Online Masters in Clinical Psychology - options for future practice in LA

Mar 29, 2010
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This is my first post here. I am not trying to flame but I am looking for honest advice at this juncture in my life.
I am 24 years old with a bachelors in both biology and psychology (my bachelors degree in biology is in IIT in chicago and my bachelors in psychology was from the university of phoenix). Immediately after receiving my bachelors in psychology, I began to look for land based masters programs in chicago IL; notably the chicago school which I got accepted in, but due to financial reasons I couldn't go. I found that to be an issue in many of the schools I applied to so I went with capella for a few reasons. It was covered by financial aid and it still gave me an opportunity to get some clinical training at practicum as a springboard for my PsyD aspirations. I felt this was a good step for the degree because IL doesn't have licensure for masters students and in LA there is psychological assistant licensing and my financial aid didn't cover everything (my family and I are very poor).

I ultimately want to move from IL to CA (Los Angeles specifically) to either complete my masters or do my PsyD there. I guess my questions here (with a bit of background now that I'm sort of stuck at capella with at least some clinical hands on and opportunity for 600 hour practicum next summer) for a person that plans on practicing in LA, what suggestions would be made? My grades in both undergrad programs were stellar (3.8 gpa respectively) but I do lack experience. I thought of starting to volunteer at community mental health centers and I have joined the IPA and APA under graduate student which has helped a bit (though the topics on the IPA haven't deviated from RxP). As I said before I'm not trying to flame, just a young psych major that's trying to look for his options for future practice in LA.
 

erg923

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Be aware that although CA is very psych friendly, th LA area market is pretty saturated, especially if you have the goal of starting a PP.

Geographic restrictions for grad school put a serious damper on the process, as its is very competitive. The more program you apply to the better you odds of acceptance are. You will most likely have to geographically relocate for the internship year anyway,,so my advice is simply to be more geographically flexible and not get your heart set on one area for either grad school of practice at this point. Sorry, its just the nature of the beast
 
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Mar 29, 2010
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thank you for the prompt response
while it would be ideal to move to start a private practice I do have some experience in teaching as well, but my love has always been research. In fact the only reason why I am not in the premed forum today is because my father got ill and passed during my last year of undergrad in Biology. it gave me the opportunity to pursue something I wanted to in psychology. But my "love" has always been research after my time as an intern at UIC in 2004...wow those were the days!
 

6SAnthony

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if you are interested in research then why are you looking at PsyD programs? One big thing to consider is that if you were financially hampered for a masters program, PsyDs are very expensive. PhDs can give you the kind of funding that might be helpful. If you are looking at PsyD because of practice-oriented focus, there are some less research oriented PhD programs (ie, LIU [who also have a PsyD]). Just my two-cents
 
Mar 29, 2010
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one reason I chose a psyD route was because how applicable it was. I have many passions (research, teaching, and clinical practice) each plays to them. That's the bigger push to the psyD rather than the phD route
If you are looking at PsyD because of practice-oriented focus, there are some less research oriented PhD programs (ie, LIU [who also have a PsyD]). Just my two-cents
can you clarify on LIU I am unfamiliar with the programs. Its just not so familiar with the NY setting (which is surprising I guess) and the familiarity with LA is that I travel there a bit I guess that's the push on both counts. But I am very flexible to any options because I am essentially a guppie at this. I am however going to volunteer
 

6SAnthony

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I was referring to Long Island University (the CW campus has the PsyD and the Brooklyn Campus has a practitioner-scholar oriented PhD).