Wichita State University



Title of program

Human Factors Psychology

Year human factors/ergonomics program was established


Accredited by HFES?


Contact person for more information, including applications

Dr. Carryl Baldwin, PhD, 1997, University of Nebraska of South Dakota at Vermillion.  Professor of Psychology, Carl and Rozina Distinguished Professor in Aging and Director of the Regional Institute on Aging. 

Wichita State University, Psychology Dept., 1845 N. Fairmount, Wichita, KS 67260-0034; 316/978-3170;


Graduate School, Wichita State University, 1845 N. Fairmount, Wichita, KS 67260-0004

Web site

Academic calendar


Human factors/ergonomics graduate degrees offered

MA and PhD

Goals, objectives, and emphasis of the program

The PhD program is the only PhD program in human factors psychology approved by the Kansas Board of Regents. It has also been accredited by HFES. The human factors psychology program at WSU is designed to provide strong academic training in the tradition of experimental psychology in the context of an applied specialization. Training is rooted in the behavioral sciences, with an emphasis on research methods. Training occurs in the context of applying this knowledge and these skills to the world of the professional human factors psychologist. The university provides a unique environment for students to gain practical experience while receiving fundamental academic training. All students are required to complete an approved internship, and each student's program is balanced between the academic and applied aspects of our profession. 

Number of degrees granted during last 3 years

MA 6, PhD 12

Can students attend part-time?


Are required courses offered through distance learning?


Does the university have an HFES student chapter?




Application deadlines

January 15

Are separate applications required for university and department?


Application fees

U.S. $60, international $75. Online application available.



Minimum requirements

GPA: no specific GPA required 

GRE: v + q required 

Other: Psychology. Undergraduate degrees, background, or coursework required or recommended for admission: psychology background with emphasis on learning, physiological psychology, and perception is recommended; strong background in math and/or science/engineering is desirable.

Importance of other criteria as admission factors

Research: medium

Work experience: medium

Letters: medium

Interview: medium

Tuition and fees



Number of students applying to the human factors/ergonomics program last year


Number of students accepted into the program last year


Number of students entering the program last year


Anticipated number of openings per year for the next two years




Percentage of students in program receiving financial assistance


Amount received per year


Types of assistance available

TA (nonresident reduced to resident tuition, varying amounts of resident tuition waived), RA, scholarship (nonresident tuition reduced to resident tuition) 

When should students apply for financial assistance?

With application



Graduate degrees offered

MA (must be currently enrolled in PhD program) and PhD

Number of units required

MA: 36

PhD: 90

Exams required

MA: no 

PhD: qualifying exam, oral defense of dissertation, demonstrated math competency

Language requirements


Research required

MA: second-year project research required

PhD: second-year project research required

Practical experience required

MA: no 

PhD: six-month internship

Typical number of years required to obtain degree

MA: 2.5

PhD: 5

Is there a non-thesis option?




Required courses (units)

Biological Foundations of Psychology (3),  Cognitive Foundations (3), Advanced Research Methods I & II (8), Ethics (3), Seminar in Perception (3), Psychological Principles of Human Factors (3), Seminar in Human Factors (3), Seminar in Software Psychology (3), Graduate Research (10), Predoctoral research project (16–18), doctoral dissertation (12), Electives (from Psychology and other departments) (24), Internship (6), Teaching of Psychology: Principles, Practices & Ethics (3)

Number of courses outside department that are required

12 units

Average or typical class size in a required course




Research and support facilities available to students in the program: 

The department, housed in the four-story science building, maintains fully equipped labs and a carpentry and electrical shop for use in human factors research. These facilities include the, Applied Cognition & Expertise (ACE) Lab Challenge, Metacognition and Perception (ChaMP) Lab, High Performance and Design Lab, Vision and Accessibility (VISA) Lab, Visual Perception & Cognition (VCP) Lab, Wichita Auditory Research Group (WARG). Additional facilities are housed outside of the science building and include the National Institute for Aviation Research (NIAR) Human Factors Lab, the Social Science Research Lab, and Applied Psychology Research Institute (APRI). The computer facilities are state of the art and available to students for coursework and research. The empirical focus of the program seeks to provide to students wide exposure to research training, practice, and literature, as well as theory.

Teaching opportunities available to students in the program:
Most, if not all, students will receive teaching assistantships and will have the opportunity to obtain teaching experience.

Current research activities and projects being carried out by program faculty and/or students:

Current human factors research involves cognitive function, aging, development, human-computer interactions, aerospace issues, perception and motor behavior, software usability, application of technology to instruction, distance education, perceptual learning, decision making, and the design of medical devices. (All students are required to be actively engaged and enrolled in research throughout their tenure as a graduate student.)


Current number of active students in program, by gender

19 men, 11 women

Current number of first-year students in program


Based on current graduate students in the program,
the mean score on admission tests and
undergraduate GPA by degree being sought are

PhD: GRE 4150 V, 150 Q,
GPA 3.50



Dr. Baldwin, Carryl, Professor of Psychology, Carl and Rozina Distinguished Professor in Aging and Director of the Regional Institute on Aging. 
Aging, driver behavior, neuroergonomics, spatial navigation, auditory cognition, multimodal displays and warnings

Dr. Lei, Quan., PhD 2015, Northeastern University. Visual impairment rehabilitation, accessible design, autonomous driving

Dr. Ni, Rui, PhD 2001, Chinese Academy of Science, visual perception and cognition in 3D space, driving, aging, psychological and physical training, autonomous vehicles and drivers

Dr. Suss, Joel, PhD 2013, Michigan Technological University naturalistic decision making, cognitive task analysis expertise, human factors, visual attention, accelerate training

Dr, Vangsness, Lisa, PhD 2019, Kansas State University, Judgements of difficulty, metacognition, task engagement, risk mitigation procrastination

[Updated July 2022]