Faculty Director of the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning
Victor A. Benassi
Victor Benassi graduated from the City University of New York with a Ph.D. in psychology. He has been a faculty member at the University of New Hampshire since 1982. He is professor of psychology (Department of Psychology) and professor of college teaching (Graduate School). During the early 2000s, he served in the Office of Academic Affairs as vice provost for undergraduate studies. He is currently faculty director of the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning.
Professor Benassi's primary interests focus on the psychology of personal control and judgment of contingency. His articles address effects of situational and individual difference variables on illusory control and contingency judgments and on effects of feedback on judgmental accuracy. Other research interests include judgmental biases and errors, belief in putative paranormal phenomena, and belief persistence. He participates in research collaborations in the area of college teaching and on issues related to college teaching as a professional field of study and preparing future faculty. Professor Benassi is currently principal investigator on a three-year grant provided by the Davis Educational Foundation--The Cognition Toolbox: Implementing Cognitive Principles and Assessing Student Learning in College Courses.
Professor Benassi has taught a variety of courses, including introductory psychology, research methods, statistics, meta-analysis, social psychology, abnormal behavior, psychology of depression, belief in alleged paranormal phenomena, and human judgment. He has been involved since the early 1980s in preparing doctoral students for faculty careers. He teaches the Psychology Department's Practicum and Seminar in the Teaching of Psychology as well as a course on Classroom Research and Assessment through the Graduate School's Preparing Future Faculty Program. Since 2002, he has led an effort to develop and offer an online course titled Preparing to Teach a Psychology Course. Students in the course have come from over 80 participating universities from across the USA as well as from a number of other countries (http://www.unh.edu/teaching-excellence/GRAD980/homeinstitutions.htm).
Professor Benassi has received several UNH awards—the Excellence in Teaching Award, the Outstanding Use of Technology in Education Award, and the College of Liberal Arts’ Lindberg Outstanding Scholar/Teacher Award. In 2003, he received an American Psychological Foundation career award--the Charles L. Brewer Distinguished Teaching of Psychology award. Professor Benassi is President-elect (2012, president 2013 ) of the Society for the Teaching of Psychology (Division 2, American Psychological Association).