10+ Year Member
Dec 15, 2008
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  1. Psychology Student
Hi guys.. I am about to graduate in florida. I have 3.9 of GPA and my major is psychology.. I am only 20 years old and don't have any working experience.. I have done some service learning but nothing serious (no more than 25 hours) so I do not want to do my PsyD in psychology right now.. I want to get exposure in the field before making a long term commitment in a doctoral program.. I don't even know if I want to make that commitment:rolleyes:.. So I am thinking in doing a master in mental health counsuling or the master in social work.. right now my school is offering the mental health counsuling program in the education department and the MSW so what do you think is better for me... and one last thing.. I heard that if I become a licenced mental health counselor with a master's degree and I want to practice counseling, I have to be supervised by a psychologist with a PsyD or PhD and I have to pay for that supervision... is that true????:confused:


Regional Clinical Officer, Centene Corporation
10+ Year Member
Apr 6, 2007
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  1. Psychologist
I can not tell you which route is best for you, ultimately, this your choice. Whether or not you can see clients for counseling without supervsion varies by state, and I do not know what the licensing laws are in FL. If you would like to get more exposure to the field, i would recomend applying for tech postions at psychiatric facilties/hospitals and/or loking at clinical research type positions. If it turns out that your only interest is in therapy, then a masters level degree is probaly the best.


10+ Year Member
Apr 14, 2008
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Just pretty much wanted to second what ERG said in the above posting.

You seem concerned with committing to a doctoral program without fully understanding the field... so I'm curious why you would commit to a masters degree under the same conditions.

There are plenty of ways to get exposure in the field, as I'm sure you know from your service learning experiences. Psychiatric techs at residential facilities or acute care inpatient units, outpatient mental health technicians (hab techs, community support professionals, etc depending on where you live), even just attending a few NAMI/AA/NA, etc meetings to see if the issues associated with mental health are of interest to you.

Licensure, supervision, etc between counseling/social work are questions that you should be able to find on your state's websites for each licensing board.

Good luck.


Neuropsych Ninja
Moderator Emeritus
10+ Year Member
Oct 7, 2006
The Beach
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  1. Psychologist
Definitely take some time off between graduating and applying to doctoral programs. Learn about the field more, gain some life experience, and really figure out what you want to do as a career. Trust me, there is time to go back. I think everyone should take time between undergrad and grad school to do those it really can help give you a better perspective.
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