Subject: Women in Psychology

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Five Minute History Lessons

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Ruth Howard

Ruth Winifred Howard was among the first African American woman to earn a doctorate in psychology, earning her PhD from the University of Minnesota in 1934. While at Minnesota she conducted research at the university’s Institute for Child Development and her dissertation, “A Study of the Development of Triplets” was the first published study or a large group of triplets of varying ages and ethnic groups. Armed with an undergraduate degree in social work and a PhD in developmental psychology, Howard practiced psychology throughout her life in a variety of settings including public schools, boards of health, medical schools, and private practice.

Scavenger Hunt Activity | Teacher's Guide

Side-by-side images of Leta and Harry Hollingworth

A Love Story of Academic Proportions: The Leta and Harry Hollingworth Story

Harry and Leta Stetter Hollingworth are critical figures in the history of applied psychology – Harry for his work in industrial/organizational psychology and Leta for her work in clinical psychology, psychology of women, and gifted education. Both researched and published widely while teaching psychology, Harry at Barnard College and various city clubs and Leta at Columbia’s Teachers College. Their influence on early applied psychology cannot be denied, and theirs was a great love story to boot.

Scavenger Hunt Activity | Teacher's Guide

Lectures and Panels

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Psychology Film Club: Professor Marston and the Wonder Women

Discussion of the 2017 film Professor Marston and the Wonder Women, detailing the life of psychologist William Moulton Marston (Luke Evans) and his partners, Elizabeth Marston (Rebecca Hall) and Olive Byrne (Bella Heathcote). 

Length: 62 minutes

Originally recorded: July 30, 2020

Cummings Center Blog

Color photo of Anne Anastasi

Anne Anastasi: An Individual for the Ages

Anne Anastasi served as the third woman President of American Psychological Association in 1972. She is most well known for her work in psychological testing and the psychology of individual differences.

Contributed by: Lizette Royer Barton

Newspaper photo of Leona Tyler

Leona Tyler: Dean looks like a lady!

In 1973, Leona Tyler became the 81st President of the American Psychological Association and only the fourth woman to hold that position. She is most well known for her work in counseling psychology and her research on individual differences and development.

Contributed by: Lizette Royer Barton

Black and white photo of Florence Denmark

Florence Denmark: Go with the Flo

Florence Denmark was the fifth woman President of American Psychological Association, serving in 1980. She is well known for her work in leadership and mentoring, and spent her career uplifting other women to the great benefit of the field of psychology.

Contributed by: Lizette Royer Barton