U-M Research Resources

Research Centers

Many faculty hold cross-appointments in research centers on campus and the research scientists at these centers add to the breadth of training opportunities at Michigan. The following selective list highlights some centers of particular interest to social psychologists.

The UM Institute for Social Research

The social psychology program is closely connected to the Research Center for Group Dynamics (RCGD), originally founded by Kurt Lewin. Research programs within RCGD address issues of aggression, culture, race, and self. RCGD is housed within the Institute for Social Research (ISR) and offers additional research resources for the social psychology program, including lab space. It also offers a summer school in psychological methodology that attracts instructors and participants from national and international universities.

ISR also houses the nation's leading academic center for survey research, the Survey Research Center (SRC), as well as the largest archive of survey data, ICPSR. Both institutions provide social psychologists with outstanding opportunities to leave the laboratory and to acquire skills in survey research. Other programs address adolescent development, economic behavior, the ethnography of everyday life, health and well- being, prevention research, and aging. Many students participate in the SRC and ICPSR summer training programs. To facilitate the involvement of graduate students in SRC research programs, SRC offers a number of graduate student fellowships, for which students can be nominated by their department.

A third center within ISR is the Center for Political Studies, which conducts (among other things) the National Election Study, the leading investigation of political attitudes and behavior in the United States. The Population Studies Center completes ISR's portfolio of social science research centers and addresses issues of demography.

The Center for Human Growth and Development

The Center for Human Growth and Development (CHGD) was established by the Regents of the University of Michigan in 1964 to further the understanding of the complex processes by which human beings grow and develop. With multidisciplinary collaborations among biomedical, behavioral, and social scientists, the long-range goal of research and training at the Center is to optimize children's physical, cognitive, and socioemotional development.

International Institute

The International Institute offers many resources that are of interest to culture research. It includes centers for Chinese Studies, Japanese Studies, Korean Studies, Latin American and Caribbean Studies, Middle Eastern Studies, as well as other regional programs.

Yaffe Center for Persuasive Communications

Begun in 1996, the Yaffe Center is one of the world's pre-eminent academic centers for the science and arts of Persuasive Communications. It brings together those useful elements of this knowledge that today exist in fields as diverse as psychology, advertising, design, film and video, media studies, politics, popular culture, religion, theater, and others. It sponsors conferences, colloquia, courses, and discussions of new knowledge in frontier areas on topics such as visual persuasion, designing persuasive communications, cultural styles of processing persuasive messages, and how the techniques of effective communication might change with the introduction of new technologies.

Interdisciplinary Training Programs

Culture and Cognition

The Culture and Cognition Program is completing its sixth year as a Rackham Certificate granting unit. The program is jointly supported by Anthropology, Psychology, and the Institute for Social Research. The central mission of the program is to create and maintain an inter-disciplinary intellectual environment favorable to the exploration of the cultural context of human mental life and the mental foundations of culture.

Decision Consortium

The University of Michigan's Decision Consortium is a University-wide distributed center for scholarship on decision making.

The Evolution and Human Adaptation Program

The Evolution and Human Adaptation Program (EHAP) supports work by faculty and students at the University of Michigan in the area of evolution and human behavior, including work relevant to Darwinian medicine.

The Interdisciplinary Committee on Organizational Studies

The Interdisciplinary Committee on Organizational Studies (ICOS) has the single goal of enhancing the University of Michigan's strength as a world center for interdisciplinary research and scholarship on organizations. We seek to enrich the intellectual environment of Ph.D. students and faculty interested in organization studies, by increasing the quality, breadth, depth, and usefulness of organizational research.

Michigan Prevention Research Training Program

Michigan Prevention Research Training Program (MPRT) researchers work on: (1) developing testable process models pointing to factors that if manipulated, can promote well-being and reduce risk, (2) developing interventions targeted at those points in the process model where change is possible. Prevention research combines an interest in basic topics in psychology and sociology with an interest in creating change.

Program in Survey Methods

ISR's Program in Survey Methods focuses on survey methodology, the science of how to improve the quality of what we can learn through surveys. Survey methodology is recognized as both a scientific field and a professional practice. The field blends study of human behaviors (e.g., judgments and choice; interpersonal attribution) capable of producing errors in data with statistical methods that draw scientific inferences.

The University of Michigan launched MS and PhD, as well as Certificate, degree programs in survey methodology in Fall 2002. These degree programs are administered by an interdepartmental program, the Program in Survey Methodology. The Program draws faculty and courses from social, behavioral, and statistical science departments across the University. The Program is located at the Institute for Social Research, the world's largest university-based center for social science research.

Social Work and Psychology Program

The Ph.D. program in Social Work and Psychology was one of the original programs in 1957. Psychology's link with social work has traditionally been strong and is most evident in the contributions psychology has made to social work theory in the areas of individual, group and family treatment. Less obvious, but no less important, is psychological knowledge that can be applied to more macro level issues in social work having to do with human service delivery in particular and social welfare policy and planning in general.

Women's Studies and Psychology

The doctoral program in Women's Studies and Psychology is one of several graduate programs in Women's Studies at the University of Michigan. These include a graduate Certificate( equivalent to a minor), and doctoral programs in English and in History. These programs provide students with conceptual and methodological tools grounded in the interdisciplinary perspectives of the Women's Studies Program.