Wilfrid Laurier University

Wilfrid Laurier University Psychology Degree Program

Address: Science Building 75 University Ave. W. Waterloo, ON, N2L 3C5
Website: http://www.wlu.ca/homepage.php?grp_id=44

School Description:

Greetings from the Chair

Psychology is one of the largest departments at Laurier and this web site reflects that size and the resulting complexity. Our site is directed at three large groups of individuals, our undergraduate students, graduate students, and other visitors that might be interested in our department or our faculty.

Psychology is a discipline that has had many definitions. At the start of the last century, William James, one of psychology’s founders, called it the “science of mental life.” Donald Hebb, perhaps Canada’s most famous psychologist, who was my instructor for introductory psychology, defined psychology in 1966 as “the study of the more complex forms of integration or organization in behavior.” The authors of our current PS101 and PS102 text, Psychology 4th Canadian Edition, define psychology as “The discipline concerned with behaviour and mental processes and how they are affected by an organism’s physical state, mental state, and external environment.”Clearly the definitions are getting longer and many might argue less clear. However these definitions suggest psychology is at the junction of terms like science, behaviour, brain, and mind. The complexity and breadth of psychology can also be seen in the research interests of our faculty which range from the neuroscience end of the discipline, through developmental and social issues, to applied work focusing on using psychological knowledge in a community context.

For our undergraduates, those who are majoring in psychology, simply taking a few psychology courses, or are coming to Laurier we hope that your psychology courses will be both challenging and academically exciting providing you with some insight into what fascinates us about this subject. While our administrative home is in the Faculty of Science we offer both B. A. and B. Sc. degrees in psychology with two honours programs in each: Research Specialist and Comprehensive. Additionally there are a number of joint undergraduate, honours programs with other departments. The link on the left labeled “Undergraduate Programs and Information” will lead you to parts of our site that are particularly relevant to your needs. Currently we have about 9500 enrollments in our undergraduate courses per year and over 1000 majors in psychology. Our faculty, both full-time (35) and part-time (many), are excellent teachers, getting good to great teaching evaluations. Two current full-time and 4 part-time faculty have won Laurier’s award for teaching excellence over the last 10 years. While our first and second year classes have become larger than we like, we have tried to work with our undergraduate students at a more individual, personal level in our smaller third and fourth year classes. Even in the larger classes faculty enjoy talking and working with their students individually about specific aspects of psychology that have come up in classes, so do not hesitate to talk with them.

For those of you who are interested in our graduate program, we offer MA or MSc and PhD degrees in a number of areas, including behavioural and cognitive neuroscience, developmental and social psychology and community psychology. The link on the left labeled “Graduate Programs and Information” will expand to show you how our programs are structured and the research interests of our faculty members. There are just over 90 graduate students at various stages in our programs. Our graduate program follows an apprenticeship model that provides individualized research opportunities with faculty at all levels of the program.

For those of you interested in knowing more about the research of our faculty members the Research link on the left provides a brief introduction to the research interests of our faculty (General documents – Faculty Research Interests) and this in turn links to the individual faculty web sites. There is more information about research directions in our department under the various graduate program areas. Our faculty members are strong researchers, many with international reputations. Drs. Mark Eys and Anne Wilson both hold Canada Research Chairs. Most of our faculty members have current external funding through both the federal agencies like NSERC, SSHRC, CFI, and CIHR as well as through provincial and other agencies. The total value of grants received by the faculty over the past seven years is over $25 million. In addition there are two centres in the department which provide the focus for narrower group research interests, the Centre for Community Research, Learning and Action and the Laurier Centre for Cognitive Neuroscience.Both these centres are relatively new and we are excited about the potential for collaborative research that they represent.

In closing welcome to our department and its website, if you have any questions please contact us (see the contact link on the bottom left) and we will be happy to get back to you. It is probably also not necessary to tell you that this web page (like all web pages) is under constant revision so if you notice a problem please let me know (psychologychair@wlu.ca) and we will try to correct it.

On behalf of the Psychology Department enjoy our web site and your experiences with psychology.

Rudy Eikelboom

Undergraduate Program Description

Undergraduate Programs and Information


We have two undergraduate Academic Advisors.

For ungergraduate students with their last name beginning with A to K your Academic Advisor is:  Dr. M. Gwynn

For undergraduate students with their last name beginning with L to Z your Academic Advisor is:  Dr. N. Kocovski

Any questions not answered on our Academic Counselling page:  http://www.wlu.ca/page.php?grp_id=44&p=1029  you can contact the advisor. 


Please DO NOT contact Dr. Gwynn or Dr. Kocovski directly but use the Psychology Advising email address:  psychadvising@wlu.ca or Kim Susanna at ksusanna@wlu.ca.  This helps us keep all the emails in the right place. 


YOU MUST USE YOUR @mylaurier.ca ACCOUNT AND YOU MUST INCLUDE YOUR ID NUMBER IN YOUR EMAIL and the reason you need to see the advisor.


To make an appointment with the advisors, please contact Kim Susanna at ksusanna@wlu.ca  who will make the appointment with the advisor assigned to you. 


If not, please contact the psychology office room N2006 or call ext. 3665 to book an appointment.

NOTE:  During certain times of year the appointments fill up quickly and you may have to wait a week or so to get an appointment.

Psychology Worksheets – Program Outlines with Course requirements

Thesis PS499 – Application Process – 2013-2014

Thesis PS499 – Application Form – 2013-2014


Academic Dates 2013 – 2014

Psychology Course Descriptions 

Difference between Comprehensive and Research Specialist

Special Topics 2013-2014

Graduate Program Description

Graduate Programs and Information



You can receive funding to pursue your research-based masters studies. For more information click here.


Psychology at Laurier is an energetic and growing research-intensive department of 33 full-time faculty members and approximately 90 PhD and Masters students. Our faculty members are strong researchers with external grant support and international reputations. Our graduate students have outstanding academic records and enthusiasm for research, and many are also externally funded by scholarships and grants. Our graduate programs are designed to prepare students for careers in research and teaching, or for applied opportunities in various community and social agencies.

Behavioural Neuroscience

Cognitive Neuroscience

Community Psychology

Developmental Psychology

Social Psychology

To learn more, visit the area links and read our Information for Applicants, or contact us at: psychgradinquiries@wlu.ca

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