Industrial-organizational psychology, criminology graduate programs recognized by U.S. News & World Report

The College of Humanities and Social Sciences is pleased to announce that the Industrial-Organizational (I-O) Psychology program has been ranked number five nationally, and number four among public institutions, in the recently released U.S. News & World Report rankings of graduate programs.

“This ranking reflects the fact that industrial-organizational program has a dedicated group of nationally and internationally known faculty with wide-ranging research interests,” said Stephen Zaccaro, I-O professor and the program’s director. “We also have a very collegial climate that fosters collaborations across faculty and students.”

Zaccaro noted that Mason’s I-O program comprises three graduate programs: a PhD program that has placed alumni in a variety of high-level academic and applied positions, an in-person MA program that opens career routes to PhD programs or to applied positions, and an online master of professional studies (MPS) program that is intended for working professionals. Many of the students in the online program have received promotions or found new jobs during and after their participation in the program, he added. “We are proud of our high ranking, and we think all of these factors contributed to our strong reputation.”

Keith Renshaw, chair and professor, Department of Psychology, agreed. “The psychology department is driven by a commitment to its students,” he said. “As the faculty conduct high-impact, rigorous research, they involve students directly in that research and bring that expertise into the classroom. The I-O program has broadened its reach even further, by having not only research-focused doctoral and master’s programs, but the applied MPS program. Their commitment to reaching as many students as possible and training them in a rigorous, supportive way, has helped keep them at the forefront of the I-O field.”

The psychology graduate program overall was ranked eightieth among all universities considered, and at number 45 among public institutions. Renshaw emphasized the program’s focus in reaching even more students: “The department, as a whole, has worked to expand its reach while maintaining its rigor, through the careful development of online classes that are equivalent to face-to-face instruction.”

Criminology, law and society graduate program noted

The graduate program in the Department of Criminology, Law and Society (CLS) remains strong, ranked tenth nationally and among public institutions in 2021.

“Unfortunately, U.S. News and World Report does not report rankings for top criminology programs as regularly as other academic disciplines,” said CLS chair James Willis. “Nevertheless, in 2021, CLS was ranked number 10 nationally for its criminology graduate program (the highest ranking of any Virginia schools). This is an outstanding accomplishment given how young the program is in relation to its peers across the country. Reputational rankings reward older, more established programs, and they tend to hurt the ‘new kid on the block.’ Although less than 20 years old, CLS has enjoyed a spectacular rise in the rankings due to an outstanding team of faculty researchers and teachers, staff, and students, who are producing cutting-edge research to inform critical issues in criminal justice policy and practice, and to advance justice. I could not be prouder of our accomplishments, and with the continued support of the university and the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, we will only get stronger.”

Across the college, other graduate programs enjoy top-100 rankings in the U.S. News & World Report results: Mason’s history graduate program was ranked number 73 nationally, and at 41 among public institutions. The graduate program in economics was ranked number 74 nationally, and at number 42 among public institutions.