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I'm interested in pursuing a career in research psychology. Will employers take the college I went to into consideration?

#psychology #research-psychology #research

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Linda Ann’s Answer

Employers will be interested in your EXPERIENCE actually doing research. Generally speaking, they will be looking for someone with a master's degree in psychology and not an undergraduate psychology major (there are of course exceptions to this rule). So the actual undergraduate university that you attend is less important than gaining experience as an undergraduate DOING RESEARCH.

Look for undergraduate programs that require a senior thesis to graduate. Explore the requirements for graduation online at the universities that you've considered applying to as a high school student.

Good luck.
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Archana’s Answer

For the career that I am currently in (User Experience Researcher/User Researcher) I have to say "Yes". In my experience, graduating from a top tier university or one has has a reputed Human Computer Interaction (HCI), or Psychology program has definitely helped me get more interviews and get my foot in the door. Although I do see students from other universities or colleges, and non-psychology disciplines successfully break into the field, I feel that having these names in your resume does help at those initial stages with establishing credibility and staying "visible" in the crowd of innumerable qualified applicants.

That said, your student research experience and the quality of your academic research projects also heavily weigh in for your first job in the industry. So regardless of which university or program you're in, please chart a career path toward those goals by taking courses, speaking to professionals and completing projects in the area you're interested in.

Archana recommends the following next steps:

Use LinkedIn or other networking platforms to reach out to professionals in the area/specialization you're interested in. Ask them if their college and program influenced their job search.
Reach out to alumni who are currently working in the area/specialization you're interested in and seek their advice.
You could also look up profiles on LinkedIn and see if there's a correlation between those who graduate from colleges/programs like yours and are working in job roles/companies that you desire.
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Emily’s Answer

To some extent, but more important will be the type of experience you get during college, particularly with research. It won't benefit you to be in a college or university with a great reputation if you won't be one of the students who's able to participate in research. Look for schools either where you will be one of the strongest students and likely to be chosen for these opportunities or at a school that emphasizes lots of research opportunities for undergraduate students (smaller schools tend to have the best opportunities)
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Selma’s Answer

No they will not. As long as it is an accredited school. You need to have a great GPA. In college, get a college profesor tou can use as a mentor. You’ll be able to use them as a reference later on when applying to grad school and also job search.
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Saiber’s Answer

It depends.
As said previously, as long as it is accredited, you should be fine with whichever college you pick.

But it's not just the name of the college or how big it is that matters. What some research based colleges offer you is oppurtunity. I'm in Grad school and I had an option to go to a bigger/more research oriented school. The only reason I couldnt was finances so now my research background isnt that vast.

But thats the thing- if you want to get into research- try finding colleges that are active in publication and labs and research. They will have more tie-up with organizations that further do reasearch after you graduate. Check for programs that allow research /thesis as part of their requirements. Build your profile by going to workshops, applying for mentorship and assisting professors. Try to get as much expeirence as you can. All the best. :)
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