Psychoanalytic Studies Minor


Introduction to the Minor

Dear Penn Students,

Welcome to the Penn undergraduate minor in Psychoanalytic Studies. Instituted in 2015, the minor offers Penn students a coherent basis for understanding how people feel and think, and how they function as individuals and in groups. Unlike other forms of psychology, psychoanalysis focuses both on what people are aware of in their minds and what they aren’t aware of. Because much of what is important and motivating in people is unconscious, as well as conscious, psychoanalytic ideas have very broad applications. They form a bridge across many disciplines throughout the humanities, social sciences, and some of the natural sciences. Contrary to what many students have been taught, psychoanalytic ideas are very much alive, and are continuously evolving. Penn is one of very few schools in the country (and the world) to offer its students the exciting opportunity of a minor in Psychoanalytic Studies.

Because Psychoanalytic Studies are truly interdisciplinary, our program offers courses in many departments, within the College and even beyond. The Minor and its curriculum have been designed by Penn faculty members in partnership with psychoanalysts from the Psychoanalytic Center of Philadelphia. Students who sign up for the Minor also have the opportunity, if they choose, to meet monthly with a practicing psychoanalyst to learn about contemporary psychoanalytic theories and therapies. Students who complete six of the many diverse courses that count toward the Minor, as well as a series of meetings with a psychoanalytic mentor, will receive both the Minor on their official Penn transcript and a Certificate of Accomplishment from the Psychoanalytic Center of Philadelphia.

There are many ways to complete the minor. Any of the Minor’s co-directors, or our administrative coordinator, will be glad to hear from you to answer any questions you may have.


Dr. Lawrence Blum
Adjunct Professor in Anthropology
Phone : (215) 751-0102


Max Cavitch
Associate Professor of English
Phone:(215) 898 7456


Professor Greg Urban
Arthur Hobson Quinn Professor of Anthropology
Phone : (215) 898-0895

Nancy Ameen, MLA ’17
PSYS Administrative Coordinator