At the University of Illinois at Springfield, the Psychology Department’s primary mission is to assist its majors in developing the knowledge, skills, and values that define psychology, academically, as a contemporary social science discipline and, professionally, as the foundation for a variety of post-baccalaureate career paths. As a department within the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Psychology faculty has a related but secondary mission, shared with all other departments within the College, to build upon and further enhance the fundamental knowledge, skills, and values of a liberal arts education among all of its students.
Antiracism Commitment Statement
The Psychology Department at the University of Illinois Springfield commits to antiracism, both in its internal practices, principles and policies, and in its engagement with the university, the community, and the culture at large. We stand committed to inclusion, equity, diversity, and social justice. We embrace the idea that antiracism, along with other efforts to promote socially just ideals, requires ongoing effort and investment.
We define antiracism as an ongoing, active commitment to successfully promoting and achieving racial justice. In practice, this means building (and, as necessary, transforming and rebuilding) societies, organizations, communities, institutions and policies in which “race” does not predict disparities in access to anything good and worthwhile; nor exposure to anything harmful or oppressive. It also involves promoting and articulating ideas and ideals that reject the use of “race” as the grounds for making assumptions about persons or groups. We especially work to reject the notion of racial hierarchies of any form.
In living out our commitment to antiracism, we stand in solidarity with all groups that suffer the impacts of racism. We also believe that for antiracism to be effective, it must be grounded in a dynamic, sensitive understanding of the unique present and historical realities of various racial groups. This means that antiracism must be as active and complex as are the ideas and practices that can be described as racist, and attuned to the diverse histories and cultural contexts of various groups and individuals who have been and continue to be impacted by racism.
To implement these principles and ideals, we are taking the following steps with the intention of promoting lasting change and transformation:
- We are examining and, as necessary, updating our department’s search processes to ensure that we utilize the best practices in equitable hiring.
- Faculty members from our department will regularly write blog posts for our department’s website describing specific steps they have taken to implement antiracism in their teaching, research, and/or service.
- We have implemented a standard item of business at department meetings to check in on our progress toward our antiracism goals.
The UIS Psychology Department will:
- Develop and deliver a curriculum that reflects rigorous disciplinary goals and expectations for optimal learning outcomes;
- Foster student sensitivity to and appreciation for the usefulness of psychology in addressing real world problems;
- Set clear guidelines for ethical academic behavior;
- Establish clear performance objectives at the program and individual course levels;
- Provide variety in learning formats and experiences;
- Encourage student autonomy and active engagement in learning experiences;
- Appreciate student diversity and address relevant diversity issues within the curriculum;
- Evaluate student performance fairly and provide feedback on a regular basis;
- Review the curriculum systematically and maintain consistency with evolving professional standards and guidelines;
- Advise students effectively about institutional policies and procedures, exploration of career options, and post-baccalaureate educational possibilities; and
- Encourage student participation in program decision-making and co-curricular activities.