Independent Study

In contrast to many colleges and universities, faculty at Illinois State maintain a strong commitment to undergraduate instruction and mentoring. Every semester, undergraduate students develop and complete independent study projects under faculty supervision. Any research conducted in the Department of Psychology must comply with the Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct of the American Psychological Association.

PSY 287 Independent Study is an opportunity for students to study an area of interest in depth under the supervision of a psychology faculty member. This type of experience is generally appropriate for advanced students. In PSY 287, students are responsible for developing their own investigation and study of a specific topic. Students usually produce a substantive work product from the independent study—generally a paper—although the nature of the work product is variable.

The specific topic and required work are arranged through several meetings with the faculty member. The student and faculty member should complete the PSY 287 Independent Study Contract. Click on the link to download the contract. This contract is an interactive Microsoft Word document that should be completed on a computer. If necessary, the contract can be saved and sent as an email attachment to the faculty member. All sections of the contract should be completed before it is printed, signed, and dated by the student and faculty member. The signed contract should be submitted to the department for approval. If the contract is approved, the department will also approve an override for the student to register for PSY 287. It could take one to three weeks for the contract to be approved and the override processed before students can register for PSY 287. Students must register for the specific number of credits identified in the contract; otherwise, the registration will not be complete. If the contract is approved after the first week of the semester, students must register for the course in 107 Moulton.