Outreach Event: Demystifying the Graduate School Application Process!

Leah Lessard

Leah is a graduate student in the Developmental Psychology department at UCLA and is a UCLA high school diversity project graduate researcher and the outreach coordinator for Psychology in Action. She is broadly interested in the socio-cognitive and cultural bases of achievement motivation and self-beliefs, particularly how identity maintenance and socialization interact to affect educational outcomes of minority youth.

Navigating the graduate school application process can be a very overwhelming and stressful experience. Potential applicants are understandably faced with countless questions, such as: “How many schools should I apply to?” “When should I take the GREs?” “What should I include on my CV?” “How do I know if a professor is accepting students?” “When should I ask for letters of recommendation?” In order to alleviate some of the confusion associated application process, the PIA outreach team…

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If I told you I’d have to exclude you: Do online research participants have too much experience?

Keela Thomson

Keela Thomson

Keela Thomson is a graduate student in Cognitive Psychology. She studies the truly bewildering process of how other people make decisions. She is interested in decision-making in part because she often requires 15 minutes of hard deliberation to choose a latte flavor. She has a degree in Psychology and Economics from the University of Texas at Austin, and spent two years at a think tank researching startups and business incubators before coming to UCLA to get her PhD. On the occasions when she breaks out of her office, she likes running, hot yoga, and mixing new cocktails.
Keela Thomson

When I was an undergraduate Research Assistant, I worked with two- to six-year-old kids in a developmental psychology lab. Aside from my general incapacity to get small children to cooperate, the data collection process took an excruciatingly long time. It can be hard to find people to participate in studies, especially when many of the people you’re looking for are three years old. Recruiting enough participants for a single study took a team of about…

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My Graduate School Survival Guide

Hannah Schacter

Hannah Schacter

Hannah is a Ph.D. student in Developmental Psychology at UCLA. She earned her M.A. in Psychology at UCLA and received her B.A. in Psychology from Hamilton College. She is broadly interested in the risk factors and consequences of peer victimization among early adolescents, and how these experiences vary across different contexts (e.g., at school, online). In her free time, Hannah enjoys playing basketball and softball, eating cheese, and watching Survivor (not necessarily at the same time).
Hannah Schacter

Disclaimer: Technically, I have not yet ‘survived’ grad school. But, with three out of five years under my belt, I like to think I’ve acquired some useful wisdom. Although there is no one-size-fits-all model for successfully navigating grad school, here I’ll outline some strategies that I find particularly effective for maximizing efficiency and maintaining solid work-life balance. Stay organized (and give your brain a break) Although I pride myself on having strong memory skills, grad…

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The Top 5 Differences Between Undergraduate and Graduate School

Hannah Schacter

Hannah Schacter

Hannah is a Ph.D. student in Developmental Psychology at UCLA. She earned her M.A. in Psychology at UCLA and received her B.A. in Psychology from Hamilton College. She is broadly interested in the risk factors and consequences of peer victimization among early adolescents, and how these experiences vary across different contexts (e.g., at school, online). In her free time, Hannah enjoys playing basketball and softball, eating cheese, and watching Survivor (not necessarily at the same time).
Hannah Schacter

When deciding whether or not to attend graduate school, a lot of prospective students ask how it is different that undergrad. Is it more difficult? Less fun? Stressful? Whether you are thinking of applying to grad school, have a friend/sibling/daughter/son/niece/nephew/etc. in grad school and still don’t quite understand what it means, or are a graduate student yourself, here you can read about (my opinion on) some of the ways in which these two experiences differ…

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Tips for Graduate School Admission Interviews: through the years

Joey Ka-Yee Essoe

Ph.D. Student Researcher at Rissman Memory Lab, UCLA
Joey is a graduate student of Behavioural Neuroscience in UCLA, minors in Cognitive psychology and Quantitative Psychology. She is trained in simultaneously EEG/fMRI, behavioural experimentation utilising virtual reality (VR), including virtual world development and logistical interfaces between VR and statistical software. She is now expanding to fMRI compatible paradigms, fMRI MVPA analyses, and advanced statistical modelling.

She grew up in Hong Kong under English rule (please do pardon her spelling), then spent half her life living and loving San Francisco. Now in Los Angeles, she is a member of University Bible Church and the Rissman Memory Laboratory.

Joey served as Blog Master of Psychology in Action since January 2013, and has served as her President since 2014.

http://www.jessoe.com

It’s that time of year again… The wait is almost over, invitations for graduate school interviews are going out. Perhaps your experience is/would be like mine: cries of joy and then… “OMG OMG OMG what do I do when I get there?” Congratulations for being in the minority of applicants who need to conduct this search! Here is what Psychology in Action has offered in the previous years, thought it might be helpful to have…

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a Day in the Life of a Grad Student

alyssa

Alyssa is a graduate student in Health Psychology, studying how positive psychosocial resources like religious practices and spirituality affect mental and physical health. She received her BA in biology and psychology from Luther College in Decorah, IA and her Master of Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School. She is happy to be in California with sunshine and good hiking, but sad to be far from Wisconsin Cheese and the Green Bay Packers.

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It is probably a cliché to say that no two days are alike for a graduate student. For me, this variety makes the hard work and long hours of graduate student life worth it. What makes up those long hours?

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Women in science: Yes we can!

Tawny Tsang

Tawny Tsang

Tawny is a doctoral student in Developmental Psychology at UCLA. She received her B.A. in Psychology and Music at UC Berkeley (Go Bears!). Her research interests include understanding visual social attention and its relation to social and cognitive development in typically developing infants and those at-risk for Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Tawny Tsang

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The cover of my statistics text book features a diagram depicting the relation among sex, time since obtaining a doctorate degree, number of publications, and citations on salary. I haven’t formally learned about structural equation modeling just yet, but nonetheless found it rather discouraging for women. In hopes of being potentially proven wrong, I read the chapter on causal models. The example that Cohen, Cohen, West & Aiken, 2003 give as a working frame to…

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Communicating the Value of Research: A Two-Way Street

Seven months ago I found myself seated across the table from a dear friend at a small restaurant in Eugene, Oregon, mere weeks from the start of my graduate career. Over dinner and a few drinks, we got to talking about the enormity of this undertaking, exploring all of the parts associated with finally going to grad school – moving, living away from home, taking classes, teaching, and, critically, conducting research. We spoke at length…

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Graduate Program Interviews: Cognitive Psychology

Carolyn Bufford

Carolyn Bufford

As a grad student in Cognitive Psychology, Carolyn enjoys studying intersections of perception, learning, and technology in vision and music. She earned her B.S. in Cognitive Science from UCLA. She enjoys choral singing and dabbling in photography.
Carolyn Bufford

Latest posts by Carolyn Bufford (see all)

So you applied to PhD programs in Psychology in the fall, with some kind of interest or focus in cognitive psychology – memory, attention, perception, thinking, learning, cognitive neuroscience, computational modeling of cognition, etc. Now interviews are coming up. Want to get the inside scoop on the interviewing/decision process?

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Interview Tips for Students Applying to PhD Programs in Psychology

Timothy Williamson

Timothy Williamson

Timothy is a PhD student in Clinical Health Psychology, studying how psychosocial factors help and hinder adjustment to chronic medical stressors. He received his BA in psychology from Pitzer College and his Master of Public Health degree from Claremont Graduate University. In his spare time, Timothy can be found hiking the canyons of Malibu and baking delicious treats for his classmates.
Timothy Williamson

Preparing for interviews for a PhD program in psychology can be very stressful as well as very exciting. This is likely the first time that you will be interacting face to face with multiple professors and graduate students from the program you are applying for, and it is important to make a good impression. It can be difficult to find the ideal balance between self-praise and humility; you want to sell yourself as a dedicated…

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How to Change the World

Britt Ahlstrom

Britt Ahlstrom is a graduate student in UCLA's PhD Health Psychology program. Britt researches the impact of severe and long-duration stressors on eating behavior and the use of novel techniques to increase interest and ability in the sciences. Britt is particularly interested in integrating health psychology with other fields, such as aerospace medicine and education. More info at http://brittahlstrom.weebly.com

If you enter the world of research psychology, there will come a time when you’re talking about your studies at a party and you suddenly realize that no one cares. If you’re lucky, this will happen before you’ve been in academia for 10 years and published 30 papers that 5 of your closest friends have read. Or skimmed. Let’s be honest, they read the title. So how can you take the leap from academia to real…

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Outreach Event: Brain Booths!

Joey Ka-Yee Essoe

Ph.D. Student Researcher at Rissman Memory Lab, UCLA
Joey is a graduate student of Behavioural Neuroscience in UCLA, minors in Cognitive psychology and Quantitative Psychology. She is trained in simultaneously EEG/fMRI, behavioural experimentation utilising virtual reality (VR), including virtual world development and logistical interfaces between VR and statistical software. She is now expanding to fMRI compatible paradigms, fMRI MVPA analyses, and advanced statistical modelling.

She grew up in Hong Kong under English rule (please do pardon her spelling), then spent half her life living and loving San Francisco. Now in Los Angeles, she is a member of University Bible Church and the Rissman Memory Laboratory.

Joey served as Blog Master of Psychology in Action since January 2013, and has served as her President since 2014.

http://www.jessoe.com

Psychology in Action’s Outreach Initiative teamed up with Interaxon, an interdepartmental undergraduate neuroscience educational outreach group at UCLA, to participate in two events with the Los Angeles community. To learn about future Interaxon events, please visit their web calendar. On Saturday, October 19th, 2013, Psychology in Action and Interaxon members hosted a “Brain Booth” at STEAM Nation in Culver City. 1,600 school children and more than 200 educators participated to celebrate Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math education. Hosted by STAR Education, STEAM…

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What not to do in science

Alexandra

Alexandra

Alexandra is interested in understanding how the mind effects the body. Her research primarily focuses on how psychological processes like stress influence the immune system in cancer patients and survivors. She started blogging for Psychology in Action because she is passionate about communicating exciting research to those outside of academia. Alexandra received her Ph.D. in Health Psychology from UCLA in 2014. She loves everything outdoors and reading novels.
Alexandra

A short and funny article published in Perspectives on Psychological Science by Neuroskeptic highlight the mistakes to most avoid and be aware of when doing research. Important knowledge for undergrads and newer researchers, and a good reminder for seasoned ones!

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Graduate Program Interviews: Social Psychology

Latest posts by Ivy Onyeador (see all)

This post is part of an ongoing series about applicant interview weekends in Psychology departments. Check back for posts about interviews in other areas of Psychology, and visit our Careers in Psychology section. This post was written by social psychology graduate students who recently (and successfully) went through the process of applying, interviewing for, and selecting a doctorate program. The following is a list of our collective suggestions for social psychology graduate applicants headed off to…

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Graduate Program Interviews: Clinical Psychology

Irene Tung

Irene is a fourth year graduate student in the Clinical Psychology program at UCLA and a current NSF predoctoral fellow. She received her B.A. in Psychology and English Literature from UCLA in 2011. Broadly, Irene is interested in using a developmental psychopathology perspective to investigate developmental plasticity, including mechanisms of risk and resilience across childhood and adolescence. She is currently working on better understanding how children’s genotypes and early temperaments interact with the environment (e.g., parenting, peer relations) to influence the onset, developmental trajectory, and consequences of youth antisocial behavior (e.g., aggression, delinquency).

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This post is part of an ongoing series about applicant interview weekends in Psychology departments. Check back for posts about interviews in other areas of Psychology, and visit our Careers in Psychology section. Interviewing for doctoral programs in clinical psychology can be a nerve-racking process. Here are some tips from current clinical psychology graduate students on questions they asked (or wish they had asked) during interviews and also some questions you should prepare to answer. You may not…

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Graduate Program Interviews: Health Psychology

alyssa

Alyssa is a graduate student in Health Psychology, studying how positive psychosocial resources like religious practices and spirituality affect mental and physical health. She received her BA in biology and psychology from Luther College in Decorah, IA and her Master of Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School. She is happy to be in California with sunshine and good hiking, but sad to be far from Wisconsin Cheese and the Green Bay Packers.

Latest posts by alyssa (see all)

This post is part of an ongoing series about applicant interview weekends in Psychology departments. Check back for posts about interviews in other areas of Psychology, and visit our Careers in Psychology section. So you want to be a Health Psychologist? Here are some tips from current Health graduate students on questions they asked [or wish they had asked] during interviews as well as questions they were asked by faculty that really got them thinking.

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