Doctoral research in Positive Developmental Psychology equips you with contemporary psychology expertise to design, implement, and evaluate social interventions aimed at fostering positive human development throughout the lifespan.
Positive psychology is the scientific study of the factors that contribute to human flourishing and well-being. You’ll research the positive developmental trajectories and processes that contribute to positive outcomes at both the individual and sociocultural levels, integrating that scholarship with research from developmental science, positive psychology, statistics, and methodology. The positive psychology program at CGU was founded by the grandfather of Positive Psychology, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. At CGU, you will continue the good work began by late Professor Csikszentmihalyi with the only positive psych doctorate in the country. Led by faculty-scholars who are experts in the field, you’ll apply social science concepts and methods to important social issues through supervised fieldwork or teaching, preparing you to succeed in an array of organizations and institutions and to make a lasting impact on the lives within them.
Our programming in Positive Developmental Psychology is built upon the following core principles:
- The importance of understanding positive developmental processes and primary prevention, promotion, and optimization, rather than remediation.
- The need to take into account inter-individual differences and intra-individual changes across the lifespan.
- The centrality of context, especially institutions, settings, and programs that promote positive experiences and characteristics.
- An appreciation of the bidirectional relationship between knowledge generation and knowledge application.
- Promotion of applied research and evaluation so that our work has direct implications for the decisions of individuals, families, schools, practitioners, and policymakers.