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What psychology research has not yet been completed? (Especially in the developmental and abnormal fields?)

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I am a high school senior and I am interested in psychology, especially the developmental and abnormal fields. I would like to get into research, but I am not exactly sure what I would be studying. Does anyone have an idea about what I would be researching by the time I am finished with college (4-6 years from now)? #psychology #psychology-research #abnormal-psychology #developmental-psychology

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Stephanie’s Answer

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There are endless possibilities in the field of Abnormal Psychology research. The goal of scientific research (in any field) is to use your interests, creativity, and innovation to pose NEW questions for exploration. Even within areas of research that may have "already been covered" there are often hidden gems inside those research findings.

First, I encourage you to narrow your focus when it comes to abnormal/developmental psychology. Is it learning disabilities? Is it forensic psychology? Is it developmental issues on the autism spectrum? Is it genetic disorders? etc.

Next, I encourage you to use Google Scholar to find published research papers of interest to you.* Read through them and you will find that at the end of each research paper, the authors will pose questions for additional research and/or suggest other factors that should have been considered when constructing the original experiment. Adding a new factor to a pre-existing study and examining the change (if any) in the results creates new research in and of itself. It will spark your own scientific inquiry and show you how unlimited the possibilities are. I hope this helps!

*Be careful, Google Scholar publishes some papers in full at no cost to you, but some require memberships in certain organizations or a one-time purchasing fee. I don't advocate that you pay for any research papers on Google Scholar. Just keep searching and eventually you'll find a bunch of free research.

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Andrew’s Answer

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It is difficult to predict exactly what will be the “hot topics” for research in psychology or any field 4-6 years from now. I suggest you try to get into the best research psychology program you can (considering location, cost, etc...) for your BS degree. Talk to your professors about their research and volunteer to help out in their laboratories. Make sure you prioritize your courses and grades first, but figure out how to get research experience. If you really like research and want to run your own studies at some point, you should consider getting a PhD. A career option to consider is to a PhD in clinical psychology so you can practice and also do research. This gives you more flexibility with respect to careers and economically. But you have lots of time to think about this. Best of luck!!
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