Western University PsychologyFaculty of Social Science

Independent Studies

WHAT IS AN INDEPENDENT STUDY?

Individual reading and research at an advanced level under faculty supervision. Students are responsible for arranging independent study credit with an individual Psychology Faculty member.  The Independent Study courses in Psychology provide students with the opportunity to develop their research skills under the mentorship of an individual faculty member. Typically, students take two Independent Study courses in a single year (3996F and/or 3997G and/or 4996F and/or 4997G) to enable them to develop and justify a research question (first term), and to gather and analyze data and write up a full research report (second term).  A single term Independent Study experience also is possible, with the content negotiated by student and mentor. The Independent Study courses are ideal for students who wish to gain additional research training and writing experience in preparation for graduate school in Psychology or related disciplines. A 2500-word paper is the minimum requirement for each Independent Study half course; other assignments may be required as negotiated by student and mentor.  Students must have adequate flexibility in their schedules to allow for consultation, writing, data collection, and data analysis. 

Note: Independent Study courses are exempt from the Senate requirement that students receive assessment of their work accounting for at least 15% of their final grade at least one week before the deadline for withdrawal from a course without academic penalty.

WHO CAN SERVE AS AN INDEPENDENT STUDY SUPERVISOR? 

Any full time psychology faculty member (listed at http://www.psychology.uwo.ca/people/faculty/index.html) or those with  cross or adjunct research appointments in Psychology (listed at http://www.psychology.uwo.ca/people/faculty/cross_adjunct.html) may serve as a supervisor.

Psychology graduate students, post-doctoral fellows and those with adjunct teaching appointments in Psychology may not be the sole supervisor. They may co-supervise with a full-time faculty member or someone with a cross or adjunct research appointment in Psychology. The Independent Study Form (see below) should have the name, e-mail address and signature for BOTH co-supervisors.

ELIGIBILITY

Students may register for Independent Study courses if they achieved an A average in the previous academic year, and have written permission from the faculty mentor and the department. At the beginning of the term, the student and mentor must complete the Independent Study Form, which involves describing the content of the Independent Study, the anticipated frequency of meetings between student and mentor, and the work required of the student. This form must be returned to the Psychology Program Advisor, Ramona Fudge. Note that Independent Study papers MUST be submitted to Turnitin on the relevant course website (3996F, 3997G, 4996F, or 4997G) at the end of term before a final mark will be recorded.

PROCEDURE TO ENROL IN AN INDEPENDENT STUDY COURSE(3996F; 3997G; 4996F; 4997G)

1. Student must have an “A” average from the previous year.
2. Confirm with a professor that he/she is willing to supervise your Independent Study.
3. Prior to the start of the course, print off the form found at Independent Study Form.
4. Complete the Independent Study Form with your supervising professor (including due date and listing your average from the previous year) and ensure you both sign it.  If you are away from London, and therefore unable to complete and deliver the form, wait until you arrive on campus to actually fill out and submit the form on or before the last day to ADD a course for that term. However, ensure you have an understanding with your professor over the summer that he/she is willing to supervise you in the course.
5. Take the Independent Study Form to Ramona Fudge in SSC 7402 for approval and processing, and so that a Special Permission can be submitted.
6. Once you see the Special Permission on your Student Center (student.uwo.ca (log-in) > Academic Records (on far left under Self Service) > View Special Permissions), contact the Registrar’s Helpline at 519-661-2100 for them to register you manually as the system will not allow you to do it online.