Whether you are planning to attend graduate school in psychology or will seek employment after completing your BA or BS in psychology, you should consider some of the advantages of experiential learning while you are an undergraduate. These opportunities can help you:
- Learn first-hand about a field of work you may have only read or heard about
- Gain specific experience and skills that might be applied to later paid employment
- Acquire references for graduate school or employment applications who can document success-related attributes such as reliability, diligence, independence, and professionalism.
Experiential learning may be referred to by several different terms- i.e, volunteering, internship or practicum. Whatever the title of the experience your decision about where to pursue your experiential learning depends on your own interests, goals, and career plans.
A partial list of hospitals, health care facilities, social service organizations, and other facilities which may offer such opportunities in the Iowa City and surrounding areas is available at the link below.
Additionally, students may want to visit the Pomerantz Career Center to discuss ideas with a career advisor or peruse the following websites:
You may be able to earn course credit for your volunteer work or receive transcript notation for completing an internship. Psychology students who are interested in pursuing an off-campus volunteer opportunity should contact a psychology advisor about enrollment in PSY:3996 External Practicum in Psychology. Students who are considering an internship may be able to enroll in CCP:1005 Internship in Liberal Arts. This is a zero-credit course but students will have the internship experience noted on their official transcript. Students interested in this option should visit the Pomerantz Career Center for more information.
External Practicum in Psychology PSY:3996
Students interested in doing professional work outside of the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences (whether through another academic department or a private/community organization) are able to earn 1-3 semester hours of credit with the External Practicum. Offered only on an S-F basis, this course allows students to gain career-related experience while earning psychology credit. All work must be unpaid. Students in the University of Iowa Honors program can earn credit via HONR:3200 Honors Service Learning. Note: Alternatively, students may earn transcript notion for this same type of activity via CCP:1005 Internship in Liberal Arts (see description below).
Teaching/Advising Practicum in Psychology PSY:3997
This course offers students the opportunity to earn 1-3 semester hours of credit by working as an undergraduate TA. The Teaching/Advising Practicum is offered on an S-F basis only. Alternately, students in the University of Iowa Honors program can earn credit via: HONR:3100 Honors Teaching Practicum.
Internship in Psychology CCP:1005 Internship in Liberal Arts and Sciences
This is a zero-credit hour course offered to students who would like to have a transcript notation for their internship. The work must be relevant to psychology but could occur in many different settings. Because students do not earn credit, their work may be either paid or unpaid. The Career Center can help students clarify their career objectives, select related internships, and complete the required application materials. Each internship lasts a full semester and can be full-time or part-time. Internships are available throughout the United States, and some international appointments are available, but many opportunities are also available locally. To qualify for an internship, a student must have completed at least 12 s.h. in psychology and have an overall GPA of at least 2.0. Students interested in having their job/volunteer work registered as an internship should see the Career Center (C310 Pomerantz Center).