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PhD/PsyD Best places to get a PhD? (general psychology)

Discussion in 'Psychology [Psy.D. / Ph.D.]' started by Pscyh6, Dec 2, 2017.

  1. Pscyh6


    Dec 2, 2017
    I am currently a junior in high school studying AP Psychology and I know I want to get my PhD in psychology although I haven't decided what specific field.

    I am wondering--disregarding; commission, location, requirements, etc. Where the best possible place would be to get a PhD in general psychology in the US alone. I understand it may be opinionated therefore I welcome a list of school with top psychology programs if need be.

    Thank you!
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  3. psych.meout

    psych.meout 2+ Year Member

    Oct 5, 2015
    It doesn't really work like that at the graduate level. There isn't really an "ivy league of psychology programs." Each university has different kinds of psychology programs (e.g., clinical and social), but not all of them have the same ones (e.g., not all have clinical programs). A given university's psychology programs are not necessarily of equal quality, some are better known and of better quality than others. Furthermore, graduate level education in psychology tends to be of the mentor-model, meaning you apply to work under a particular faculty member(s) as your research mentor. Thus, programs can excel in a particular topic by who their faculty are, e.g., Abramowitz for OCD research.

    Some of the consistently best programs with some of the most respected and accomplished researchers are public universities, some of which aren't particularly well known for their undergraduate programs.

    You'll need to narrow down your sub-discipline and research interests to get an actual idea of what are the ideal programs.
    ellabelle46 likes this.
  4. AcronymAllergy

    AcronymAllergy Neuropsychologist Moderator Psychologist Gold Donor Classifieds Approved 7+ Year Member

    Jan 7, 2010
    Like psych.meout said, it really depends on your area of interest/specialty. There's no way to say without knowing what it is you want to do. Getting a doctorate in "general psychology" is essentially useless, and such non-specified degrees (from what I've seen) are typically only offered by less-than-reputable online programs.
    ellabelle46 likes this.
  5. erg923

    erg923 Regional Clinical Officer, Cenpatico National 10+ Year Member

    Apr 6, 2007
    Louisville, KY
    A ph.d is specialized. There is no phd in "general" psychology.
    ellabelle46 likes this.
  6. WisNeuro

    WisNeuro Board Certified Neuropsychologist Psychologist 7+ Year Member

    Feb 15, 2009
    Well, there is actually. But most of them are offered by diploma mills, and all of them generally won't lead to many job prospects.
    ellabelle46 likes this.
  7. ay1314

    ay1314 2+ Year Member

    Mar 17, 2013
    Like others have said, at the doctoral level it's really about fit and what's best for you considering whatever your goals are. Check out what APAGS has to say about finding the right fit in their "applying to graduate school" section. Unfortunately I can't share the link here because I'm a n00b but if you google "apags resources for students" the first page the comes up should be the page I'd link to if I weren't such a n00b.
    ellabelle46 likes this.
  8. Pscyh6


    Dec 2, 2017
    I suspected there would be a top school for specific fields and I know it's a rather vague question because I don't have a particular interest in a specific field quite yet.

    I appreciate everyone's help regardless, thank you!
  9. Temperance

    Temperance 2+ Year Member

    May 27, 2015
    Some groups do publish "rankings" of psychology programs, but, as everyone else has said, they don't apply to graduate programs in psychology like they might for something like law because of how specialized the PhD degree is. The quality of those rankings vary wildly depending on the methodology used, so they're not that reliable. You'll get different numbers looking, for instance, at how many journal articles were published by professors in the department versus how much they pull in research funding versus how many times on average each journal article published by the professors in the department is cited; these may be important if you're considering a career in academia, but looking exclusively at these things misses the bigger picture.
    ellabelle46 likes this.
  10. enduroevo

    enduroevo 7+ Year Member

    Mar 8, 2010
    I think it requires some reflection on your part to think about your goals for graduate school. Do you want to be a clinician? A researcher? Is going to a top name institution important to you (perhaps it might be a super high stress environment). I agree with everyone else--fit is key

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