Faculty Profile

Rui Zhang

Assistant Professor of Psychology (2015)

Contact Information

on sabbatical 2019-20



Professor Zhang's research examines the dynamic of psychological responses to cultural change in varying contexts. One such context involves societies that undergo rapid changes driven by the accelerated globalization processes. In another context of change that results from migration, he studies the psychological processes and consequences of biculturalism or acquiring two cultural identities.


  • B.A., Shanghai International Studies University, 2004
  • M.A., 2007
  • Ph.D., University of Alberta, 2013

2018-2019 Academic Year

Fall 2018

FYSM 100 First-Year Seminar
The First-Year Seminar (FYS) introduces students to Dickinson as a "community of inquiry" by developing habits of mind essential to liberal learning. Through the study of a compelling issue or broad topic chosen by their faculty member, students will: - Critically analyze information and ideas - Examine issues from multiple perspectives - Discuss, debate and defend ideas, including one's own views, with clarity and reason - Develop discernment, facility and ethical responsibility in using information, and - Create clear academic writing The small group seminar format of this course promotes discussion and interaction among students and their professor. In addition, the professor serves as students' initial academic advisor. This course does not duplicate in content any other course in the curriculum and may not be used to fulfill any other graduation requirement.

PSYC 150 Cross-Cultural Psychology
This course takes the position that human behavior can best be understood only in the cultural context in which it occurs. Discussions focus on the impact of culture on human behavior including the nature of culture; political and religious elements of culture; perceptions, stereotypes and the realities of cultural differences; how nationalism and animosity between cultures grow; and sources of prejudice and cultural conflict, and how they may be reduced. Suitable for all students, regardless of prior background in psychology.

PSYC 450 Seminar in Cross-Cult Psych
This advanced seminar course investigates psychological perspectives related to the impact of culture in determining individual and social behavior, cross-cultural differences and similarities in human behavior, and the psychological sources of group conflict. Topics may include the impact of stereotypes on perceivers and targets, the psychological rationale for prejudice and discrimination, the benefits and difficulties of gender, racial, and cultural diversity, methods for prejudice and discrimination reduction, and an examination of human behavior beyond the traditional Euro-American psychological perspective. Prerequisite: 201 & 202 OR 210 & 211.

PSYC 550 Independent Research

PSYC 560 Stu/Faculty Collaborative Rsch

Spring 2019

PSYC 210 Analysis of Psychological Data
Completion of both PSYC 210 and PSYC 211 fulfills the WID Requirement.

PSYC 450 Psychology/Cultural Processes
This course covers advanced research as it pertains to culture and psychology. Thematically, this course is organized in terms of influential perspectives on cultural processes rather than psychological domains (e.g., the self, cognition, and motivation). By cultural processes, we mean why, how, and when culture comes to shape psychological functioning for group differences to arise. To fully appreciate how culture is intertwined with psychology, it is necessary to go beyond a survey of research that merely describes cultural variation. As a result, we will pay close attention to different ways of explaining cultural influence in addition to specific ways in which cultures vary. We will conclude this course by discussing some recent applications of this emerging science of cultural processes.

PSYC 550 Independent Research

PSYC 560 Stu/Faculty Collaborative Rsch