|Deciding on a career in I/O
Deciding if I/O is right for you can be difficult. Here is some information that you may find useful.
|Is I/O right for me?
There are many options for psychology and business students, and a few choose to go to an I/O PhD program. Here are some things to consider:
- All PhD programs focus on research. A PhD is a research degree. You are going to read 10-20 articles a week for a year and engage in at least a couple research projects, beginning to end. There are MA and MBA programs for people who are less interested in research.
- I/O has a heavy stats background. Most people find stats surprisingly non-complicated, so don't let that discourage you. However, be warned you will hear about, read about, and learn about a ton of math. Most programs require at least 3 stats classes.
-Survey design/testing is of particular importance. In fact, our SIOP principles state we MUST have full mathmatic understanding (ie validation) of every question we give, in research or an organization. That is why we reuse our scales. It is rare for an article to make up a scale specifically for the study.
-Your friends and family will have no idea what you do. They will think you give therapy to employees with ADD.
-Organizations don't always want to hear what we have to say (especially if it will cost them money) and research is not always practical to apply in the organization. Some peole find that unfulfilling.
-Most PhD programs will pay your tuition and a stipend (national average is about $12,000) a year to attend, at least for the first few years. They may expect research or teaching in exchange.
|What's required to get in?
Ok, so I/O is right for me. Am I right for it? Requirements are listed here, pretty much in order. This is based on my familiarity with top 10 research programs.
1) GRE (1150 min, 1300 is good)
2) GPA (3.25 min, 3.75 is good)
3) Strong letters of recommendation
- written by faculty, preferably big names
- someone you did research with or who knows you well
- e.g., honors advisor
- PSI CHI advisor
- research supervisor
- If necessary, a grad student can write and ask
professor to cosign- this is not as strong.
4) Research experience
-You have the tools of a scientist
-You know what you are getting into
-You can hit the ground running with your thesis
- Empirical honors thesis
- Conference submission
- Lab work
5) Commitment to the field
-You know what you are getting into and you will succeed!
- SIOP membership
- Conference attendance
- You might be able to review for APS conference
|I'm going for it! Now...
Where to apply