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Psi Chi is a national honor society whose purpose shall be to encourage, stimulate, and maintain excellence in scholarship of the individual members in all fields, particularly in psychology, and to advance the science of psychology.
The mission of Psi Chi is to produce a well-educated, ethical, and socially responsible member committed to contributing to the science and profession of psychology and to society in general. Subends for accomplishing above mission:
A. Advance science and the profession of psychology
B. Promote an educational experience consistent with the mission
C. Promote ethical and socially responsible members and leaders
D. Define and establish an organizational structure that promotes our mission
E. Recognize and foster the contributions that diversity makes to the science and practice of psychology.
What is Psi Chi?
Psi Chi, the National Honor Society in Psychology, was founded in 1929 at Yale University. It functions as a federation of chapters located at over 1,000 senior colleges and universities in the USA and Canada. The national office is located in Chattanooga, Tennessee. A National Council, composed of psychologists who are Psi Chi members, guides the affairs of the organization and sets the policy with the approval of chapters.
Psi Chi’s sister honor society is Psi Beta, the national honor society in psychology for community and junior colleges.
Currently, the total number of memberships registered at the National Office is now over 500,000 lifetime members.
Psi Chi serves to provide encouragement, excitement and excellence amongst psychology scholars, and also to advance the science of the field. Psi Chi is a member of the Association of College Honor Societies and is an affiliate of the American Psychological Association (APA) and the Association for Psychological Science (APS).
Psi Chi has two main goals:
1. To provide academic recognition to its inductees by the mere fact of membership.
2. That each of the Society’s local chapters provides a nurturing environment in which members are free to develop creatively.
The national organization provides programs to help achieve these goals, including national and regional conventions held annually in conjunction with the psychological associations, research award competitions, and certificate recognition programs.
The Society publishes a quarterly magazine called Eye on Psi Chi, first published in 1996, which helps to unite the members, keep them informed, and recognize their contributions and accomplishments. There is also a quarterly journal, Psi Chi Journal of Undergraduate Research, that rewards the scholarly efforts of undergraduate psychology students and provides a valuable introduction to the publishing and review process.
Psi Chi Key and Seal
Most honor societies use a key as their main symbol; the majority of these are based on the Greek letters that form the names of the respective societies, and some include various other graphic elements intended to convey additional meaning. Psi Chi's key (pictured above) is based on the Greek letters "psi" and "chi" with the "psi" graphically extended as a key and superimposed over the "chi." There are no additional graphic elements used as symbols, but the letters "psi" and "chi" have been used for decades in the Psi Chi induction ritual to express the Greek words "psyche" and "cheires," which in turn symbolize "mind" (particularly scholarship and the enrichment of the mind) and "hands" (a symbol of fellowship and cooperation in research). These concepts are developed more fully in the Formal Ritual for the Induction of Members.
The Psi Chi seal places the key at the center of a circle, indicating that scholarship and fellowship are at the center of Psi Chi's mission. In addition to the official name of the society and its founding date, the seal also includes a circle formed from a series of smaller circles, which represent the diversity and the cumulative number of lifetime members which together make up the society as a whole. The outside of the circle is a rope border, symbolizing the fellowship and common goals and mission that bind us together as one unified group.
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Last updated or reviewed on 2/15/11