Department of Religion
Seton Hall University
United States of America
Michael Vigorito began teaching at Seton Hall University in 1989 when the Department of Psychology was exclusively an undergraduate department. In 2004 the department began offering graduate education by introducing an M.S. in Experimental Psychology and he served as its first director. His general interests are in science, animal behavior, and human nature and he learned early his my education (as an undergraduate at Brooklyn College) that experimental psychology is an ideal field to cultivate these interests. One of my goals as a professor is to introduce the scientific study of psychology to undergraduates and to help graduate and interested undergraduate students further develop their scientific way of knowing through study and research. Most of his recent empirical research falls within the category of behavioral neuroscience and investigates learning and behavior in laboratory rodents. He is also interested in computers and technology and their application to instruction (pedagogy). He is known to occasionally try new technologies and approaches in my classes. The courses that he has been teaching for undergraduates in recent years are Introductory Psychology and Research Methods; for graduate students he teaches Conditioning Behavior and Biological Basis of Behavior. Most recently he has also been thinking about how to incorporate a discussion of faith and science into my classes. Many (perhaps most) believe that faith and science are incompatible and even adversarial. This need not be. To focus on a discussion of science, faith, and what it means to be human he is co-teaching with Dr. Bert Wachsmuth of the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science a multidisciplinary course called Robots and the Mind.
Science, animal behavior, and human nature
• An Electronic Workbook for Assessing the Dunn et al (2007) Quality Benchmarks in Undergraduate Psychology Programs, Office of Teaching Resources in Psychology, May 2006
• "Spatial Learning and Memory in HIV-1 Transgenic rats", Journal of Neuroimmune Pharmacology, 2(4), 319- 328, June 2007
• "Methamphetamine-Induced Behavioral Sensitization is Enhanced in the HIV-1 Transgenic Rat", Journal of Neuroimmune Pharmacology, May 2009