Dear Future Behavioral and Social Sciences Students:

Today, more than ever, students are called upon to become engaged, productive citizens of the world. Crucial to this transformation is learning to analyze and solve problems, make ethical decisions, communicate effectively and interact with diverse cultures.

In the School of Behavioral and Social Sciences, as throughout St. Edward’s University, we challenge and inspire our students to excel in these important pursuits. Our curriculum and resources prepare students to address critical issues in whatever field they choose, while remaining current, relevant and driven by a passion for finding just and responsible solutions.

Through classroom discussions, research, presentations and projects, students identify, discuss and work to solve complex social problems that unfold in every realm of society — from courtrooms and capitol buildings to crime scenes and social institutions. All the while, they are guided by dedicated, caring faculty members who merge innovative research with award-winning teaching.

Vital to our students’ success is hands-on learning that “closes the loop” of theory and practice. Students apply the knowledge they gain in the classroom through internships in government and law enforcement, with professional researchers and therapists, and with local, national, and global nonprofits. They pursue independent research on topics ranging from human decision making to the impact of military innovations on civilian life to the cognitive effects of video games. They also present their findings at conferences such as the Southwestern Psychological Association, the National Conference for Undergraduate Research and the McNair Scholars Research Symposiums.

Having grown in their academic pursuits and their sense of community, behavioral and social sciences graduates go into the world with the confidence to tackle problems on a local and global scale, understanding the cultural context and values of those involved. From there, they find careers that are professionally, personally and spiritually fulfilling.

Those who hire our graduates constantly comment on how competent and adaptable they are in the workplace — that they “get it.” What better way to face the future?


Brenda Vallance, PhD
Dean, School of Behavioral and Social Sciences

View Dean's Profile