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Vision, Mission, and Values

Here you'll find the vision, mission, and values for the School of Psychological Sciences in the College of Education and Behavioral Sciences at UNC. Please read on to learn more.


In the School of Psychological Sciences at UNC, everything we do is designed to create opportunities that can transform individuals’ lives in a way that has a positive and lasting impact on our community at a local, national, and global level.


Our mission is to promote psychology as a pragmatic science; use psychological science as a vehicle to develop adaptive and critical thinkers; foster the generation of new knowledge; support the acquisition of skills, strategies and methods necessary for a successful life and prosperous career in a technologically advanced world; challenge individuals to delve deeply into the complexities of today’s society; and ethically engage in these issues to prepare them for the challenges of tomorrow.


Respect, Community, and Integrity

  • Use considered communication: Listen to, value and validate what others have to say.
  • Be cooperative.
  • Share values and goals.
  • Create a sense of belonging.
  • Respect differences across a range of perspectives and backgrounds.
  • Act with honesty in all endeavors.
  • Model ethical principles.


  • Be honest and trustworthy.
  • Share openly.
  • Create explicit, transferable and sustainable systems, polices, and processes.
  • Explicitly communicate values and policies and minimize inferences needed by others to understand intent.

Responsibility and Accountability

  • Take ownership for achieving own and collective goals.
  • Consider the bigger picture: Be sensitive to the immediate and broader contexts.
  • Communicate to colleagues and students any internal/external threats to achieving our goals.
  • Serve as role models in our respective communities.

Curiosity and Thoughtfulness

  • Use evidence-based decision making.
  • Use empirically-driven intellectual argument and dialogic reasoning.
  • Embrace and foster scientific literacy (rather than ways of knowing based on authority or tradition).
  • Encourage and engage in debate and intellectual dissent (rather than opinion-based dissent, i.e., not evidence-based).

Learning, Adaptability and Resilience

  • Develop a safe-to-fail environment: Be honest, supportive and encouraging.
  • Be willing to be wrong and explore "unknowns."
  • Be willing to accept feedback, including constructive criticism.
  • Be flexible (rather than fixed or rigid).
  • Take alternative perspectives.
  • Be prepared: Develop contingencies.
  • Be well calibrated: Be acutely aware of what you do and don’t know.


  • Personally employ the above values and strive for excellence.
  • Value and pursue equally the quests for understanding (intellectual innovation) and knowledge utility (societal impact).
  • Uphold high academic standards for undergraduate and graduate students.
  • Engage in high-quality scholarship, teaching, and service that makes a difference in people’s lives and fosters positive change.