Doug Bahnick

Psychology

I KNEW I WAS IN THE RIGHT PLACE

At the time I discovered Bradley University, it was just another college sending me letters in the mail. However, after reading about their psychology program, I decided to inquire further. From that point on, the interactions I had with the faculty and staff made all the difference. The admissions staff was extremely helpful with the transfer process; making sure I entered Bradley with as much credit as possible.

One of the biggest confirmations regarding my decision to attend Bradley occurred very early in my first semester as a new student. One of the people I had met on my first visit recognized me and called me by name when she saw me walking down the hall. I knew then that I was in the right place.

SOMETIMES BIGGER ISN'T BETTER

The classroom environment at Bradley is extremely conducive to the way I learn. I often find myself in classes of about 20 students (though I had a class one semester with only 11). With small classes I receive the attention I need as a student but I’m still able to bounce ideas off of the other working minds in the room; I can ask questions, get answers, get to know my classmates and build a relationship with my professor. I simply can’t imagine being in a lecture hall of several hundred students. I absolutely love this learning environment.

FROM THE CLASSROOM TO THE COURT

The Bradley faculty, as a whole, is extremely open to developing relationships with their students beyond the classroom. I took a class in my major and found that I enjoyed this particular professor so much that I decided to enroll in one of his classes the following semester. Soon after, we began playing racquetball once a week and continue to develop our teacher-student relationship. After two years of developing this relationship, I am currently acting as a teaching assistant for one of his classes, he has written me several letters of recommendation for graduate school and we continue to play racquetball together. I know our relationship will supersede my time at Bradley.

THE NATURE OF INTELLIGENCE

I am currently working on an independent research project with a professor in the psychology department. Our study is looking for a relationship between implicit theories of intelligence (an individual’s personal beliefs about the nature of intelligence—if it is inherited and fixed or learned and malleable) and self-handicapping strategies (an individual’s tendency to create barriers to performance that can serve as non-ability based excuses for poor performance). I hope to have psychological research be a cornerstone of my career. As an undergraduate student, I have been involved in developing the overall experiment, creating our general hypotheses, writing the methods for how the study is to be conducted, recruiting participants, running the experiment and analyzing data. I also will have the opportunity to present our findings at various on-campus events (in paper, poster and oral presentations). Students often do not receive an experience such as this until they are in graduate school.