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Southern Nazarene University - Character Culture Christ

Chair, Department of Psychology and Counseling

Contact Information
Office Location: Don Beaver Science Building, Fourth Floor, Room 437
Office Number: (405) 491-6395


  • Ph.D. – Clinical Psychology, Graduate School of Psychology, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, California, 1991-1997.
  • M.A. – Theology, Graduate School of Theology, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, California, 1991-1995.                                                                                                
  • M.A. – Psychology, Graduate School of Psychology, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, California, 1991-1993.
  • B.A. – Psychology & Theology (Magna Cum Laude), Mount Vernon Nazarene College, Mount Vernon, Ohio, 1987-1991.

Dr. Ron Wright has had a lifelong interest in the relationship between theology and psychology and his educational journey reflects that interest. After graduating from Mount Vernon Nazarene College as a psychology major, he attended Fuller Theological Seminary where he received a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and a M.A. in Theology. Dr. Wright has taught in the psychology departments at Southern Nazarene University (1997 – 2002) and Mount Vernon Nazarene University (2002 – 2010). He also taught for a semester as a Fulbright Scholar in the Master’s Program of Psychotherapy and Psychodiagnostics at the University of Bucharest, Romania. He returned to Southern Nazarene University in 2010 as the Chair of the Department of Psychology and Counseling.

Ron has been licensed as a psychologist in the states of Oklahoma and Ohio and has maintained a private practice for much of his career. He is married to Suzanne and they live in Bethany with their two children, Emma and Zane. When not at work or reading, one can probably find Ron and Suzanne at a practice or game as Emma and Zane are active in playing softball, baseball, and basketball. In those rare moments in which Ron does not have work or family obligations, he enjoys chasing a small white ball around a golf course.

Dr. Wright’s research interests include the integration of relational psychoanalysis and Wesleyan theology, the philosophical and moral assumptions embedded within psychological theory and how those relate to theological perspectives, the relationship of attachment states of mind to spiritual development (including image of God), and mixed methods (qualitative and quantitative) approaches for examining cross-cultural perspectives on psychological well-being.

Courses taught:

Graduate courses:

  • PSY6293 – Philosophy of Interpersonal Relationships

Undergraduate courses:

  • PSY1113 – General Psychology I
  • PSY1212 – General Psychology II
  • PSY4113 – Psychology of Religion
  • PSY4153 – Psychology of Personality
  • PSY4373 – Special Studies in Psychology – Cross-Cultural Research: Psychological Well-Being in Costa Rica

Current Scholarship

In 2012, Ron presented Tradition shaped integration: The past and future of SSPWT at the Annual conference for the Society for the Study of Psychology and Wesleyan Theology in Nashville, Tennessee with co-authors Dr. Paul Jones and Dr. Brad Strawn.  Ron was also a committee member for Scott Secor's poster presentation at the annual conference of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology in San Diego, California. The title of that presentation was Relational predictors of resiliency following trauma.  Ron has been published numerous times, with his latest article "If my hand hurts, he feels my pain, too": Attachment States of Mind and Conceptualizations of Friendship Among Street Children in Bucharest being published in the Romanian Journal of Experiential Psychotherapy in 2010.  Also in 2010, Ron was co-editor, along with Dr. Brad Strawn and M. Kathryn Armistead, of the book, Wesleyan theology and social science: The dance of practical divinity and discovery.  Ron published another articles in 2010 entitled Grief, Hope and Prophetic Imagination: Psychoanalysis and Christian Tradition Dialogue in the Journal of Psychology and Christianity with co-author Dr. Brad Strawn.


Our Nazarene Heritage
Founded in 1899, Southern Nazarene University is a private, Christian, liberal arts university - a service of the Church of the Nazarene. Located on a 40-acre campus just west of Oklahoma City, SNU grew out of several small colleges committed to educating people for lives of service to God, leadership, and reconciliation toward their neighbors and within the global community. More than 32,000 alumni work and serve throughout the United States and the world. Read About Our Heritage

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