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PhD/PsyD Questions for a PhD in psychology ?

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Mr. Ripley

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I've decided I will pursue a PhD degree in either social psychology or I/O psychology. So, now that I've decided on a career, i'm a bit confused as to what sort of path I would take in order to obtain a PhD in psychology. My main questions right now are as follows:
1.) I am planning on attending either OU or OSU ( Oklahoma) basically for free, or pretty close to it. There, I will get a bachelor of science in psychology. So is there any sort of special criteria I should look for to help me decide on which to attend? Right now I believe I will choose OSU over OU simply because it is slightly less expensive and I don't believe there are any major differences in the two psychology departments.

2.) I want to make sure that, from what i've read, my idea of obtaining a PhD is correct. In order to obtain a PhD, one needs a masters degree, and in order to obtain a master's degree, one needs a bachelor's degree. Is this correct? If I am admitted to a master's program, is admission into the school's doctorate program guaranteed considering the student obtains the master's degree?

3.) What sort of financial aid and scholarships are made available to students in graduate school? Will getting scholarships for graduate school come from the school itself or outside sources? Do either of these scholarships anything involve submitting essays, financial need, academic rigor, and academic performance? As for financial aid, are there various grants made available for graduate students and is there a difference between out-of state tuition and in-state tuition?

4.) I was also wondering what graduate schools had the best reputations for psychology programs? What is the selection criteria for these specific schools like?

5.) Would graduating summa cum laude or having a double major, say in sociology, give me any sort of advantage in regards to being admitted to these graduate programs?

6.) Is it safe to assume that a doctorate's degree from a better psychology program will have more opportunities compared to a doctorate's degree from OU or OSU but it will also result in a higher amount of debt?
 

erg923

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I've decided I will pursue a PhD degree in either social psychology or I/O psychology. So, now that I've decided on a career, i'm a bit confused as to what sort of path I would take in order to obtain a PhD in psychology. My main questions right now are as follows:
1.) I am planning on attending either OU or OSU ( Oklahoma) basically for free, or pretty close to it. There, I will get a bachelor of science in psychology. So is there any sort of special criteria I should look for to help me decide on which to attend? Right now I believe I will choose OSU over OU simply because it is slightly less expensive and I don't believe there are any major differences in the two psychology departments.

2.) I want to make sure that, from what i've read, my idea of obtaining a PhD is correct. In order to obtain a PhD, one needs a masters degree, and in order to obtain a master's degree, one needs a bachelor's degree. Is this correct? If I am admitted to a master's program, is admission into the school's doctorate program guaranteed considering the student obtains the master's degree?

3.) What sort of financial aid and scholarships are made available to students in graduate school? Will getting scholarships for graduate school come from the school itself or outside sources? Do either of these scholarships anything involve submitting essays, financial need, academic rigor, and academic performance? As for financial aid, are there various grants made available for graduate students and is there a difference between out-of state tuition and in-state tuition?

4.) I was also wondering what graduate schools had the best reputations for psychology programs? What is the selection criteria for these specific schools like?

5.) Would graduating summa cum laude or having a double major, say in sociology, give me any sort of advantage in regards to being admitted to these graduate programs?

6.) Is it safe to assume that a doctorate's degree from a better psychology program will have more opportunities compared to a doctorate's degree from OU or OSU but it will also result in a higher amount of debt?

1. Not that is relevant to psychology, no.

2. Masters can be earned while enrolled in Ph.D program. You can be admitted to ph.d programs in psychology straight from undergrad.

3. Research assistantships and teaching assistantships. With the remission (full or partial) of tuition granted at most programs.

4. Depends on the specialty. For IO and social, I dont really know.

5. Summa cum Laude yes. Sociology double major, not so much.

6. No.
 
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smalltownpsych

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The PhD programs are going to be looking at research productivity so looking at what the professors are working on at each U you are considering might be a consideration. Regardless of what you end up doing do n the road, getting some solid research experience will be a benefit and the earlier you get involved in it the better.
 

PsychMajorUndergrad18

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Hello Mr. Ripley!!,

I would to help answer your questions since I, at one point, was looking into I-O psych although now I am pursing a completely new direction. Heres my thoughts on a few of your questions and also offering some of my suggestions for you:

1) For your BA, go to the cheaper school. Make connection with a good amount of the psych faculty. Also like erg mentioned, get as much research experience as possible and even try to get a thesis done. But most importantly aim for at least a 3.5 GPA to be very competitive for grad school and get a good score on the GREs during your junior or senior year. While sociology is a good minor, I would say that it is also a good idea to take a few business classes such as Organizational Behavior, Marketing and Accounting which would help you in the future if you decide to be a business consultant while organizational behavior would give you a taste of another similar field that is like I-O but instead of being focused on all psychological research (i.e. social and cognitive psych research), OB focuses on a interdisciplinary approach with psych, sociology, economics, management and other fields. Graduates from OB PhD programs are able to work in business departments and as consultants. A
2) A couple of solid grad programs in I-O are Michigan State-Lansing, Illinois State at UrbanaChampaigna, and Bowling Green State. Here's a link to the SIOP's (Society of Industrial Organizational Psychology's) rating of graduate programs. SIOP grades each program on (1)research output (2) total points in top 5 journals and (3) average rank. Here is the link: http://www.siop.org/tip/backissues/tipapr02/02gibby.aspx
3) Another option you have if you dont want to spend 5 to 8 extra years in school AND want to just be a consultant or HR employee while maybe adjuncting would be to get a masters in I-O psych. A masters will give you plenty of opportunities in the business world and also a good starting out salary. But if you get your GPA up high and get research experience AND want to do research or being a academic then strive for the PhD.
4) it seems that OU and OSU doesn't have a program in I-O psych so I would suggest you look at the other programs I showed you and also further research the fields of I-O and social psych more.

Lastly,

if you have any questions about I-O psych or OB feel free to private message me

PsychUndergradMajor18
 

CWard12213

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2.) I want to make sure that, from what i've read, my idea of obtaining a PhD is correct. In order to obtain a PhD, one needs a masters degree, and in order to obtain a master's degree, one needs a bachelor's degree. Is this correct? If I am admitted to a master's program, is admission into the school's doctorate program guaranteed considering the student obtains the master's degree?

6.) Is it safe to assume that a doctorate's degree from a better psychology program will have more opportunities compared to a doctorate's degree from OU or OSU but it will also result in a higher amount of debt?

Just to expand a little on these since:

2. It is absolutely not correct that you need a master's degree to get into a doctoral program. It CAN help, but not necessarily. If you do well in undergrad, get some good research experience, and score well on the GRE there shouldn't really be anything standing in your way of jumping straight from undergrad to doctorate. Getting into a school's master's program does not guarantee acceptance into their doctoral program, but I would assume it would help.

6. Pretty much all of this is inaccurate. Fit tends to be more important than overall prestige. For example, attending a doctoral program well-known for its research would probably help you get a job as a researcher, but it isn't necessarily going to make you a more attractive candidate to be a private practice therapist. Try to get out of the line of thinking of programs as being "better" or "worse" and look more for a program whose overall training fits in with your long-term professional goals. Most of the more prestigious programs have a more research/education oriented focus. If you just want to practice and see clients for therapy they aren't necessarily the best fit.

And on that note, because many of the more prestigious state universities and such have a heavy research focus and involve students in the research, in many cases thay are actually not that expensive because you work for the school while you are a student there. Cost does not equal quality in grad school.
 
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