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The Field of Psychology

By karlsjunior456 Jun 22, 2013 1545 Words
The Field of Psychology
The field of psychology has always been a vastly helpful field in which we always find a use for in everyday society. The possibilities that one person could do with a major doctorate are nearly endless and greatly beneficial. With a degree, you can work in many business settings, clinical settings, and even your own psychiatric environment where you are able to talk one on one with your patients. They also Conduct scientific studies to study behavior and brain function, collect information through observations, interviews, surveys, tests, and other methods, find patterns that will help them understand and predict behavior, use their knowledge to increase understanding among individuals and groups, develop programs that improve schools and workplaces by addressing psychological issues, work with individuals, couples, and families to help them make desired changes to behaviors, identify and diagnose mental, behavioral, or emotional disorders, develop and carry out treatment plans, collaborate with physicians or social workers to help treat patients.

The reason I chose psychology as a career choice for me is simply off the fact that ever since an early age I wanted to help people. Considering the fact that I had to learn the hard way that blood and needles made me uneasy, I decided to help people in another way, I was going to listen to their problems and observe them in the best ways that I could. I have always been fascinated as well about the development and thought processes by which people have during troubling times. This branches out from an early exposure to longing to hear out people’s problems due to the fact that my mother has her bachelor’s degree in psychology. The understanding of people is so vivid and varied that it would take an eagerness to learn and severe dedication to the field to grasp every concept of human motivation, the anatomical make up, emotion and way of life to find a proper diagnosis of every patient you have.

There are many different fields of psychology that one could look into just as any other science career. Social psychologists study how people’s mindsets and behavior are shaped by social interactions. They examine both individual and group interactions and may investigate ways to improve negative interactions. Clinical psychologists assess, diagnose, and treat mental, emotional, and behavioral disorders. Clinical psychologists help people deal with problems ranging from short-term personal issues to severe, chronic conditions. Forensic psychologists use psychological principles in the legal and criminal justice system to help judges, attorneys, and other legal specialists understand the psychological findings of a particular case. They often appear in court as expert witnesses. They typically specialize in family court, civil court, or criminal court. Neuropsychologists study the relation between the brain and behavior. They typically work with patients who have sustained a brain injury. Counseling psychologists advise people on how to deal with their problems. They help patients understand their problems, including issues in the home, workplace, or community. Through counseling, they work with patients to identify the strengths or resources they can use to manage problems.

The pay for a psychologist can also vary with the field you decide to practice into. According to the bureau of labor statistics, the median of their income was about $68,640 (the highest 10% making about $111,810 and the lowest 10% making only $39,200.) The median annual wages of psychologist occupations in May 2010 were the following: $87,330 for industrial-organizational psychologists, $66,810 for clinical, counseling, and school psychologists and $89,900 for psychologists in all other fields. They are considered some of the lowest paid doctors.

When asked, “How did you know you wanted to study psychology? When did you first become interested in the subject?” Dr. Art Markman answered with: “The story I always tell is that I went to college assuming I would study economics or physics. But when I got there, I didn’t like the economics classes and the physics classes didn’t like me. Along the way, I took some computer science, anthropology, philosophy, and psychology. Midway through my sophomore year, I was sitting down with an advisor, and they pointed out that all of those classes would satisfy major in cognitive science. So I took very few actual psychology classes as an undergraduate, but one time I found myself in a computer science class and I remember that we read a paper that had a psychology experiment in it. The teacher made a snide comment about psychology experiments and I remember giving an impassioned defense on doing research on people and I started to realize maybe I am a psychologist. Ultimately I ended up going into a PhD program and that was the start.”

Psychologists in which I would love to live up to would include many of the famous that we have come to learn very much from today. Such psychologists are William James, who created the first Psychology textbook and taught at Harvard. He is thought to be one of the major founders of psychology because he really gave scientific proof that psychology was a science other than a social phenomenon that couldn’t be explained. He opened the doors for many new fields of research in everyday aspects of human lives. Without him, we wouldn’t have this great understanding for ourselves that we do. Other famous psychologists such as Sigmund Freud, who was very into the psychoanalytic perspective of psychology which was really into bringing up the classic stereotypical introspective psychologist which is talking about repressed memories and how they make you feel. Clearly these two have made huge impacts in the field since we continue to learn about them today even though they both had very different views on psychology. I would love to be able to be remembered for something as great as them some point in my life. “A man should not strive to eliminate his complexes but to get into accord with them: they are legitimately what directs his conduct in the world.” –Sigmund Freud

Most clinical, counseling, and research psychologists need a doctoral degree. Psychologists can complete a Ph.D. in psychology or a Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) degree. A Ph.D. in psychology is a research degree that culminates in a comprehensive exam and a dissertation based on original research. In clinical, counseling, school, or health service settings, students usually complete a 1-year internship as part of the doctoral program. The Psy.D. is a clinical degree and is often based on practical work and examinations rather than a dissertation. The schooling required for a degree in psychology is no easy task. Currently, my plan consists of finishing off high school, already with one year of college credit in general psychology. Then moving on to the University of San Francisco State to further my schooling. There I would need to pursue the clinical study of psychology to evaluate mental health of individuals who seem to need it. This would require me to take 4 more years of schooling that would grant me a license to practice family and social therapy in the state of California. Good writing skills are necessary for success in the major, so I would also look into taking a writing class or two on the side to specially hone in my skills. This would also help later on if I ever decided to publish any papers or books on my findings as a psychologist.

To get into my college of choice, I would need to first finish high school and complete all my core classes with a C or better. I will also need to take my SAT and ACT tests in February and submit my scores to the school, the higher the score, the better the chance I have at getting in. I plan on graduating with at least a weighted 3.6 which in that case, my parents would pay for the entire price of tuition. Regardless of financial security, several scholarships are available that would greatly benefit me such as ones that require essay writing about the adversities of my high school.

United States. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Psychologists. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 29 Mar. 2012. Web. 11 Jan. 2013. <http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Life-Physical-and-Social-Science/Psychologists.htm>.

"Psychology." San Francisco State University Bulletin 2012. San Francisco State University, n.d. Web. 11 Jan. 2013. <http://www.sfsu.edu/~bulletin/current/programs/psychol.htm>.

Markman, Art, Dr. "Cognitive Psychologist." Interview. Careers In Psychology. N.p., 2012. Web. 11 Jan. 2013. <http://careersinpsychology.org/interview/dr-art-markman/>.

"Careers In Psychology." About.com Psychology. About.com, n.d. Web. 12 Jan. 2013. <http://psychology.about.com/od/careersinpsychology/Careers_in_Psychology.htm>.

Author’s note: This might seem a bit slapdash and I cannot really deny it. I’ve had a lot of stuff going on at home over the last month and it’s been affecting my schoolwork throughout, not just in your class. That’s also the reason I hadn’t turned in the rough drafts either. I know it’s no excuse but I just wanted you to be aware that I’m sorry for the last minute piece of writing.

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