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"Help me decide" mega thread

Discussion in 'Psychology [Psy.D. / Ph.D.]' started by IcedBennu, Mar 23, 2012.

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  1. psychkid

    psychkid

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    I thought about it but then I realized that I don't want my education to be primarily focused on research. I want to eventually open up my own practice. I see myself happier in a psyd program

  2. AcronymAllergy

    AcronymAllergy Neuropsychology Fellow Moderator

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    Keep in mind that the majority of Ph.D. graduates go on to become clinicians, and the majority of Ph.D. programs provide significant clinical training and exposure; the "Psy.D. = clinician, Ph.D. = researcher" belief is, in actuality, a falsely-perpetuated dichotomy.
  3. Jon Snow

    Jon Snow Senior Member

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    Hmm. Psychology is a bit strange compared to other applied disciplines. Most people who attend PhD programs end up as practitioners only and much more than that end up as practitioners of some sort. I contend that clinical training is actually better in the phd programs for a variety of reasons. What you have to deal with in the PhD programs is a bit more idiosyncratic issues with respect to "match." It is a mentorship based model, generally, so you are applying to specific labs. There are more practice oriented phd programs. There is some guide that many people reference on here, the insider's guide or something like that (I've never actually seen it) that rates programs on the level of practical emphasis. The major advantage to the PhD schools is financial. Most offer full to near full tuition waivers and a stipend. I would strongly reconsider your rule out of PhD programs. Your wallet will thank you/
  4. erg923

    erg923

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    So you dont think there are any ph.d practitioners? How did you get that idea?

    At least tell me you agree with us about 4410...LOL?
  5. NotTheHoff

    NotTheHoff On Internship

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    In the OP's defense, he/she seems to be referring specifically to activities while in the program and not equating Ph.D. with research career. Note, however, that statistics on clinical hours prior to internship contradicts the perception that Ph.D. students engage in less clinical practice.

    Students in most Ph.D. programs do indeed spend more time conducting research than students in most Psy.D. programs, yes, but it's not a rule of law in all Ph.D. programs (or Psy.D. programs for that matter).
  6. psychkid

    psychkid

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    I'm planning on doing therapy and assessments
  7. AcronymAllergy

    AcronymAllergy Neuropsychology Fellow Moderator

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    A doctorate could indeed make sense; like JS mentioned, though, I'm sure nearly everyone here would strongly urge you to look into funded programs (whether they be Psy.D. or Ph.D.), even if that means potentially going through the application cycle again next year.

    Ultimately, though, the decision is of course yours to make. Of the four programs you mentioned, I honestly don't know which I would recommend above the others. I'd suggest, if nothing else, looking into match rates for APA-accredited internships, as not securing such an internship can present a significant career derailer down the line. If ALL you want to do is conduct therapy and assessments in private practice, then it may not be much of an issue. But if you're considering any work for the VA or federal BOP, or are thinking of getting involved in any forensic work, then APA accred. is essentially a must.
  8. erg923

    erg923

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    La Verne has the least stigma asociated with it. No stigma really since its so new. The price tag (of any of these prorgams) doesn't seem to fit with the modal earnings of psycholgists though based a salary surveys. Do you have thoughts about that?
  9. GoPokes

    GoPokes Graduate Student

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    10. Doctoral practicum hours reported on the AAPI:

    Ph.D. Psy.D.
    Doctoral Intervention Hours
    Median 602 540
    Mean 650 576
    St. Dev. 348 293

    Doctoral Assessment Hours
    Median 167 122
    Mean 225 163
    St. Dev. 202 162

    Doctoral Supervision Hours
    Median 347 262
    Mean 377 284
    St. Dev. 186 149
  10. psychkid

    psychkid

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    i don't want my grad school experience to be about research. i know that a lot of psyd programs have you learn about statistics and have some sort of research project, but that is not that same as spending 6-8 years in a program that focuses the same amount or more on research. also, i didn't think i would get in to a phd program. i have a 3.6 from ucla 1180 on the gre one year experience in a lab, presented a poster presentation, worked with kids with autism and volunteer at a crisis hotline. one of my professors told me there are applicants with higher gpas and more research experience that still don't get in.


    and yes i agree with you, you seem to be a lot more knowledgeable than 4410. i had to sign something from argosy stating that they cannot guarantee licensing in the state of california. that made things a bit skeptical for me. also their statistics confuse me. they only have 8 graduates from 2001 until now. that kind of worries me. i know it's a new school and all but it still seems pretty low.

    http://www.argosy.edu/documents/psydinfo/orange-county-psyd-outcomes.pdf

    on top of it. ever since i visited over the summer, they called me repeatedly, making sure i would apply. it makes sense to me now.

    thank you for all of your input. it is really helpful. if i dont get into wright, i'm probably going to go for alliant. though i would still like some input on that
  11. psychkid

    psychkid

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    it's hard to make such assessments when the salary ranges so much. But I have spoken to psyd's and they are doing well financially
  12. J445

    J445

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    Would someone mind telling me how to unsubscribe to this thread? Thanks. Just getting flooded with e-mails.

    If anyone else is considering Wright, feel free to shoot me a private message.
  13. Pragma

    Pragma

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    I am sorry OP, I don't have any inside knowledge about those particular programs aside from what has already been mentioned. Psy.D. programs are not a bad route if you aren't so into research as you say, but there are good and bad programs. This is discussed on other threads a fair amount and if you are willing to look around the country, you may find some desirable ones.

    On a side note, I looked at the statistics from the link you posted from Argosy. I may get flamed for this, but can we agree that of course a professional school posts a median of 5.01? :smuggrin: I doubt their stats professor put the handout together, but come on!

    Edit: Yes I recognize that it is statistically possible to arrive at a median of 5.01. But we are talking years to completion rates. Do they measure this stuff in days or something?
  14. erg923

    erg923

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    Yes, i know the salary has a huge range. But you should plan on being the mode, right? Not the outliers. meary part of the bell curve, right?

    Thats about 70k 5 years post licesure. Now take out 1000/month for a loans repayment.
  15. deliciousgoose

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    Are you absolutely set-on starting in Fall 2012? If not, why not try getting more research experience, possibly another poster/publication, redoing the GREs and applying again? My CGPA was lower than yours and I got interviews at top-tier PhD programs. A 3.6 is definitely nothing to scoff at. People I know who interviewed at top programs (like UCLA Clin. Ph.D) had lower CGPAs than you. What they did have was a bit more research experience that was relevant to the area they wanted to pursue.

    IMO it's worth it to put in one more year of work to attend a fully-funded PhD program or a better funded/more reputatable PsyD program (like Rutgers). Attending such a program will afford you more opportunities, and allow you to graduate with little-to-no debt, compared to the ~150-200k I've heard of people taking on to go to FSPPs.
  16. Jon Snow

    Jon Snow Senior Member

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    Psychkid, you're not that far off being competitive to a PhD program.

    Your 1180 GRE is a little low, but I bet you could raise it. Anything north of 1250 or so should get you in the running solidly. Your GPA is fine. Your undergrad institution has a great reputation.
  17. psychkid

    psychkid

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    i appreciate all the input, but i just dont see myself happy in a phd program
  18. deliciousgoose

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    And that is perfectly valid. Have you considered taking sometime this year to improve your application and applying to stronger Psy.D programs like Rutgers?
  19. psychkid

    psychkid

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    i really do not want to move out of state. i know it limits me, but i got rejected from pgsp and i havent heard anything back from yeshiva university (in ny).and i think i'll go insane if i take another year off
  20. wigflip

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    Why would anyone try to push the OP towards a uni-based PhD program if s/he thinks that ULV is too research-focused? :confused:

    Sounds like it's just a waiting game (unless OP recently heard about Wright). OP, if you're disinclined to go to ULV (and sensible enough to eschew Argosy, which it sounds like you are...?) there really is a tremendous amount of info on Alliant on numerous threads here to bone up on while waiting for the Wright notification.
  21. erg923

    erg923

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    What would Beck think about this statement, Mr. Soon-to-be psychologist? :D
  22. erg923

    erg923

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    Wishful thinking? OP, can you tell us why ULV is too resaearch focused for you? It actually looks like what the Vail model invisioned they propsed the Psy.D degree in the early 70s. Its th other schools that are the bastardized versions...

    Really, if that program is too research focused, than you need to rethink what a psycholgist actually is. There is something that seperates your from social workers and other generic "therapists." That is that you are firmly rooted in science, have training in the scientific method, and utilize the science and the scientific mindset when we think about clinical phenomena. This neccesitates that we we have adaquate exposure to doing this. A class in stats and methodology doesn't cut it...

    Just think about the term "psychologist." "ology"=to study. The name itself implies research and investigation. Sorry, I just get confused when I hear people say they want to be psychologist but that they have no interest in doing any research...even while in school.

    Thoughts?
  23. Jon Snow

    Jon Snow Senior Member

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    My opinion is that the op should strongly consider a different career.
  24. psychkid

    psychkid

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    actually, its ms. soon-to-be-psychologist ( lol this reminds me of friends). when i went to the interview orientation, they pretty much grilled it into our minds that they are very research based. i also do not like the clinical- community component of the program. though the campus was nice, i did not get a good feel from being there. i didnt really like the location and couldnt really see myself living there.
  25. erg923

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    Hmm. ok. Forget about the school itself for a second, k? Why would a would-be psychologist NOT want to attend a Psy.D. program that is "research based?"

    To me this says "we teach the science of psychology." Well hell, sign me up! I would much prefer this to: "we teach you how to be warm and fuzzy" (and can do that on my own), "we teach you how to do phallic interpretations" or "we teach you a bunch of stuff that is fun, but research shows is only minimal effective for patients."

    What exactly would you want to hear?
  26. Jon Snow

    Jon Snow Senior Member

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    Op = yet another wont live anywhere but California or new York I hate research addition to the field. Awesome. Hope your parents are wealthy.
  27. 4410

    4410

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    I agree that you don't want to attend a research based program if you want to be a clinical psychologist. If you look in most directories for major medical centers, teaching hospitals, and mental health centers you will find that most are filled by PsyD clinical psychologists due to the superior training they received in their program of study over PhD clinical psychologists. Most of these agencies do not have the time or money to nurse feed the PhD research-oriented psychologist to learn adequate clinical skills for two to three years so many of these PhD research-based clinical psychologist end up resorting to a inferior positions with the VA and State or Federal Correctional Facilities that have vastly subpar mental health services in comparison with the private sector.
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2012
  28. Jon Snow

    Jon Snow Senior Member

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  29. Pragma

    Pragma

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    :eek:

    I suppose that us PhD folks have so little sense that we would advise discontinuing use of a prescribed psychotropic medication over a message board on the internet.

    Trolling?
  30. MCParent

    MCParent SDN Bronze Donor Bronze Donor

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    Hahahahahahahhahahahahahahhahahahahahhahahahhahahahahahahahahahahaha.
  31. erg923

    erg923

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    Fortunately the OP was educated on 4410 and she has enough sense to see his nuttiness. He represent little threat here...:rolleyes:
  32. AcronymAllergy

    AcronymAllergy Neuropsychology Fellow Moderator

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    It's honestly so blatantly incorrect and emotionally-charged that even I'm beginning to think so at this point.

    To the OP: as erg and JS point out, learning to approach mental health with a truly scientist-oriented mindset is what makes the doctoral degree unique, and is why having a solid foundation in research and science during your doctoral training is essential.

    As for location, realize that if you limit yourself now, you're going to make things even more difficult for yourself at the internship and, possibly, postdoc/employment levels as well. People do successfully stay in one area for the entirety of their training, but it's tough.
  33. 4410

    4410

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    Duh...I beleive I told him to consult with his doctor before making any changes but if he is concerned about having a positive UA for amphetamine-based medications he could stop using them two or three weeks before the scheduled drug screening. Certainly he has more insight on his own health than to use a message board to decide medical decisions. You have an agenda...is this not what everyone on the board is commenting about the quality of PsyD programs based on broad unfounded generalizations. If you look at most major facilities hiring psychologists it is quite common to find that the Directors of Programs are practitioner-oriented PsyD clinical psychologists. If you look at State or Federal facilities such as Universities or Military facilities you may find more PhD research-based clinical psychologists. He does not want to do research, so be smart and go into a PsyD program where you can learn high quality clinical skills and become a director of a medical unit at a major hospital rather than relegated to working in a Federal Prison with Sociopaths and very poor quality mental health programs or with the VA with their less than par mental health programs.
  34. MCParent

    MCParent SDN Bronze Donor Bronze Donor

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    "Some employers have a zero tolerance due to the security of their facility. You don't want to have a positive UA even if you have prescriptions and other verifiable documentations as people abuse and become dependent upon prescription drugs, as well. My take is to stop taking the stimulant medication two or three weeks before your testing and to not even bring it up that you take prescribed meds as you have HIPPA rights to privacy and confidentiality. Once you get through your internship and work in different settings, it most likely will not be an issue."

    :laugh:

    It's bad enough when he flat out lies about professional issues.. now he's lying about something he said an hour ago.

    This HAS to be a joke account.
  35. Duck Duck Goose

    Duck Duck Goose Senior Lurker

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    Just wanted to throw in my mantra (haven't read the entire thread, sorry if there is some reason the doctorate is necessary): You don't need a doctorate to be a therapist, at least check out MSW/MFT/etc. programs before committing to the PsyD because you'll have a lot less debt and can be licensed 4 years from now.

    :luck:
  36. AcronymAllergy

    AcronymAllergy Neuropsychology Fellow Moderator

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    The OP did mention a desire to do assessment as well, in his/her defense. Although going the MSW/MFT/LPC route first, seeing how that works, and then pursuing a doctoral degree afterward is always an option, of course.
  37. Pragma

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    OK, I am done feeding the trolls. :sleep:

    But if you are seriously not trolling - I'd recommend going to talk directly with the faculty members at your program about some of your ideas. You might be surprised at what you hear.

    Edit: For those interested in research, we may be able to string together a nice qualitative analysis of 4410's posts. I'm sure that we could identify several psychodynamic defense mechanisms within said posts. Sadly, it wouldn't qualify for a top-tier journal, but perhaps it could serve as a poster at an Ethics convention.
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2012
  38. 4410

    4410

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    I told him to discuss this with his psychiatrist earlier in the thread, smarty pants. Here is what I said earlier in the thread about talking to his doctor.

    Stimulants have a very short half life unless you are taking extended release. Most stimulant medications or traces of these medications are difficult to detect with UA as they are metabolized quickly and excreted completely within two to three days. If you knew when you were going to be drug tested you could stop them for a week or so before hand. Also, many of the newer ADHD meds are not stimulate based medications and they have much fewer side effects. You may want to discuss this with your psychiatrist or primary care physician who is prescribing your medications. Strattera and Clonidine are non stimulant meds that help with ADHD and I believe they are meds for high blood pressure that help with reducing ADHD symptoms, most helpful for hyperactivity and less helpful for inattention. Another thing that many are recommending in neuro feedback in the treatment of ADHD and some are getting completely off of medications.
  39. erg923

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    I get emails all the time from the NYPSI about interesting talks they do. Maybe..

    There was someone else I while back (dont think he posts anymore) who could have been: The Narcassistic Personality Structure of a Doctoral Student Who Doesn't Know the Difference Between Your and You're. Anyone remember that?
  40. Ollie123

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    Pretty sure I know who you are referring to. We've had some fun ones over the years - I'm fairly convinced 4410 was legit when he began but am now convinced he is just trolling (and doing a bang-up job of it). Whatever...its not too hard to figure out he's not one to be taken seriously, and many of his posts just further the stereotypes about professional schools that he's trying to defend (i.e. that their students don't understand the importance of relying on data rather than making things up).

    One of my favorites was the RxP psychologist we had awhile back (who also seems to have disappeared) who seemed to believe his license came with omniscience, and seemed virtually incapable of any argument beyond "I'm licensed so I could be your supervisor some day and therefore am correct". Pretty sure he was actually legit, but also can virtually guarantee he wouldn't have made it through half a semester at any real program.
  41. Psychadelic2012

    Psychadelic2012 PhD Student

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    Uh....what school is it that does this, now? Can you post a link to their admissions page?:claps:
  42. eudaimonPsyD

    eudaimonPsyD Clinical PsyD Student

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    It is so depressing that I am automatically going to be lumped into this stereotype. If my future degree didn't already get enough crap thrown at it, there are plenty of people out there just like 4410 who continue to make themselves, and the Psy.D degree, look idiotic. I promise we are not all this ridiculous.

    To the OP: if you want to know about Alliant, I can tell you a bit more about it, although I don't attend the campus you are interested in. But I can give you plenty of scoop on their business...err I mean education model and maybe give you a little more information than the fluff that was likely presented to you by the admissions and faculty. PM if interested.
  43. 4410

    4410

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    It's a wonder anybody post on this site after reading such misinformed and inaccurate information about the field of psychology and training models. I have never witnesses so much hostility among psychology students over degrees, accreditation, and internships that is very inaccurate. Normal people in this field do not waste their time questioning each others degrees or if they know how to add two plus two and they maintain professional composure with others despite the level of training. Face it...we all have our strengths and weaknessess and what good does it do to keep badgering others as the bottom line is that there are alternative paths for clinical psychology licensure and such pettiness as is evident by students in doctoral level psychology programs is clearly why this field pathologizes normality and even pathologizes each other or students different from themselves. Social conformity is not something valued to produce competent psychologist. Can you see a doctoral program generating a template with each and every graduate having either a PhD or a PsyD stamped on their forehead. Heaven forbid the day that all psychologists are exactly the same.
  44. psycscientist

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    Yes they do. I would never refer to anyone who graduated from an unaccredited degree mill and I don't know any of my colleagues or mentors (at a top academic medical center) who would either. In addition, credentials will be scrutinized for hiring, or consulting, or giving workshops or any other number of professional activities. Lack of credibility due to subpar training won't take you far.
  45. 4410

    4410

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    More misinformation based on your own agenda. The whole concept of degree mills does not apply to APA accredited programs or doctoral degree programs....maybe you can classify a degree mill as a school that provides a certificate such as a program with an associate degree equivalent but no way can you classify a program that produces graduates who pass the EPPP and gain licensure as degree mills. Do you really believe that a licensing board would allow licensure to a candidate who has not graduated from a doctoral program that follows APA curriculum or is actually from an APA accredited program?

    All of the schools listed that he or she is accepted to are APA accredited programs....so in effect they would not meet the classification of being a degree mill. If you take some time you will find graduates from these programs who are leaders in the field and hold director and chair roles for the professional positions they hold. Everyone who has slandered these programs who have APA accreditation are an embarrassment for the field of psychology and you should be ashamed of yourselves from "bad rapping" the students, faculty, and administration of these programs.

    All of these doctoral programs are regionally accredited and many are APA accredited so they are not diploma mills. Furthermore, because they have higher number of students and they are for profit does not generalize to making them diploma mills as they take a number of years to finish and they do not let you transfer in a large number of credit or get credit without doing the work required in the curriculum. Please try to limit any use of the word "Diploma Mills" as due to the fact that these programs are APA accredited they do not meet the definition of "Diploma Mills!"

    Many of the PhD University research-based clinical psychology programs require students to accept TA or RA as part of funding their programs. A large number of PhD University research-based clinical psychology program provide a tuition waiver and a stipend for teaching or doing research. Typically, these students accrue significant debt from student loans and the stipends they receive for working for the program are normally low wages. How come I hear no outcry or complaints about these program as they could be described as "Sweatshops" with low wages and also reflect a mentality of abuse as students are required to help teachers or researchers while putting in long hours at low wages. Is this not a form of abuse of students? Should students not receive a fair wage for their work and not have it contingent upon their acceptance into the doctoral program. Should the University not be allowed to use student workers in a "Sweatshop" mentality to incur additional profit or savings from not having to pay a student workers a fair wage close to the faculty wages, since, after all these students are almost Doctors? Does a tuition waiver and a stipend necessary have equivalence with a full time salary? Would it be more fair to the doctoral level student and the tax payers to require the students to all pay tuition but then to have fair full time pay for working for the University? Is it fair to have a group of graduate students working long hours doing research for faculty members with large multimillion dollar grant money? How in the world is this not "abuse of labor?" Why is there not a Federal Investigation of University practices of provided a tuition waiver and a low wage stipend to attract or advertise their program? Is this not similar to bribery of students and perhaps even abuse of student rights to expect their admissions into the program to be dependent upon their acceptance of a tuition waiver and a low wage for the next five to six years with no guarantee of acquiring an internship? Is this not a form of intimidation for a large University to require students to work at low wages for long hours while faculty are paid a significantly higher salary and they may even have summers off and work four-hours per day only three days a week. Is this not the same as the "Sweatshops" over in Mexico or South Korea making gadgets or computer devices?
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2012
  46. AcronymAllergy

    AcronymAllergy Neuropsychology Fellow Moderator

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    APA accreditation has always been meant as a minimal standard; it's something programs should achieve and then exceed, which unfortunately seems to have stopped occurring. Simply because a doctoral program meets APA accred criteria doesn't necessarily mean people won't qualify it as a "diploma mill." The term is used to describe programs that, in general, are thought to have reduced admissions standards, large class sizes, and poorer objective and subjective student outcomes on the average. APA accreditation isn't doing a good job of stopping this from happening.

    As for TA/RAships, I'm curious what you think a fair wage would be? If you remove the tuition waiver (which, for out-of-state students, which is what the majority of graduate students seem to be at these programs, includes in-state tuition status), the typical pay I've see would probably be in the low- to mid-30's. For an individuals with a bachelor's degree in psychology, and for a 20-hour/week commitment, that seems fair to me. Even not counting the tuition remission, the pay is actually rather similar to that of an adjunct professor brought in to teach a course, with the workload for the TA/RA-specific duties being similar or less. Do graduate students work long hours? At times, but that doesn't mean the long hours are necessarily directly related to their assistantships (which, again, are technically capped at 20 hours/week); they're usually related to classes, clinical work, and research in addition to the TA/RA duties. Ultimately, these students are also learning; that is, they're being paid to go to school.

    I don't know if anyone has done a study of the mean and modal number of hours worked by students in different types of programs, but I'm not sure that it would differ very much. Then again, if I could choose between no to moderate-debt coupled with a 50-60 hour work week at a funded program vs. a 40-hour work week coupled with $150-200k in debt, I know which option I'd choose.
  47. Pragma

    Pragma

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    Oh come on AA...clearly you have an agenda and are spreading misinformation :laugh:
  48. AcronymAllergy

    AcronymAllergy Neuropsychology Fellow Moderator

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    :cool: That's what I do best; or so my dissertation would have me believe, anyway.
  49. erg923

    erg923

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    Btw, just got the green light for defense! I'm so stoked!

    PS: Where are the mods? These threads are being hijacked by this goofball, and yes, yes, I know we are letting it happen by responding, but the mods should till clip this nonsense in the bud and prevent the spread of such distorted information about our field. Seriously, can we please toss this guy?
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2012
  50. AcronymAllergy

    AcronymAllergy Neuropsychology Fellow Moderator

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    Psychologist SDN 2+ Year Member
    Congrats to ya :thumbup: I'm quite jealous; still working through my data at the moment, although I suppose there's something to the old adage that null results can be just as important as significant ones.

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