The master's program in Industrial-Organizational Psychology at UWF is unique in our provision for a final integrative experience in the application of psychology. The information in this document is provided for students in the Industrial-Organizational Psychology track. We will discuss the purpose and the nature of the internship experience and the procedures by which a student finds a placement and works with faculty to complete the internship and the accompanying internship paper.
Prior to or early in your internship, you will discuss your choice of internship option with your committee. This plan should be approved by the faculty members of your internship committee before you begin work on the internship. This approval is formally granted on the Internship Project Form which your committee members sign; often this occurs at a meeting with your committee members just prior to your internship. Both options require an integrative paper that summarizes and offers a critique of the internship experience.
Although the content and style of internship papers vary, the typical paper must include information in the following areas:
In recent semesters, our students have completed internships in both private- and public-sector organizations. (Click on the link above to view a list of internship sites). Placements have occurred across a variety of industries including technology, manufacturing, consulting, health care, banking, vocational rehabilitation, military, civil service, and transportation. Interns have worked in locations across the United States and even in other countries.
Our program requires completion of either a thesis or an internship. Internships will be most useful for students who expect to enter the job market immediately after graduation, and students who have not been employed previously. On the other hand, students who plan to apply to Ph.D. programs will benefit from the creative research experience of completing a master's thesis. Other students choose to complete theses when their current regular employment prevents them from accepting temporary employment as an intern. Of course, some students choose to complete both a thesis and an internship. In this case, the student may petition for acceptance of the thesis in lieu of the internship paper/portfolio.
Talk with your academic advisor (and other faculty members) about your preparation for an internship and the type of placement you'd like. Also discuss this with the I-O Concentration Coordinator, who will often have information about possible placements or be able to assist you in locating an internship site. Complete the Application for I-O Internship (obtained from the School of Psychological and Behavioral Sciences or the Concentration Coordinator) and give three copies to the I-O track coordinator, along with two copies of your resume. A project or research proposal is not necessary at this point. (One copy of your application with resume will be placed in your file, one goes to your advisor, and the third with resume is retained by the Coordinator.) This should be done early in the semester before you want to begin your internship, certainly at least six weeks prior to registration.