Q: As I try to envision myself as a psychology major at Cedarville, are there particular characteristics that I should have to be successful?
A: No, not necessarily.
Our students in the program are quite diverse, and there isn't really one set "profile" that describes them. And given the broad range of vocational avenues our students pursue after graduation, this is what we expect and consider healthy in our program.
For those considering the possibility of becoming counselors, such persons typically possess a caring disposition. Sometimes friends or others have asked their advice about issues and they often possess a degree of wisdom that not everyone shows (for their age). Counselors often are analytical about people and events. That is, they enjoy trying to figure people out. They tend to possess a natural curiosity about human personality and why things happen and how people work. Of course, you grow in your development of these qualities and not all future counselors innately have each of these characteristics.
Q: What are the hallmarks of Cedarville's psychology major? That is, tell me a couple of things that characterize your department.
A: We describe our program in terms of two primary distinctions. The first involves developing a Christian world-and-life view toward psychology. Faculty members know the Bible and possess firm theological moorings from which they teach their subjects. All Cedarville students minor in Bible/theology, and this knowledge base is applied critically to the secular and sometimes humanistic concepts found in psychological literature. Cedarville psychology professors help students to evaluate all they learn from a distinctly Christian perspective, and students wishing to pursue ministry vocations after graduation will learn the foundational principles of biblical counseling. Above all, Cedarville psychology faculty train students to think biblically about life, psychology, and helping people.
Second, student mentoring is a hallmark of the Cedarville psychology program. All students are provided a designated faculty advisor who spends time with them and assists them with academic decisions and other life choices. In addition, all psychology faculty at Cedarville are available and accessible to psychology majors during times when advice, encouragement, and direction is needed. Mentoring is an important dynamic in our department, which is done both by way of classroom and extracurricular activities. In sum, the stories you hear of university professors who are so busy with their research that they don't have time for students do not apply to Cedarville. Building quality relationships with students is part of the fabric of who we are and how we operate at Cedarville.
Q: Can I "minor" in some academic area if my "major" at Cedarville is psychology?
If you choose to do this, you'll probably opt for the psychology major, rather than the applied psychology major. The former affords 42 credits of electives and the latter, 22 credits. Note that some students choose not to pursue a formal minor but rather select a broad range of courses that interest them and will be useful for their future vocational pursuits. A few psychology majors even elect to take a "double major" using their 42 elective credits to fulfill the requirements of a second field of study. Firm decisions regarding minor fields of study are not made by most students until their sophomore year (with the assistance of the faculty advisors).
Q: What if I'm not sure about a psychology or applied psychology major when I come to Cedarville?
A: Most students aren't sure when they arrive. An inspection of the curriculum will show that the requirements for the applied degree are the same as the psychology degree - except you take some additional courses in a specialized area. The first two years of both programs are identical, so there is plenty of time to get good advice from your faculty advisor, clarify and solidify your own vocational goals, and to actually make your decision final.
Q: Can I get a job with a bachelor's degree in psychology?
Graduates with B.A. degrees in psychology find employment in preprofessional domains. This means that they are hired for positions which entail being supervised by master's level (or higher) personnel. They normally provide direct, hands-on services to a variety of clientele. Psychology majors use their knowledge and skills acquired from the major normally in human service settings, although others work in business and industry milieu.
Following is a list of jobs that recent Cedarville psychology majors obtained after graduation. The data comes from an alumni survey:
- Life Skills Specialist, Choices Inc.
- Psychiatric Technician - Parkview Behavioral Health
- Detention Counselor - Greene County Juvenile Court
- Youth Care Specialist
- House Parent - Teen Ranch Family Services
- Program Specialist - Dartmouth Hospital
- Human Resources Generalist - Price Pfister/Black & Decker
- Joy Ranch
- Child Case Manager
- Therapeutic support staff in Philhaven Hospital in PA
- Office Manager - organizing workshops
- Crisis Therapist - Westfield Area Mental Health Clinic
- Residence Counselor - Wildwood Programs
- Human Resources
- Career Counselor
- Case Manager at a Community Mental Health Center
- Montgomery County Children's Services
- Daybreak - Youth Specialist
- Psychometrist - Flexman Clinic
- Family Literacy Specialist - Mercer County Family Center
- Childcare worker - Residential home
- Program Assistant - Benjamin Rush Center (children's unit) - Also promoted to Counselor
- HUGS counselor
- Social Work position in long term care -- Nursing Home
- Case Manager - Women's Community Association - Catholic Social Services
- Intern Counselor / now full-time Therapist
- Clinician and Substance Abuse Counselor
- Intern - Caring Place
- Group Facilitator / Child Care Leader
- Mental Health Rehabilitation Specialist
- Personnel Consultant
- Residential Treatment Specialist
- Director of Social Services and Admissions at Nursing Home
- Children's and Services Caseworker
- Youth Care Specialist - working at a boy's group home
- Unit Specialist - Clubhouse program which is a form of psychosocial rehabilitation
- Teen Challenge in Columbus - Live-in Counselor
- Home Health Care
Q: Do Cedarville psychology students find entrance into graduate school?
Not only do they find admission, but they often enroll in the types of programs of their choices. That is, students aspiring to enter Ph.D., Psy.D. and master's programs frequently find entrance into their top-choice kinds of degrees. Cedarville faculty work closely with psychology majors, helping them to clarify their vocational and educational aspirations, set achievable goals, then take the necessary steps to gain admission to the programs of their choices.
The Cedarville psychology curriculum is designed to offer all the courses typically found as pre-requisites for admission to graduate school. Further, psychology major seniors are prepped to take both the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) and Subject Test in Psychology GRE as part of the formal requirements for graduation from the program. This, combined with research & publication opportunities and individual mentoring from faculty, puts Cedarville psychology majors on solid footing for graduate school admission.
Following is a partial list of graduate schools to which Cedarville psychology majors have recently been accepted:
- Auburn University
- Baylor University
- Baptist Bible College
- California School of Professional Psychology
- Dallas Theological Seminary
- Drake University
- Fuller Graduate School of Psychology
- Georgia State University
- Georgetown University
- Grace College
- Grand Rapids Baptist Seminary
- Indiana University
- Iowa State University
- Liberty University
- Nova Southeastern University
- Ohio State University
- Purdue University
- Regent University
- Southern Illinois University
- U. of Detroit
- U. of Illinois
- U. of Iowa
- U. of Missouri
- U. of Northern Iowa
- U. of Tennessee
- U. of Toledo
- U. of Wisconsin
- Valprasio University
- Western Seminary
- Wheaton College
- Wright State University