Success Maps

Psychology Success Map

 

All Pillars | All Years
1st Year (0-30 Credit Hours)
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BUILD Knowledge & Expertise

Explore SMU’s diverse course offernings while completing the Basic Arts Requirements and the foundation courses from PSYC 1210, 1220, 1230, 1235, 1240, 1250, and 1260.


Psychology courses are grouped into three broad categories: A) natural science, B) social science, and C) general.


Need extra help? Visit a peer mentor of the SMarts Advantage Program in room MM214A.


Explore your options for majors and minors by attending the Programs Day across faculties in February.


Register for classes as soon as registration opens. Classes fill early!


Visit your Academic Advisor and your Psychology Academic Advisor to be sure you have the right courses.


Gather information on Co-operative Education opportunities.

DEVELOP Essential Skills

Begin the critical thinking process. Extract the main concepts from what you read, recognize pattern and flow, and organize and present your analysis.


Develop collaboration and teamwork skills, combining independent thought and group interaction.


Improve your writing skills at the Writing Centre. Get expert feedback and incorporate it into your work.


Develop research skills by navigating online databases and the stacks at the Patrick Power Library. Take a virtual tour.


Build a résumé at a Résumé Seminar, to prepare for internships, scholarships, and summer jobs.


Start your Co-Curricular Record. Document your acquired skills from on- and off-campus activities and volunteer work.

PARTICIPATE in Campus Life

Attend Welcome Week. Make friends. Meet classmates, faculty, and advisors at academic orientation. Attend a session about a culture of safety and respect at Saint Mary’s.


Introduce yourself to your professors after class or during office hours. 


Become a research participant in psychological studies and earn bonus points in select Psychology courses.


Attend the annual Undergraduate Student Psychology conference.


Join the Psychology Department Facebook page, the Psychology Society Facebook page, and the Psychology Society.


Visit the Societies Fair. Explore student societies, including the Psychology Society and those that are culturally-based, before deciding which to join.


Try Speak Up!, a program where international students practice speaking English.


Stay Active. Explore SMUfit, campus sports, exercise, and recreation opportunities.


Apply for a scholarship. There are more than 260 available!


Need help with time management, organizational, or presentation skills? Book an Academic & Life Skills Coaching session.


Learn to budget your money. Attend a Financial Literacy workshop or get advice from Financial Aid and Awards.


Check in with Career Services to start discussing your career goals, related to your program. Experiment with the Psychology Career Centre as an online option.


When facing a personal crisis, get help from the Counselling Centre. When dealing with a medical or health issue, get help from the Student Health Centre.

CONNECT Locally & Globally

Volunteer with a local organization, such as the Brain Injury Association of NS, Special Olympics NS, Autism Nova Scotia, or the IWK Health Centre.


Consider courses with global themes for your electives.


Need a job? Create a HireSMU account to find available jobs.


Not from Halifax? Explore and discover all our cultural opportunities and have fun.


Keep current with local events. Read Pride in Your Shared Neighbourhood newsletter.


Travel while studying after 1st year. Investigate travel options beyond Canada at International Activities.


Obtain or update your passport in preparation for possible international travel.


Not from Canada? Browse Services for International Students for available support.


Attend International Night—an annual banquet showcasing SMU’s many cultures.

2nd Year (30-60 Credit Hours)
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BUILD Knowledge & Expertise

Complete PSYC 2340 and PSYC 2350.


Take Arts electives during 2nd - 4th years to complete the major requirements.


Consider taking the Certificate for Human Resource Management in conjunction with your Psychology degree.


Thinking of changing majors or minors? Attend Programs Day for help.


Visit your Academic Advisor and your Psychology Academic Advisor to be sure you have the right courses and to declare your major in this year.

DEVELOP Essential Skills

Understand research ethics and design.


Develop your statistical computing skills.


Refine your collaborative and research skills. Volunteer in a Psychology research laboratory.


Brush-up on Math basics. Drop-in for a free refresher workshop at the SNAP Centre.


Review the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association to avoid plagiarism and properly format an essay or term paper. Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association


Upgrade your writing with one-on-one tutorials at the Writing Centre or through online resources.


Learn advanced researching techniques at the Library.


Update your Co-Curricular Record to keep track of your accomplishments and set new goals.

PARTICIPATE in Campus Life

Become a LEAP Peer Mentor. Build leadership and mentoring skills, while getting paid.


Apply your classroom learning and improve soft skills by joining some student societies.


Participate in intramurals. Demonstrate your team skills and character to future employers and admissions officers.


Browse the Scholarship List and modify your cover letter to match the criteria. Apply between February and May.


Need more academic support? Contact Personal Counselling or Academic & Life Skills Coaching.


Seek Career Counselling. Explore the core competencies of your major, and career possibilities related to your strengths, interests, and values.

CONNECT Locally & Globally

Discover ways to give back to your community, from local to global. Come to the Volunteer Fair held every September, or speak to a Career and Employment Coach at Career Services.


Volunteer with a National Organization, such as The Canadian Mental Health Association or Frontier College.


Get involved with activities outside of your major and minor. Employers like well-rounded candidates.


Attend a LinkedIn photo shoot and a LinkedIn Seminar with Career Services. Put your best (and most professional) face forward!


Keep your HireSMU Account updated with accurate contact information and most recent résumés.


Consider applying for the Co-op Program at the beginning of 2nd year (30+ credits). Gain work experience over three terms.


Visit the International Activities office for a study-abroad program or an international field study course in 2nd - 4th years.


Explore options for international internships in your area of study.

3rd Year (60-90 Credit Hours)
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BUILD Knowledge & Expertise

Familiarize yourself with the course requirements for a Psychology major as you focus on the chosen program.


Consider enrolling in a directed studies in a directed research course.


Get involved in research by volunteering on research teams - see your professors for guidance.


Visit your Academic Advisor to be sure you’re on the right track to meet graduation requirements.


Meet your Psychology Academic Advisor for help with course selection, career advice, and certifications.


 Meet the Undergraduate Program Coordinator for help in selecting a thesis supervisor for the Honours Program.


Thinking about graduate school? Contact Career Services for options and admission procedures, and begin planning for applications with your Faculty Mentor/Department Chair.

DEVELOP Essential Skills

Strive to maintain a Dean’s List GPA and be eligible to work as a tutor at the SNAP Centre to reinforce your numeracy skills.


Practice presentation skills in select upper-level Psychology classes.


Consider taking a prep course for the Graduate Record Exam.


Improve your research skills and grades by visiting the Library and using the Research-by-Appointment service for one-on-one help.


Visit the Writing Centre for workshops on Exam Writing & Preparation.


Update your Co-Curricular Record.

PARTICIPATE in Campus Life

Get to know your professors. They are excellent contacts for reference letters. Chat about your future plans for 4th year and beyond.


Attend the Research Expo. Learn from the research and critical analysis of peers and professors. Also, showcase your own research project.


Apply for summer research awards or a proctor job.


Join campus societies in your field. These provide opportunities to network with the industry and professionals.


Run for a leadership position in a campus group.


Interested in teaching? Consider applying to lead LEAP Workshops as a Peer Facilitator.


Apply for over 200 scholarship and bursary awards.


Visit the Career Development Centre for help with tactical job searches, including using social media, information interview, fine-tuning your résumé and cover letter, and practicing interview skills.

CONNECT Locally & Globally

Become a member of the Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) or the Canadian Society for Brain, Behaviour, and Cognitive Science (CSBBCS).


Consider volunteering with Immigration Services Association of Nova Scotia.


Attend the Halifax Career Fair in September and March. Discover career opportunities and employer expectations.


Let your networks know your major. Seek out potential employers for information and interviews.


Explore new internships designed to help international graduates gain experience in Nova Scotia.

4th Year (90-120 Credit Hours)
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BUILD Knowledge & Expertise

For majors, you must obtain at least twelve (12) credit-hours from Group A courses and twelve (12) credit-hours from Group B courses. Also, at least eighteen (18) credit-hours from 4000-level Psychology courses.


Consider PSYC 4445 to gain research experience or study a specialized topic in detail, while transitioning to work or graduate school.


Familiarize yourself with ethical conduct for research involving humans. Complete the Tri-Council Online Tutorial Course on Research Ethics.


Is it too late to do an Honours degree? Speak to the Undergraduate Program Coordinator about your idea.


Complete a CAPP Degree Evaluation in Banner.


Visit the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research. Discuss SMU graduate opportunities.


Contact your Academic Advisor and your Psychology Academic Advisor to ensure you are on track for graduation requirements and post-graduation plan.


Apply to graduate. Fill out an application for graduation form and submit it to the Service Centre. Get your picture taken for the yearbook.


Consider graduate schools or professional programs. Start early, and ask your professors and the Writing Centre to review your personal statement, cover letter, and applications.


Request transcripts, if required.

DEVELOP Essential Skills

Demonstrate and share your skills by considering a Psychology TA position.


Enhance your public speaking skills in Psychology seminar-style courses.


Increase your data analysis skills.


Before you graduate, do a final update of your Co-Curricular Record, and request an official copy.


Visit Career Services to prepare to clearly and persuasively articulate all you have learned at Saint Mary’s (in and out of class) to an employer.

PARTICIPATE in Campus Life

Serve as Department Student Rep. Speak to your Department Chair.


Enter your best research paper for the Academic Writing Awards.


Get recognized for your involvement in the classroom and in the Saint Mary’s community. Apply for the Student Leadership Award.


Apply for other awards, including the SMUFU scholarship.


Brush up on your Financial Literacy. Receive guidance for a successful and healthy financial future, including student loan repayment.


Your degree can open the door to many types of careers. Use Career Counselling to discover where you want to go and how best to get there.


Plan to attend Career Services’ 4-week Job Search Seminar Series before or after graduation.

CONNECT Locally & Globally

Be prepared to apply, interview, and network when school begins, to maximize your chance of receiving some job offers before graduation.


In addition to the Halifax Career Fair, attend some career fairs specific to your program. Bring your résumé. Prepare in advance to speak with recruiters and potential employers.


Apply for the Halifax Connector program. Meet with a Halifax professional in a field of your interest.


If you are a co-op student, arrange for your final work term placement early.


Are you an international student interested in staying in Canada and receiving permanent resident status? Contact the International Centre.


Get in contact with the SMU Young Alumni Association to begin your next phase as a Santamarian.


Remember, you have access to Career Services for three years post-graduation. Use these services to help you continue to get the most out of your degree.