New Concentration in Industrial Organizational Psychology

The Bureau of Labor and Statistics has identified Industrial Organizational Psychology (I/O) as one of the fastest growing fields through 2020. Due to this demand and growing interest in the field, the Behavioral Sciences Department has modified our previous Applied Psychology major to develop an Applied Psychology Major with a concentration in Industrial Organizational Psychology.

Instructor Chanda Murphy and Mauricio Ramirez (Senior Applied Psychology Major) have been working over the past two years to develop this major to include the courses and experiences, curricular and extracurricular, necessary to prepare students to be competitive upon graduation. Research to develop the paradigm included looking at other universities in the Mid-South that had comparable majors and making sure CBU’s major would provide similar courses and opportunities. The new paradigm offers classes in areas such as leadership, personnel development, human resources, and organizational development. Many of these courses focus on bringing in people from industry to share their experiences and to demonstrate how professionals apply theoretical and practical information learned in the classroom in their daily roles. Moreover, these courses incorporate the most recent research in the field of I/O to keep students abreast of the future of the field. The students are also required to take the three statistics courses that our other psychology majors complete so that those that graduate with the I/O Psychology concentration are prepared for both the applied domain and graduate school.

The updated major has already generated interest from corporations in the Memphis area. Professor Murphy and other CBU I/O students recently spoke at a meeting for the Memphis Industrial Organizational Psychology (MIOP) chapter about the updated paradigm and internship possibilities. I/O Professionals, including faculty at the University of Memphis, have also applauded CBU for bringing the attention to the need and importance of having a degree that prepares students to enter the world of Industrial Organizational Psychology. There are already over ten students enrolled in the major and it is expected to grow significantly. Any questions about the major can be directed to Instructor Chanda Murphy: