The UBC campus, Canada's largest, is located on the tip of Vancouver's Point Grey peninsula, surrounded by the Pacific Spirit Park and the Gulf of Georgia of the Pacific Ocean. UBC has about 35,500 undergraduate students, 8,200 graduate students, and 4,300 faculty members. UBC has a total of 5,500 international students from over 100 countries. UBC has total assets exceeding $3 billion. The Department has a stable operating budget of $5.2 million. UBC has been awarded nearly 100 CRC chairs, five of which are in the Psychology Department. The University also has a competitive campus-wide designation similar to CRC Distinguished University Scholars (DUS) and some of our faculty have been awarded DUS status. There are seven members of the Royal Society of Canada in the Psychology Department.
The university is one of Canada's top research institutions and receives large amounts of funding for research (typically over $175M per year). Members of the Psychology Department alone receive over $6.5 million annually in research funding from NSERC, CIHR, SSHRC and other agencies. The UBC Library is the second largest in Canada and is one of the leading libraries in the world in electronic technology. UBC has several Centres of Excellence, one of which was directed by the late Nobel Laureate, Dr. Michael Smith.
The Department of Psychology has 47 full-time faculty members, several honorary and emeritus professors, and a large professional support staff. In the past five years we recruited 11 new faculty members, four of whom hold Canada Research Chairs, and five received prestigious Research Scholar awards. Eighteen faculty members have been awarded the Killam Research Prize for outstanding research. Five faculty members have received Alumni Prizes for Research in the Social Sciences and one has received the McDowell Prize for the best young NSERC researcher. In a typical year, the Department's faculty members and graduate students publish about 200 scientific articles and book chapters plus several books.
There are currently about 100 Psychology graduate students plus 26 students from Neuroscience and other departments being supervised by our faculty members. Many of these students come from Canada; however, our program attracts students from the United States, Australia, China, England, Germany, Ghana, Hong Kong, Israel, Korea, Japan, Poland, Russia, and South Africa. Nearly 70% of our graduate students hold one or more competitive postgraduate awards. A full range of teaching assistant and research assistant positions are also available for our graduate students.
Graduate students form an integral part of the Department's research and teaching activities. In addition, graduate student representatives serve on many departmental committees and attend departmental meetings. Graduate students also receive office space, free statistical consulting, photocopying for thesis preparation, and computing facilities for data analysis.
The Psychology Department is located in the D.T. Kenny Building. The building boasts excellent laboratory facilities, seminar rooms, and a lounge. Recently, approximately $1.5 million has been spent equipping laboratories and offices with modern personal computers and software. All offices, labs and teaching spaces have 100 Megabit per second switched Ethernet connectivity with a 1 Gigabit per second building link to the UBC network. In addition, the building is served by 26 access points supporting wireless connectivity at data rates up to 54 Megabits per second. All incoming graduate students automatically receive no-cost e-mail accounts. The Department has its own computer analysts. UBC has site licenses for many popular software packages for personal computers, enabling students to purchase software inexpensively. The UBC Bookstore offers discounts to UBC students on MacIntosh and IBM computers.
Due to the generosity of one of our early graduates, Dr. Michael Quinn (PhD, 1969), the Department hosts an annual public presentation featuring a high-profile cognitive scientist. The inaugural QML, titled "Illusions of Memory" was given in March 2006 by Dr. Elizabeth Loftus. The Quinn Memorial Fund also supports exchange visits for graduate students between UBC and other countries, for example, with universities in Japan and Scotland in 2006. Several other innovative programs are under development.
From September to May, the Department offers a series of colloquia given by psychologists invited from other universities. In addition, several informal seminars that are attended by faculty members and graduate students operate throughout the year. These are often interdisciplinary and attract students from other departments, for example, Neuroscience, Zoology, and Computer Science. Each April the Department hosts an Undergraduate Research Conference, and each in May the Department also holds a one-day conference, "Psychfest," at which graduate students present recent research.
More information on our department and its recent activities may be found throughout the department website.