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Mister Belvedere

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Everything posted by Mister Belvedere

  1. I had a 151 Q, 156 V, and a 4.5 on AW, and I was able to get in my program of choice with full funding for all 5 years including tuition and $22K yearly stipends from assistantship. My program isn't at an Ivy League or somewhere like UCLA, but it's a well-respected program with solid training. When applying for doctorate Clinical Psychology programs, my research advisor in a Clinical Psychology lab at the time said that my GRE stats were good enough Granted, standardized exams aren't my strength and I was able to offset this weakness with my Calculus I, II, and III courses I did well in as an undergrad.
  2. Don't be afraid to use whatever connections you have, because as @MarineBluePsy said, doctorate Clinical Psychology programs are very competitive to get admitted into. As for myself, working with a well-respected Clinical Psychology professor who was willing to help me with applications opened more opportunities for me. Specific research areas, such as Chronic Pain or ASD, are tight-knight scientific communities where many professors know each other. If you can get at least a 150+ on the Quantitative and Qualitative section each on the GRE, plus at least a 4.0 on the Analytic Writing section, I think you should be a competitive applicant considering your research experience. Programs like Yale or UCLA are nearly-impossible long shots for most applicants (these programs receive like 500+ applications a year), but there are plenty of other high-quality doctorate programs that receive less attention that would be worthwhile looking into.
  3. Your research interest sounds like it fits more in a Political Science or Sociology field, rather than Psyschology.
  4. I honestly think your work as an OT can be used as a strength in your applications to doctorate Clinical Psychology programs, if you're smart in how you "market" yourself. I think that choosing a Clinical Psychology program that focuses on medical populations will be especially beneficial for you, given your extensive work as an OT. Some good examples of such programs are UAB (the University of Alabama at Birmingham), East Carolina University, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and Virginia Commonwealth University. It's also important to choose a specific research interest that matches one or two professors in these programs. For doctorate Clinical Psychology applications, it's more about applying for a specific professor to work in their lab, rather than applying for the program itself. Of course, you need to be mindful to apply to programs whose philosophical orientation meets your career goals. Programs range from focusing on almost exclusively with "clinical/counseling" training to solely hardcore scientific research. The program's application website spells out what their training focus is. About your question with APA-accredited internships, it basically makes you a more competitive job candidate and opens many doors for better opportunities. In relation, you also want to choose to apply for APA-accredited doctorate Clinical Psychology programs too in order to get the best possible training and preparation for actual licensure Hope this helps!
  5. Hi CGrapids, I've met some "untraditional" doctorate Clinical Psychology students who started pursuing psychology in their late-30s and early-40s after switching careers, so you're not in bad company. It's doable, and I believe there are transferable knowledge and skills from OT that complements Clinical Psychology quite well depending on your clinical/research interests
  6. Yeah, do anything that's NOT related to school or psychology. Play video games. Travel overseas. Enjoy your last summer break, ever
  7. Unless you're aiming for extremely, extremely competitive programs like UCLA or Harvard, you're not expected to have publications under your belt when applying for doctoate Clinical Psychology programs. Rather, I'd recommend you to focus more on working in a Psychology research lab as a paid employee and networking with faculty and graduate students in psychology labs and at research conferences related to your specific interests
  8. I mean, anything below a "B" in a class at an upper-tier Psychology graduate program is considered as failing the course. A 3.0 GPA average is fine as long as you haven't completely bombed any classes
  9. I don't agree with the moderator's actions or explanation myself, and I feel that @byn was the scapegoat in all this.
  10. Good luck to everyone! I remember the tumultuous waiting process these past couple of years. Also, (try) to enjoy your time now - graduate school gets pretty rough once you're in it
  11. Good luck to everyone! It took me two application cycles before getting accepting into a Ph.D Clinical Psychology program this year, and I understand the pressure and stress from the process. The GradCafe forums were a great support network, and I made some good friends here through the process. Assuming you're using the U.S. News "Top Clinical Psychology Programs" Ranking, you're seriously missing out on solid programs by focusing on just the Top 50. I'd actually recommend extending your considerations to the Top 120+ on that list. The U.S. News School Rankings aren't reliable according to my previous research mentors. Many of the "lower ranked" programs actually have a ~90%+ licensure pass rate and ~90%+ internship match rate with full funding provided for students. These types of programs may not be perceived as a "brand name" in the mainstream, but they're recognized favorably within the field if they produce solid training.
  12. What's making you unhappy in your current Neuroscience program? If possible, I would recommend discussing your concerns with your Program Director first. I'm sure the program is willing to work with you. If your dissatisfaction stems primarily from a strong disinterest in Neuroscience research, then it would be understandable for you to leave. In this case, the question becomes "Why do you think Clinical Psychology is a better fit for your career interests?" and you'll need to back this up with some solid reasons. Take some time to think about these reasons before reaching out to the potential mentor at the "alternative choice" Clinical Psychology program. When you do reach out to him, just be honest and explain your reasoning as to why you feel the Clinical Psychology program would provide the type of education and training you're looking for. Good Luck!
  13. This was the approach that I took for this past application cycle, which was my second year in a row applying for doctoral Clinical Psychology programs. And it worked! Got accepted into my top-choice program where two PI's in my area of research reciprocated interest in me. Right now, I'll be co-mentored between both professors since they plan to closely collaborate with each other
  14. Your GRE scores are honestly solid, even for the higher tier programs. Also, many students admitted into a doctoral psychology program don't have any publications under their belt, so you don't have to worry much there. The main concern would be addressing your overall undergrad GPA, which isn't as bad as you perceive - it's still in the 3.0 range, and your major GPAs of 3.7 each are good. I also had a similar background as you during undergrad; I was also a pre-medicine student who switched to psychology late into his college career. Talking with other psychology graduate students, this happens more than you'd realize - many of them were also former pre-med students. In my personal statements for doctoral Clinical Psychology program applications, I directly addressed my poor grades in pre-medicine coursework by explaining my lack of passion for those areas, and I described my journey of discovering psychology as my true calling. This seems to be the approach you should consider taking as well; I don't think a post-bacc or Master's program is necessary. Instead of a post-bacc or Master's program, I'd suggest applying for paid RA positions in social psychology labs - preferably in a study similar to your area of research. Admissions committees for graduate psychology programs are strongly attracted to applicants with significant research experience in their area of interest. And if you manage to work for a private investigator who's well-connected with other Social Psychology professors in the field, you'd have won the jackpot ;-) In any case, this is some advice that helped me land an acceptance into my top-choice doctoral Clinical Psychology program The road ahead may be difficult, but keep focused on your goals and don't be afraid to ask questions. I wish you the best!
  15. Forensic Psychology is a pretty small subfield - why aren't you considering Clinical programs?
  16. Wow, I really admire @ihatechoosingusernames's productivity Last year, I was also rejected on my first application cycle for doctoral Clinical Psychology programs. And yes, I felt heartbroken, lost, depressed, and hopeless for a long time. I was a recent college graduate with a B.S. in Psychology that was worthless in the job market, to be honest...the only job I could get post-graduation was a part-time retail position (and this was after 4 months of constantly applying for jobs too). I stayed in contact with one of my former psychology professors from college, and she notified me about a paid RA opening at my alma mater. The PI for the study is a very well-known health psychologist. And to be honest, compared to the poster above, all I did to prepare for my second round of applications was work at this job. I was burned out from everything to push myself any further. Didn't retake the GRE, or take any post-bac classes, or write articles, or attend conferences - I felt I deserved a bit of a break. And it all worked out This year, I got accepted into my top-choice Ph.D Clinical Psychology program, fully funded for 5 years plus stipends. My point is that you don't need to over-exert yourself in order to become a more enticing candidate. As long as your GRE is within the average score of admitted applicants for your schools of choice, you really don't need to take it again. Focus more on networking with professors in your field - they tend to know each other if they study the same topics (i.e. chronic pain; behavioral sleep). Paid Research Assistant positions will also do wonders for your application - although, from my personal experience, these paid RA positions are very difficult to obtain without the right connections. If you interviewed at any programs this year, consider contacting your POI's to ask for critiques about your applications so you can work on them. This was very difficult for me to do myself, but it helped me focus on my weaknesses much better.
  17. If you're pursuing a subfield in Health Psychology or Behavioral Medicine, programs actually are impressed by pre-med courses. I think getting a "B" in a pre-med course is fine especially if it's a more difficult course like Physics II or Organic Chemistry. Classes taken after your undergraduate degree don't count towards your "overall undergraduate GPA" specified on applications.
  18. I also think it's wise not to share this information publicly at this time, unless you've already officially accepted an offer somewhere.
  19. Going by your credentials on paper, I'm honestly also confused why you haven't received any offers yet :-< My GRE General Exam scores weren't as high as yours and I have far less research experience, but I managed to receive an official offer from a doctoral clinical psychology program that provided tuition remission and stipend. This is my 2nd cycle applying - last year when I was rejected after interviews, I did reach out to the POI's at the schools who interviewed me for some constructive criticism on my application, and I worked on it. Personally, my biggest issues were my own anxiety going into interviews (one POI said that I appeared "overwhelmingly tense" during interviews) and another said it was just a matter of fit between our research interests. So over the past year, I worked on my anxiety through outside help and honed my research interest through introspection and dabbled in different psychology research labs. Also, I didn't waste time applying for the *extremely* competitive programs like your Harvard, Yale, UCLA, etc. I applied for programs not based on U.S. News ranking or "name brand," but based on its training quality and its general fit with my interests. For example, I realized over the past year that I'm really interested in programs that emphasized Behavioral Medicine/Health Psychology training, so those are the programs I focused on applying for.
  20. Pro-Tip: Next time, focus your time and energy on funded Ph.D Psychology programs at public universities instead
  21. @beyondnervous The GRE General Exam was definitely a weakness in my applications to doctoral Clinical Psychology programs too, but I wouldn't recommend investing too much time, energy, and money into testing prep & tutoring unless your score is significantly low. My research mentor is the clinical director for the Clinical Psychology program of a well-known state university institution, and she advised me to just score high enough on the exam to reach a program's average GRE score range for admitted applicants, and focus most of my time & energy into other strengths I could play up in my application. For most funded Ph.D programs, you'd roughly want to aim for a 150+ on Quantitative, a 155+ on Verbal, and a 4.0+ on Analytical Writing. Of course, if you're aiming for schools like Harvard, Yale, UCLA, etc., you'd need a nearly perfect application (and in my mentor's opinion, the best mentors are typically at a state university where the application competition isn't as rigorous). The first time taking this exam, I scored lowest on Quantitative and Writing, so I concentrated on studying primarily Quantitative and Writing with test books and private tutoring. Over the course of a month, I would study in 2-hour sessions about three or four times a week. While my GRE score on my 2nd attempt isn't impressive, I did get into the score range at my programs of choice and decided it wasn't worth my time to take the exam again. On my applications, I played up my other strengths to compensate for my average GRE score like my high GPA in natural science courses, high-level math courses (I had taken Calculus I,II, and III during undergrad), awards & poster presentations, etc. With all of that, I managed to get invited to 3 funded Ph.D Clinical Psychology programs this year (so far), without obsessing too much over the GRE
  22. There isn't an official thread for meet-ups, but I have reached out to people on the forums by private message who posted on the "Interview/Interview Invitation Thread" for the same programs I'm attending for interviews. In fact, just yesterday, I met-up with a fellow GradCafe member for a clinical psychology interview we both attended
  23. I agree with Artsy - the thread has become too cluttered since people began posting their own compiled lists. If possible, we need to make a new thread for the compilation list updates (which can just be updated once a week or a couple days a week, instead of every single hour like it is now), and we should keep this specific thread for conversations between members
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