Things that Help You Get into Graduate School
Get Research Experience
The Psychology Department at the College of Staten Island has internationally renowned faculty who use cutting-edge technology in a wide range of research areas. Research laboratories provide students with the opportunities to study motor development in children, animal learning and behavior, gender and sexuality, language and cognitive development, technology and communication, neuropsychology and neuroscience, health psychology, clinical psychology, and cross-cultural psychology.
Getting research experience is crucial if you are serious about graduate school in psychology. Programs in every field of psychology expect applicants to have research experience, including clinical, social, and counseling programs. By participating in research you will gain valuable skills that you will need in the future. You may also get a good letter of recommendation for graduate school.
Research labs at CSI are very competitive, and students often find it hard to get in. The reality is
there are many psychology majors, and only so many labs. To learn about the different labs at CSI, explore our webpage faculty listings, research labs, and our brochure on research in our department.
Contact the faculty for more information, or if you think you want to apply for a position, ask if there are any openings. Whether you are interested in joining a research lab, or whether you are contacting a Professor to ask about a mentorship opportunity, it is generally fine to approach them via email. Make sure you keep a polite and concise tone. Your email should stand out in a good way. Convey to them why you are interested in their research. Professors prefer to work with students who are genuinely interested in their research, but they don’t expect you to be an expert in the field. Don’t contact random labs, on areas that don’t particularly interest you and
you don’t know much about. Working at a lab is a hard and serious job, and you will make the most out of it if you join a project you are genuinely interested in.
If Your Interests are Clinical, Volunteer or Intern
Internships are not only meant to give you field experience in a mental health setting, but they can also be a great way to gain research experience. An internship gives you an opportunity to see whether this is the right career path for you. For example, one who is interested in clinical psychology would seek an internship in a psychiatric/psychological clinic or hospital. Hospitals, mental health institutions and research centers are excellent places to seek internships, and
many have stable internship programs that are designed to provide students with considerable
Present or Publish Your Research
Honors thesis students are expected to present their research at the annual Undergraduate Research Conference or any other scholarly conference. The highest achieving students publish their research, and your application to graduate school will look much better with a conference presentation or publication in the works.