Term Paper: Psychology Master's Degree: Methodology Degree Concentration

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Psychology Master's Degree: Methodology

Degree Concentration:

Master of Sciences in Interdisciplinary Studies with a concentration in

Psychology

Degree Rationale:

By establishing a base education in Psychology that is centered in

interdisciplinary contexts, I anticipate creating a wide array of

opportunities for participation in practice, research or instruction which

can incorporate any number of scholastic subjects. For instance, though my

attention will be on issues derived from the discipline of abnormal

psychology, the courses which I intend to pursue will present me with a

greater understanding of the correlation between psychological disorders

and a host of other subjects themselves justifying a full course of study.

For instance, the relationship between psychology and morality is something

which will be of great interest as I proceed in my studies, with the

intercession of philosophy, sociology and law suggesting an inherent demand

on the psychologist to think both within and without the parameters of the

conventional practitioner. Or by directing a study according to the

intercession between psychology and physiology, one might serve an

important role in a medical team seeking to diagnose or treat one suffering

within this cross-section. A subject such as religious theory, as it

relates to psychology, can lend itself to the establishment of credentials

concerning the correlation between spiritual and psychological

dispositions, abnormalities or complexes.

Essentially, the interdisciplinary focus of my degree is based on the

promise that such will open infinite doors for future occupational

consideration. Indeed, if approached correctly, a course of study such as

this ought to prepare one for the natural correlation between psychological

treatment and criminal counseling, legal testimony, sociological research

and a whole host of additional career paths. Thus, even as I might set my

sights on a specific practice or approach, I will inherently improve my

value to the profession and expand the prospective ways in which to drive

my practice.

The interdisciplinary focus on opportunities which demonstrate the value of

psychology in a broad array of fields should also arm me with the

experience and confidence to take on any of the challenges that may emerge

on my career path.

Degree Content

Guiding Committee:

I intend to carry out the components of this degree at the main campus of

Mountain State University in West Virginia. This context will allow my to

work with a guidance committee constituted of some of Mountain's most

highly regarded professors and research professionals.

I will be studying with the Lead Faculty member and Graduate

Interdisciplinary Studies Coordinator of the Psychology Department, Dr.

Robert Hayes. A Ph.D. in General Psychology, Dr. Hayes is a member of the

APA, the Society for the Teaching of Psychology and the Society for the

Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity and the Arts. Since his addition to

the staff in 2006, Hayes has worked as a program director and as a vessel

through which the holistic implication of Mountain's core focus can be

channeled. Indeed, the diversity of his resume in research, instruction

and writing implies a many well-suited to serve my interdisciplinary focus.

Professor Dinah Rock will also be working on my committee. As Coordinator

of Graduate Academic Services, she is in a unique position to provide me

with the type of counsel that can help me to sequence my chosen course load

and to integrate my research investigation into that which I am learning

from said classes. As a published author and a research specialist, in

addition to her role as a crucial liaison to student needs on the

university campus, Rock will be a source of ongoing advice and insight.

Dean of Graduate Studies, Dr. Brian Holloway is the third member of my

guidance committee and one whom I will rely heavily upon for consultation

on my written and presentation skills. As the author of numerous volumes

on technical and creative writing, as well as a longtime project

coordinator for self-styled and interdisciplinary courses of study, Dr.

Holloway will be a valuable source of critique as I compose and revise my

research report.

Course Content:

The courses I have selected for fulfillment of 25 hours of scholastic

content reflect the interdisciplinary approach driving my degree studies.

Courses have been strategically selected in order to simultaneously meet

the conditions of my degree and retain an inherently diversified balance of

subjects.

Advanced Developmental Psychology (GIDS 517) will provide me with a

rigorous and direct overview of the field into which I am entering. Based

upon the complex relationship between the body, the mind and human society

as a whole, this course suitably reflects my intent to design a study that

advances upon the notion of this relationship. The dynamic interaction of

these aspects of the human condition are uniquely examined at Mountain,

where a holistic interest is taken in the subject matter. The course in

Advanced Developmental Psychology promises to be among the most universally

applicable points of entry into the field.

Psychology of Psychopathology and Diagnosis (GIDS 518) offers students the

opportunity to active a mounting knowledge of the ways that various factors

and contexts interact to produce viable psychiatric diagnoses. Such is to

say that where the practice of psychology and the diagnosis of patients

concern the vast possibilities of initial dysfunction, there is a need for

a core knowledge in the practitioner of the virtually limitless

intersection between psyche and all other things. The MSU degree program

website identifies this course as pertaining not only to the relationships

within and surrounding the individual but, again in a holistic sense,

presumes to extend the discussion to the nature of the relationship between

this and such broad sociological patterns as concern gender, politics and

culture, so name just a few discussion points. This is an excited premise

for a discourse on abnormal psychopathology and the relationship between

external and internal factors producing disorder in the subject. I

anticipate that this will imply many of the core relationships that are of

interest to the course of my degree program and to my career interests.

Psychology of Psychotherapy and Counseling (GIDS 519) is a crucial forum

for development of the tools and knowledge to apply an education in

psychology to a context in the real world. Learning by way of examination

of the variety of styles, modes and philosophies which can direct

counseling methodologies, this course should produce a greater body of

knowledge on how to use that which I have learned to the benefit of others.

Consideration of important contributors to the fields of counseling and

examination of relevant issues such as diversity, ethicality and social

justice suggest the nuance required to allow one to ultimately decide how

to counsel based upon the specificities and needs pertaining to the

condition of the individual subject.

Research in Physiological Psychology (GIDS 520) applies a direct focus to

the biological bases for human psychology and for psychological

abnormality. By learning with greater clarity about the relationship

between genetics, nervous systems, neurology and experience, I anticipate

that this course will produce a needed understanding of the basic

physiology of the human psychological processes and deviation there from.

This course is of great interest for its reflection of a subject which is

still very much under constant change and development. Our collective

understanding of some of these relationships is fairly new. Therefore,

this course will take into considering research both historical and current

in the field, suggestion a close parallel between that which is taking

place in the research context and that which is being discussed in an

educational context.

Research Methods (GIDS 563) is a basic primer in the ways that research and

examination are to be approached within the field. The course will

instruct on the step-by-step process of choosing research questions,

determining suitable study subjects, creating viable methodologies for data

gathering and data analysis and displaying findings in a rational and

meaningful framework. Issues such as ethical integrity and the protection

of internal validity will also be considered in this course.

Advanced Educational Psychology (521) is an elective which promotes the

study of currently accepted methodologies in the learning and instruction

strategies relating to the field. This is a highly recommended course of

study for anybody with such an interest as mine in the ongoing pursuit of

knowledge and findings within the field. As already noted here, there is a

close connection between education and continuing research which suggests

the need for practice and learning always to coincide. This course should

provide me with the tools to channel this demand properly throughout my

career.

Psychology of Spirituality and Religion (522) is a subject which I will

eagerly anticipate. Another elective, this one is derived from the

specific relationship between spiritual orientation and its correlation to

initial psychology. Concerning less the evaluation of distinct religious

traditions but more extensively considering the question of the causative

psychological factors providing for the existence of religion, of religious

belief systems, of theological dispositions and of moral inclinations

related thereto. This promises to be among the more interesting

applications of psychology in a course of study inherently directed by… [END OF PREVIEW]

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