What is a practicum?

A practicum or internship is a supervised work experience in your major area. For example, a psychology student may have a practicum at a shelter for the homeless.

Why should I do a practicum?

Psychology students are not currently required to complete a practicum. However, many students report that practicums allow them to explore a particular area of psychology that they had considered, to get work experience, and to meet people working in various fields.

Do practicums pay?

Some practicums do pay. Unfortunately, the majority do not.

Can I get academic credit for doing a practicum?

Yes! Academic credit is currently available through Career Services & Placement under LBST P392. The amount of credit (1, 2, or 3 credits) depends upon the number of hours you devote to the practicum. In addition the Psychology Department offers a Volunteerism course (P301) occasionally. In this course 10 students are placed in practicum sites in the community. One of the major differences between the Volunteerism course and the practicum course offered through Career Services and Placement is that in the Volunteerism course, students meet with the professor once a week in a classroom setting. This allows additional material to be learned from the instructor and from other students. The sharing of experiences that occurs during these meetings has been well received by the students who have taken this option.

What do you mean by supervised?

Each practicum student has two supervisors. One supervisor is at the work site and will be assigned to the student by the worksite. A second supervisor is on-campus. Typically, this supervisor will be selected by the student and will be one of the full-time psychology faculty members.

How often do I meet with my supervisors?

Meetings with on-site supervisors are arranged at the work site but are usually on a weekly basis. On-campus supervisors will decide on the frequency of supervision meetings but supervision will typically be either weekly or every other week.

Are there class assignments?

Most on-campus supervisors require a daily log of practicum activities. Other assignments might also be required depending on the professor. Some common requirements include assigned readings, term papers, and brief presentations.

How do I get involved with a practicum?

If you are a junior with at least a 2.5 GPA, all you need to do is contact Career Services and Placement (812)941-2275. They will be more than happy to help you complete the proper forms and help you locate a practicum site.

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