school is critical to finding a job, but you should start learning andusing this skill while you are in college.
Planning Your Classes
Most employers and graduate programs aren’t interested in the contentyou know. They want to know what skills you have acquired, in partic-ular what social skills. Can you work with a team? Get along with adiverse group of people? Take the initiative? Be persistent? (This followsthe same list of characteristics that most employers seek; this list is cov-ered in Chapter 5.)The most important goal is to have some understanding of what you want to do. If you want to be a counselor, you should look at what Dean Appleby of IUPUI calls the “KSCs” or the knowledge, skills, and char-acteristics required for that field. Your major course work will be deter-mined by the path you select, but you can then add to this knowledge by a careful choice of a minor and electives. For instance, if you want to useyour psychology degree to get a job in advertising (that’s a commonpath), you might get a minor in advertising or take courses in marketingresearch and analysis. If you want to use your psychology degree to work as a school counselor, you may want to take education classes.If you aren’t sure what skills a particular path requires, look into it inmore depth. (Chapters 6 and 7, for instance, introduce some commonand not-so common paths pursued by psychology majors.) You can alsoask your college career department for advice. If they know what youare interested in, they can guide you toward classes that fit that interestand build particular skills. Faculty members are another great resourcefor making recommendations on minors or other electives to take aspart of your complete degree.One thing to keep in mind: If you hate a particular class, considerviewing that dislike in a different light. For instance, if you hate mathand put it off until the very end, are you going to be very competitivecompared to students who are more well rounded (and didn’t avoidmath as much as possible)? If you have a weakness, it might be a betteridea to try to build up that area rather than ignore it. You don’t have tostrive to be a star, but at least think about taking another class in thatsubject so that you are comfortable and more confident.
What Can You Do with a Major in Psychology?