Wondering if anyone in the field of psychology would have some advice for me. I have an undergrad psychology degree, plan to do a masters next year with a view to evenyially doing clinical psychology.
At the moment I am doing some volunteer work to try to build up my portfolio and want to try to get some reseacrh experience.
I have contacted the PSI about how to become an assistant psychologist/reseacrh assistant. Basically their advice was that it was impossible unless you were already in the college, maybe doing a Masters.
So I am just wondering does anyone have any advice from their experience on how to get the opportunity to get such research experience?
Thanks a mill
I got some experience volunteering in a cognitive neuroscience EEG lab while I was doing my undergrad and after I graduated. It was as simple as emailing around to some academics and asking if they have any positions available. Just email some of your old lecturers in college and see what they say.
I think emailing and building a contact base is essential. I began contacting psychologists with letters & emails offering assistance in my second year. Before that I had begun to work on my voluntary experience base. I went to a CV preparation session in a university careers center. By third year (this year) I applied for two part-time voluntary AP positions in two un-related areas in order to try and get breadth of experience. I made sure to talk about my research/previous experience when called for interviews & I am due to start both AP positions within the next month. It is not impossible at all to get an Assistant Psychologist position if you are an undergrad like me (psychology is my first degree, so I have been at it for 3 years since my leaving cert!- So no age advantage!). The Google group for assistant psychologists in Ireland is ESSENTIAL if you want to keep up with all the advertised posts. Remember, a lot go unadvertised so email, email, email!
With regards the research experience, I searched some terms like "research assistant, psychology" etc. on LinkedIn, and found where other students were volunteering as assistant researchers. From there, I contacted an organisation and took up volunteering on one large project. I searched all the "research" sections of organisations that deal with mental health & emailed them, and I googled "research assistant" and shortened the search criteria to "within Ireland". This can be quite useful. I emailed to inquire with a few of these and got an offer from one (I declined because it wasn't clinically supervised and I had already secured another research position). Email even if the closing date on the advertisement has closed. I got a response this way!
Best of luck.
Hi Michelle, just wondering where you are planning on doing your masters?
I graduated from the AP course in UCC last Sept and have been working 3days a week as an assistant psych since to get clinical experience and have accepted a place on the MSc AP course in Trinity for the coming year but am wondering if anyone knows the structure of this course as I would like to begin applying for AP posts in Dublin while doing the masters.
I am also part of the AP google group which I have to agree with is great but there has only been 1 paid AP position advertised since I graduated that I'm aware of. So while it is great to get as much experience as you can, for most people they also need to be working part time to fund themselves which can be difficult, particularly if your employer isnt happy to work around your voluntary work.
I would love to find a way to get some paid work in a clinically relevant field to supplement my experience but have had no luck so far..Is everyone else also just volunteering?