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John Bechtold, Ph.D.

Chair, Professor of Psychology



717-796-1800, ext. 7023

Interest and areas of expertise

Cognition, Experimental Psychology, Statistical Methods in Psychology
Research: Psychological effects of technology use.

  • Ph.D., Kansas State University, 1990
  • M.S., Kansas State University, 1986
  • M.S., Kansas State University, 1983
  • B.A., Wheaton College, 1980
Classes I teach

I have always been a “student” of human behavior and psychology, even reading psychology books in high school before it was regularly offered as a course in high school. In college I started as “Pre-Med” but soon discovered psychology was my stronger interest - even after getting a C+ in Intro to Psychology. I went to a Marriage & Family Counseling Ph.D. program at Kansas State University and did an internship counseling adolescents and families in Kansas City, MO. I liked the challenges and was offered a job at the Institute I was working at when I finished my Ph.D. but Missouri did not license Marriage and Family Therapists at that time, so I switched graduate programs to get a degree in psychology (which the state did license). In my Psychology program I got a teaching assistantship and “the rest is history.” I discovered I loved college teaching and working with college students. I have never looked back to counseling.

Dr. Bechtold loves traveling and exposing students to other cultures. He especially enjoys leading Messiah Cross-Cultural trips, and has been able to take students to many different countries including Russia, Greece, Italy, Trinidad and Tobago, Costa Rica, the Netherlands, and Kenya.

Hobbies include spending time with family, traveling, racquetball, service projects (Grantham Cemetery, missions, church), hospitality.

Recent Works

Recent Publications

  • Bechtold, J. I. (2008, February). God is God and we are not: Technology and identity in the age of information. Humanities Symposium, Grantham, PA.
  • Bechtold, J. I. (2008, January). Use of the Stroop effect as a bridge between courses: Statistics and experimental psychology. Poster presentation at the National Institute on the Teaching of Psychology, St. Petersburg, FL.
  • Bechtold, J. I. (2006, January). Use of student portfolios as a tool for student and departmental assessments: A pilot program. Poster presentation at the National Institute on the Teaching of Psychology, St. Petersburg, FL.
  • Bechtold, J. I. (2006). Technology and the self: Approaching the hypermodern. In P. Vitz & S. M. Felch (Eds.), The self: Beyond the postmodern crisis. Wilmington, DE: ISI Books. (pp. 183-199)

Recent Consultations:

Chair of Program Review Team for the PA Department of Education for reviewing a new psychology program at Delaware Valley College, 2008; reviewed a Cognition textbook for Worth Publishing Company, 2008.