Frequently Asked Questions

What is interdisciplinary research?

Our faculty and diverse set of affiliated programs suggest one way in which we are an interdisciplinary program. Another way is to look at our participation in a broad range of professional associations and scholarly journals. Recent research, for instance, has addressed the experiences of recently housed homeless people, the privatization of public space, socio-spatial conflicts, children’s safety in the public environment, relocation, community based approaches to housing, the design of specialized environments such as museums, zoos, gardens and hospitals, the changing relationships between home, family and work, the environmental experiences of gay men and lesbians, and access to parks and other urban ‘green spaces.’ None of these topics could have been adequately addressed from the perspective of a single discipline.

Please see our Research Topic Wiki for more information about the type of research conducted by students in the Environmental Psych program


Can I get credit for previous coursework? Can I transfer credits?

It varies depending on the courses you are seeking to transfer. You will need to have a discussion with your advisor.


How many credits can I transfer?

The university allows a maximum of 30 acceptable graduate credits taken prior to admission to the doctoral program at the City University may be applied toward the degree provided the courses were completed with a grade of B or higher within an appropriate period preceding the time of application and are equivalent to comparable courses at the City University. However, the actual amount of transferable credits is different by subprogram policy. See student handbook of each subprogram for details.


Are there any prerequisites to apply? Do I need a statistics course?

Students from a wide range of undergraduate and graduate disciplines are welcome.  Current students and graduates have prior degrees in various fields ranging from ecology to urban planning, architecture, and dance. See the Students page for more information.

Receiving a bachelor’s degree, interests related to environmental psychology, and recent GRE scores are important prerequisites for applying to the Environmental Psychology program. At least one statistics course is preferred.


What courses are offered?

Throughout their course of study, all students will take a three-part course on Environmental Social Sciences, focusing on “Place, Space & Experience”, “Ecological & Contextual Concepts”, and Social Theory, respectively. All students will complete two semesters of Research Lab to develop their own project and two methods courses to assist with research design. Additionally, students are required to complete two semesters of Statistical Methods in Psychology. Of the sixty credits needed, twenty-nine are required courses and thirty-one are electives.

The Environmental Psychology Area encourages students to search for interdisciplinary coursework as they pursue their interests. Courses taken by students as electives in the past include (but are not limited to):

  • Group Relations
  • Critical Mapping
  • Supportive Settings and Restorative Environments
  • Consumer, Society, & Culture
  • Study of Lives
  • Social Movements in the US
  • Environmental Policy and Planning
  • Inequality and Reimagining the 21st Century
  • Seminar & Practicum on the Teaching of Psychology
  • International Liberation and Social Community Psychology

For more information about coursework please reference the Program Handbook


How do the doctoral exams work?

The FIRST DOCTORAL EXAMINATION covers a broad, basic grounding in the field of Environmental Social Science.  The examination consists of multiple sections, each of which is evaluated separately.  Passing the examination requires passing all its sections.  If any section is not passed on the first try, one retake will be administered covering only the section or sections that were not passed.  The “first doc” is written at the end of the semester in which a student completes a series of three required courses – typically at the end of the first semester of the second year.  A student must pass the First Doctoral Examination as a condition of being allowed to register for any course credits beyond 45.

The SECOND DOCTORAL EXAMINATION is a closed, two-hour oral examination of the student, by a faculty committee, on the scholarly literature from two topic areas relevant to the student’s interests and planned dissertation research.

For more information on exams, program timeline, and structure see the Program Handbook.


How do I create a Student or Alumni profile?

If you are a student or alumni of the Environmental Psychology program please click here to create you profile.

 OpenCUNY » login | join | terms | activity 

 Supported by the CUNY Doctoral Students Council.