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from masters to doctorate.

Discussion in 'Psychology [Psy.D. / Ph.D.]' started by jwtaylor, Dec 8, 2005.

  1. jwtaylor

    jwtaylor Member
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    due to some circumstances that'd keep me around my hometown for a little while after graduation (time obligations for tuition reimburs.) im going to have to pursue my graduate work here at home. id like to earn a phd in clin psych. there arent any phd programs around here, only a masters program in general/theoretical psychology at marywood. i read in the literature that this program is adequate for moving onto a phd. my question is, how easy is it to get into a phd program with a masters? and has anyone heard anything about the masters at marywood?
     
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  3. konrad

    konrad Member
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    I think going from a masters to a clinical phd is a viable route, at least I hope so, since that's what I'm trying to do. The key is to show productivity in your masters research, preferably getting something published along the way. Overall, I don't think the extra coursework does much for your credentials (except maybe advanced stats), but the extra research does. People from my general experimental MA program have done very well in gaining admittance to clinical programs.

    Unfortunately, I don't know anything about Marywood. William & Mary and Wake Forest are the two best MA programs that I know.

    You should also consider trying to get a research job in a lab in your area. This might boost your application credentials just as much as an MA, without the financial strain.
     
  4. psych101

    psych101 Member
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    Marywood has new a PsyD program (started 2001, I think?) that does not appear to be APA-accredited...I'm sure you already realize this...I know someone who went there for a master's and spoke positively of the program, but they stayed on to pursue the PsyD option. If your intent is for PhD specifically, I'd just focus on trying to get the appropriate research experience and think ahead to your later goals. I'd consider the training philosophy of the program -- is it scientist practitioner (as most PhD programs are) or the Vail model (utilized by many PsyD programs)? Might make a difference later when applying to PhD programs.
     
  5. jwtaylor

    jwtaylor Member
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    well i havent ruled out the psyd option. and i have considered using my time to do research, but my research options are limited around here, in fact, im not aware of much research that actually goes on around here. i still have more to learn about the finer differences between the psyd and phd program. i know what the differences are (clinical vs. research respectively) but i dont know what option would be best for what i want to do (im really interested in psycho-legal issues...custody evaluations etc.). i still have alot to figure out.
     
  6. JatPenn

    JatPenn Senior Member
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    just find a post-bacc research assistant position, tons of university professors would love the help. this way you MAKE money (as opposed to SPENDING thousands on a masters program which will probably not make you a better PhD candidate) yet you STILL get valuable research experience and have an opportunity to publish.

    Honestly, this is the best way to go, but for some reason, many folks haven't caught on.
     
  7. konrad

    konrad Member
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    I stand by my opinion that general (not clinical) MA programs are a decent idea for some people. I had a non-psych undergrad, so the coursework was important, but even moreso, I received a lot of attention from a research mentor. Also, the good MA programs are funded with at least small stipends, so there's not a big financial downside.

    That being said, I agree that psych grads should take RA jobs when they can. Most MA programs aren't funded, and the coursework will feel redundant to your undergrad classes.

    To the OP: don't stress out -- you should take your time to figure out what you want to do, and definitely not jump into an expensive professional school out of panic. Even an unrelated job might not be a horrible option in the short term. You can use the time to figure out exactly what you want to do.
     
  8. ProZackMI

    ProZackMI Psychiatrist/Attorney
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    Why not go into the PsyD program there?
    http://www.marywood.edu/Admissions/Graduate/psyd-ap/psydapply.stm
     
  9. ProZackMI

    ProZackMI Psychiatrist/Attorney
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    I didn't realize the PsyD isn't accredited. Sorry. If you are interested in psycho-legal/forensic psych, you might consider this option. Go to Marywood for your MA. Then, if you're up for it, go to law school and get your JD, take the bar in the state where you wish to practice, and practice law and do master's level work. Make some money, then go on for your PhD in clinical or counseling psych.

    PhD is more of a research focused degree. A PsyD is like a JD or MD and is more of a professional degree, but every school is different in its approach and focus. Good luck.
     
  10. Jon Snow

    Jon Snow Senior Member
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    I understand your perspective on how you believe clinical psych training should evolve, but reality is much different. It is not as simple as PhD = research, PsyD = clinical. Perhaps it will be someday, but, at the present, I think it can be handily argued that PhD training, for various reasons, is superior (on average) for both clinical and research applications. Further, due to the economics of clinical psychology, the PhD degree should always (at least for now) be the first and, in some people's estimation, only consideration.

    I don't mean to be divisive, but for people starting out in their explorations of clinical psychology doctoral level options, the PhD = research/PsyD = professional dichotomy is a serious disservice.
     
  11. 50960

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    Not being APA accredited does not equal not being accredited. Accreditation refers to regional accreditation. APA created their own, and unfortunately it has come to mean something when really it is just political.
     
  12. psych101

    psych101 Member
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    I agree, and I really get annoyed by APA anyway. However, attending an APA-accredited grad program tends to help you land an APA-accredited internship --- and attending both does tend to make it easier to obtain licensure. You can be assured that the programs meet the minimal (albeit sometimes questionable) criteria required for licensure in most states. Sure, you can investigate yourself and make sure any nonaccredited program you're interested in meets those same criteria, but you will also have to provide a load of documentation later to prove it. From what I understand, it's a pain.
     
  13. clinpsych

    clinpsych New Member
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    I don't know the particulars of your situation, but it often does not make financial sense to pay for a master's degree if intend to earn a PhD in clinical psychology. Full-time research experience will be more attractive to most programs than a master's degree, and as JatPenn said, you'll actually be earning money rather than spending it. Very few PhD programs will accept all of your master-level credits, so you'll probably end up "wasting" (i realize this is subjective) time and money. Plus, in a PhD program, your tuition will most likely be covered.




     
  14. jwtaylor

    jwtaylor Member
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    i guess i do have alot of options. law school is definitely in my future though. even when i was doing the pre-med thing i still planned on eventually going to law school just because i find it interesting. perhaps ill stick around here and do the MA then law school. i was looking into the psyd program at lasalle and that looks thoroughly interesting to me as well. i just gotta figure out what order ill be doing the law and psych thing...cuz that'll definitely influence what i do with my year off between.
     
  15. psych101

    psych101 Member
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    Yes, it sure can be confusing! It's certainly your decision, and please keep investigating as you are now and weigh all the options. Hope this doesn't make your choice sound too simplistic...but if it were me and I knew that I definitely wanted to go to law school, I'd try that route first. Your odds are probably a little better getting in since law school acceptance rates can be more favorable than some psych programs, plus it's a shorter degree to complete. Then you'll be qualified for something that could potentially be quite lucrative and would certainly allow you the opportunity to interface with psychological practice, whether or not you choose to pursue a psych degree later. The reason I wouldn't pursue psych first is because a master's in psych can be limiting - and, if you would need to take out loans, you might find yourself with a financial debt that you couldn't easily or quickly pay back based on what you'd be qualified to do with a master's degree. If you pursued a doctoral degree first (especially a PsyD degree or a PhD without funding provided by the program), your debt would be even worse. And keep in mind that, typically, psychologists make crappy money, at least for up to a few years until they become licensed and can build a unique niche for themselves-- and frequently the pay is crappy when compared to the amount of time/effort/money devoted to obtaining the degree. Plus it takes 5+ years to finish doctoral level education, with many potentially frustrating hoops to face both during and after. Having that law degree under your belt is a safe thing to fall back on no matter what happens with the other stuff. Good luck, keep asking lots of questions - that's how you'll get it figured out
     
  16. Forensic M.S.

    Forensic M.S. Senior Member
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    I am in the same boat, i feel like the masters isnt really gonna do crap, but i disagree that law school is less selective. I would have to contend it's a lot easier getting into a masters program than a law school. I would also love to go to law school and if i had the gpa and took the lsats i would probably do that instead. i dunno i just feel dillusioned by my undergraduate education.
     
  17. psych101

    psych101 Member
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    Right - I meant law school is (often) less selective than doctoral psych programs. Sorry if I wasn't clear. A masters psych program can be an ok choice, especially if you think you want to continue on beyond that and/or if you live in a state where masters-level psychologists can be licensed. Although then, if you want to ultimately work permanently at the masters level, you have to consider whether a MSW would be a better choice (although it likely wouldn't do much to help in pursuing a clinical psych doctorate). I understand about the feeling disillusioned thing -- mental health is sort of a mess, and they don't really explain that in school...
     
  18. Forensic M.S.

    Forensic M.S. Senior Member
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    yeah i plan on working in mass because their laws are more lienent than ct
     

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