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Cognition, Brain, & Behavior Overview

The Cognition, Brain, & Behavior (CBB) program offers graduate training leading to a Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology. Research in the area is centered on using rigorous methods and theory to understand fundamental mechanisms underlying cognitive and neural processing. Research on cognitive and perceptual processes, such as visual perception, memory, attention, knowledge development, concepts and categories, problem solving, and decision making, contributes to our understanding of human behavior in individual and social environments and provides the structure on which to build applications to improve health and behavior.

Program of Study

Full details of the program of study can be found in the CBB graduate handbook.

Research Training

Students receive research training at the forefront of Psychology. Students are assigned a primary advisor upon entry to the program and are required to actively participate in program of research supervised by a core faculty member through the duration of their program of study. Participation in these groups is designed to facilitate the development of research skills and professional development necessary for a career in psychological science. Required milestones include completion of a first year research project, Master’s proposal and defense, qualifying exam, and Dissertation proposal and defense.


The curriculum in is designed to provide students with the essential coursework and laboratory research experience necessary for an academic or research career in cognitive psychology, broadly defined. The coursework spans three areas: (1) methods, techniques, and statistics; (2) cognitive and neural bases of behavior (3) breadth of training. The program of study requires a minimum of 90 graduate credit hours. Consult the Course Catalog for specific requirements.


Most graduates of the program seek a research-teaching position following completion of the Ph.D. Opportunities to develop teaching skills come in the form of serving as teaching assistant in one or more classroom courses or laboratory courses often including Introduction to Psychology, Introduction to Statistics, Introduction to Research Methods and the Laboratory in Cognitive Psychology.

Concentration in Neuroscience

Students who are admitted to the CBB training program may choose to complete interdisciplinary neuroscience coursework, resulting in a Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology with "Neuroscience Concentration" listed as an area of specialization on your degree. Learn more about the Interdisciplinary Neuroscience graduate program.

Commitment to Diversity

Faculty make a special effort to recruit and prepare well-qualified minority students for careeers in the field of cognition, brain, & behavior.

Contact Us

For more information about the program, visit the Frequently Asked Questions page.
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