The mission of the I/O program at the University of Akron is to apply basic psychological research and theory to Industrial/Organizational Psychology using the considerable breadth and experience of our faculty in areas like social psychology, cognitive psychology, and research methods/statistics to train the best I/O psychologists in the world. In particular, our goal is to prepare our students so that they are competitive for both academic and applied jobs. To do this, we are committed to training students in all areas of I/O psychology in both the practice and research domains. The Ph.D. graduate of the University of Akron’s I/O program is grounded in theory and recognizes how theory and research are applied to the world of work. In short, we train well-rounded I/O psychologists who have flexibility in their career paths and the skills to really make a difference to society.
The Guidelines for Education and Training at the Doctoral Level in Industrial/Organizational Psychology (SIOP, 1998) emphasize the scientist-practitioner model in that the I/O psychologist is often both the generator of knowledge and the consumer of such knowledge. The Guidelines suggest that doctoral education in I/O psychology must focus on both the theory and application associated with various content areas. The Guidelines go one step further by arguing that the dual emphasis on theory and practice is needed regardless of one’s career path. Further, "Those interested in academic careers need to understand both theory and practice to develop sound research... Academicians will also be charged with teaching new generations of I/O psychologists about the theory and applications associated with each content area...Thus, students not only need to know each topic in a theoretical sense, they also need to know "how to" develop and implement associated products," (p. 3). It is this approach that best exemplifies the I/O program at The University of Akron and is what helps to set our program apart from many others.