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How do I proceed in high school if I have an interest in Psychology?

What should I be doing in order to figure out if the field is really for me?

Thank you comment icon If your school offers AP Psychology then you should take that class. Victoria

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Gurpreet’s Answer, CareerVillage.org Team

I majored in Psychology and would recommend the following:
- Some schools offer AP Psychology for juniors and seniors. I remember this being an incredibly competitive course to get into because EVERYONE wanted to do it.
- Sociology if your school offers it. It'll give you some insight into social psychology
- Anatomy. Having a foundational knowledge of the brain, body, and neurotransmitters can be helpful
- AP Stats. As a psych major, I took at least 4 stats classes over the years. It's a large component of psych, especially research! It's okay if you don't completely understand it the first time, I sure didn't. but it will give you a preview of what's to come
- Volunteering at a non-profit. It doesn't necessarily matter where as long as you're passionate about it. It will give you experience on how to work with different kinds of people
- Tons of high schools offer free or reduced-cost access to community college courses. I remember taking a psychology course during the summer of my senior year which gave me a leg up when I got to college.
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Priya’s Answer

Hi Aayush,
Some things you can do in high school is volunteer at shelters or other human services locations. You can volunteer in a hospital setting if you would like, though you may see a different severity of conditions in hospital settings. You can see if your school offers any dual credit Psychology classes or if you can try a Psychology class at community college. You can also search videos online and talk to mental health professionals here or in person. You can also browse college psychology classes and see if they sound interesting to you. You can also talk to your school counselor/advisor--I believe they should all have a psychology and helping fields background. Good luck!
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Jackson’s Answer

I'd recommend hitting up some local psychologists about perhaps shadowing. You could watch them work, and ask them certain things about the job to figure out if it is for you or not. Once you're in college you could even intern, which lets you get even more of an understanding of the job/field. I wouldn't worry much if you're only in high school, the most you can do now is probably just ask to shadow and ask for information, they'd likely be more than happy to oblige.
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LiFeng’s Answer

Personal advice I think you can take some psychology-related courses in school, as well as talk to teachers who teach psychology subjects at your school. And looking for volunteers about psychology, which will help you really understand how the profession works.
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Darion’s Answer

Within your high school there may be specific Psychology classes that you can take. Volunteering and participating in activities would be helpful as well. Sometimes there are Psychology seminars that you can participate in within your local community. Maybe reach out to a local college and ask if you can talk to students that are majoring in Psychology.
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Rija’s Answer

Hello Aayush!

Psychology is a great field! I would recommend getting some shadowing hours. When you start shadowing a Psychologist/Psychiatrist, you get to see how they interact with their patients, how they get to their diagnoses, etc... This will really help you understand if you want to be in that field or not. When you get to college, its best to take psychology courses, even if you don't major in Psychology, just to get the core classes and have a better understanding of the field. As Jackson stated, getting a part-time job or becoming an intern would really help you get the experience you need as well.
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Marra’s Answer

If your school provides any Psychology classes, take advantage of those and any pre-requisite classes that may pertain to psychology. I also recommend taking full advantage of any volunteer or internship work that you can find as well. This will help with insight into the actual field and also help guide you along the wonderful world of Psychology. There are many focuses you can take within the subject so try to focus specifically on the type of psychology; whether it be behavioral or organizational or any other subject, make sure to learn where you would like to foucs.
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