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RA positions - 2013

Discussion in 'Psychology [Psy.D. / Ph.D.]' started by ceruleania, Dec 4, 2012.

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  1. ceruleania

    ceruleania

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    Hi all,

    I'm looking for full-time research assistant opportunities in Clinical Psychology starting on/after June 2013. Although I am open to most opportunities, I am especially interested in topics related to developmental psychopathology. If you know of any opportunities, or have advice on how to find them, please post them here.

    -C
  2. ndlek21

    ndlek21

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    SimplyHired can send you psych research assistant positions to your email. I have been getting these for a while because this is my last semester of undergrad and I needed something to do during the spring and summer (and hopefully not longer..because I just applied to clinical programs!). I'm not sure how this will work for the average person -- but I just happened to spot a job posting in one of their emails that was in my hometown (top-tier research university) where I had volunteered as an RA over the summer.

    So I sent an email to my former supervisor (apparently he put in a good word for me), sent in my CV and filled out the application and BAM - I have a full-time paid research position starting in December. I got lucky, but I imagine if you apply to enough of these positions, you might too!
  3. ndlek21

    ndlek21

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  4. briarcliff

    briarcliff Gold Donor

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    +1

    I graduated with my BS this past Summer and have been working in a clinical capacity but am definitely interested in attaining more research experience. I'm located in Louisiana, so if anyone knows of any potential RA openings in the area please post it here!
  5. ahpsych

    ahpsych

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    What area specifically are you looking to work in? If I were you, I would look through the research interests of the professors at LSU and see if there is a match. Even if it isn't EXACTLY what you want your focus to be, see if it's something that you could at least be interested in and that could help your case for why you want to study what you do. Then, email those professors and see if they are hiring RAs. You might have to start out volunteering, but maybe that is something you could do part time while you work part time, if necessary.
  6. briarcliff

    briarcliff Gold Donor

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    I've considered it, but even after contacting many of the psych professors at LSU and faculty at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, which is a local research institution, all labs seem to be well staffed with both graduate and undergraduate students. I was on staff at Emory last year as part of a large PTSD study, which is my primary interest. I'm working on publishing my UG thesis, and am *hopefully* presenting it as a paper session at APA next year. Because I have a job now in a clinical setting, It would be hard to leave my job for a volunteer position, especially since I'm still able to continue my research while working for a PsyD - It would just be nice to know of any labs hiring BS level RA's in the area.
  7. ahpsych

    ahpsych

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    Yeah, I know what you mean briarcliff. I am also from the Baton Rouge area, and I tried to go home after college and do research. I kept hearing that funding wasn't available to hire RAs. When I did research as LSU, it was as an undergrad and they made me sign up for three credits through the university before they'd even let me volunteer. That being said, I got a paid RA position, but I had to leave home to do it.

    It seems like networking is EXTREMELY important, as all of the positions that I have gotten have been through word of mouth. It was seemingly impossible when I was just looking on my own. Since you're from the area, do either of your parents/family members know an LSU professor? Do you have friends who went to LSU who were very involved in the psych department? I got my summer position there through a friend who had worked with the prof. Likewise, I was offered a volunteer position that is usually only for undergrads and grad students because a friend of mine knew the professor.

    Good luck!
  8. briarcliff

    briarcliff Gold Donor

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    I have a few friends that work at PBRC (through the undergraduate college employment program), and I've made contact with a few professors at LSU. None really focus anything that I'm interested in (PTSD in youth, domestic violence/abuse, minority psychology), which I know shouldn't be a complete deterrant (any research is better than no research), but regardless, my boss now is allowing me to take on a lot of responsibility in his practice, and I am still working with my UG mentor and my boss at emory (MD/PhD from Harvard), so I think I'll have enough research and clinical experience, event though I know research trumps clinical experience.
  9. uca68

    uca68

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    Please also post job openings or advice for getting research positions in the Boston/Cambridge area. I'm casting a wide net for now, but I'm particularly interested in labs that deal with trauma or its associated emotional disorders.

    Thanks!
  10. da3mite

    da3mite

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    Hello,

    I am currently a final semester senior at the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor). I am planning to take the year off to apply to Ph.D. programs, work as a lab manager, and publicize some work. My main interests are many topics within the realm of social psychology, and I have an increasing interest in marketing psychology (and consumer behavior).

    I am already looking around for lab manager/research coordinator positions throughout the country at different universities, but since a steady stream of postings does not really exist (at least to my knowledge), I decided I would post here and see if you guys had any leads. I am hoping to begin either this summer, after I graduate, or in the fall. Thanks so much in advance for any information/advice! Let me know if you would like to hear about my credentials.

    -Michael S.
  11. briarcliff

    briarcliff Gold Donor

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    My best advice would be to intern in a lab while you're still in school (which I assume you already do), and then try and find a paid position in that lab. Often times it's difficult for BA/BS folk to find positions in labs without volunteering first, since there's a lot of MA and even PhD people out there who are looking for similar positions. The only advantage that a BA/BS person may have over someone with a graduate degree is familiarity with the lab's protocol and procedures, and the best way to get that is by volunteering. One of the labs I worked at during undergrad offered me a competitively paid position after volunteering for about 6 months, and there came a time, before I had even earned my BS, where I was getting paid to train people with masters degrees who elected to volunteer in our lab. Volunteering and interning is your best bet, and I recommend you do it while you're still in school, so that way you don't have to sacrifice earning a living post-grad to try and find an in at a research position.
  12. da3mite

    da3mite

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    briarcliff, thanks for your message.

    I am currently in 3 labs (but only 1 of them needs a new lab manager anytime soon). Unfortunately, even though that 1 lab has expressed that they would love to have me back as a lab manager, they would not have the funds to pay me. Thus, any other advice? Thanks again.
  13. briarcliff

    briarcliff Gold Donor

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    Keep looking around. Paid research gigs for people with a BA/BS are rare, so I would talk to your PI's and see if they can put a good word in for you with any of their colleagues. Also scope out the careers page for any universities or research institutions in the area. In my area there are quite a few RA positions available, but almost require an MA or equivalent degree. Like I said before, experience and familiarity with the lab is going to be your biggest advantage over anyone else applying, so I would consider branching out and working with other PI's and maybe cutting back on some of the labs that don't offer you any opportunity for advancement.
  14. emily621

    emily621 PhD Student

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    I don't know how likely it is that you will land a lab manager/coordinator position right out of undergrad. They usually require experience and sometimes a Master's. I would definitely also search for RA positions.
  15. da3mite

    da3mite

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    Thanks for all of your advice and information guys.

    I may also have the opportunity to stay another year at Michigan for an accelerated Master's course. If I cannot find a lab manager position, do you think a Master's program like this (but still with the aim of an eventual Ph.D.) would be worth it over a paid RA position, for example? Or just continuing as a non-paid RA in the labs I'm already in?

    Thanks again!
  16. psychologyrun

    psychologyrun

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    If you want to get into a research oriented PhD program, I think that being a paid RA for 2 years would look best. You might be worrying a little prematurely... alot of paid RA positions open up in March or April once the old RA's find out if they got into grad school.
  17. Rmack1219

    Rmack1219

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    Any updates on research assistant positions for the 2013 year? I've particularly interested in PTSD.
  18. AcronymAllergy

    AcronymAllergy Neuropsychologist Moderator

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    Mod Note: I've merged these threads so that all posts for RA-type positions remain in the same topic
  19. thought units

    thought units

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    Thanks

    Research Assistant, Emotion Dysregulation in Young Children

    Full-time research assistant sought to support an NIMH-funded study examining the neural circuitry of young children with severe temper outbursts to be conducted at Fordham University and the NYU Child Study Center. Responsibilities include participant recruitment, screening, assessment, and operation of the MRI scanner at the NYU Center for Brain Imaging. Additional duties include organizing and managing study databases, data analysis, assisting in submitting IRB and grant protocols, overseeing study finances and subject payment, and assisting with the dissemination of research findings including manuscript preparation and presentation of research findings at national conferences.

    Requirements: B.A. or B.S. in psychology; an interest in applying for a graduate degree in psychology or neuroscience; prior laboratory experience and knowledge of research methodology; prior experience with children and families; strong writing skills; experience with SPSS; organizational, analytical, and problem solving skills with an ability to be detailed-oriented, and multi-task; interpersonal, communication and collaborative skills; professional demeanor and sensitivity towards research participants. At least a two-year commitment is required. Position will begin in June-July of 2013. Please send cover letter, curriculum vitae, and the names/contact information for two references to [email protected].
  20. thought units

    thought units

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    Dear Colleagues,
    As you may know, we have conducted the Children's Summer Treatment Program (STP) for children with ADHD and related impairments for more than 30 years, most recently through the Center for Children and Families at Florida International University since 2010. The STP has been named a Model Program in Child and Family Mental Health by the American Psychological Association, and has been named a program of the year by CHADD, the national parent advocacy group for children with ADHD. The STP has also been listed in SAMHSA's National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices. I am writing to ask your help in making outstanding students aware of the numerous positions we have available. Positions are available for students who are interested in working with children in Pre-Kindergarten, elementary, and adolescent age groups.

    Positions are available for lead counselors, counselors, teachers, and classroom aides. Links to the detailed position descriptions are provided below.


    Lead Counselor
    Counselor
    Teacher
    Classroom Aide

    Online application materials are available at the FIU careers web site, http://careers.fiu.edu (search keyword STP). More information about the Summer Treatment Program and the Center for Children and Families is available at http://ccf.fiu.edu.


    If you would like to receive paper copies of the position descriptions to distribute to students or colleagues, you may contact Gabriela Morales at [email protected].


    Erika K. Coles, Ph.D.
    Research Assistant Professor
    Clinical Director, Center for Children and Families
    Florida International University
    AHC 1, Rm. 140
    11200 S.W. 8th St.
    Miami, FL 33199
    (305) 348-4087
    (305) 348-3646 (fax)
    [email protected]

    http://ccf.fiu.edu
  21. psychstudent155

    psychstudent155

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    Hi all,

    I am looking for paid RA or CRC or CRA positions in the Boston/Cambridge area. I have looked on all of the hospitals websites (I used partners.org to do this since it groups them all together) and have applied for 10 jobs. I know it is early but I haven't received any responses. I would like to apply to jobs at Universities in this area, but there seem to be hardly any jobs posted online. I've also looked a VA Boston, but there aren't ANY RA/CRC jobs available (I find this odd, I don't know if I am doing something wrong in the search). I'm coming from a great undergraduate institution, I've had research experience for 2 years and I work as a therapist. I'm looking for more research experience in abnormal psychology, I've been working with people who have depression and anxiety. Any job postings or information about listservs to be on would be great!

    Thanks!
  22. dramaqueen616

    dramaqueen616

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    Hi All,

    The lab where I work is currently emptying out do individuals going to medical school an PhDs. Some things to know are as follows:
    1. Only apply to this job if you are interested in working in dementia/aging/memory/neuropsychology/ neuroimaging. I got plenty of great experience here and wanted to be in aging so it worked out well for me but other PhD hopefuls have found it difficult to transition to other research areas.
    2. This is a position that involves brain imaging analysis as well as clinical work. By clinical work I mean you will be administering some neuropsych but you will also be scheduling appointments and MRIs and working with blood an patients directly.
    3. You will get posters and pubs here, the PI is very ambitious.
    4. PI is a neurologist and wants only sane psychology applicants. A masters degree does work in your favor but is not required if you are the right fit.

    Here is the reference number and link. https://jobs2.mednet.ucla.edu/css_external/CSSPage_Welcome.ASP
    Job# H65506 - Staff Research Associate
  23. BrainNerd5

    BrainNerd5

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    Hi Everyone!

    I will be graduating this May with a BA in psych and am looking for an RA position. I applied to Clinical Psych PhD programs (specific interest in neuropsych) and didn't get in. I'm currently an RA (part time/hourly, 1 year experience in may ) and am looking to gain another year of research experience (full time) to boost my resume and continue doing what I love...research! I'm very interested in brain function, memory, neuroimaging, aging, etc and would enjoy having a position related to that. I would be willing to take a position pretty much anywhere in the US. I've been looking on job sites and searching around, but if any of you know of RA positions related to those topics (or any open positions) or just some tips on how to best search for open positions, I would love to know! Thanks!
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  24. modestmousktr

    modestmousktr

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    I'm not fully understanding this. It's rare to land this position after undergrad? After attending social events at well respected universities, it appeared as though ALL of my fellow interviewees were postbac RAs. Professors who rejected me even noted that a primary concern was my undergraduate status, and suggested I become a lab manager in between now and next years cycle.

    So if as an undergrad it's rare to be accepted straight to the Ph.D. and it's also rare to get a lab coordinator position, where do we go? Is masters the way to go? Im just so lost.

    Also, in my circumstance, doing unpaid RA work post B.A. would not enhance my CV. I have been doing independent research as an undergrad for three years with one pub already and my senior thesis being written up for publication. I also have 16 conference presentations (5 of which are national). That being said, this research is not in my field of interest, BUT I do have one year's worth experience working on an NIMH funded clinical trial directly in my field.

    I'm getting a ton of rejections, even post interview, all related to my position as an undergrad and, admittedly, my GRE score (1240). I am just literally lost because these RA positions seem just as difficult to grab as the Ph.D. spots- should I do an MA? Is there a link to respectable MA programs that lead to doctoral acceptance?

    Thanks, guys.
  25. emily621

    emily621 PhD Student

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    I more meant a lab/study coordinator position versus an RA position. People right out of undergrad definitely get hired as RAs, but I've always seen coordinator as something you progress to after being an RA (that's how it happened for me). But I'm sure there are people with a ton of undergrad research experience that could be hired right out of undergrad into a more advanced position.

    Either way, jobs like that are still hard to come by. It sounds like you have excellent undergrad experience, but perhaps your research interests don't seem all that developed yet? Programs want you to not only have good research experience, but oftentimes they also want you to have a good sense of what you want to study, and perhaps these POIs are thinking that you'll have a better sense of that after you get some 'real-world' work experience in this field.
  26. pretzels

    pretzels

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    Maybe this is a dumb question but i'll ask any way: taking research positions completely unrelated to your interest / field of intended study for the sake of research experience -- recommended or no?

    Its very hard for me to find any RA positions in my area, that are paid, in forensic psychology, who are currently hiring and only require a BA. However, i've found some RA positions for non-psych fields, more in general medicine and healthcare, but RA positions nonetheless.

    Would these positions be advantageous at all for applying to a doctoral program? Is it only worthwhile if the work you're doing is specifically in the field of your POI? Or is research experience research experience?
  27. jbean24

    jbean24

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    If anyone has any info about lab positions in the Los Angeles area that would be AMAZING. I applied to clinical psych PhD programs, but it looks like I probably won't be getting in any where this time around. I am most interested in child anxiety disorders, so anything even vaguely related to that area would be awesome.
  28. modestmousktr

    modestmousktr

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    Oh no :( I've hit up every child anxiety lab in the general area and in New York- even one I had worked at previously as an unpaid RA, all with no openings. I hope you have better luck than I do!
  29. jbean24

    jbean24

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    Wow, that's discouraging... :( but thanks for the info! Could you possibly tell me where you looked and who you asked and how recently? I'd really appreciate it.
  30. modestmousktr

    modestmousktr

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    Sure, I'll PM you!
  31. ResearchGirlie

    ResearchGirlie

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    I think these titles vary a lot. Where I worked prior to grad school, coordinator positions were less research oriented, and thus less valued by future grad students, than RA positions. As RAs we got to run participants, data analysis, etc while the coordinator took care of things such as ordering equipment, keeping track of employees/vacation time/etc, and other jobs that were more administrative in nature.
  32. ResearchGirlie

    ResearchGirlie

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    I don't know anything about forensic programs, but in regular clinical psych programs I'd say getting experience is important. If it's in your area of interest that is best, however, that's not always possible. The key is to be able to show from your experience that you are capable of doing research and also how/why you got interested in your subject area.
  33. mewtoo

    mewtoo

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    Does anyone know of any RA positions dealing with borderline personality disorder, eating disorders, or emotion dysregulation? Location does not matter as long as its in the continental US.
  34. NYU FTRG

    NYU FTRG

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    For anybody interested in gaining greater research experience - our externs have been very successful in getting into graduate programs - a number were accepted into competitive Clinical Psychology PhD programs this past application round.

    The Family Translational Research Group (FTRG) has recently joined NYU. FTRG is directed by two clinical psychologists — Dr. Richard E. Heyman and Dr. Amy M. Smith Slep — and has received over 35 federal grants to conduct research on understanding and preventing family dysfunction and violence.

    Since 1997, FTRG has offered students an opportunity to be involved in its research. Such experience is needed for admission to most graduate programs in psychology and other helping professions.

    FTRG conducts research on a wide variety of cutting edge topics ranging from (a) how anger, conflict, and family violence affect children’s and adults’ psychological and physical functioning to (b) defining maltreatment in ways that can be reliably used by field workers to (c) understanding how couples’ conflict dynamics relate to violence to (d) furthering our understanding of risk and protective factors for child maltreatment and partner abuse. In addition to this basic research, FTRG is involved in two large prevention efforts, one for communities and the other for couples with newborns. These studies use the wide spectrum of research methods — from intensive observational approaches to large-scale surveys involving tens of thousands of respondents. The FTRG typically has about 10 active federally-funded projects. The group includes several doctoral-level psychologists, masters level researchers and counselors, bachelors level research staff, externs, research assistants, and graduate students.

    We are looking for individuals to assist with and collaborate on ongoing and upcoming projects. People who join our team can expect great research experience. Individuals with a variety of education and backgrounds are welcome.

    The research opportunity is unpaid, requires 12 hours per week, and includes mandatory attendance (on-site or by video conferencing) at our weekly lab meeting on Fridays from 10:30am-11:30am. The majority of the research will be completed on-site in our lab located in the NYUCD offices within the Manhattan VA. We require a 2 semester commitment if you are invited to continue. Coding requires two consecutive semesters (fall/spring; spring/summer; summer/fall).

    If you are excited by the possibility of doing innovative research on couples, families, and family violence in a team environment, please apply. Kindly complete the application at the below link and send with a copy your resume/curriculum vitae to the FTRG Externship Coordinator at [email protected]. The subject of the email should be “FTRG Externship Application,” and attached files should be saved as, “yourlastname_externapp,” and “yourlastname_externCV.” So, if your name is “Sean Jones,” files should be saved and sent as, “Jones_externapp,” and “Jones_externCV.”

    http://www.nyu.edu/dental/ftrg/application.pdf

    Also, check out our website!

    http://www.nyu.edu/dental/ftrg/whoweare.html
  35. futureapppsy2

    futureapppsy2 Ed Psych PhD student Moderator Gold Donor

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    Merged with RA position thread.

    Also, how's the searching going for those of you who are looking for RA positions next year? :)
  36. Bianco32

    Bianco32

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    I'm looking at two positions that seem promising, just waiting to hear back from them. They see to like hiring psych grads from my school. They have next to nothing to do with psych and are mainly focused on cancer research. Honestly, I'm thinking it may be good to step out of this particular science for a year or two. I love it, but I know the arduous path and working in another science may shed some light on if I really want to go through with it or not.
  37. kcm146

    kcm146

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    if you are in Texas or are interested in moving here, a lot of my research team are leaving our PTSD study to go to phd programs (myself included). good pay (I have my MA but pretty much everyone else has their BA) and great experience
  38. nolegal10

    nolegal10

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    I am interested in getting research experience in forensic topics (antisocial PD, sex offenders, correctional mental health) if anyone has any sight into those. I am in Chicago if that helps
  39. Rmack1219

    Rmack1219

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    I'll be attending USUHS in the Fall :soexcited:
  40. gestaltpsyc

    gestaltpsyc

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    Hello All,

    I may be late for any research opportunities for the Summer 2013 period, but if anyone can help or has any ideas, I would greatly appreciate that.

    I am mostly interested in Social or Cognitive Psychology, so if there are any openings please let me know of any in the San Francisco Bay Area.

    Otherwise, I will be moving to the Greater New York area this Fall, and if anyone has any suggestions on research or internship opportunities in that area, by God let me know. My wife will be attending Rutgers University, while I will be completing a hybrid Bachelor's completion program at the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS).

    Thanks in advance,
  41. modestmousktr

    modestmousktr

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    I think the obvious choice would just to search for clinical trials that Marsha Linehan is a part of, and contact their coordinator. I know the CARES Study is currently active at University of Washington, Seattle Children's Hospital, UCLA, and Harbor-UCLA. I do not believe they are seeking paid research assistants, but I know for a fact that both UCLA and Harbor-UCLA are seeking unpaid research assistants, if that is something you're interested in.

    RA positions never seem very clear- honestly, I would just look up faculty at several universities, find the ones who specialize in that, and do some "cold call" e-mailing. I actually ended up getting some interviews that way, but decided to complete an M.A. instead.

    At Temple University in Philadelphia, PA, Mike McCloskey studies emotion dysregulation and BPD (I think BPD), and I cannot remember her name, bu one faculty there studies eating disorders and DBT for eating disorders.

    I think you, and most other RA hopefuls, could find this helpful:
    http://clinicaltrials.gov/

    good luck!
  42. cara susanna

    cara susanna Predoctoral Intern

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    Kathryn Gordon at North Dakota State University studies emotion regulation and eating disorders.
  43. Avalakita

    Avalakita

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    Did you try the ICPSR at the University of Michigan? I was trained in SEM there last Summer. If you could get some really good stats/data management training it might help your CV a lot as well.
  44. gestaltpsyc

    gestaltpsyc

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    Status:
    Psychology Student
    I applied for this RA position. Thanks.
  45. PsychTryhard

    PsychTryhard

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2013
    Messages:
    4
    Status:
    Psychology Student
    Anyone having any luck finding RA positions?

    I have applied to 20+ positions and haven't heard anything yet.

    Anyone have any advice for extra steps other than just following the guidelines of the online application portal?

    Thanks
  46. briarcliff

    briarcliff Gold Donor

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2011
    Messages:
    313
    Location:
    USA
    Status:
    Pre-Psychology
    SDN 2+ Year Member
    IMO, it's nearly impossible to find an RA position without an 'in', whether that's a grad student, former employee, or volunteering in the lab before applying. I've applied for ~50 research spots at my local research center, and have gotten 0 interviews. The two medical schools, where I've been employed as a researcher have been the result of personal connections and people speaking on my behalf to higher ups. I suggest, you network with professors, grad students, and research staff at universities/labs that you're interested in and work on a volunteer basis in a lab that you would like to work for.
  47. modestmousktr

    modestmousktr

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    137
    I obtained an interview for the position of Clinical Research Coordinator that I very, VERY unfortunately had to decline (serious family illness and the lab was on the other side of the country) with a prestigious medical school by calling them. It seems unorthodox and a little brazen, I honestly never would have done it, but I couldn't find an e-mail address for their lab manager! I think the phone call actually benefited me- I called after hours and left a message, so they got to hear my voice, which is a lot more personal than an e-mail that they may receive several of. I wouldn't recommend this as the way to go, but since you've already applied to ~20 it wouldn't hurt- especially if it's some place you aren't applying for grad school.

    I'm really, REALLY bummed that I turned down the interview. I think it would have led me to exactly where I need to be, when it's time to reapply for Ph.D. programs :( but we all have to make personal decisions.
  48. samcatg

    samcatg

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2013
    Messages:
    2
    Status:
    Non-Student
    I am wondering if I can ask for a bit of advice. I am currently a part-time RA for a prestigious research institute. My goal is to apply to a clinical psych graduate program and follow a child track orientation. However, I am currently doing research that focuses on depression in minority populations in adults. Although I have excellent clinical and research experience, and since I am only working part-time, I started looking for other opportunities to obtain experience with children. I am mainly interested in working with minority populations and latino children, my research and clinical interest lies there...
    I have two new part time paid job offers... one is at a therapeutic nursery school affiliated with columbia university where I would work as a teacher assistant (TA). The second position is another RA position assisting in research focusing on head start programs and latino toddlers. I understand that the RA position would strengthen my application incredibly and may help round my research interests i suppose, however, I am so in love with the TA position...
    I was wondering how would clinical phd or psyd programs value the TA position? It would be purely an educational and clinical experience. The director of the nursery said that a lot of her TAs do go on to great clinical programs.. but do clinical programs value a TA as a clinical experience? Would that be ok if I continue my research exposure at my current RA position?
  49. cara susanna

    cara susanna Predoctoral Intern

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2008
    Messages:
    4,526
    Location:
    Midwest
    Status:
    Psychology Student
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    All I can say is that the programs I interviewed at did not seem to care about my clinical experience at all--and these were balanced programs.
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2013
  50. briarcliff

    briarcliff Gold Donor

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2011
    Messages:
    313
    Location:
    USA
    Status:
    Pre-Psychology
    SDN 2+ Year Member
    The more you surround yourself with research the better. If you can still publish/present from the lab you work in now, and take the TA job, then that's better than nothing, but I'd recommend that you stay with the lab, unless you're absolutely miserable working there, which if that's the case, you may want consider alternate grad programs given how research heavy most PhD programs are. Is it possible to keep working part time, and take the new TA job?

    Right now, I'm working as a psychometrist for a private practice, after having worked in three labs for two years - I had to leave those labs because I moved.

    I recently got involved with a new lab working evenings/weekends, which I am so grateful for, where I'll be working in addition to my full time 'clinical' job. However, over the past several months I've been keeping myself busy by working on two manuscripts and a presentation for APA using data from the previous labs I worked in. I knew that since I was moving from research to clinical work, I would need to apply myself even harder to keep myself relevant in regards to research.

    In my case, I'm glad I've had the opportunity to work in a private practice, because I can now tell graduate programs confidently that I've worked in research and clinical settings both for extended periods of time and can say without a doubt that research is what I really want to focus on. I've heard that university's perceptions of clinical experience can vary greatly, some programs see it as a negative because they feel that they have to 'deprogram' you and rebuild you from the ground up, while others may look at is as more of a neutral bit of information, and some (few) may even view it as a positive.

    Obviously, the decision is up to you, but it is always a safe bet that a research position is a better option than really anything else when it comes to graduate school admissions. I've worked in a clinical setting for about 10 months now and am already exhausted from the infinite loop of insurance preauthorization, insurance claims, scheduling patients, testing, scoring, etc., etc., etc. - In my opinion, research is more stimulating, and is often correlated with a greater sense of passion from fellow staff members, given that a specific study's PI has dedicated his or her entire career to researching a very specific topic, and I enjoy education and like working with professors and grad students who enjoy sharing their knowledge.

    Long story short, research is always > clinical experience when it comes to admissions for PhD programs - PsyD programs may be a different story, but I feel confident saying that no research job will ever be considered a negative, as opposed to clinical jobs.

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