Valerie Stratton

Associate Professor of Psychology
142 Smith Building
Penn State Altoona
Altoona, PA 16601



Psy 2 - Introductory Psychology
Psy 201 - Basic Research Methods
Psy 243 - Personal Well-Being and Adjustment
Psy 437 - Psychology of Adjustment

Research Interests

My primary area of interest is the impact of music 
on emotions and moods and the role of music in 
peoples' lives.  I have been working with a colleague 
in the Department of Music, Annette H Zalanowski
This work has resulted in a number of publications 
and presentations at numerous conferences.


Stratton, V.N. and Zalanowski, A.H. (1994). Affective impact of music vs. lyrics. Empirical Studies of the Arts. 12, 173-184.

Stratton, V.N. and Zalanowski, A.H. (1994). Electrodermal and subjective reactions to music. Proceedings of the Third International Conference for Music Perception and Cognition. 439-440.

Stratton, V.N. Influence of music and socializing on perceived stress while waiting. Perceptual and Motor Skills. 75, 334.

Stratton, V.N. and Zalanowski, A.H. (1992). The interfering effects of musicwith imagery. Imagination, Personality and Cognition. 11, 381-388.

Stratton, V.N. and Zalanowski, A.H. (1991). The effects of music and cognition on mood. Psychology of Music. 19,121-127.

Stratton, V.N. and Zalanowski, A.H. (1989). The effects of music and paintings on mood. Journal of Music Therapy. 26,30-41.

Stratton, V.N. and Zalanowski, A.H. (1984). The relationship between music, degree of liking, and self-reported relaxation. Journal of Music Therapy. 21, 184-192.

Stratton, V.N. and Zalanowski, A.H. (1984). The effects of background music on verbal interactions in groups. Journal of Music Therapy. 21, 16-26.

Psychology 2 - Introductory Psychology


Psychology 2 is a broad introduction to the field of psychology covering topics such as perception, learning, motivation, emotion, personality, development, physiological, abnormal, and social. I generally have 6-10 quizzes during the semester, 3 larger tests, and a comprehensive final exam. In addition, homework questions and small projects may be assigned.

Psychology 201 - Basic Research Methods

Psychology 201 is a required course for psychology majors which focuses on designing and conducting research studies, analyzing data, and writing journal-style reports. It is designated a writing-intensive course. Statistics 200 is a prerequisite. Students are usually required to write 4 major papers, complete a number of class assignments, take two tests and a final exam.

Psychology 243 - Personal Well-Being and Adjustment

Psychology 243 enables students to apply principles of psychology to their own lives. Topics covered include theories of personality, stress, coping, communication, interpersonal relations, family, sexuality, work, and aging. In addition to quizzes and tests, I require students to keep an adjustment journal through the semester in which personal events are recorded with references to the course material.

Psychology 437 - Psychology of Adjustment

Psychology 437 is an advanced course on adjustment. Topics of personality theory, stress and coping, and challenges to adjustment are covered in more depth. Typically, two tests, a final exam, and a term paper will be required. The term paper may be an individual paper or a group project focusing on some topic related to adjustment.

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