100% of Psychology Seniors Selected to Present Research at WPA Conference

100% of Woodbury Psychology Seniors Submitting Own Research Projects Receive Invite to Present at Western Psychological Association Convention; University Makes Fifth Consecutive Appearance

LOS ANGELES (March 15, 2017) – What’s the impact of music content on aggression and sexual objectification? What are the links connecting bullying, narcissism, shame and irrational aggression in young adults? To what extent does political orientation involve the selective recall of political information?

Graduating psychology seniors at Woodbury University set out to answer these and other probing questions through their capstone thesis research projects — and all were accepted to present their senior thesis research projects at the peer-reviewed Western Psychological Association annual convention in Sacramento next month. This will mark the fifth consecutive appearance by a Woodbury contingent.

This year’s results bring the program’s lifetime acceptance rate to 94 percent. Acceptance is based on a blind peer-reviewed process where students are judged against graduate students, professors, and professional researchers. Among the participating students: Ali Alghamdi, Najla Alhasan, Knarik Arutyunyan, Lia  Babakhanyan, Monica Babian, Izabella Bagdasarian, Lauren Carrington, Brittany Cobb, Mary Manoukian, Michael Mikaelyan, Moayad al Marrar, Nare Nazaryan, Emily Shatz and Celine Skaf.

Among the projects: Lauren Carrington’s study on “Adult Attitudes Regarding Romantic Relationships and Child-Rearing after Early Parental Loss;” Nare Nazaryan’s study, “It’s Not Just for Kids: Association between Bullying, Narcissism, Shame and Irrational Aggression in Young Adults,” and Moayad Al Marrar’s study, “Seeing What You Want to See: Political Orientation and the Selective Recall of Political Information.”

“As a group and as individuals, our senior psychology students have accomplished something quite extraordinary,” said Prof. Joye Swan, Ph.D., Chair of the Psychology Department. “From the development of topics to the conducting of research to the presentation of results, each student has performed with distinction. It’s both inspiring and rewarding to witness their growth in the field.”

A part of the School of Media, Culture & Design, the Woodbury psychology program is among the most demanding in the field. Participating students are required to take multiple statistics and research courses culminating in an individual empirical thesis project. “The result is students who are way ahead of the curve upon graduation, evidenced by our laudable 90 percent acceptance rate to graduate school,” Prof. Swan said.

Psychology students at Woodbury complete a rigorous curriculum to prepare for graduate school or the workforce. The program includes theoretical breadth, applied experience, and in-depth participation in conceptualizing and implementing an independent, capstone research project. Psychology students hone their empirical skills through two levels of research methods courses and two levels of statistics courses. Each year, seniors submit their project abstracts to a national or regional psychology convention, and finalize their research in the capstone senior thesis course.

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