School of Psychology & Cognitive Science

We Study Minds.

Preparing students for what’s next.

Avila’s School of Psychology & Cognitive Science will develop the critical reasoning, problem-solving, and interpersonal skills required for a wide range of career areas from healthcare to law to public relations. If your goal is to become a licensed counselor or psychologist, your Avila degree will prepare you to enter a master’s and doctoral graduate programs.

Cognitive science majors will study how the mind works. Through an interdisciplinary curriculum you’ll engage in critical thinking and problem-solving. You’ll gain a deeper understanding of memory, language, reasoning, motor control and attention. With your professors, you’ll uncover how cognition affects our capabilities to learn, to communicate and to experience the world.

Psychology majors will explore a three-tiered approach to instruction as you prepare for future graduate studies or work in related fields. At Avila University you’ll:

  • Gain hands-on experience in research and statistical techniques
  • Learn about and understand human behavior.
  • This will be your pre-professional training as you apply psychological techniques in individual or group settings
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Department of Psychology

Through college coursework, field experiences, involvement in Psi Chi (psychology honor society)/psychology club, and an apprenticeship-model of research in one of our five active research labs, you will experience collaborative, participatory learning, with real-world applications.

Department of Psychology Home Page >>
Graduate Psychology Programs >>

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Department of Cognitive Science

As the only program in the region, Avila’s cognitive science major will prepare you to understand how the mind processes information by investigating thinking, memory and consciousness.

Department of Cognitive Science Home Page >>

Degree Programs

Bachelor of Arts

  • Psychology (General, Mental Health, Research Concentrations)

Bachelor of Science

  • Cognitive Science (Biology, Math & Computer Science, Psychology, Research Concentrations)


  • Psychology

“At bigger schools, students are going to be working with grad students or postdocs – they’re not working with faculty directly. Avila is especially good for preparing students for graduate study because it makes a concerted point of valuing its students.”

Grace Tibbetts ’19, Psychology B.A.

What is Cognitive Science?

Cognitive science is the study of how the mind works, functions, and behaves. As a field of study, cognitive science encompasses ideas and concepts from multiple disciplines including philosophy, neuroscience, biology, psychology, computer science, linguistics and artificial intelligence. In order to understand how the brain makes decisions and performs tasks, students will take classes in a variety of program areas. Ultimately, cognitive science seeks to grasp intelligence and behavior in a way which can help improve human development and lives.

Because of the interdisciplinary nature of the degree, cognitive science majors have a wide range of career and advanced study opportunities. Students will graduate with strong writing, research, and analytical thinking skills. Many will pursue careers in software development, healthcare administration, research, game design, and education. Other graduates will further their knowledge and research interests in masters and doctoral programs in linguistics, neuroscience, and psychology. A cognitive science degree is also a path toward medical school, law school, or an MBA program.

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