For general questions, email us at Please include your USC ID number with your correspondence. 

To schedule an appointment with any of our advisors, please visit our advising portal below.

Note: the advisor for all cognitive science first-year students is Lisa Perkins ( Please contact her through first-year advising instead.


Schedule an Appointment


Advisor: Samia AlamSamia Alam
Office: SGM

Education: B.A. Psychology & M.Ed Higher Education Administration & Policy, UC Riverside
Hometown: Riverside, CA
Fun fact: I collect items that have my go-to phrase on them, which is: You got this!


Advisor: Vivian Hsu-TranVivian Hsu-Tran
Office: SGM 501

Education: B.A. Psychology, UCSB; M.Ed. College Student Personnel Services, USC
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Fun fact: I’m a bit rusty, but I can write backwards in cursive.





Advisor: Ingrid PopperIngrid Popper<
Office: SGM 501

Education: B.A. Psychology, UC Santa Cruz; M.Ed. Student Personnel, Northeastern University
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Fun fact: I rode my bicycle from San Francisco to Los Angeles.





Advisor: Giovanna KurtzGiovanna Kurtz<
Office: SGM 501

Education: B.A. Communication Studies, CSULB; M.A. Guidance and Counseling, LMU
Hometown: Culver City, CA
Fun fact: I love to cook and try new recipes!





Advisor: Rika YanoRika Yano
Office: SGM 530

Education: B.A. Business Administration – Entertainment and Hospitality Management, CSUF; M.S. Education – Higher Education, CSUF
Hometown: Torrance, CA
Fun fact: I was a gymnast for 4 years and I played volleyball for 7 years.


Departmental Clearance

Prerequisite Waivers

A score of 4 or 5 on AP Psychology satisfies PSYC 100.

If you received a score of 4 or 5 on AP Psychology and cannot currently register for any PSYC 300+ course that lists PSYC 100 as a prerequisite, please email to have your prerequisite clearance entered in the system. If USC has not processed your official transcript/score report yet, please attach a screenshot or unofficial PDF of your score/grade.

Note: Taking PSYC 100 at USC fulfills General Education (GE) Category D Life Sciences, but AP Psychology or an Intro to Psychology transfer course does not.

All other prerequisite waivers are discouraged in this department. If you feel you qualify for an exception, email us or download the prerequisite waiver form, complete and obtain the signature of the professor teaching the course you wish to take, and then obtain approval from the director of undergraduate studies. Final approval is under the discretion of the director of undergraduate studies. Waivers are rarely granted.


Prerequisite Waiver Form