab or in the field to deepen knowledge learned in class and develop valuable skills. To help you navigate your path, you can find course information and career paths, described by PNB’s research areas. Click on the research area headings below for a description of the area and faculty members working in that area.
Our undergraduate courses connected to this research area include Animal Behaviour (PNB 2XC3), Audition (PSYCH 3A03), Evolution & Human Behaviour (PSYCH 3F03), Motivation & Emotion (PSYCH 3M03), Animal Behaviour Lab (PNB 3S03), Behavioural Ecology (PSYCH 3T03), Special Topics in Animal Behaviour (PSYCH 4R03), and Hormones, Neurochemistry & Behaviour (PSYCH 4Y03). Students considering graduate school should consider completing a course with a strong research component (PNB 4QQ3, PNB 4D06, PNB 4DD6 or 4D09).
Breadth of training in allied fields (such as ecology, physiology, or chemistry) and/or possession of particular practical skills (such as statistical analysis, computer programming, or electronics) can be helpful for future careers. Many animal behaviourists teach and/or do research at universities or colleges. Many have academic appointments in biology, psychology or zoology departments. Researchers may work in laboratories or in the field, depending upon the nature of the research project. Applied animal behaviourists may be hired by zoos, museums, and government and private facilities to help conduct ongoing animal behaviour research.
Cognition and Perception
Our undergraduate courses in this area of research are designed to provide students with an interdisciplinary view and highlight the connections among cognition, perception and other sub-disciplines within psychology. A solid base in Human Perception & Cognition (PNB 2XA3) can followed by courses in Human Memory (PSYCH 3VV3), Language (PSYCH 3NL3 and PSYCH 3UU3), Audition (PSYCH 3A03), and cognitive neuroscience (PSYCH 3BN3 and PSYCH 4BN3). Students may study the Multisensory Mind (PSYCH 3D03), The Arts and The Brain (PSYCH 3H03), Learning and Memory (PSYCH 3FA3), and Vision (PSYCH 3J03).
Practical laboratory skills can be gained by taking a relevant lab course (PNB 3EE3, PNB 3MM3 or PNB 3V03). Students considering graduate school should consider completing a course with a strong research component (PNB 4QQ3, PNB 4D06, PNB 4DD6 or PNB 4D09).
Our cognition and perception research at McMaster is diverse, with many broad areas of interest represented. Students who graduate with a focus in this area are well prepared for graduate studies in psychology and related disciplines, professional studies such as medicine, or research positions in government, university or industry.
Students interested in developmental psychology research can take a course in General Development (PSYCH 3GG3) in addition to specialized courses in areas such as Language Development (PSYCH 3UU3), Social-Emotional Development (PSYCH 3JJ3), Child Language Acquisition (PSYCH 3C03), and Psychopathologies of Childhood (PSYCH 3B03).
Throughout these courses, library research, experimental methodology, laboratory research, communication, and critical thinking skills will be emphasized (PNB 3EE3 or PNB 3V03). [I am note sure what you mean by this.] Students who wish to pursue post-graduate studies should consider completing a course with a strong research component (PNB 4QQ3, PNB 4D06, PNB 4DD6 or PNB 4D09).
This research area provides excellent training for graduate school, research positions, and professional disciplines such as medicine, nursing, teaching, and speech pathology.
Evolution and Social Behaviour
Courses in Animal Behaviour (PNB 2XC3), Social Psychology (PSYCH 2C03), and Perception and Cognition (PNB 2XA3) provide a foundation for more advanced study of Audition (PSYCH 3A03), Evolution & Human Behaviour (PSYCH 3F03), Social & Emotional Development (PSYCH 3JJ3), Motivation & Emotion (PSYCH 3M03), Animal Behaviour (PNB 3S03, PSYCH 4R03), Behavioural Ecology (PSYCH 3T03), and Hormones, Neurochemistry and Behaviour (PSYCH 4Y03). Students interested in pursuing post-graduate studies should consider completing a course with a strong research component (PNB 4D06, PNB 4DD6 or PNB 4D09).
This research area provides valuable preparation for further training in these areas or for careers in the health sciences and helping professions.
Systems and Behavioural Neuroscience
If your interests lie in the study of Systems and Behavioural Neuroscience, including neuroanatomy and neurophysiology, we suggest taking (PNB 2XB3) to provide a solid foundation. From this course, students can branch into more specialized coursework in their later years.
Students may then study topics in Audition (PSYCH 3A03), Cognitive Neuroscience (PSYCH 3BN3 and PSYCH 4BN3), Neurobiology of Learning and Memory (PSYCH 3FA3), Visual Neuroscience (PSYCH 3J03), Neural Circuits (NEUROSCI 3SN3), Hormones, Neurochemistry and Behaviour (PSYCH 4Y03), and Neurobiology (BIOLOGY 4T03).
Valuable laboratory experience is available from several relevant lab courses (PNB 3EE3, PNB 3MM3 or PNB 3V03). Students interested in pursuing post-graduate studies should take one of the thesis courses (PNB 4D09, 4D06, 4DD6), which allows a full year of experience in the laboratory of one of our faculty members. Students will also find some physics and chemistry coursework background helpful.
Students who have studied in this area will be well prepared for careers in areas related to biomedical sciences and neuroscience.
For further infomation contact the Undergraduate Academic Advisor