Succeeding in Graduate School: The Career Guide for Psychology Students

By Steven Walfish; Allen K. Hess | Go to book overview

In the case of medical problems, often the psychologist is brought in to help determine whether an apparent medical problem is in fact of psychogenic origin (e.g., pseudo seizures; Lowman & Richardson, 1987), whether there are psychological components deriving from a medical condition (e.g., depression secondary to the diagnosis of a serious medical condition such as multiple sclerosis), or whether psychological conditions are manifesting as physical ones (e.g., untreated depression masking as stomach disorders).

Forensic Consultation. Psychologists play an ever-increasing role in consulting to attorneys and the judicial system on legal issues that overlap with psychological ones (Gottlieb, 2000; Hess & Weiner, 1999; Thomas & Howells, 1996). Types of consultation in the forensic area include child custody evaluations, helping to assess fitness to stand trial and competency at the time of a crime, jury selection, employment discrimination and fitness for duty, and violence and recidivism prediction (Brigham, 1999; Roesch, Hart, & Ogloff, 1999). As in many areas of psychological consultation, there are both art and science to the process of consulting, and knowledge from many specialty areas of psychology may be needed in order to be effective in these roles.


WHERE TO FROM HERE?

If, in reading this chapter, you conclude that you at least want to know more about consulting or that you hope it will be your life's work, where can you go for further information? The reference list includes a number of relevant articles, book chapters, and books you may find helpful. A professor at your school might be consulting and able to discuss with you the rewards and limitations of this kind of work. Such faculty may be found in colleges of business, not just in psychology departments. Above all, consider joining Division 13 of the APA as a student member or attending one of its mid-winter “Consulting for Corporations” conferences. That membership will put you in touch with some of the key players in the world of consulting psychology.


REFERENCES

Ackerman, P. L. (1996). A theory of adult intellectual development: Process, personality, interests, and knowledge. Intelligence, 22, 227–257.

Ackerman, P. L., & Heggestad, E. D. (1997). Intelligence, personality, and interests: Evidence for overlapping traits. Psychological Bulletin, 121, 219–45.

Alderfer, C. P. (1998). Group psychological consulting to organizations: A perspective on history. Consulting Psychology Journal: Practice and Research, 50, 67–77.

Alderfer, C. P., & Tucker, R. C. (1996). A field experiment for studying race relations embedded in organizations. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 17, 43–57.

Atella, M., & Figatt, J. E. (1998). Practica in consulting psychology: Working with the doctoral clinical programs. Consulting Psychology Journal: Practice and Research, 218–227.

Brigham, J. C. (1999). What is forensic psychology, anyway? Law and Human Behavior, 23, 273–298.

Caplan, G. (1995). Types of mental health consultation. Journal of Educational and Psychological Consultation, 6, 7–21.

Carson, A. D. (1998a). The integration of interests, aptitudes, and personality traits: A test of Lowman's matrix. Journal of Career Assessment, 6, 83–105.

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