Psychology Graduate School FAQ

Answers to some common questions about psychology grad school

Psychology grad school questions
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Are you thinking about attending a psychology grad school? Earning a graduate degree in psychology can open up a whole new world of career opportunities. Before you apply to a graduate program, it is important to first learn the answers to some of the most common questions about psychology graduate school.

How Early Should I Start Preparing for Psychology Graduate School?

If graduate school is something you are seriously considering, then it is a good idea to start planning for it as early as possible.

By taking the undergraduate classes required by psychology programs, tackling the Graduate Requisite Exam (GRE) and building good relationships with your psychology professors, you’ll be in a much better position when it comes time to submit your grad school applications.

Make the most of your undergraduate years by choosing courses that relate to your future graduate study plans and taking advantage of research opportunities. Start by taking psychology classes now that will help you reach your graduate school goals. Another thing you might want to consider is whether or not you should focus on a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree during your undergraduate years. The BA option tends to be more focused on liberal arts courses, while the BS degree is usually centered on more science and research courses.

How Do I Know If Psychology Graduate School Is the Best Choice for Me?

The first question you need to answer is whether or not pursuing a graduate degree in psychology is right for you.

The answer depends on a variety of variables, including your career goals, the amount of time you want to spend in school as well as your schedule and financial situation.

In some cases, you might decide to pursue a graduate degree in a related field such as sociology, counseling, criminal justice, or health sciences.

If you do decide that pursuing a graduate degree is the right choice for you, the next step is to determine which type of degree you need. Some individuals will find that a master’s program is the best fit, while other might decide that either a PhD or PsyD is the best option. Time and cost are both serious factors to consider if you do decide to early a doctorate degree. In most cases, you should expect to spend anywhere from five to seven years completing your degree.

How Do I Get Into Psychology Graduate School?

As you prepare to apply to different psychology graduate programs it is important to understand the basic components of a graduate school application. While each individual program may have different requirements, nearly all schools will require your transcript, your GRE scores, letters of recommendation and an admissions essay. Some psychology programs may also require you to take the GRE Psychology Subject Test before you apply.

Your best bet is to contact the admissions office at the school in question to inquire about specific application guidelines and requirements and to learn about any application fees or exam prerequisites.

How Do I Pay for Psychology Graduate School?

After you’ve been accepted into a psychology graduate program, finding a way to finance your education will probably become a top priority. While some students are able to pay for their education out of their own pocket, many students must rely on other means of financial support including student loans, grants, scholarships, work-study and graduate assistantships.

In the majority of cases, graduate students rely on more than one type of financial aid. For example, you might supplement your student loans with scholarships or a part-time job. Learn more about some of the types of financial aid that are available to graduate students.

In addition to finding sources of financial support, you can also explore different ways to save money while you are pursuing your degree. Just a few ideas include finding ways to save money on psychology textbooks, learning how to manage your money wisely while you’re in school and getting tuition assistance from your current employer.

​​How Do I Survive Psychology Graduate School?

After the strenuous psychology graduate school application process, you are probably ready for a reprieve. Rather than rest on your laurels, now is the time to start preparing for the first year of your life as a psychology graduate student. The first year of psychology graduate school can be difficult, but there are steps that you can take to make sure you are ready for all of the challenges that lie ahead. Learn more about how to survive your first year of psychology graduate school.

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