a row of students writing in a GW psychology classroom


One of the largest undergraduate programs in the Columbian College, the Department of Psychology attracts students eager to develop research skills and solve issues within communities and societies.

Our undergraduates apply lessons learned in the classroom to real-world scenarios through learning and research. Students work alongside faculty on a range of health psychology and cultural diversity issues, and many present their findings at local and national conferences. Students pursue career paths that range from the more traditional paths of psychiatry and social work to careers in management and public relations.

325+ students in the major graphic


200+ students in the minor graphic


Programs of Study


"[Professor Dennis Schell] showed me that teaching, for him, goes beyond the classroom. It's not just about lecturing or giving exams but working with students so they can achieve their best."

Katrina Valdes

BA ’12




Potential Career Paths

An undergraduate degree in psychology can serve as a springboard to a wide range of professions. Understanding how people think, feel and behave can translate to careers as psychologists, family counselors, behavioral researchers, child care workers, clergy members, occupational therapists and much more. Our graduates have worked for public relations, consulting, media relations, law, higher education and even reality TV companies, including:


  • Accenture
  • American Psychological Association
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of America
  • CBS Corporation
  • Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
  • Children's National Medical Center
  • Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton
  • DC Public Schools
  • Edelman Berland


  • Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts
  • Hill Holiday
  • Kennedy Krieger Institute
  • Literacy Lab Reading Corps
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
  • National Institutes of Health
  • North American Family Institute
  • Ounalashka Corporation


  • Penguin Random House
  • Society for Research in Child Development
  • Teach for America
  • U.S. Department of Commerce
  • U.S. National Park Service
  • U.S. Navy
  • Vanguard
  • The View


Learn More at GW Career Services


Psychology Alumni Making News

Doctor Rachel Brem showing a group of students image of brain cancer

Can Cognitive Science Help Detect Cancer?

How do the cognitive sciences save women’s lives? Watch this short video to learn more about breast cancer detection and how cognitive science helps inform how radiologists can best perform their jobs.

A happy-looking stroke patient on a wheel chair

Can Cognitive Science Help with Stroke Recovery?

How do the cognitive sciences help with brain injury? Watch the short overview video of some of the work done in the National Rehabilitation Hospital.

Isaiah Pickens standing outside in a suit

Counselor, Entrepreneur and Reality TV Host

Isaiah Pickens, BA ’05, once volunteered as a counselor for young people in New York’s Rikers Island prison. The experience stayed with the former psychology major, who is now a well-known counselor, frequent media voice in defense of the underserved and host of a TLC reality show. His work has taken him across the country to schools, jails and foster care agencies, working with young people on understanding the harm caused by stress and trauma.

Stephen Mitroff sitting in an office being interviewed for a video

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. Recently, the Federation of Associations in Behavioral and Brain Sciences (FABBS) joined Mitroff and his students on several trips around Washington, D.C., and has produced a series of short videos that highlight how cognitive science can be used to benefit society. Watch the first video, which focuses on aviation security.