Psychology and Social Intervention


The mission of the Doctoral Training Program in Psychology and Social Intervention at the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and  Human Development (Department of Applied Psychology) at New York University is to train action scientists prepared to work in a variety of settings in order to understand, transform, and improve the contexts and systems in which humans develop across the life span. The program places a strong emphasis on:

(a) understanding and assessing social settings, systems, and policies;
(b) creating/improving, implementing and evaluating prevention and intervention programs; and
(c) understanding various forms of diversity and structural inequality among individuals, institutions, communities, and societies.

Ours is a research intensive program with a strong quantitative training component.

Program faculty study a wide range of ecologies (e.g., families, schools, neighborhoods, policy contexts, programs) and preventive and policy interventions (e.g., psychological, social, educational and health programs), locally, nationally and internationally. Our faculty also conducts research on how cultural factors and identities influence and interact with experiences of these ecologies and interventions. Our New York City location provides an ideal urban setting for studying many kinds of communities, combined with gateways to the world at large.

About Our Program

Students work collaboratively with faculty mentors on a range of activities in these research areas, including study design, data collection and analysis, manuscript preparations, conference presentations, policy briefs, and evaluation activities. Program faculty collaborate closely with one another, as well as with other social, behavioral, health and policy scientists at NYU, other universities, and service, community and policy organizations.

Program faculty also direct or co-direct affiliated institutes and centers at NYU, including the Institute for Human Development and Social Change, the Center for Health, Identity, Behavior, & Prevention Studies, the Child and Family Policy Center, and the Center for Research on Culture, Development, and Education.

PSI Program Goals & Objectives

  1. Build content knowledge base to understand and improve human development in social context.
  2. Develop methodological skills that enable analysis of change over time and within and across levels of human ecology.
  3. Acquire abilities to apply psychological and social science principles to the understanding of social settings, social/cultural contexts, and social and policy interventions.
  4. Develop abilities to conceptualize, interpret, evaluate and disseminate evidence-based social and policy interventions; and develop the ethical, interpersonal, organizational, and technical capacities to undertake high-quality professional work in psychology and social intervention.

Program benefits for international students

If you’re an international student, you may be able to work in the United States after graduation for an extended period of time. Most students studying on F-1 visas will be eligible for 12 months of Optional Practical Training (OPT) off-campus work authorization. F-1 students in this program may also be eligible for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, or Mathematics) OPT extension, allowing you to extend your time in the United States to pursue degree-related work experience for a total of 36 months or 3 years. For more information on who can apply for this extension and how, see NYU’s Office of Global Services: STEM OPT

Frequently Asked Questions

See a list of answers to frequently asked questions about the program.