Some students automatically assume that going to a bigger college is better, but once you look at some of the benefits of small colleges for Master’s in Psychology students, you might rethink where you go to grad school. Smaller colleges may have fewer than 100 students enrolled in its doctoral and master programs, which lets you spend more time working with your teachers and forming the type of relationships that you’ll remember for years to come.
More Financial Aid
Graduate school can easily cost $20,000 to $30,000 a year, especially if you chose a private college. Student loans and grants may not cover the total cost of your education, but if you attend a smaller school, you’ll have access to more financial aid. Colleges often offer advising jobs in fields like research and teaching. As a research assistant, the college pays you to help a professor with his or her studies. Teaching positions pay you for actually teaching undergrad classes, grading papers and assigning work. A job as a TA or an RA may even come with full tuition and a stipend for your expenses.
One of the biggest benefits of small colleges for Master’s in Psychology students is that these schools often offer more in the way of research opportunities. Even if you don’t take on an RA job, you will have the chance to conduct research of your own. You may even do research into studies or other topics and then test your theories on undergrad students in the program. Larger colleges often have limited funds available and limit the number of students who can do research each year, but a smaller school may have opportunities available for all psychology students.
A big difference between a larger and smaller college is the number of students in each class. When you attend a larger school, you might take classes that have 30 to 50 students competing for the attention of professors. Making yourself stand out is next to impossible. Smaller colleges limit the number of students who can enroll each year, and you may have just 10 or fewer students in each of your classes. This helps you form professional and personal connections with all your professors, which may lead to them writing you recommendations for a doctoral program or helping you find a job.
As you look over the benefits of small colleges for Master’s in Psychology students, you may want to think about how professors will evaluate your work. Larger colleges sometimes have assistants who grade papers and professors who care more about their research or next book than they do the work their students do. According to U.S. News & World Report, a key benefit of attending a smaller school is that professors spend more time grading the work of their students, evaluating their work and ensuring that they can keep up with the demands of the program.
A Master’s in Psychology can help you find work in certain fields within psychology, and many programs give you the chance to work directly with patients and clients in supervised settings. Some of the benefits of small colleges for Master’s in Psychology students over larger campus include getting you better evaluations, giving you access to more research opportunities and helping you pay for college.