Click here to check out Dr. Lynn Friedman's new website, with more comprehensive information on work-life, psychology, psychotherapy and psychoanalysis.
Dr. Lynn Friedman, a Washington, DC, based clinical psychologist, psychoanalyst describes the various paths to becoming a psychologist and/or a psychotherapist |
Tips for the Psychology Major (undergraduates & postbac students)
Considering Graduate School in Psychology, Health and the Helping Professions?
You are considering a career in psychology. What about psychology interests you? Working with people? Studying and researching human behavior? Teaching? A mix? Your answers will inform your decision as to whether you should consider graduate school and, if you do, what sorts of graduate programs you consider. In an article written in the Washington Post, Dr. Lynn Friedman, a Washington, DC, based, clinical psychologist, psychoanalyst, in full-time, private practice in Chevy Chase, MD, describes the myriad of options available to those considering these professions. These include a career in: clinical psychology, psychiatry, (which must be preceded by getting into Medical School)
or, for those interested in a two year degree, social work, counseling, nursing and pastoral care. Alternatively, those whose interests lie in the study of human behavior might consider a career in Clinical Research.
Students who plan to apply to graduate school are encouraged to take the following steps:
Make certain that you take the required courses. Don't just focus on coursework in Abnormal Psychology. To make a successful application, it's important to enroll in statistics, research methods and experimental psychology courses.
Participate in class. Make the best use of your college or post-baccalaureate experience. Actively participate in class. Don't hide behind shyness or a lack of self-confidence. Graduate programs want to see that you can be actively engaged in your coursework.
Get to know faculty. Here's how:
Try your best to do well and address any deficits in your academic record.
Prepare to take the GRE. Take a Stanley Kaplan or Princeton Review course. Sure it's expensive but how well you do on the GRE will have a heavy influence on whether you can obtain a fellowship. Not taking GRE courses is penny wise and pound foolish.
Obtain research experience and a research position. Write a compelling cover letter for a research assistant position. A sample cover letter for a research assistant position
Here are two Washington Post articles by Dr. Lynn Friedman on 10 Steps to Getting a Great Research Internship in Psychology and
applying for Research Internships and Summer Jobs in Psychology and the Health Professions Here are some more thoughts on applying for research positions
Ask faculty and research advisors for references for graduate school.
Write a thoughtful graduate school application.
Although it is not required, for those interested in a career as a psychotherapist, it's important to seek clinical experience. Add icing on the cake by obtaining experience as an undergraduate teaching assistant. Finally, if you are interested in a clinically-oriented, program. Seek out your own personal psychotherapy. Not only will this help to deepen your self-awareness, it is the best preparation and training experience for working as a clinician.
Graduate schools like to know that graduate students are well-suited to the profession and that they will work hard to complete their degrees and to contribute to the field. If you take these steps, you'll be providing compelling evidence that you are up to the test. More importantly, you will be laying the groundwork for doing well in graduate school as well as testing out your interest in the field before making such a weighty commitment.
Lynn Friedman, Ph.D. 5480 Wisconsin Avenue, Chevy Chase, MD, 20815 (301)656-9650
Work Life |
Psychology Life |
Therapy Life |
School Life |
About Dr. Friedman |
Copyright Info |
Negotiating Salary |
Job Hunting |
Establishing a Practice |
Establishing a Business |
Professional Development |
The Work-Life Connection |
Not For Teachers Only
© 1998-2003 Lynn Friedman, PhD.
This material is copyrighted. These columns are offered as a community service. You may transmit them free-of-charge. Feel free to forward these columns to anyone who you think might be interested, so long as not a single word is changed, added or deleted, inlcuding contact information. However, I ask that you adhere to copyright laws by providing, along with any column, all attached copyright information. Also, it is a violation of copyright law to copy this column for commercial use and/or financial gain, to cut-and-paste this column or to use it without appropriate citation. I'll be glad to send these columns to anyone else who sends me email asking to be added to the dlist. While I invite you to link to this site, you may NOT reprint the material on a web site without my express written permission. Reprint permission will be freely granted, upon request, to student newspapers, universities and other non-profit educational organizations. Beyond this, advance written permission must be obtained prior to reprinting any of this material in modified or altered form. Thank you for your consideration.
The site does not provide psychological or work-life advice to any specific individual. Rather, the content is intended to be for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional psychological advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns regarding a psychological or work-life difficulty, seek professional evaluation. Do not disregard professional advice or delay in seeking it because of anything that you have read on this web site.
Page designed by: