Graduate School Info & Career Info for Psych majors. Presented by Psi Chi and the Psychology Department, 2012

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1 Graduate School Info & Career Info for Psych majors Presented by Psi Chi and the Psychology Department, 2012

2 Topics We Will Cover How do I decide if grad school is right for me? Are there books that the psych dept has for me to browse? How can career services help me? PsyD. vs. Ph.D. (differences in practice/funding) When should I start preparing? What can I do to increase my chances of getting into graduate school?

3 Is Graduate School Right for me? Step 1: Clarify your reasons for pursuing a graduate degree - do you need one to do what you want to do? If you want to be a psychologist, then you need to pursue a doctorate. If you want to work with people in general, a bachelors degree may suffice. Resources: Read the resource books in the Psych secretary s office. See information about psych careers & the GRE at Visit to look up skills, occupations, and job outlooks for many careers Talk to professors in your area of interest Job shadow careers of interest

4 Is Graduate School Right for me? Step 2: Do you have what it takes to succeed in graduate school? You will be taking courses full time, doing practicum work, possibly employed and also researching. "You will be in elite company because your peers will be among the best and the brightest. There will be times when you have to study hard just to earn a B" (Getting In: A Guide to Graduate School).

5 Familiarize yourself with the Reality of Graduate School Admissions standards: College GPA Graduate Record Exam scores o Look online or in Graduate Studies in Psychology to find schools and programs of interest. o They ll list average GPA & GRE scores (percentiles) of past students admitted to their program. o Advanced programs (e.g., Ph.D) have higher standards than Masters programs. Good candidates will have a strong GPA (3.7+ average), strong GRE scores, and a well rounded resume. If you have weaker credentials, consider applying to a Masters program and then apply to a Ph.D. program. Ph.D. programs consider one s success in masters programs. GRE scoring has changed ( ) Practice the GRE and consider retaking it if needed, Math123

6 Should I choose a Ph.D. or Psy.D.? Ph.D. o Designed to create psychologists who not only understand research and apply it but also conduct it. Programs range in emphasis but many programs combine both the scientist/practitioner model. If you want to do research or teach at the university level, the Ph.D. will provide more opportunity for it. Many times, there will be more funding for these programs. Also one year longer than Psy.D.

7 Cont. Psy.D. o The rationale for this degree is intended to prepare graduates for careers as practicing psychologists. They are trained to be consumers of research-based knowledge and excel in practice-related knowledge and experience. Students who choose this degree will not have as many funding options/scholarships

8 It s never too early to start! Junior Year o narrow down research interests o get actively involved in research (lab, psy390, independent project, present research at a conference, submit paper for publication) o study for GRE o compile resume o try to become member of psych organizations/psi Chi Senior Year o compile list of programs that offer the degree you want o apply to schools in Sept-Nov of Senior Year o thoughtfully write your application essay o October: take GRE and subjects tests o finalize resume/cv o ask letter writers early (see website for info profs want)

9 The Cost of Graduate School Typically takes the average student 4-7 years to earn a doctorate in psychology and 2-4 years to earn a masters. Most Ph.D. programs have students earning their masters on the way to their Ph.D. In most doctorate programs, you will be enrolled full time and many programs will not allow you to work an outside job (either full or part time). Doctorate programs often offer jobs (research/teaching assistantships). Some masters program will discourage outside employment but are not as strict. There are many ways to finance graduate school education from scholarships, fellowships, loans or teaching assistantships.

10 What do grad schools look at? Evaluation Criteria Used by Selection Committees o Quantitative Criteria: GPA (overall, psychology and last 2 years) Standardized test scores (GRE- verbal, quantitative, analytical and psychology subject test) o Qualitative Criteria Letters of recommendation Experience (research, work, clinical, public service) Application Essays Interview performance Extra Curricular Activities

11 What Do Grad Schools Look At? (Cont.) Evaluation Criteria Used by Selection Committees o Unspecified Criteria fit with training mission of program resume quality of application materials school and work site attitudes and behavior special projects and honors courses diversity

12 Graduate School Options Neuropsychology Social Cognitive Clinical Counseling Developmental Blends of these (child/clinical) Industrial Organizational

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