May 29, 2012. Dr. Robert Bringle has been named the Kulynych/Cline Visiting Distinguished Professor of Psychology in Appalachian State University’s Wiley F. Smith Department of Psychology beginning in August.
Bringle is an internationally known leader in the field of service-learning. He comes to Appalachian from Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) where he was a Chancellor’s Professor of Psychology and the executive director of the IUPUI Center for Service-Learning for the past 15 years.
“This fall, the Department of Psychology will begin to implement an innovative undergraduate curriculum that enhances student engagement,” said department chairman Dr. James Denniston. “This new curriculum will include numerous opportunities for obtaining research and applied experiences, including community involvement through courses with service-learning components. As the Kulynych/Cline Distinguished Professor of Psychology, Dr. Bringle will help faculty integrate community service into their existing courses.”
In addition to his expertise in service-learning, Bringle is a renowned scholar of social psychology with interests in relationships and jealousy. At IUPUI, he developed the Social Psychological Undergraduate Research project, a National Science Foundation supported summer research program designed to provide undergraduate students with research opportunities that would prepare them for graduate-level training in psychology.
“Dr. Bringle’s commitment to student engagement and the field of psychology is truly impressive and we look forward to him contributing to the students, faculty and the greater Appalachian community,” Denniston said.
“This position presents an exciting opportunity for me to develop new projects on psychological research and to help the department integrate service-learning into its new psychology curriculum,” Bringle said. “The department is very collegial and student oriented, so it will be a great environment in which to work.”
Bringle has a B.A. in psychology and mathematics from Hanover College, and an M.S. and Ph.D. in social psychology from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.
His scholarly interests related to civic engagement include the role of service in the academy, developing ways to implement and institutionalize service-learning. His books include “With Service in Mind: Concepts and Models for Service-Learning in Psychology,” “Colleges and Universities as Citizens” and “The Measure of Service-Learning: Research Scales to Assess Student Experiences.”
The Department of Psychology has more than 700 psychology majors and provides many opportunities for undergraduates to become involved in research. Bringle has emphasized involving undergraduate psychology students in his psychological research, including as co-authors on a dozen journal publications and co-presenters on 30 papers presented at professional conferences. He also plans to continue his research and scholarship on teaching and learning, particularly in the area of service-learning.