GPA and Credit Transfer From Previous Degrees
Admissions officers will usually consider a student’s GPA during the application process. If a student had poor grades during his or her bachelor’s or master’s programs, it may be more difficult to get accepted. Applicants should also be aware of any credits that may need to be transferred.
Applicants should take advantage of every opportunity possible to mitigate the costs of their degree program. This includes looking for merit-based, or GPA, subsidies, federal aid and private scholarships. Individual programs may have a scholarship office or sector for which students can apply, and many professional psychological organizations give financial aid too. Prospective students should check with their adviser or admissions office for additional information.
Psychology GRE Scores
High scores on this exam may help yield merit-based scholarships as well as acceptance into a great program. Scores from this exam are typically good for five years. Test takers will often receive a social subscore and an experimental subscore in addition to the overall score of the exam.
References and Resumes
Students should ask their current supervisors, professors or community leaders for a reference. References are typically required for many doctoral psychology programs and offer an inside look into an applicant’s character, personality and work ethic. Students should also take great care in preparing a resume. Admissions officers generally want to know about an applicant’s work experience, current skill set and passion for the field.
For programs that request an essay or a personal statement, students should seize the opportunity to describe who they are, why a PhD in psychology is important to them and how they plan to contribute to their community and to the field upon completion of a program.
Research is often a large part of the psychology field, especially if an applicant is seeking a PhD. Students who are comfortable with research will likely have an advantage over other applicants who are not. If an applicant does not have research experience yet, he or she should consider working or volunteering for a project in the psychology field.
Check out Accreditation
Generally, not all accreditations are treated equally. Applicants should be sure to check their state licensing regulations as some accreditations may not be enough for a particular position. It is important to be mindful of the standards for any state a graduate may work in.