Washington and Jefferson College


Two W&J Degrees for Studying Psychological Phenomena

Washington and Jefferson College appears in our ranking of the 50 Great Small Colleges for a Bachelor’s in Psychology.

At Dieter-Porter Hall, the Psychology Major (B.A.) inspires Washington and Jefferson College undergrads to think critically about the variables that affect people’s behaviors. Chaired by Dr. Elizabeth Bennett, this 128-credit, MSCHE-accredited pathway ends with a capstone project after Greater Pittsburgh courses like Cognitive Psychology, Personality, and Statistical Methods with an 11:1 student-faculty ratio. The Neuroscience Major (B.A.) offers an interdisciplinary exploration of the brain and the central nervous system for 90 percent grad school admission success. Headed by Dr. Kelly Weixel, this 128-credit, four-year curriculum was updated in Fall 2019 to include intensive STEM courses like Organismal Biology, Organic Chemistry, and Neuropathology. Students could also research in the Child Development Lab, intern with Southwood Psychiatric Hospital, take Magellan Project trips from Peru to Paris, become Charles West Scholars, join Active Minds, and utilize the Chatham PsyD Partnership.

About Washington and Jefferson College

Washington and Jefferson College originated in 1781 when Princeton grads John McMillan, Thaddeus Dod, and Joseph Smith built a Presbyterian log cabin school in Chartiers. On September 24, 1787, the Pennsylvania General Assembly chartered it as Washington Academy. Closed during the Whiskey Rebellion, it was reopened in 1794 with a sister school called Canonsburg Academy. In 1802, John McMillan renamed the second academy Jefferson College. In 1817, arguments over merging the two entities started the long-fought College War. By 1865, the financial strife of the Civil War forced the two to unite as Washington and Jefferson College. In 1871, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the merger spearheaded by President James Moffat. One century later, the W&J Board of Trustees finally allowed coeducational admissions. In 2008, W&J notably started a Combat Stress Intervention Program with the Pentagon.

Endowed for $143.6 million, Washington and Jefferson College now employs 152 faculty teaching 1,357 Presidents from 26 states plus 11 countries on its 60-acre East Washington Borough campus with 50+ clubs like Advocates for Sexual Assault Prevention for 80 percent retention. In 2019, Washington & Jefferson won an ABCA Team Academic Excellence Award. In 2015, W&J received the Arbor Day Foundation’s Tree Campus USA Award. Washington and Jefferson College accepted the 2010 IIE Heiskell Award for International Education too. The U.S. News & World Report ranked W&J the 92nd best liberal arts school and 108th top social mobility performer. On Niche, W&J boasts America’s 286th best psychology degrees and 273rd top private education. Forbes labeled Washington and Jefferson College the 165th best Northeast institution. Times Higher Education placed W&J 208th overall. The Educate to Career Index declared W&J the 69th top value. Washington Monthly picked W&J 131st for bachelor’s programs.

Washington and Jefferson College Accreditation Details

On June 27, 2019, the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE) Board of Trustees voted to reaffirm the Level III accreditation status at Washington and Jefferson College through the next 2027-28 review under President John Knapp, Ph.D., who earned the Georgia Governor’s Award in the Humanities. Located 311 miles east via Interstate 76 in Philadelphia, this superb six-state Northeast Region accreditor is recognized by the Council on Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) to evaluate W&J College’s 32 majors and 27 minors.

Washington and Jefferson College Application Requirements

Admission at Washington and Jefferson College is classified “very selective” by Peterson’s though 2,311 of the 2,806 Fall 2018 applicants were chosen for 82 percent acceptance. First-year Presidents seeking the Psychology Major (B.A.) or Neuroscience Major (B.A.) are reviewed holistically. The rigor of one’s high school curriculum is a major factor. Freshmen need at least 15 academic units, including three in English and three in math. Advanced Placement courses scored 4-5 are transferrable. The Class of 2022 reported an average secondary GPA of 3.71. Mid-range admitted SAT scores were 1060-1260. The middle 50th percentile had ACT scores of 24-30. Undergrads with cumulative GPAs above 3.0 can forgo standardized test scores though. The Honors Program mandates a minimum 3.2 GPA. Bachelor’s majors can transfer up to 16 accredited courses graded C or greater. International students are also welcome with proficient English scores over the 580 TOEFL PBT or 6.5 IELTS mark.

Featured Programs

Washington and Jefferson College set freshman deadlines of December 15th for Early Decision, January 15th for Early Action, or March 1st for Regular Decision. It’s suggested non-U.S. freshmen file before February 1st. The candidate reply date is May 1st each year. Department of Psychology transfers can apply until August 1st for Fall or January 10th for Spring starts. Note need-based financial aid consideration runs from October 1st to February 15th. Accordingly, complete the W&J Leadership or Common Application online for $25. Mail official registrar transcripts to 60 South Lincoln Street in Washington, PA 15301. Attach supplemental documents, such as the optional test score, extra-curricular resume, 500-word personal statement, and recommendation. Contact (888) 926-3529 or info@washjeff.edu with questions.

Tuition and Financial Aid

For 2019-20, Washington and Jefferson College is charging full-time undergrads $24,379 each semester or $48,758 annually. Single courses for the Psychology Major (B.A.) and Neuroscience Major (B.A.) cost $4,880. Bachelor’s students cover the $255 service fee, $225 activity fee, and $100 health services fee each year. Science courses incur another $100 laboratory fee. Residing at the Greater Pittsburgh campus dorms like Bica-Ross Hall adds $7,654 to $10,238 for yearly rent. Standard 19-meal weekly plans for Rossin Campus Center are $5,390 extra. W&J budgets $800 for books and $900 for miscellaneous expenses. Annual undergrad attendance currently averages $62,386 on-site or $49,388 at home.

According to the NCES College Navigator, the Office of Financial Aid at Wheeling Street’s Admissions House helps 99 percent of new full-time W&J Presidents enroll with assistance averaging $30,775 each for $10.37 million total. Institutional funds include the Howard Burnett President Scholarship, Dean’s Award, Challenge Grant, Legacy Scholarship, William Hertzler Memorial Scholarship, Joseph Hardy Sr. Scholarship, Alumni Referral Award, Pittsburgh Promise Scholarship, RaiseMe Scholarship, Buckholt Science Scholarship, Black Family Scholarship, Charles Pappas Sr. Scholarship, and Megan Phillis Academic Scholarship. The W&J Thrive Scholarship gifts $33,000 annually to accomplished freshmen with unweighted GPAs above 3.6. Since 1995, the Washington County Community Foundation has developed 70+ local programs like the Chapman Family Scholarship and Olivia Scott Scholarship. Federal resources, such as the Pell Grant and Direct Unsubsidized Loan, open with FAFSA forms coded 003389. Pennsylvanians also apply for the PHEAA State Grant, PA Forward Loan, State Work-Study Program, National Guard Assistance Grant, Ready to Succeed Scholarship, and others.

Learn more about Washington and Jefferson College at the Department of Psychology website.

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