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How did you narrow your research interests for grad school?

anmeheranmeher Registered User Posts: 2 New Member
edited March 2011 in Graduate School
Hi all,
I'm new to cc and I was wondering how you guys narrowed down your research interests for grad school? I'm most likely going to apply to a clinical psychology program but I'm still not sure what my research interests are. Thanks!
Post edited by anmeher on

Replies to: How did you narrow your research interests for grad school?

  • NeuroGradNeuroGrad Registered User Posts: 111 Junior Member
    Do research! Many things may sound interesting when you hear about them in a course, but that is necessarily a superficial description. It is tough to really narrow down what type of research you find fascinating until you actually try some out.
  • belevittbelevitt Registered User Posts: 2,005 Senior Member
    This is really important but I hope you understand that there is flexibility after you have started and even after you have finished graduate school.

    I had worked in three labs as an undergraduate in pretty different disciplines but I graduated and didn't really know what I wanted. I worked for several years as a technician, again in a couple of different areas until I was deadset on what I wanted to study. I picked programs based on the faculty who shared my intended career interests and secured a spot in the one that I thought would be the best fit.

    Three months later, I discovered that there were better opportunities within the department in a slightly different field. (it all sounds so flaky when I say it like this). I started in the new area and have found that it suits me quite well. I fully expect that by the time postdoc applications roll around, I will want to shift again.

    As an aside, my PI changed his research interests from a process involved in RNA biology and gene expression to the study of pathogenic tropical viruses at the ripe young age of 50-some. So I guess you aren't locked in as a full professor either.
  • cogneuro76cogneuro76 Registered User Posts: 118 Junior Member
    Doing lots of different research projects helps because it helps you know what you like and don't like.

    But you can't try everything, so once you get a general sense of what you like, read the literature on it and see what particular area you'd like to research.

    When something really resonates with you, you know that's what your research interest is!
  • anmeheranmeher Registered User Posts: 2 New Member
    Great! Thank you for replying guys.
    I'm an RA in a lab right now... so I guess I'll just do more research and read.

    Thanks again!
This discussion has been closed.