1 Undergraduate Studies ePortfolio LaToya Cooper Psychology, 2010
Personal Statement I’ve put a lot of thought into life after college, and a lot of my plans have totally changed from what I wanted when I first started back in school two years ago. After carefully thinking about what I want for my future, I’ve decided to pursue a career after graduation. Fortunately, there are several options for an individual holding a Psychology degree. However, it wasn’t until my last semester that I made a final decision on a career goal. I don’t have a documented minor or concentration, although I have taken electives in child development and family relations. It is my intention to find a career where I can work with children and families that have been affected by family violence. A mentor who works with juvenile delinquents is the ideal position for me. I’ve successfully taken courses in child development and violent children. I have also done detailed research as part of my studies on how children respond to certain people and conditions. That experience helped me find ways to work with children and to build their trust. I am currently studying how the cycle of violence affects children even into adulthood. I want to contribute to stopping this cycle by helping children realize their potential. They can overcome all types of adversity and become productive members of society. I believe that more intervention programs should be put in place in the public schools as well. I am hopeful to be able to make a difference by making things like this happen. I think that it makes sense for me to go ahead and get a career opposed to continuing to grad school because I don’t need a graduate degree to be able to reach my goals of helping children. Rather than taking more courses, I think that it would be more to my advantage to begin volunteering in a similar position dealing with children, or in a crisis center. This way I can get hands on experience. If I see that it is a challenge to get into my desired career, I cancomplete a certificate program to make up for the lack of a minor.
Resume LaToya Cooper 723 Pony Club Circle Cary, NC 27519 (919) 996-9885 firstname.lastname@example.org
Objective To obtain a position where I can apply the knowledge gained from my education.
Summary of Qualifications Effective verbal and written communication skills Good time management skills Excellent Customer Service Skills
Education Argosy University Online-- Phoenix, AZ 2009--2010 Major: Psychology Degree and Date of Graduation: Bachelor of Artsin Psychology, December 2010
East Carolina University-- Greenville, NC 2007—2009 Major: Psychology
Resume cont… Employment Pitt County Memorial Hospital--Greenville, NC Food Service Tech May 2007--May 2008 Responsible for making sure that patients were receiving the nutritional requirements requested by their doctors. Made sure that healthy snacks were available for patients and staff to eat between meals.
Convergys--Greenville, NC Customer Service Rep Mar 2006—May 2007 Took calls from Charter Communications customers Resolved customer billing issues and issued refunds when applicable Assisted customers with cable and internet repair issues
Waffle House--Greenville, NC Relief Manager Aug 2004—Mar 2006 Supervised 2-3 employees Prepared daily sales reports for the District Manager Handled customer complaint issues and was involved in the day to day operation of the restaurant
References Available Upon Request
Reflection I think that deciding to continue my education at Argosy was the best decision that I could have made for myself. I’ve learned a lot about myself and I’ve been able to gain a lot of information on the different fields that Psychology reaches. Now that I’m at the end of my journey, I know what options are available to me and I feel like I am more than educated enough to make a decision on the career field that I would like to go into. One of the things that I feel was strengthened during my time at Argosy is my researching skills. That’s something that I really appreciate and I know will prove valuable in whatever career I choose. My critical thinking skills and interpersonal effectiveness have also been strengthened. I have a better understanding of how ethics and diversity play a role in psychology as well. I still have weaknesses in some areas. I don’t feel as confident in my oral communication skills. I think this is because I have mainly worked online and haven’t had many opportunities to communicate orally with others. My knowledge of psychology is still a little weak also. I can research what I need to know, but I can’t always recall concepts and theories off the top of my head. Overall, I have had a great experience at Argosy, and I look forward to putting that education to work in a great career.
Table of Contents Cognitive Abilities: Critical Thinking and Information Literacy Research Skills Communication Skills: Oral and Written Ethics and Diversity Awareness Foundations of Psychology Applied Psychology Interpersonal Effectiveness
Critical Thinking Using an integrated approach, the therapist would believe several things about Sabina. The therapist could take a person-centered approach and believe that Sabina has the capability to understand why she has been feeling the way she has. The therapist could also take a behavioral approach and believe that Sabina has her symptoms because she has witnessed these symptoms in someone else’s life. She does have a history of depression in her family. She could be acting like she’s used to seeing the women in her family act. The counselor would believe different things based on the approach they want to use. Some of the goals of therapy would include: “restructuring her personality, uncovering the unconscious, creating social interest, finding meaning in her life, curing an emotional disturbance, examining old decisions and making new ones, developing trust in oneself, becoming more self-actualizing, reducing anxiety, reducing maladaptive behavior and learning adaptive patterns, gaining more effective control of one’s life and re-authoring the story of one’s life” (Corey, 2009, p. 459). Once again, the goals would really depend on which approach the counselor is using. Depending on the approach, Sabina’s relationship with the therapist would be the crucial determinant of treatment outcomes (Corey, 2009, p. 462). In some approaches such as cognitive behavior therapy, less emphasis is put on the relationship and more is put on effective use of techniques. But regardless of the technique, there should be a personal relationship that indicates honesty, sincerity, acceptance, understanding and caring, their interest and ability to help the Sabina, and genuineness. The therapist’s function and role would be different in each approach. It could be to operate within a present-centered, directive, didactic, structured, and psychoeducational context. Or it could operate with a much looser and less defined structure. In Sabina’s case, a structured approach would most affective.
Critical Thinking cont… Several approaches can be used when using integrative approach. Free association could be a good choice. It could help Sabina express her true feelings. Family systems therapy could also be a good technique for her. Since a lot of her issues stem from issues with her husband, having him join in the therapy would be beneficial to them both. During counseling, Sabina is likely to discover that she must be active in the therapy process by selecting her own goals and working toward them both in sessions and in everyday life (Corey, 2009, p. 463). She will recognize and express pent-up feelings and examine her beliefs and thoughts. She will also get to talk about her relationship with her husband and other significant family members. The desired outcome, regardless of the approach, would be for Sabina to be able to find ways to make herself happy and mentally healthy. In the future, she should be able to handle her issues without the help of a therapist.
Research Skills Future Effects of Entering the Justice System as a Juvenile I have decided to research the effects of entering the justice system as a juvenile. In most cases, it’s easy to predict which adolescents will end up being violent adults and enter the justice system. Russell Eisenman states in his study of characteristics of adolescent offenders that “Since adult criminality often had its genesis in juvenile offending, understanding young offenders may also provide insight into criminals in general” (1993). It is my hope that we can one day use this information to intervene and reverse the cycle of violence in these adolescents. According to a study done by Rachmand et al. concerning seven year life outcome of adolescent offenders, interventions for institutionalized youths generally reduce a relapse in criminal behavior (2009). There are several reasons why adolescents have violent tendencies. Parental violence, either in the form of physical abuse towards the child or violence between parents, and interparental discord, have been linked consistently to externalizing problems in children (Hill & Nathan, 2008). Both men and women have histories of interpersonal violence (Wolff, Shi, & Siegel, 2009). My hypothesis is that if a male is convicted of a violent crime as a juvenile, then he will later be convicted of a violent crime as an adult. The statistical analysis that I used to test my hypothesis is analysis of variance (ANOVA). Methods Participants These men ranged from the ages of 18-30, and were black, Caucasian, or Hispanic. Prisoners who had served more than two years were excluded from this study. The dependent variable is violent adult offenders; the independent variable is violent juvenile offenders.
Research Skills cont… Design The design of this study is quasi-experimental, meaning that participants are not randomly selected from the population and/or are not randomly assigned to conditions (Argosy University, 2009). I only was interesting in including participants who were incarcerated for violent crimes. Measures and Instruments For the purpose for identifying a measure, violent crimes in this study are considered murder, attempted murder, manslaughter, and wounding with intent to cause bodily harm and wounding. I used ANOVA as my method of statistical analysis. I chose ANOVA because this method can be used to examine multiple groups and multiple factors at the same time (Argosy University, 2009). My participants were men of different ages, races, and geographic locations. So ANOVA allowed me to establish whether the interactions are significant (Argosy University, 2009) Procedure I visited ten correctional facilities in the state of New York, interviewing twenty male offenders convicted of violent crimes at each facility. My observations were based on information gained by individual surveys and case files. The surveys focused on the nature of the crimes that they were incarcerated for, and the violent crimes that they had been charged with as juveniles, if any. To increase the validity of my observations, all information was verified by one of my research assistants, and the same observations were made for each participant. . Results The purpose of this analysis is to determine if violent adult offenders can be predicted from adolescences. I found that in 88% of the cases, the adult had spent at least 6 months in a juvenile delinquency facility as a teen. These results are a good indicator that violence can be predicted. I will use these results to try and establish programs in high crime areas that will mentor juvenile offenders. It is my hope that we will be able to prevent these young offenders from becoming adult offenders later in life.
Communication Skills Working in groups certainly has its benefits, but there are also some negative consequences to take into consideration. Some of these include social loafing, free riding, the sucker effect, process loss, and groupthink. Any one of these leads to ineffective decision making within the group. Social loafing is the idea that individuals working in groups exert less effort than those who work individually (Riggio, 2008). This could cause tension among the members who feel like some aren’t doing their part in the group. Free riding is when one individual takes on less than their fair share. They are in the group, and reaping the rewards for the groups work, but they are not doing their part in making the group a success. This situation could also cause tension between the group members. The sucker effect is when a group member reduces their effort so that they won’t appear to be contributing more to the group. This may be interpreted by some members as being a free rider who isn’t doing their part. Process loss is the difference between what the group actually produces and what the group should produce based on the number of group members (Argosy University, 2010). Since individuals tend to be less productive in a group than if working individually, process loss will occur in these groups. Groupthink is when the group is so concerned with coming to an agreement, that they are not able to make a critical decision (Riggio, 2008). This will cause decisions to be made in haste; therefore it is very unlikely that they will make the best decision on the matter. I would use process loss to determine the stage of development the groups are currently in. If there is a major difference between the productivity levels that the group actually produces and where the group should be, they are not developed to the full potential that they could be as a group. If this is the case with Li’s groups, and she wants to continue having her employees work in groups, I would suggest that she try some group development strategies. I wouldn’t suggest not working in groups; I would just help her to make sure that they are at fully developed.
Communication Skills, cont… The first thing I would suggest is that Li follow the 5-stage model. She should first allow the group members to get to know one another. She may do this by having a small luncheon for the employees. She then should allow the group members to express any concerns they may have about their roles or other group members. She needs to make sure that any conflicts are resolved. At this point the group becomes more cohesive and members are able to identify with the group. Then the group is ready to work and leadership is accepted. Then is the last step, when the group may cease to exist because the group members have met their goals (Argosy University, 2010). Evidence has shown that brainstorming isn’t as effective as we perceive it to be. The creativity of the people in brainstorming groups is often inhibited (Riggio, 2008). However, there are some things that can be done to ensure that brainstorming is effective. You may want to try electronic brainstorming. Have each member to exchange ideas via computer, maybe through email or instant messaging. This will eliminate the group processes that hinder the group’s abilities to generate good ideas face to face. The best way for you to effectively communicate your expectations regarding group work to your employees is to clearly define the roles of each group member. You should also make clear what your expectations are and what norms are acceptable within the group. You should definitely look at organizational socialization when it comes to your new employees. They should learn and be trained from day one as to what the group roles and norms are and develop specific work skills and abilities (Riggio, 2008).
Ethics and Diversity Awareness Create a plan for a community-intervention program for the effects of bullying and violence at school for children who have been exposed to bullying.
Bullying has become a major problem in our school system. It can be anything from pushing, punching, and kicking, to sending mean text, email, or instant messages (Stop Bullying Now!, 2010). Some of the long-term psychological effects of bullying are low self-esteem, loneliness, humiliation, insecurity, depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, and trouble focusing in school (Argosy University, 2010). Quick intervention of this problem will help to prevent these long term problems. The most effective intervention strategies are comprehensive in nature and involve the entire school (Argosy University, 2010). Parents need to work with school administration to make sure that children suspected of being bullied are safe in the school environment. For children who are exposed to bullying, they would benefit from enrolling in a program which teaches prosocial behavior, interpersonal communication, and problem-solving and conflict-resolution skills. Some effective strategies include encouraging open dialogs about bullying and its consequences, organizing writing workshops, enacting role plays based on potential situations, and conducting regular parent-teacher meetings (Argosy University, 2010). Parental involvement is very important.
How will you foster resiliency as part of the community-intervention plan?
Sports teams, self defense classes, and role playing are all great ways to rebuild self esteem in a child that has been exposed to bullying. Some other ways that we can foster resilience for children are to identify assets of both children and their family, imitate the positive behavior of their role model, encourage children to develop a positive sense of self, and teach communication, problem solving, and decision-making skills (Argosy University, 2010).
Ethics and Diversity Awareness cont… Include issues of gender, diversity, and ethics in your plan.
Gender: Both boys and girls experience bullying. But whereas boys are more physically violent, girls are more likely to be bullied through rumor spreading, social exclusion, or sexual comments (MCHB/National Bullying Prevention Campaign Webcast, 2004). So when focusing on helping these children, their genders need to be taken into consideration.
Diversity: The family’s economic status may play a factor in the nature of intervention also. If a child is from a poor family who doesn’t have internet access or cell phones, it would be useless to focus on cyber bullying.
Ethics: During the intervention, the parents need to be informed of what is going on. If a child is suspected of being a bully, the school can’t put a child in an intervention program without the consent of the parent.
Foundations of Psychology Compare and contrast Freud’s view of the unconscious against Jung’s.
Jung and Freud did agree on the importance of the unconscious, but Jung thought that Freud overemphasized sexual and aggressive drives in humans. Jung felt that in addition to sexual and aggressive drives, humans inherit a desire to seek higher religious fulfillment and self-development (Argosy University, 2010). Jung believed that the unconscious contained repressed memories, but that these memories could be accessed voluntarily. Some memories existed in layers, but all were capable of being remembered; some more easily than others. He used the term personal unconscious because he felt that those repressed thoughts were unique to each person. Freud believed that those repressed memories could only be accessed if triggered by some event. Because he was concerned with the internal as well as the external factors of personality, Jung came up with a concept called the collective unconscious. This is the idea that our ancestors experiences significantly influenced each succeeding generation. Freud did believe in a similar idea, but he called it phylogenetic endowment. The difference between the two ideas was that Freud relied on the notion of inherited dispositions only when explanations built on individual experiences were not accurate (Feist & Feist, 2009). Jung also believed that the collective unconscious contained archetypes, or inherited tendencies that predispose us to view the external world in certain ways (Argosy University, 2010). The most important archetypes were the anima, the animus, the shadow, and the persona. Jung believed that dreams were the main source of archetypal material, and that certain dreams offer “proof” for the existence of the archetype (Feist & Feist, 2009). Freud also believed that dreams serve as a source of unconscious material. He believed that childhood experiences can appear in adult dreams, even if the dreamer has no recollection of the experience (Feist & Feist, 2009).
Foundations of Psychology cont… Highlight views that specifically show where they would agree and disagree as it relates to the purpose and manifestation of the unconscious.
According to Freud’s view of the unconscious, he would first analyze her dreams. He would say that her bizarre dreams represent a repressed memory. Something must have happened recently to trigger one of these difficult memories and this is causing her to act fearful and have relationship problems. Freud may just analyze the symbols in the dream to see if he can help her bring the memory into the conscious mind. If the dreams do not trigger any memories for her, Freud may use phylogenetic endowment to fill in the gaps. Jung would also begin by analyzing the dreams. He would look for symbols, or archetypes, in the dreams. He may look into her past to see if there was something inherited from ancestors that could be causing her problems.
My Future in Learning Learning and education is very important to me. I do intend on continuing on to Grad school in the fall of 2011. This will allow me even more options, and will keep me on track to the career that I ultimately want. In between the time that I graduate and I begin Graduate school, I will be doing two things. First I will be seeking a career. At the same time, I will be taking private courses to help refine my skills in a hobby that I’ve had for about a year now. Even after grad school, when I’m in my dream career, I will still attend seminars to keep my mind fresh. Learning will be a continual part of my life.
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