Degree and Career Plan for General Psychology

Academic and Career Plan for Future Professional Development

Students in psychological sciences undertake courses to provide them with psychological knowledge, which blended with contemporary sciences model them to qualified researchers and experts in there are of concentration. I am currently undertaking a master’s degree in psychology, and I plan to get my doctorate in psychology after that to become a psychology professor. As part of my master’s degree program, I must complete research requirements and perform at high competency levels in required departmental courses.  

Degree Plan

My area of concentration is general psychology. General psychology focuses on equipping students with a comprehensive knowledge of people’s behavior, feelings, actions, interactions, and responses to certain situations. Masters in psychology involves fundamental scientific theories, psychological concepts, and research methods used by scientists in making scientific conclusions. The course provides students with an overview of the discoveries made by psychological science about human behavior and thought processes, which are learned through cognitive and developmental psychology. The course covers a wide range of topics, including the history of psychology, research methods, psychological statistics, biological foundations of behavior, development, sensation, and perception, and reasoning, and decision-making. In general psychology, M.S provides students with an opportunity to undertake the required courses needed to meet the eligibility criteria for admission to other psychology programs such as advanced doctoral studies. 

The curriculum in general psychology helps students develop necessary interpersonal skills, cultural awareness, knowledge, and skills to prepare them for professional work in highly diverse environments. Students collaborate with a departmental mentor in developing an individualized course of study that combines both written course knowledge and hands-on experience in research. To successfully graduate from the programs, students must demonstrate mastery of the general principles of general psychology, such as acquired, individual, and social foundations of behavior. Students must also possess knowledge about research methods and statistical techniques and apply them to general psychology problems. Students must be able to think critically about psychological issues.

Core and Specialization Courses

I will be required to complete 40 core requirements in M.S. general psychology. These core requirements include;

PS501: Foundations of Professional psychology. This core requirement will equip me with the knowledge and skills required in the psychology field, such as academic writing, evaluation of scholarly journals, career exploration, credentialing and licensing, among others.

MM570: Applied Statistics for Psychology: This core will equip me with knowledge about statistical analyses of psychological data and its use in psychological research. This core will cover topics such as data distribution, descriptive statistics, regression, and variance techniques.

PS502: Ethics and Standards of professional psychology. This requirement will provide me with a comprehensive understanding of the professional code of ethics and standards that I must uphold as an expert researcher and psychologist. I will be required to apply to the American Psychological Association (APA) code of ethics and standards to determine whether organizations use legally and ethically acceptable decision-making processes.  I will also learn about the psychology field’s social and cultural factors and their implications for scholar-practitioners.

PS504: Advanced Research Methods. This course will provide me with a comprehensive theoretical framework and research methodologies used in psychology. I will gain knowledge about qualitative and quantitative research methods and apply them in conducting data analysis and apply the theoretical framework in developing theoretical research. I will learn how to conduct an experimental study, evaluate the internal and external validity of data, and ensure research conforms to psychology study’s ethical standards.

PS505: Testing, Measurement, and Assessment: I will gain knowledge about the theoretical underpinning of psychological testing, measurement, and assessment (“Master’s in Psychology Online | Purdue Global”, 2020). I will learn how to construct psychological tests, use psychometrics in measuring precision, and survey reviews and tools for measuring intelligence and personality. I will also familiarize myself with the ethical issues involved in psychological testing, measurement, and assessment.

PS506: Life Span Development. This core focuses on the process of human development from conception to death. I will learn about the genetic, social, and mental changes at each stage of human development and their importance in clinical, educational, and social settings. I will also learn about various psychological issues and individual needs at each phase of human development.

PS601: Master’s Research and Thesis I. I will gain an understanding of the various tools needed in developing and submitting a formal research proposal in general psychology. This will help me in pursuing my doctoral degree in general psychology.

PS602: Master’s Research and Thesis II. I will complete my thesis in general psychology to committee members for review. I will do a verbal presentation of the statement of the problem, research methodology, findings, conclusions, and recommendations during the thesis defense hearing. My thesis must conform to APA guidelines and I shall submit it to relevant personnel for approval, binding, and acquisition.

Concentration Requirements

PS510: Qualitative Analysis. This course focuses on the main theories and issues in conducting qualitative research in psychology. I will examine various methodological problems, methods of collecting data, interpretation, and coding of qualitative data, and determine the ethical issues involved in qualitative research.

PS515: Learning and Behavior. In this course, I will focus on the main ideas of learning theory in relation to the development of behavior. I will explore the acquisition, maintenance, and adaptation of learning. I will study the behavior, social, cognitive, and motivational foundations of human behavior.

PS520: Neuropsychology. I will explore the major concepts and issues in the nervous systems that affect behavior formation. I will study neuroanatomy and neuropsychological syndromes and the moral, lawful, and scientific concerns in research and application of neuropsychology in clinical settings.


PS525: Foundations of Psychopathology: I will explore both psychopathology and pathological behavior by exploring emotional, personality, psychotic, and development disorders. I will also explore the ethical and legal issues of psychopathology in clinical settings. I will also learn to classify disorders and treatment methods according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of mental disorders (DSM-5) system.

PS530: Cognitive Psychology. In this course, I will explore the mental processes that influence behavior. I will study the mind’s structure and various mental functions such as attention, memory, perception, language, consciousness, and categorization.  

I will take the thesis option as I plan to get my doctorate after completing my master’s degree in general psychology.

Licensure / Credentialing Plan

Psychologists require licenses from their states to practice psychology. Licensing requirements differ from one country to another. Although most states offer one general psychology license to psychologists who have obtained a doctorate, other states provide additional certification for specific areas of practice, such as clinical psychology (Bohall and Bautista, 2017). To be licensed, I will need to attain a doctoral degree in psychology, pass national and state exams, obtain supervised experience, and make a formal application to the licensing board. After my master’s in general psychology, I will undertake a doctoral degree and attend an internship to obtain supervised experience. I will also complete and submit a formal application to the licensure Board for the board to verify my educational background and qualifications. I must also pass the state’s licensing exams. These exams aim to test my knowledge about the legal and ethical standards relevant to psychology. 

After successfully passing the jurisprudence exam, I will take the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP) to assess general psychology knowledge. I will pay $687.50 to register for the EPPP exam (“Indiana Psychologist License | LP Requirements in IN”, 2014). I will be required to earn a score of 500 and above to pass the exam. After successfully passing the EPPP exam, I shall receive my initial psychologist license to practice my profession independently as a psychologist in research. To work as a psychologist in health settings, I will complete two years of supervised professional experience. I will complete 1500 hours of internship with a reputable internship program in a clinical setting guided by the internship supervisor, two psychologists, and two interns. I will go for an internship before completing my doctoral degree in psychology.

I will also undertake practicum placements during the doctoral program, whereby a licensed psychologist will supervise my work. I will undertake 1600 hours of supervised professional experience with a minimum of one-hour supervision per ten working hours for every professional psychologist (“Indiana Psychologist License | LP Requirements in IN,” 2014). I will spend most of my time offering clinical services to patients. After that, I should apply for countersignature as a Health Service Provider in psychology (HSPP) to provide eth supervisors with my educational attainments and training. I will pay the $100 application fee for the endorsement. After reviewing my application, the board will grant me the endorsement to start offering health services as a psychologist.

  In the United States, the acceptable educational requirement for psychologists is a doctoral degree. To become a licensed psychologist, I need a minimum of a doctoral degree from an APA-accredited institution. To receive a certificate from the board, I should have an APA-accredited doctoral degree and state licensure. Additionally, the U.S. Department of labor requires psychologists to be emotionally stable, people-person, culturally sensitive, detail-oriented, and compassionate (Gould, 2019). I will need to embody these skills to secure work in clinical organizations within the United States.

Career Plan

After attaining licensure and credentialing for a psychologist, I will venture into clinical psychology. I will focus on the principle of general psychology and provide therapy to a wide range of patients. The career goals in my filed will include;

  1. To increase professional knowledge and training in clinical psychology. I will get the right certification and institution to exercise my skills. I will volunteer in clinical settings and join professional associations for a clinical psychologist to gain new experiences and create a professional network.
  2. To provide research on child behavior and thought processes. I will focus on studying children’s behavior to understand their behavior’s biological, social, and cognitive foundations. I will conduct qualitative research and apply psychological principles to interpret data results to develop recommendations on these behaviors.
  3. To secure a job in an accredited healthcare institution. I will look for an employment opportunity at a well-established organization to practice my profession. I will work for the institution for several years and become self-employed in the future.

In the next three years, I will have finalized my master’s degree in general psychology. In the next five years, I will be pursuing my doctoral degree in general psychology and obtain the necessary licensure and credential to become a certified psychologist. In the next ten years, I will be a psychologist professor, offering therapy in clinical settings.

To meet my career goals, I will need a state-licensure and certificate from the board of psychology. I will also need to complete supervised experience in my field and obtain Endorsement from HPP to start offering therapy services. I will need to pursue a doctoral degree in psychology to become a professional psychologist. I will need to register with the American Board of Professional psychology to access various resources available for professional psychologists.

One deficiency I need to address to reach my career goals is personality. I am an extrovert, and I often talk more and listen less. As a psychologist, I will be required to work directly with clients or small groups. As such, I will need to change my personality to listen more to clients, empathize, and conduct a critical analysis of the client’s behavior during interactions, and offer constructive advice without dominating the exchange. Talking more during therapy will hinder me from observing the client’s action, leading to misdiagnosis. I need to address this deficiency to prioritize patient’s behavior offer effective treatment.

I will use the career center and resources to obtain career advice. I will consult career services top define the multitude of paths I can take with my doctoral degree in psychology. I will also use the resources to look for mentorships with relevant alumni and faculty mentors who can advise me about my career path. I will need the help of experienced psychologists to know where to begin and the tools required by a psychologist to succeed in the corporate world. Additionally, the career center resources will aid me in creating professional networks with potential employers. The resource also has job and internship listings and placements, which will help secure a job. The career center will also refer me to employers and place me in internship programs.

I will use the Purdue Global resources such as the Writing Center in making professional job applications. I will use the writing center in writing quality and original thesis for master’s degree. The center also offers guidelines on writing professional resources and cover letters for job applications. I will use this resource to write professional applications that will secure me competitive and desirable in the job market. External resources, such as mentors, will help me improve my skills and experience as a psychologist. Professional societies and mentors will provide me with professional socialization and personal support needed in the corporate world. Joining a professional association will provide me with ongoing education in psychology by providing me access to research material and psychology information. These societies also will provide me with access to organizations that align with my passion that will allow me to serve in the community.

free essay typer




Bohall, G., & Bautista, M. J. (2017). The Practicum, Predoctoral, and Postdoctoral Experience. In The Psychologist’s Guide to Professional Development (pp. 157-163). Springer, Cham.

Gould IV, W. B. (2019). A primer on American labor law. Cambridge University Press.

Indiana Psychologist License | LP Requirements in IN. (2014). Retrieved 27 August 2020, from

Master’s in Psychology Online | Purdue Global. (2020). Retrieved 27 August 2020, from