Educational Psychology

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College of Education and Human Development wordmark.
Department of Educational Psychology wordmark.

Social psychological and developmental processes M.A. and Ph.D.

Inspire positive social change by studying human relationships
and growth

The way we work, think, and play in groups and alone affects our personal success as well as the success of our schools, workplaces, and communities. As a Ph.D. or M.A. student, you’ll study the social and social developmental processes experienced across the lifespan, with a primary focus on processes during the years of schooling. You’ll apply what you learn to further the development of groups and organizations as well as individuals, particularly in educational and related settings.


  • Faculty (Ph.D only)
  • Research scientists at universities and companies
  • Other educational settings (e.g., K-12 school research offices)
  • Human and social service organizations
  • Health care organization evaluator/researcher
  • Government agencies
  • Research and development centers
First in the World Grant
Professor Geoffrey Maruyama and students from six research universities participating in the University of Minnesota’s First in the World grant take part in an icebreaker activity at the annual Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI) Summit in Minneapolis.

Degrees and coursework

A master's degree is not required to apply for the doctoral program.

Master's of Arts (M.A.)

M.A. curriculum (33-34 credits)

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D)

Ph.D. curriculum (72 credits)

What you'll study:

  • Social influence processes
  • Group dynamics/cooperative learning
  • Theories of intergroup relations
  • Methods of organizational change and conflict resolution
  • Action research models and engaged research
  • Impacts of disparities on educational and life outcomes
  • Social emotional development
  • Prosocial and antisocial behavior in schools


Visit the College of Education and Human Development's Finance and Funding page for information on tuition.


Fellowships and awards

Submit your application materials by Dec. 1, and you’ll automatically be considered for Graduate School fellowships and departmental awards based on scholastic achievement. Notification of awards will be sent in March.

Graduate assistantships

Get paid to work as a teaching assistant, graduate instructor or research assistant. Graduate assistantships are available through the department, College of Education and Human Development, and the University.

Note: Applicants who complete their applications by the March 1 deadline will be less likely to receive graduate assistantships than students who meet the Dec. 1 deadline.

Financial aid

Visit OneStop Student Services for more information on available financial aid.


Visit the College of Education and Human Development’s Awards page for scholarship information.

How to apply

"In this program, I see a direct connection between academic work and helping populations in the most need. The faculty provide an exceptional learning environment both in the classroom and in the research labs."

Anthony Schulzetenberg headshot

Anthony SchulzetenbergM.A. student |

Interests: Focuses on personal qualities and stereotype threats that may inhibit success in adults. Investigates how social psychological interventions can promote healthy self-concepts and interrupt damaging recursive cycles that perpetuate negative stereotypes and suppress an individual’s potential.

Work: Currently, Anthony works on a national grant that looks into better understanding internal struggles in learning and comprehension, particularly within underrepresented college students. Through psychology and research, he is working to contribute to narrowing the achievement gap in colleges across the country.


Geoffrey Maruyama headshot

Geoffrey MaruyamaDepartment chair
Email | Lab

  • Achievement processes in schools and other organizations
  • Connections between social processes and educational success
  • Research and community partnerships in challenged communities and urban settings

Adjunct faculty

Murial Bebeau, professor in Department of Primary Dental Care

Emeritus faculty

David W. Johnson

Curriculum and instruction emeritus faculty

Roger Johnson