Baylor's Doctoral Program in Psychology Receives High Marks in National Survey

Nov. 4, 2010

Follow us on Twitter: @BaylorUMediaCom

In the first detailed survey of doctoral programs in the United States by the National Research Council (NRC) since 1995, Baylor University's Ph.D. program in psychology received strong marks and now ranks among the nation's best programs.

The 1995 NRC rankings were based on a reputational assessment, with academic officers across the country rating each program. In contrast, the 2010 report relied heavily on quantitative measures of faculty research activity and quality, student support and outcomes, and student and faculty diversity.

In the 1995 NRC survey, the psychology program ranked at the 89th percentile (165 out of 185). In the most recent survey, released Sept. 28, doctoral programs were not assigned a single rank, but rather placed within a range based on the highest rank a program received and the lowest rank it received. Baylor's psychology program's percentile range was 34th-60th, with a midpoint of 47th.

"The marked improvement in our ranking is extraordinarily gratifying and reflects a concerted effort to move our program forward since the release of the last NRC rankings," said Dr. Jimmy Diaz-Granados, chair of the department of psychology and neuroscience and associate professor of psychology, neuroscience and biomedical studies.

"At that time, we identified areas that had us out of step with our peer and aspirant institutions such as student support, faculty recruitment, and research productivity, and worked hard to address those," Diaz-Granados added.

For example, since 1996, nearly 90 percent of the department's hires have secured external funding, with a majority coming from federal agencies such as the National Institutes of Health, Department of Defense and Veterans Administration.

"We are fortunate to have a department populated by hard-working, talented faculty and graduate students and look forward to continued improvement and future success," Diaz-Granados said.

"Baylor now ranks as one of the top psychology programs in Texas," said Dr. Matthew Stanford, professor of psychology and neuroscience and director of the doctoral program in psychology at Baylor. "We are in the middle of the pack in the Big 12, a remarkable feat given that we are a small private institution competing with large, state universities. Most importantly the NRC rankings show that the psychology program is now recognized as part of a cohort of prestigious private universities that include Emory, Rice and Notre Dame."

Media contact: Lori Fogleman, director of media communications, (254) 710-6275

Looking for more news from Baylor University?