Independent Study

The Department of Psychology offers four types of independent study courses: Psychology 99, 197, 198, and 199. Descriptions of the courses are listed below. Students interested in enrolling in one of these courses should come by the Student Services Office at the beginning of the semester, obtain an application, and refer to the list of studies on the website. The faculty will be available during regularly scheduled office hours to discuss independent study enrollment. An application form should be filled out by the student, signed by both the student and the instructor, and returned to the Student Services Office by the University deadline to add a course (generally the Friday of Week 3). Upon receipt of the completed application, the Undergraduate Advisors or Peer Advisors will give the student the course control number to be entered on CalCentral.


Psychology 99:

Supervised Independent Study and Research, 1-3 units, P/NP. Intended for freshmen and sophomores who wish to undertake a program of individual inquiry on a topic in Psychology. A final may be required.


Psychology 197:

Field Studies in Psychology, 1-3 units, P/NP. Groups or individual students may volunteer or intern in an agency whose program relates to the discipline of Psychology. A final paper may be required. Although the Department does not place students in agencies, the Undergraduate Bulletin Board may have posters from agencies seeking volunteers and announcements may be sent out via the listserv.

Students may receive either Psychology 197 units or compensation if the agency is willing to do so out of their funds, but not both.


Psychology 198:

Directed Group Study, 1-3 units, P/NP. Group study of a selected topic or topics in Psychology. Generally this is a student-initiated seminar course (i.e. DE-Cal) that requires prior planning. If you are interested in planning such a course, you should begin the semester prior to enrollment. A final paper may be required.


Psychology 199:

Supervised Independent Study and Research, 1-3 units, P/NP. Designed for junior and senior students interested in carrying out their own research (which may be linked closely to the research program of the mentoring faculty member) or review of the literature on a topic in Psychology. Research assistants normally receive Psych 199 credit. A final paper may be required.


Fall 2017 Research Assistant Positions

Click here for a list of research assistant positions that are available this Fall through the Department of Psychology.  * Updated 9/11/17


Summer Research and Field work

Research and field work opportunities are available during the summer months at Berkeley and other institutions. Several universities have special research programs in Psychology for junior and senior Psychology majors. Recent examples have included research in language acquisition at Clark University and cognition and communication in marine mammals at the University of Hawaii.


Katherine Craig Swan Undergraduate Research Award and Endowment in Psychology

The Swan family has generously donated funds in memory of Katherine Craig Swan, a 1932 Berkeley graduate in Psychology, which will support undergraduate research in the Psychology Department. Theh budget for the proposal cannot exceed $500. This money will be awarded to the most deserving applicants on an annual competition. The faculty of the Undergraduate Awards Committee will review these award funding to the best proposals. Swan Research Awards will be acknowledged at the annual Commencement Ceremony of the Psychology Department.


Campuswide Research Opportunities

The Office of Undergraduate Research's web site is designed to highlight the diverse research opportunities available to undergraduates at Berkeley. You can access it through:



Forms are accessible from the Psychology website. Please see the Resources page to download the application and instructions.