Psychological, Health, & Learning Sciences - University of Houston
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Leadership Announcement: Professor Cathy Horn assumed the role of dean of the College of Education on June 1.

Student teacher with a student behind a Third Ward mural

The University of Houston’s Psychological, Health, & Learning Sciences department is an interdisciplinary collection of scientists, scholars and educators committed to innovative research and academic excellence. We are dedicated to breaking down the traditional silos that place restrictions on how and what students learn. We are a forward-thinking institution committed to developing forward-thinking leaders who will face down the challenges of our modern world. And we do all this in a multicultural, multilingual campus (and city) that provides students and faculty members numerous opportunities to learn and grow in the classroom and out in the field.

Our Programs

About PHLS

  • Department Overview

    We welcome you to the Department of Psychological, Health, & Learning Sciences. We train the next generation of counseling, school, quantitative and learning science professionals. We prepare undergraduate students for work in the fields of health and human development & family sciences.

    Our students and faculty are a vibrant group. We may practice different disciplines, but we're drawn together by a desire to right society's wrongs. We work to ensure people of all backgrounds have the opportunity to live healthy and productive lives. Our diversity of thought, discipline, and background unites us. This diversity will solidify our place among the top departments of our kind in the nation. It will also nurture what makes us unique amongst our peers.

  • Mission Statement

    The mission of our department is to advance scientific knowledge, effect real-world change, maximize student potential for global competitiveness and enhance the quality and length of life in all segments of society.

    This mission has three critical goals:

    1. Leverage both innovative research and academic excellence to offer nationally competitive and internationally recognized degree programs related to psychological, health and learning sciences that prepare a diverse student body to serve an increasingly diverse society.
    2. Build an interdisciplinary enterprise that advances innovative scientific inquiry and services that have a measurable impact on the elimination of global disparities in health and education.
    3. Lead in the advancement of Houston’s future by establishing and maintaining collaborative relationships with local school districts; medical and mental health service agencies; and community-based organizations, coalitions and stakeholders.
  • Program Values

    Engaging in innovative research and providing rigorous and pioneering programs of study that have significant social/educational impact and public health relevance.

    Fostering robust mentoring relationships and providing exceptional undergraduate and graduate programs that prepare future professionals to solve real-world challenges and improve the lives of those they serve.

    Sustaining strong long-term relationships that enable and enhance our collective impact on local, national and international communities through our research, teaching and service.

    Valuing diversity and promoting social and academic inclusion to enrich learning, inform scientific inquiry and facilitate the development and delivery of culturally-informed services within a uniquely diverse metropolitan context. Furthermore, this involves challenging structural inequities to reduce disparities and promote social justice locally and globally.

    Fostering an educational culture that promotes collegiality, honesty, fairness, empowerment, transparency and collective responsibility.


Short Takes

A sampling of faculty, staff, student and alumni happenings:

Luane Araujo Rabello, a doctoral student in the counseling psychology program, received a 2023 Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco Travel Scholarship award to attend and present at the annual meeting in San Antonio in March.

Taewon Kim, a doctoral student in the counseling psychology program, was selected for the 2023 Early Career Scholars Program from the Center for Research on College-Workforce Transitions at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. 

Undergraduate students Lauren Lyles and Ritu Sampige presented their research at the 2023 Society for Research in Child Development’s biennial meeting in March. Both students work with Professor Julie Dunsmore and Associate Professor Leslie Frankel in the human development and family sciences program.

School psychology doctoral student Stephanie Navarro has been selected by the Society for Research in Child Development as a Towards 2044: Horowitz Early Career Scholar, which provides professional development for scholars from traditionally under-represented groups.


Our faculty members’ research programs have received funding from federal and state organizations such as the Institute of Education Sciences, National Institute on Drug Abuse and Cancer Prevention & Research Institute of Texas. It is our mission to advance scientific knowledge, effect real-world change and enhance the quality and length of life in all segments of society. Our department is uniquely positioned to have a measurable impact on the elimination of global disparities in health and education.

Learning, Instruction, & Student Success

Innovative Measurement & Research Methods

Development of Risk & Resilience

Behavioral Health & Health Disparities

Multiculturalism & Social Justice

Program and Research Videos

The following is a collection of brief video overviews of some of our most recent research findings. If you would like to learn more about our research, please visit our degree program pages.


Farish Hall

Contact Us

Department of Psychological, Health, & Learning Sciences at the University of Houston

Department Chair: Dr. Nathan Grant Smith

UH College of Education
Stephen Power Farish Hall
3657 Cullen Blvd., Room 491
Houston, TX 77204-5023

Department: 713-743-7397

Undergraduate: or 713-743-5000
Graduate: or 713-743-7676
General: or 713-743-5010

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