Department of Psychology Title The Ohio State University

Quantitative Program

Program Orientation

The Quantitative Psychology program is located in Lazenby Hall.

Following is information about our graduate program in quantitative psychology. For information about applying for admission to graduate study in our Department. For information about applying to the Quantitative Psychology program, contact Jay McKirnan.

As a graduate student in quantitative psychology, you prepare for a research-oriented career in mathematically modeling and quantitatively assessing psychological phenomena. Quantitative psychology is as much a way of thinking about psychological questions as it is a field of study involving specific research methods.

You will develop an expertise that spans the traditional field of psychology. This will include training in basic statistical and data analysis methods, as well as in advanced mathematical models and quantitative methods. The more basic work will be in the theory and application of traditional statistical methods and techniques for data analysis. Advanced work may be in such topics as the mathematical modeling of psychological phenomena - for example, the development and study of models of the cognitive processes in decision making.

Other advanced work may be in the most current techniques of measurement and data analysis - methods such as item response theory and covariance structure modeling. With training in such areas, you will be able to conduct research to develop new quantitative methods or models, or to explore features of current ones. You will also have a sophisticated foundation in research design and quantitative methods that will be highly useful in designing substantive research studies and analyzing data from such studies.

Active research participation is central to the training program. You choose a faculty advisor early and work closely with that person on projects of mutual interest. You are also encouraged to develop collaborative research interests with other faculty as well as with fellow students. These collaborations are a foundation from which you will build independent research programs.

The quantitative program is flexible. It is organized to help you develop a course of study that fits your goals. Formal coursework varies, depending on your background and interests.

Such work in quantitative psychology requires mathematical and statistical expertise, and you should have a strong background. Thus, students are encouraged to supplement their studies with courses in mathematics and statistics.

Program of Study

You will develop an individualized study program, leading to the Ph.D. degree in four to five years

During the first two years, collaborative research with your faculty advisor and coursework in a major and minor field of study generally fulfill the requirements of the M.A. degree. This includes a masters thesis. The third and fourth years of study are devoted to extending your expertise, developing independent research projects, and completing the doctoral dissertation.

The program offers many opportunities for research completed either collaboratively or independently. In addition, activities associated with teaching or research assistantships will provide further valuable experience. Depending on your interests, the program is flexible enough to prepare you for an academic career or for a research career in the private sector.

Facilities and Financial Support

The offices and laboratories of the program are housed in recently renovated Lazenby Hall, located in a very attractive area of the OSU campus. The facilities of the program include a central computer laboratory, providing microcomputers and related equipment. This facility is used for a variety of research-related activities, including data analysis and word processing. In addition, individual faculty have computer laboratories designed to support their own research programs. You will also have access to the university's extensive and powerful system of mainframe computers.

Fellowships, research assistantships, and teaching associateships are available to first-year students, on a competitive basis. We typically provide tuition, fees, and a monthly stipend to graduate students for at least four years of study.

Areas of Emphasis

There are two main areas of emphasis in the quantitative program: mathematical psychology and psychometric methods. Specific topics in mathematical psychology include axiomatic, algebraic, and stochastic modeling in such fields as decision making, judgment, and categorization. Specific topics in psychometric methods include measurement, scaling, and multivariate quantitative methods, such as factor analysis and covariance structure modeling. You may focus your study in either area. Each one is broadly defined and allows opportunities for interdisciplinary study.