• Scott Hanson, PhD
    Scott Hanson, PhD
SU alumnus Dr. Scott Hanson ’91 shares how his PhD in Experimental Psychology translated to the business world in the role of market research. Market researchers gather and analyze data on consumers and competitors and study market conditions to examine potential sales of a product or service. They help companies understand what products people want, who will buy them, and at what price. Bonus: learn about graduate degree options in market research.

A native Texan with wayward tendencies, Dr. Scott Hanson has explored about every facet of behavioral science and a decent portion of the United States.

Scott completed his undergraduate degree in (physiological) psychology at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas. He continued his behavioral science studies as a field researcher studying Pacific White-Sided Dolphins before switching to developmental psychology at San Diego State University. After receiving his Master of Arts, he worked as a lab manager studying the physical structures of memory at the University of California, San Diego.

With a few years of research experience, and ready for a change of scenery, Scott chose to continue his education at Washington University in St Louis. He was certainly impressed with the psychology department there, but the deal was sealed when he fell in love with the city on his very first visit. He completed his degree in social psychology, but his plans for an academic career were set aside for an internship in a pharmaceutical forecasting consulting firm. And so began his next adventure…in the private sector.

After a few years in patient research and product forecasting in St Louis, Scott heeded the call to return to Texas to join Decision Analyst, where he rose to Vice President managing a talented team of researchers. He followed that success with a brief stop at MarketVision Research, before striking out on his own with iota consulting. Soon thereafter he found his way back to academia as Director of the MSMR program at the University of Texas at Arlington, where he teaches, advises students, and generally enjoys the glamorous life of a university professor.

Along the way, Scott married his college sweetheart, Heather; together they have three wonderful (if occasionally challenging) children, Hunter, Hannah, and Hayden. They have their mother’s sensibility and their father’s sense of humor – it’s a delicate balance. He spends his free time coaching youth sports and volunteering at his kids’ schools.  He still refers to St Louis as “home”, but he has found a wonderful substitute back where he started, doing what he set out to do all those years ago.