Students in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences learn to apply psychological theories and methods to solve urgent problems facing individuals, communities and society. Our faculty members are active in mentoring student research, and several have been recognized for their prolific contributions to their fields of study.

Surrounded by the esteemed research and health centers that Washington, D.C., and GW have to offer, psychology students integrate practical experience and research into their coursework, preparing them for a wide range of successful careers.



The mission of the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the George Washington University is to contribute to psychological knowledge and educate undergraduate and graduate students. Our aim is to provide a solid foundation in scientific approaches, psychological theory and education and training in both basic and applied aspects of psychological and brain sciences. Central to this mission is a scientist/practitioner model that emphasizes the development of proficiency in theoretically grounded research and quantitative and qualitative methods to: (1) elucidate cognitive, neural and affective mechanisms as well as social and structural factors driving behavior; (2) advance empirical knowledge about mental and physical health and well-being; and (3) reduce health and social inequities. Our location in Washington, D.C., is ideally suited to our mission.

Our proximity to many of the nation’s leading research institutes and organizations — such as the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation, as well as numerous other nonprofits, think tanks, policy organizations and applied research units — creates opportunities for students to enhance their academic and professional development and training beyond the classroom.



Through our teaching, research and service, we aim to make the world a healthy and equitable place, beginning with our own community. We aim to foster an academic climate that is diverse, equitable and inclusive for all students, faculty and staff. Our goal is to seamlessly infuse these values throughout all aspects of our department, including but not limited to student admissions; faculty hiring, tenure and promotion; academic program curricula and teaching; student and faculty scholarship and research; and department-sponsored programs and events.


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Psychology News

Professor Molock stands holding a microphone and addresses a crowd out of view.

Partnering with Churches, Psychology Team Targets Suicides Among Black Youth

With suicide rates skyrocketing among young African Americans, Psychology professor Sherry Molock is working with churches to address the crisis in communities.

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Can Cognitive Science Improve Airport Security?

Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience Stephen Mitroff’s undergraduate course called Science in the District focuses on how cognitive psychology research plays a role in many real-world professions....

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Cross-Disciplinary Partnership to Focus Structural Lens on HIV Interventions

The program teams the CCAS Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences and the Milken Institute SPH Department of Prevention and Community Health.

Headshots of cognitive neuroscience major Lily Reck (left) and chemistry major Nora Houseman (right), participants in the Columbian College STEM Summer Laboratory Internship Program

Summer Program Opens Doors for STEM Students

Lily Reck, a cognitive neuroscience major, participated in the Columbian College STEM Summer Laboratory Internship Program this summer.

Justin Grady guarding a soccer goal

Eyes on the Prize: Student Stars in Soccer and Psychology

Whether in the lab or in the net, psychology major and soccer goalkeeper Justin Grady uses his study of visual cognition to see what others may miss.

Headshots for Psychology’s Sarah Calabrese, Biology’s Keryn Gedan and Geography’s Aman Luthra

Psychology Faculty Awarded Fulbright Scholar Honors

Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychology Sarah Calabrese is amongst the newest class of prestigious scholars and will travel to Australia to collaborate on a project with healthcare providers and...

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GW Research Team Awarded Funding to Study Impact of Stress, Adversity on Latino/a Adolescents

This NIH-funded project combines public health, clinical psychology, sociology and public policy.

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Study: Healthcare Bias Blocks Access to HIV Drug

A new study led by Psychology’s Sarah Calabrese suggests healthcare provider bias against people who inject drugs may prevent patients from accessing preventative HIV medication.

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HIV-Prevention Project Targets Latina Transgender Women

Funded by a $1 million CDC grant, Ana María del Río-González is launching a first-of-its-kind study that uses peer-coaching to support the needs of an understudied community.

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Meet the Columbian Distinguished Fellows

Across disciplines and research fields, these Columbian College PhD fellows are leading scholarly studies and making real-world impacts.