The Sewanee-At-Yale Summer + Semester Directed Research Program expands upon the longstanding 8-week summer research internships available to Sewanee students at the Yale School of Medicine’s Child Study Center, offering the opportunity for a deeper and extended mentored research experience over a summer plus the following full semester. Participation in the program is not restricted by year or major, although it is likely to be particularly appealing to students majoring in psychology, neuroscience, or biology and to pre-health students; participation during the junior or senior year is generally recommended.

The program begins with an 8-week summer research internship in which students are part of a cohort of approximately 10 to 12  students from Sewanee and another 10 other institutions. Students in the summer + semester program then continue their research at Yale the following fall semester, typically receiving course credit for their research experience and taking up to two additional courses at Yale for credit. 

The student will work collaboratively with his or her Sewanee faculty advisor, the directors of the program at Sewanee and at the Yale Child Study Center, and any other designated Yale and Sewanee faculty mentors to develop a feasible plan of study and identify and connect with a faculty research mentor at Yale. Normally, the minimum final requirement for the research component of the program will be a written report of the completed research; faculty advisors and mentors may set alternative equivalent requirements.

Grades & Credits

This program is an approved Sewanee off-campus academic program that is also formally acknowledged and approved by the Yale School of Medicine. Students will be officially enrolled at Sewanee during the semester that they are at Yale. At most, 16 semester-hours credit will be granted for the program.

Most students will need or want to acquire the standard 16 semester hours of credit for the semester at Yale; typically, 8-12 of these 16 credit hours will be research-related credit with 4-8 hours of separate course credit. 

Courses & Research

Students may select from a subset of the offerings at Yale. Course offerings and availability can change from year to year, and will typically be known by the end of the spring semester. Examples of courses that have been possible in previous years are:

Language, Literacy, and Play 
Introduction to Cognitive Science 
Autism and Related Disorders 
Cellular and Molecular Mechanisms of Neurological Disease 
Research Topics in Emotion and Cognitive Control 
Neuroscience of Social Interaction
Topics in Clinical Neuroscience
Sensory Neuroscience Through Illusions
Developmental Psychology

Each Yale course will count as one of the following: PSYC 495: Topics in Psychology; NEUR 495: Topics in Neuroscience; BIOL 495: Topics in Biology. The research experience will count as: PSYC 499 Directed Research; NEUR 499 Directed Research, or BIOL 499 Directed Research. These courses have been formally approved as part of Sewanee's curriculum by the University’s Curriculum and Academic Policy Committee, and by the college faculty.

The Yale faculty member responsible for each course or research component will share written comments on each student’s participation and performance, copies of the student’s work (where relevant), and their final grade recommendation to the program director(s) at Sewanee. This Sewanee faculty member—after reviewing the student’s work, the instructors’ written comments, and the instructors’ grade recommendations—will officially submit the student’s grade to the University Registrar.


All students with at least sophomore standing are eligible to apply. Additional prerequisites and recommended courses will depend on the student’s particular plan of study and research at Yale. 

Participation in this program benefits from advance planning for the fullest experience. Interested students are advised to be in consultation with the program directors at Sewanee and at Yale, with their academic advisors, and with psychology, neuroscience, and biology faculty at Sewanee by the spring semester of their first year. Discussions prior to registration for sophomore-year fall courses are encouraged; these discussions can help to identify both needed prerequisites and other courses that students can benefit from taking prior to their time at Yale, and help to identify potential faculty research mentors with shared interests at Yale. 

Participation in the program requires pre-approval of all details of the program from the program directors at Sewanee and at Yale as well as the relevant departments at Sewanee. 

During any one semester, the program can currently accept up to two qualified students. Whether all of the available slots are filled depends on the number and qualifications of applicants and also on the suitability of the program to the applicants' background and goals. Should the number of qualified applicants exceed the capacity of the Child Study Center laboratories in a given semester, selections will be made by consultation among faculty advisors and mentors, the director(s) of the program at the Child Study Center, and the director(s) of the program at Sewanee. In the case of oversubscription by qualified students, rising seniors will be given some preference since they would have only one opportunity to participate. 

Tuition, Stipends, & Housing

For the non-credit, summer portion of the program, participants will

• receive an internship stipend
• select and arrange for their own housing, with the assistance of Yale Child Study Center staff; options include sublets and shared housing with other students needing roommates

For the credit-bearing semester portion of the program, participants 

• pay regular tuition to Sewanee and receive the same financial aid as they would for a semester at Sewanee
• do not pay room & board to Sewanee; these funds will thus be available for use toward housing at Yale
• receive an additional $1000 toward their expenses from Sewanee 

The Yale Child Study Center

The Yale Child Study Center is a department within the Yale School of Medicine as well as Yale University. The Child Study Center is an academic and clinical center devoted to the understanding, evaluation, and treatment of children and adolescents with developmental and psychiatric disorders. Administratively, the Center is the Department of Child Psychiatry for Yale University School of Medicine and Yale-New Haven Hospital. It serves many functions, including: (1) The advancement of knowledge in child development and childhood psychopathology through study and research; (2) Training of professionals in child psychiatry, pediatrics, psychology, social work, special education, and other fields concerned with child health and development; and (3) The provision of exemplary clinical services to children with psychiatric and developmental disorders and to their families. The multidisciplinary clinical and research staff of the Center includes professionals in developmental psychology (with a special focus on infants and young children), developmental pediatrics, child psychiatry, psychoanalysis, developmental and molecular neurobiology, neuroimaging, human genetics, language and communication, public health, and education.

Research mentors and laboratories are carefully selected for both the summer internships and the summer + semester program, under the leadership of Dr. Linda Mayes, Director of the Child Study Center and a Sewanee alumna, and Dr. Helena Rutherford, Associate Professor at the Child Study Center and Dr. Amanda Dettmer, Associate Research Scientist at the Child Study Center. 

Applying to the Program

As a study-away program, this program is administered by Sewanee’s Office of Global Citizenship. Students should be sure to meet requirements and deadlines set by that office for various components of the study-away process. 

Please consult with the Sewanee program liaison(s) below for details on the application process and timeline.

NOTE: Applications for summer-only internships at the Yale Child Study Center are administered by Sewanee's Office of Career Readiness and accepted online via Handshake.

Contact Information
PROGRAM Liaisons at Sewanee:

Katharine Cammack, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Psychology & Neuroscience
Director of Neuroscience Program
Woods Lab 335

Karen Yu, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology
Woods Lab 321

Program Director at Yale:

Linda C. Mayes, M.D.
Director, Yale Child Study Center
Arnold Gesell Professor of Child Psychiatry, Pediatrics, and Psychology
Distinguished Visiting Professor of Psychology, Sewanee: The University of the South
Yale Child Study Center
230 S. Frontage Road
New Haven, CT 06520