Running Head: REFLECTIVE PAPER
The report reflection mainly centers on the educational experience in my psychology
program journey, utilizing the Program Goals as the organizational paradigm. Education is
merely not perceived as an entry to a career, but learning experiences that should enrich the
individuals” lives and teach them facts and lessons applicable in people’s social and personal
lives. My experience in the psychology program at the university has not merely brought me
closer to attaining my degree. Still, also it has enabled me to acquire certain applicable
knowledge, and my learning has completely transformed me. Further, the knowledge
regarding the research and psychological history, research methodology, statistics, and ethics
would essentially be advantageous for my future education and psychological career. Besides,
the numerous researches on human behavior and cultural diversity would certainly influence
my relations with other people either within the workplace or personal level. The program
also necessitated creative and critical thinking that is advantageous to the psychological
career. Overall, the coursework and content done within the Psychology Program has enabled
me to meet all the set goals, besides acquiring knowledge and skills, which would be
essential for my future career, education, and individual life.
Goal 1: Apply major concepts, theoretical perspectives, empirical findings, and
historical trends in psychology to prepare for graduate study or careers in which
psychological training is relevant.
In the theories of personality senior seminar in Psychology class, I acquired
knowledge and learned concerning the complex attributes that impact personalities and
corresponding behaviors of individuals. The main concepts we examined encompassed
assessing the personality traits, genetic and environmental attributes, which might affect
people’s characteristics and common behaviors linked to various characteristics. Besides, the
comprehensive learning in this unit needed the contextual knowledge of the historical trends
and primary concepts within personality study and psychology, and the capability
understanding the core theoretical views and findings in the field. These aspects of
psychology would contribute to my future studies in psychology and career path. For instance,
we examined history and theories starting from Freud to Rogers to biological viewpoints in
the course. All of the takeaways helped me understand that none of such perceptions are as
intricate and all-inclusive as required. Also, the course informed my understanding of how
complex people are and the several attributes that impact the personality of people and how
they behave. Being capable of comprehending that any quantity of attributes could possibly
shape the way an individual perceives and behaves is significant to be capable of working
efficiently with other individuals within the future. The knowledge acquired from the unit
would aid me in interacting with people in my career path and offer the basis for my future
studies in psychology. Therefore, acknowledging the intricacy of behavior would be
significant for my career path, studies, and interactions. Due to this unit, I have acquired a
significant gratitude for the intricacy of behavior and better understand why individuals
behave in a particular manner.
Additionally, in clinical psychology, I established a deeper understanding on the
history of psychology before exploring the factors and concepts of clinical practice of
education. It is significant to be aware of where the present perception within the field is at,
though it is similarly crucial to comprehend the history of psychology. In my perception of
psychological history, the era that held the most interest was from World War II to the
present. In the course of the second world war, posttraumatic stress disorder was first
recognized, hence forming the beginning of the diagnosis and treatment of the disorder
(Connell, 2016). Various councils were developed in the course of the war to assist different
families and soldiers to effectively cope up with the war-period stress, which later
transformed the psychology course within the US and impacted the psychological field in
other nations. The perspectives and knowledge I acquired from undergoing the UMUC’s
clinical psychology unit has effectively equipped me with fundamental skills for my further
studies and career path within the psychology field.
On the other hand, abnormal psychology, which is a course concerned with mental
disorders that helped me comprehend psychological disorders, is considered the main part of
psychological study. The knowledge I acquired in this unit has equipped me for my future
studies and career. I am expecting to begin my master’s of the social work program, in which
my responsibilities will be focused on clinical social work centered on mental health. The
skills I acquired concerning mental illnesses would adequately prepare me for the needed
coursework, like the course that focuses particularly on trauma and psychopathology.
Additionally, I opt in acquiring a part-time internship for the period of attaining my master
degree, which will be centered on mental health. Hence, prior information on psychology and
mental illnesses generally would aid me in achieving the objectives of my responsibilities in
the mental health setting.
The main study that influenced me greatly was by Greene (2017), which offers the
therapeutic perspective. In the article, he describes Rogers’ perspective on the personcentered approach, which illustrate the method to facilitate development in others. The
individual applying this tactic should be sincere to facilitate constructive development for the
clients. Also, he illustrates the requirement for the transparency for therapists. The article also
illustrates that the people using the person-centered strategy as displaying absolute positive
regard and empathic comprehension of various attributes of life. The description of Rogers of
the client-therapist interaction encouraged me to attain more knowledge regarding
humanitarianism and the whole school of psychology. In the opinion of Rogers, I grew a
sincere interest in the psychological theories, which had not been experienced. This article
that I exposed in the course my doing my coursework on clinical psychology made a
significant impact on me and would assist me in preparing for my career path of being a
Goal 2: Apply basic knowledge of research methodology, statistics, measurement,
guidelines, ethical standards, laws, and regulations to design, participate in, and
evaluate research in various contexts.
The PSY300, a study method in psychology, is a contributory in offering detailed
information concerning research methodology, statistics, and ethical standards. We began the
class by acquiring knowledge regarding the essential psychological scientific research, like
the distinction between non and experimental research. From the class, I learned that the
experimental research methods assess if the casual correlation existing between variables, in
which one variable might or might not result in certain changes to the other. Thus, the
researchers often manipulate the independent variable, randomly select research participants,
and control others to the conditions of the research. On the other hand, the non-experimental
study does not require either independent variable manipulation or arbitrary assignments of
the study respondents. Hence, this research method includes correlational, quasi-experimental,
and qualitative research (Elkis‐Abuhoff, 2015). We learned concepts that would be essential
for my future career consists of statistical strategies and tests, research designs, and ethics.
Further, the skills I attained from the course text by Paul Price that we used in our
final project. The initial stage of the project entailed designing research questions, from a preset class data on the reactions that entailed assessing if a single variable impacts the reaction
duration. We, as a class, came up with posters and paper work describing the theoretical
study experiment. I opted to take my last project assignment on the subject, ‘The Effects of
Psychological Stress on Reaction Time.’ It was essential to start the documentation with
assessing the accessible literatures on the subject, describing the research rationale, and the
detailed recommendation for preceding studies on the topic (Vega, 2013). The documentation
was supposed to be in form of journal article and included an IRM form for the research. This
needed comprehensive information of the process of writing a research proposal. The poster
detailed the essential components of the process of research for the topic I selected. Besides
the research, methods, and ethics skills, we were also required to gain the knowledge
regarding statistical calculations and design suitable graphics for the presentation of the study.
Goal 3: Apply knowledge of human behavior to inform personal growth, communicate
effectively, solve problems, make decisions, and interact with individuals, communities,
The unit that aided me in meeting this objective is the social psychology, in which I
attained knowledge concerning human behavior in various backgrounds by assessing the
common case researches and examining the intricacy of attributes that impact human
behavior, particularly in teams. The study we examined in this unit, which had an utmost
influence on me, was carried out by social psychologists Philip Zimbardo, that was conducted
within 1971 within Stanford Prison (Le Texier, 2019). In the experiment, the physically and
psychologically healthy male average study respondents were arbitrarily selected to one of
the two teams, either prisoners or prison security. The research showed that the respondents
quickly adapted to the novel responsibilities in the ‘prison’ that Zimbardo and friends opted to
shut down the research earlier. The research’s findings depicted the impact of responsibilities
on their behavior and described how atrocities could happen in the systems, particularly when
one group has more power than the other. The research offered an in-depth understanding
about human behavior, particularly the significance of roles. Additionally, the extensive
analysis of social psychology regarding the prison experiment was instructionally and
individually significant. This experiment helped me in attaining more knowledge on the
criminal justice system, and the experiment inspired me to provide mental health treatment
within prison environments.
Another course that aided me in applying the information of the individual’s behavior
to execute different responsibilities is the clinical psychology. The last task for the class
needed a case research and diagnosis of DSM-V with adequate evidence to support the
proposed diagnosis. Nevertheless, compared to other projects, this necessitated more
comprehensive knowledge and research on people’s behavior since, in this case, the analysis
subject was not imaginary. I researched and documented the case study on Dylan Klebold,
the main contributor on the shoot out encountered in Columbine catastrophe. To adequately
collect relevant information and prepare for the task, I assessed numerous documentations
and dependable accounts regarding the catastrophe, and performed a background check on
Dylan. After my assessment, I established that Dylan showed signs of schizotypal personality
disorder since he portrayed certain symptoms to quantify the diagnosis (Kirchner et al., 2018).
For instance, he showed sequence of odd speech traits associated with SPD, like creating
words such as ‘unexistable’ as examined from his writings. I considered this task an issue to
be resolved, purposely selecting Dylan since I am particularly interested in comprehending
the mass shooters’ psychology and their perception and averting additional tragedies.
Goal 4: Use critical and creative thinking, skeptical inquiry, and (where possible)
appropriate technology and the scientific approach to solve problems related to current
and emerging trends within the domains of psychology.
In unit of abnormal psychology, creative and critical thinking was a necessity in the
completion of various coursework projects. Most essentially, the last coursework entailed a
case study in which we were to diagnose fictitious personnel with a mental challenge. I opted
to base the report on the main character, Oskar, from my favorite novel, Extremely Loud and
Incredibly Close. The character depicted certain symptoms of PTSD after the death of his
father. The process of diagnosis included re-reading the novel and detailing the notes on all
the symptoms that Oskar portrayed linking it to the signs of PTSD. After which, I organized
the notes and contrasted it to the diagnosis of DSM-V before making the conclusions on the
character’s PTSD’s symptoms. For instance, one of the primary standards for the diagnosis of
PTSD is for the people to insistently avert any stimuli, which are in certain cases linked to the
traumatic events. The character I assessed constantly avoided all the tall buildings, the
locations that he considered as possible future targets of terrorists. Going through this project
and the necessary diagnosis needed critical and creative thinking, and the information
concerning the modalities od treatment to evaluate the ideal treatment for the fictitious
character in the study. Additionally, the abnormal psychology knowledge and the application
of study articles on the symptoms and treatment of PTSD helped me in comprehending that
the most effective form of treatment for the fictitious character is the use of cognitive
behavior therapy. Moreover, this class provided the opportunity to learn to think and assess
behavior, particularly the ones that are linked to the present critical psychological disorders.
The unit, Biological Basis of Behavior, enabled me acquire substantial information
regarding the present and developing trends in the psychology field. The research that mostly
influenced me regarding the developing trends was carried out by the researcher in the
University of Parma in Italy (Mara, 2017). The team established that most primates possess
mirror neurons, which are the brain cells that dictates when the animal executes an action and
when the animal is required to observe others executing a similar action. The research
following the speculations from the researchers caught my attention, whereby most of the
researchers speculated that mirror neurons exist within people too. Hence, possibly the faulty
functioning of, or even inadequacy of, such neurons is the main reason for the conditions like
autism. Although none of such assumptions have been validated, the likelihoods are
Goal 5: Value diversity and different perspectives, tolerate ambiguity, and act ethically
to communicate appropriately with various socio-cultural and international populations.
In the personality theories, I acquired that it is significant to comprehend the primary
concepts, constructs, and ways of measuring the personality attributes within a different
culture, and also to evaluate how the measurements and concepts can or cannot translate into,
or be applicable in a different culture. The knowledge acquired in the class helped me in
reflecting on how people’s personality is directly linked to the cultural backgrounds that the
people are raised in. Also, we assessed differences in cultural standards, which might be
construed as differences in behavior (Kirmayer, Adeponle & Dzokoto, 2018). The factors and
things considered tolerable within one culture are not necessarily tolerable to others; hence it
is perceived significant for the individuals to be knowledgeable and tolerant of distinctions in
cultures. Thus, I learned various approaches that facilitates tolerance and sensitive to cultural
variety within the workplace in the class. Further, it accomplishes this; it is essential to
respect the cultural beliefs and norms of other people and enhance communication mainly
through respecting and acknowledging distinction in culture.
In the last program for theories of personality, the instructor expected us to select
about five sections that we perceived to be more interesting from the Funder’s textbook and
offer comprehensive descriptions, offering novel evidence concerning the subjects examined
from different scholarly sources. Thus, one chapter I selected to describe was mainly
concerned with cross-cultural psychology, which mainly focuses on viewing people in a nonjudgmental and accepting manner. The cross-cultural strategy highlighted the significance of
understanding that the certainty is often not the ‘proper’ option; rather than, we must attempt
to attain the concept of what other people perceive as certainty. Hence, people should avert
most misunderstandings, which could happen between people of various cultures. Therefore,
the class allowed me to effectively use the knowledge in enhancing my capability to interact
with people with various cultures effectively.
The values linked to this objective that I have acquired in other units at the UMUC
have enabled me to better operate with people of varying cultures within the workplace.
Moreover, whereas attaining my degree, I have worked as a special education co-instructor
and equally at a particular job. In these jobs, I worked in a team with various people in
several settings. Further, in high school, I intermingled with both the learners that suffer from
different conditions like autism plus other people, and with at-risk learners, who have
emotional complications instead of developmental or cognitive challenges, and other people
with a unique populace. Also, I considered the numerous attributes that shape people’s
personalities and reserve judgment. Overall, the acquired knowledge through the psychology
program journey would essentially aid my relations with the clients in the future.
My experience and wide knowledge and skills attained from the psychology program
will help me in my future studies and careers. Most significantly, I will be also leaving with a
solid determination to continue psychological learning and training concerning the
psychological field to enable my interaction with others. Hence, the attained experience from
the program and working on the coursework units have been valuable and has positively
transformed me with all the courses and coursework I have completed. Therefore, I am
looking forward to effectively taking care of other people’s and my interest plus
understanding their behavior. Helping other people need a comprehension of the intricacies
surrounding individuals’ behavior; hence the psychological program has enabled me to take
the significant step in my future career. Thus, my experience with the program has been
extremely valuable and would essentially influence my future career and studies in the
Connell, C. L. (2016). PTSD in the 20th-century American military: Its diagnosis, effects,
treatment, and management, with a focus on the Vietnam War. Bound Away: The
Liberty Journal of History, 1(2), 7.
Elkis‐Abuhoff, D. (2015). Quantitative investigations: Alternative choices. The Wiley
Handbook of Art Therapy, 636-643.
Greene, R. R. (2017). Carl Rogers and the person-centered approach. In Human Behavior
Theory& Social Work Practice (pp. 113-132). Routledge.
Kirchner, S. K., Roeh, A., Nolden, J., & Hasan, A. (2018). Diagnosis and treatment of
schizotypal personality disorder: evidence from a systematic review. NPJ
Schizophrenia, 4(1), 1-18.
Kirmayer, L. J., Adeponle, A., & Dzokoto, V. A. A. (2018). Varieties of global psychology:
Cultural diversity and constructions of the self. In Global psychologies (pp. 21-37).
Palgrave Macmillan, London.
Le Texier, T. (2019). Debunking the Stanford Prison Experiment. American
Psychologist, 74(7), 823.
Mara, D. (2017). The function of mirror neurons in the learning process. In MATEC Web of
Conferences (Vol. 121, p. 12012). EDP Sciences.
Vega, J. (2013). The Effects of Psychological Stress on Reaction Time. Nanopdf.com.
retrieved from: https://nanopdf.com/download/the-effects-of-psychological-stress-onreaction_pdf