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I'm currently in high school, but I have an interest in Psychology right now and I am wondering what it would entail if I want to pursue that in University and after that?

I enjoy the psychology class I am in right now and I like the idea of pursuing something in that area but I am not sure what to really do now. I should probably take a psychology class at University but I don't know what else there is and how to look at using that for my future.
Thanks!

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Subject: Career question for you

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Gina’s Answer

If you have an interest in pursuing Psychology in university and beyond, there are several steps you can take to explore and prepare for this field:

1. Take psychology courses in high school: Continue taking psychology courses in high school to further explore the subject and gain a foundational understanding of key concepts.

2. Research different psychology programs: Look into different universities and colleges that offer psychology programs. Consider factors such as program reputation, faculty expertise, available specializations, and research opportunities.

3. Pursue a Bachelor's degree in Psychology: Once you have completed high school, you can enroll in a Bachelor's degree program in Psychology. This program typically takes around four years to complete and provides a comprehensive understanding of various subfields within psychology.

4. Gain practical experience: Seek out opportunities to gain practical experience in the field of psychology. This can include volunteering at mental health organizations, participating in research projects, or interning at psychology-related institutions.

5. Consider advanced degrees: Depending on your career goals, you may want to pursue advanced degrees in psychology. A Master's degree or a Ph.D. can open up opportunities for specialized careers, such as clinical psychology, counseling psychology, or research.

6. Explore career options: Research different career paths within psychology to determine which areas align with your interests and goals. Some common career options include clinical psychologist, counseling psychologist, research psychologist, industrial-organizational psychologist, and school psychologist.

7. Seek guidance from professionals: Reach out to professionals in the field of psychology, such as professors, psychologists, or career counselors, to gain insights and advice on potential career paths and educational requirements.

Remember, the field of psychology is diverse, and there are numerous opportunities to specialize and apply your knowledge in various settings. Exploring different areas of psychology, gaining practical experience, and seeking guidance will help you make informed decisions about your future in this field.
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James Constantine’s Answer

Hey Izabella!

If you're excited about exploring psychology at university and beyond, there are several steps you can take to dive deeper into this fascinating field and prepare for your future career. Psychology is a vibrant discipline with many different subfields, so it's key to get a handle on the various paths you can choose within the field.

1. Dive in and Discover: Kick things off by doing some in-depth research into the diverse branches of psychology and the career opportunities they present. This will help you get a clearer picture of the areas that match your interests and ambitions. Some popular subfields of psychology include clinical psychology, counseling psychology, cognitive psychology, developmental psychology, social psychology, and industrial-organizational psychology.

2. Bachelor's Degree: Your journey towards a career in psychology usually starts with a bachelor's degree in the subject. Hunt for universities or colleges that boast robust psychology programs and look at their curriculum, faculty expertise, research opportunities, and internship placements. Introductory psychology courses will give you a sweeping overview of the field, while more specialized courses will let you dive into specific areas that pique your interest.

3. Get Your Hands Dirty: While studying psychology at the undergraduate level, it's super important to get some practical experience under your belt through internships or volunteer work. This will not only deepen your understanding of psychological concepts but also give you invaluable hands-on experience in real-world scenarios. Look for opportunities to work with psychologists or research labs in areas that intrigue you. This experience will not only beef up your resume but also help you figure out which specific area of psychology you might want to chase.

4. Postgraduate Education: Depending on your career dreams, you might need to go beyond a bachelor's degree. Many careers in psychology call for a postgraduate degree, like a master's or doctoral degree. Look into different postgraduate programs that align with your interests and career goals. Think about factors like program reputation, faculty expertise, research opportunities, and available financial support.

5. Licensing and Certification: If you're keen on becoming a licensed psychologist, it's crucial to understand the requirements in your country or state. Licensing requirements usually involve completing a doctoral program, racking up supervised clinical experience, and passing a licensing exam. Plus, some specialized areas of psychology might require specific certifications or extra training.

6. Keep Learning and Growing: Psychology is a field that's always changing, so it's vital to stay in the loop with the latest research and developments. Make the most of continuing education opportunities, go to conferences, join professional organizations, and take part in workshops or seminars to boost your knowledge and skills.

7. Career Choices: Psychology opens the door to a broad range of career options across various sectors. Some common career paths include clinical psychologist, counseling psychologist, research psychologist, industrial-organizational psychologist, school psychologist, forensic psychologist, sports psychologist, and neuropsychologist. Each career path demands specific qualifications and might involve working in different settings like hospitals, schools, research institutions, private practice, or corporations.

Remember, this is just a rough guide to the steps involved in chasing a career in psychology. It's crucial to chat with academic advisors or professionals in the field to get personalized advice based on your unique interests and goals.

Top 3 Go-To Reference Publications/Websites:
1. American Psychological Association (APA) - www.apa.org
2. Psychology Today - www.psychologytoday.com
3. Verywell Mind - www.verywellmind.com
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Shelisa’s Answer

Hi! Everyone
Glad you are all in high school
You all are on your way to become Graduates!! Way to go!!

Thank you for The Question
It is a Great One!

Psychology Entails this
All I Remember is having a strong interest in Psychology
Reading a lot
Taking Tests on what I just read
Volunteer / Intern at a local business to see if this is Right Choice for you.
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Darcy’s Answer

Hi Izabela!

As Ashley mentioned, there are a ton of different paths you can take with a psychology major - it doesn't have to be just clinical or counseling! Human resources, organizational behavior, evaluation, market research are all roles that a psychology major could pursue.

Like you, I enjoyed my high school psychology class so much I decided to major in psychology in college. As a psych major, there are so many different areas you can focus in (social, forensic, cognitive, clinical, etc.), and your college will offer many different course options, so you can dabble in a little bit of all of them and see what interests you most.

For me, I found my passion in cognitive psychology and research. I ended up getting a master's in cognitive psychology, and am now working in customer experience research. This type of role is a combination of many elements of a psychology major (research methods, statistics, survey design, and human behavior).

Again, as Ashley said, you don't need to have it all figured out now. Just pursue the things you're interested in and see where it takes you, and know that a psychology major can open a lot more doors than you might think!
Thank you comment icon This is extremely helpful, thank you! Izabela
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Ashley’s Answer

Hi Izabela,

It’s great to hear that you are already thinking about your plans after high school. Good for you! With psychology, there are so many areas: human development, mental health, behavior, research, counseling, etc.

For me, I majored in psychology in college and then completed my masters in counselor education to be a school counselor. I wanted to help people in schools. Figure out who you want to help and how you want to help them. Then you can narrow down a path for your future. Once you have those answers or interests, consider joining clubs in high school or doing volunteer work to add to your resume or college application. This will really make you stand out and get you experience with helping other people.

A college advisor can help you determine what classes are best to take in college. You don't need to have all that figured out now. Have fun learning more about yourself and your interests!
Thank you comment icon Thank you so much! This definitely helped give me a better idea! Izabela
Thank you comment icon This was super helpful, thank you! Analba
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Morgan’s Answer

Hi Izabela! Psychology is a great field because the training and job opportunities are endless! One great place to start could be to check out the American Psychological Association's website and look at the different types of jobs psychologists do. Like others have said, as a psychologist you can provide therapy, assessments, supervise and train students, teach, do research, and even consult. Psychologists can do anything, from providing therapy at a private practice to conducting research for companies like Disney or working for the military. I chose to complete a Ph.D. in Psychology so that I could have as many career options as possible. To become a psychologist, I had to complete a bachelors degree, 2 year masters, and 4 year Ph.D. Once you complete a Ph.D., you can teach at a university or work in the private sector consulting and doing research. If you want to be able to see clients and provide therapy, you have to become licensed as a psychologist. That is a lot of school and training and a significant time commitment but for me, it was well worth it.
Some things to consider: do you enjoy doing a lot of reading and writing assignments? Do you enjoy classes that require a lot of critical thinking? Would you be open to going to school for longer than 4 years? How much money would you like to earn after graduating from college? Can you see yourself working with a specific group of people like children or the elderly? Those questions may help you decide if you are interested in majoring in psych.

Morgan recommends the following next steps:

visit www.apa.org to learn more about majoring in psychology
Thank you comment icon Your advice was so helpful! Izabela
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Priya’s Answer

Hi Izabela,
Psychology is a very versatile degree, meaning you can use it toward many different careers, whether you want to stick with mental health or not. Many people have used it toward a medical degree, or I am sure toward business. The study of people can serve you in many fields. You can try and see if you can either look up psychology classes online for free or even take a class at a community college if you are interested in it. You can also ask your school counselor or your university advisor regarding what careers you can pursue with Psychology. You can also choose to major in Psychology and minor in other fields/interests to hone in on your career path once in college. You have many options =)!
Thank you comment icon Thank you for answering this for me! It's really helpful. Izabela
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Racheal’s Answer

Hello. This is such a great question! Pursuing a degree in psychology is fabulous and one of the most fascinating areas to study un college.
I would say take courses that spark your interest, many will have a course narrative that you can review to determine if the course will be a great learning experience for you.
Get to know professors and ask them about what interest then in their area of expertise, as sometimes that is helpful to making a clear decision on the path you want to go into. Also, try to get a research assistantship (1. to cover some credits/tuition), but also work with grad students and get first hand experience in what you would be doing should you pursue a doctorate degree.
Remember on 2%of the world have Ph.D.s...I have mine because of what I did above.
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Talia’s Answer

I used my Bachelor's in psychology degree to enter the human resources field. My focus is on industrial-organizational psychology. It is a very rewarding career if you enjoy helping people thrive in a workplace environment.
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