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Political Psychology

The OSU Political Psychology graduate departmental specialization is one of the leading programs in the world. Our program is unique in giving coverage both to citizen political thought and behavior and to elite behavior and international politics.

Political psychology explores the role of psychological processes in the unfolding of political behavior, and the impact of political events on psychological processes. The political psychology minor program provides students with an understanding of how psychological theoretical frameworks can inform political scientists’ understanding of political events.


Thomas Nelson

Political Psychology Courses

Core Courses:

  • Foundations of Political Psychology    
  • Experimental Research

Courses focusing on Citizen Politics:

  • Public Opinion 
  • Political Communication
  • Research in Public Opinion

Courses focusing on Elites and International Politics:

  • Research on Cognition in International Politics
  • Foreign Policy Design
  • Psychological Approaches to International relations

Methods Courses:

  • Research on Cognition in International Politics
  • Experimental Research in Political Psychology

There are also relevant courses in the Departments of Psychology, Sociology, and Economics.

Recent Placements

North Carolina State University
Purdue University
Union College
Wayne State University

Recent Dissertations:

"The Psychological Structure of Partisanship: Affect, Cognition, and Social Identity"

"Monologues, Dialogues or Mediated Conversations? Citizens, Elites, the Media and Public Policymaking"

"Explaining the Vote: Claiming Credit and Managing Blame in the United States Senate"

"Associative Memory Structure and the Evaluation of Political Leaders"

"Cognitive Underpinnings of Political Intolerance"