Humboldt State University

Department of Psychology

News & Announcements

The Department of Psychology at HSU offers an undergraduate major leading to the B.A. degree, a minor program, course options for general education requirements and electives, service courses for other majors, and three active graduate programs leading to the M.A. degree, including preparation for the California School Psychology Credential, and preparation for licensure as a Marriage Family Therapist (MFT), and studies in Academic Research.


Quick Facts

  • 592
    Undergraduate Students
  • 73
    Graduate Students
  • 8
    Research Labs
  • 3
    Graduate Programs

Hands-on Learning


Research Participation for Psychology

Students serve as participants in research studies, and may have opportunities to assist with faculty research and to present and publish with faculty members in the department.

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Community Counseling Clinic

We're here for you. Our staff and students welcome the opportunity to assist you during times of emotional challenge.

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Since 2015 the Psychology department has be hosting a colloquium which provides HSU the opportunity to learn about psychological practice and research from experts in their fields and HSU students.

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Community Spotlight

  • Hello, my name is Vivian Alvarado and the most important thing I did during my college journey was find my passion, Psychology and Nutrition. Whether it be statistics, public speaking, art, research, counseling, teaching…it is important to know that everyone has their own strengths that are unique to them and the only person you have to compete with is yourself. To become wiser it is essential to listen and help one another. My advice to finding passion would be to challenge yourself by bringing your personal experiences, background and social circle into the classroom. Best wishes to you all! Currently working as a Behavioral Therapist here in Arcata, CA.
    Vivian Alvarado
    Undergraduate Student '16
  • Kashia Axthelm
    As a transfer student, I was worried about being able to make connections with my professors in such a short amount of time; however, I found the psychology faculty at HSU to be very welcoming and approachable. I was able to get involved in research as an undergraduate and continued working on those projects during my MA degree. I'm about to start a PhD program, and my course work and research experience at HSU definitely prepared me for this next step in my career. I will forever be thankful for the guidance and mentor-ship I received from the amazing psychology professors and staff at HSU! Thank you!
    Kashia Axthelm
    Academic Research masters program alumni
  • Haley Jones
    I already knew when I entered HSU for my undergraduate degree in psychology that I would pursue a graduate degree in School Psychology. I chose to apply to the program at HSU, because as someone who grew up in Humboldt County, it was important for me to stay close to home where I had support from friends and family. I didn’t know when I started the program that I would soon have a newfound group assisting me to realize my goal. I was amazed and honored by the support I received from the faculty and staff in the School Psychology graduate program. Not only did I have wonderful professors who supported my journey - I was placed at school sites where I experienced hands-on practical learning and professional development opportunities. I made school-site connections with teachers, administrators, other school personnel, students and their families. After a successful internship at Humboldt County Office of Education, I was subsequently hired full time as a school psychologist working with diverse populations, and am engaged in an exciting school transformation initiative with the Northern California MTSS (Multi-Tiered Systems of Support) Coalition, providing training and consultation to local school districts focusing on Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS), restorative practices, academic interventions, inclusion, and other critical initiatives supported at the local and state level. I am grateful to be engaged in this exciting and enriching work.
    Haley Jones
    School Psychology masters program alumni
  • "The biggest preparation for both graduation and becoming a psychiatric assistant was my Humboldt State experience. Professors sharing knowledge on topics was helpful, but to see the same professors continue to work hard to further their knowledge was inspirational. My time spent at Humboldt state has taught me that anything is possible through hard work and perseverance."
    Brandon Cameron-Vaughn
    Psychiatric Assistant
  • Hernandez_profile
    "I struggled a little because I would hear that I was not going to get a job that I wanted because I had no experience but the best advice I can give is to continue doing what you do and don't doubt yourself; you've done it this far why doubt now what you're capable of doing. Don't let others define who you are and what you can and can't do."
    Arlyn Hernandez
    Class of 2016

Stay Connected

Dr. Gaffney answering questions after her talk at WPA! #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies Congratulations to our very own Dr. Amber Gaffney who recently received the McCrone Promising Faculty Scholar Award! We're very fortunate to have such an outstanding scholar and professor in our department! #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies We wish all of the attendees safe travels and hope that you all enjoy the Western Psychological Association conference! #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies Congratulations to our students who received awards at the 2017-2018 Outstanding Student Awards! The awards took place on April 12th and recognized students who have demonstrated excellence in their coursework whilst being involved in a variety of on and off-campus activities and events. #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies Enjoy your beautiful Friday by coming out and supporting Psych Club and Psi Chi at their rummage sale going on now until 1 P.M on the UC Quad! 🌞 #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies Psychology Club and Psi Chi will be having a rummage sale this Friday from 10:30 A.M - 1 P.M on the UC Quad! Come and find some unique clothing items and support two of our Psychology-oriented clubs! 😀 #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies We would like to congratulate Dr. Melinda Myers on receiving the 2016-2017 Outstanding Faculty Award! We are honored to have such an exceptional professor like Dr. Myers teaching in our department! #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies Our Spring Preview Department Open House will be from 1:00-2:00 P.M and from 2:00-3:00 P.M in BSS 408! Be sure to stop by with your questions! 😀 #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies Spring Preview #2 is in full swing! Welcome, new psychology students! 😀 #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies The Spring 2017 Psi Chi Initiation Ceremony will be right after the Psych Talk! Join Psi Chi for the ceremony at 6:30 P.M in Art B 102! Congratulations to HSU's newest Psi Chi scholars! #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies There will be a Psych Talk today at 5 P.M in Siemens Hall 108! Our very own Dr. Gahtan, whose research interests include neuroscience and evolutionary psychology, will be speaking about why students may be attracted to careers in Psychology. Snacks and refreshments will be served at 4:30 P.M in Siemens Hall 128! #hsupsych #hsupsychtalks #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies There will be a visiting speaker at tonight's Psych Club and Psi Chi meeting! Author Kate Riley will be discussing the topic of death and dying and the changing cultural paradigm around death and related topics. The meeting will be held in the usual location (Art B 102) at 6:30 P.M. #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies Future HSU Psychology students, be sure to attend one of our Open House events! One is at 1 P.M - 2 P.M and the other is from 2 P.M - 3 P.M! Both Open House events will be held in BSS 408. 😁 #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies The Majors Fair at Spring Preview is about to begin! Come and join us in the Forbes Gym - we're excited to meet the next HSU Psychology students! #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies Our latest Psych Talk is about to begin at 3 P.M! Come to Native American Forum (BSS 166) to attend another great talk! #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsupsychtalks #hsuprofstudies Psych Club and Psi Chi will be hosting a Vision Board Workshop tonight at 6:30 P.M in Art B 102! Stop by for a fun evening of crafts, snacks, and inspiration! #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies #hsupsychpsichi Welcome back! This Wednesday Psych Club and Psi Chi will be hosting a special event geared at helping you realize your goals! Be creative and have fun with your friends as you create a vision board, a tool to help inspire and aid you in organizing and visualizing your goals in a way that reflects YOU and what YOU want to achieve. The Vision Board Workshop will be tomorrow (Wed) at 6:30 P.M in Art B 102! Bring your friends and creativity! Snacks and refreshments will be provided! #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies #hsupsychpsichi Our department is hosting another faculty search candidate today! Dr. Steph Anderson will be speaking about the role of gender expression and race in experiences of antigay discrimination. The talk will be from 1 P.M - 2 P.M in BSS 204. #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies A beautiful rainy day captured from the 4th floor of BSS. ☔🌧 #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies Thank you to everybody who came out to today's Psych Talk with Dr. Matthew Callahan - there was a great turnout! Happy Friday to you all! #hsupsych #humboldtstate #hsuprofstudies #hsupsychtalks

Excellence in teaching and research are hallmarks of the faculty in the Department of Psychology at Humboldt State University. Faculty members are drawn to the university by its stellar reputation for quality instruction, smaller classes, and excellent students, as well as the scenic beauty of a campus nestled between a redwood forest and the Pacific Ocean.