How Community College Prepares You for a Career in Psychology

by A Guest Author

The basic goal for a practicing psychologist is to help patients deal with challenges related to mental health or life in general. Proper training and experience make this possible. And yet, in order to truly assist those who are grappling with serious mental and emotional issues, good psychologists must not only be able to assess problems, but also empathize with their patients. And it certainly helps if they are able to tackle issues in their own life with objectivity and solve personal problems before they ever turn their analyzing gaze on others.

Of course, the larger part of preparation for this clinical occupation involves earning the appropriate credentials to practice. But the nature of the job requires students to develop a couple of different skillsets. Knowledge of psychology, including diagnosis, testing procedures, and treatments is only one side of the coin. Psychologists must also relate to their patients in order to help them overcome their particular issues. And community college can help in a number of ways to prepare psychology students for the challenges they'll face professionally.

Community College Prepares You for The World of Psychology

For one thing, this venue provides the first glimpse that many young adults have into the world of psychology. Most students who are interested in the field, through the course of their classes, will come to find that they themselves suffer from psychological issues. This is no big surprise considering that the majority of people have, at some point in their life, gone through the loss of a loved one, even if it was only a beloved pet. We've all been picked on, we've all been through physical ailments, and by the time we graduate from high school, many of us have been hurt physically, emotionally, or spiritually in some way that changed us. Some have gone through depression or anxiety. Others have more serious physical and/or mental issues to deal with. The point is, you'll have a difficult time picking out the person on campus who is perfectly balanced and well-adjusted, whereas nearly everyone you meet has likely faced psychological challenges small or large in their short time on earth.

Students attending community college may just be discovering the hardships of life, and taking psychology classes can help them to pinpoint and address problems in their own life. However, the abundance of other students can provide for a wealth of case studies that will help students interested in psychology to hone their intuitive and deductive skills, as well as their capacity for understanding and empathy. It is a long-held belief that people who enter the field of psychology do so because they have themselves been through some kind of mental or emotional ordeal and it has instilled in them a desire to help others undergoing similar trauma. The open and exploratory nature of college life can give psychology students the variety of interaction needed to begin trying to unraveling the mysteries of human behavior (from a purely observational vantage, of course) in their own lives and the lives of their peers.

And it couldn't hurt that most campuses provide counseling services for students in need, allowing those interested in psychology degrees an excellent real-world source for dealing with their own problems as well as learning how various professionals interact with patients. So while community college can't provide students with the credentials needed to start a practice, it can help them to begin learning about the field of psychology, take the prerequisites needed to transfer to a program of their choice, and give them their first glimpse of a profession in which they can help others in need.

This post was written by A Guest Author

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