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PSY 1010 - General Psychology: Assignment

Psychology in My Life Writing Assignment


To measure students’ ability to:

  1. Explain major psychological concepts, theories, and perspectives.
  2. Read and describe research methods used in a peer-reviewed journal to explain behavior.
  3. Apply psychological concepts to personal, social, and organizational problems.
  4. Use information literacy skills to locate appropriate research and other relevant community resources and materials to create an informative essay.


Students will write an essay of 750-1000 words (not including title and reference pages) in which you analyze and synthesize psychological concepts apply them to your speculations concerning your career and your future life.  In the essay, you will need to clearly identify your career and why you have chosen it and then explain how what you have learned in psychology will enhance your career and life. 


This assignment is worth a possible 100 points.


The PSY 1010 essay will require you to use your critical thinking skills and your writing ability to address a question of primary importance:  How will you use psychology in your career and in your life?  In order to be able to successfully answer this question, you must be able to analyze and synthesize psychological concepts and be able to apply them to your speculations concerning your career and your future life.  In your essay, you will need to clearly identify your career and why you have chosen it and then explain how what you have learned in psychology will enhance your career and your life. 

Your paper will make use of two sources:

  1. The first source is your textbook itself. You will select FOUR PSYCHOLOGY concepts/topics from at least two different chapters to focus on in your paper.
  2. The second source is an article from a refereed (peer-reviewed) journal (preferably an American Psychological Association journal published within the last five years) which addresses one of the psychological concepts or topics relevant to your intended career. You will want to find an article which is research (data-driven) based and which uses the experimental or correlational method.  The article must have the traditional sections associated with a research study (abstract, introduction (literature review), methods, results, discussion, references). That means no reviews of literature or other types of articles. If you are not sure, check with your instructor.

In discussing information from your text, you must reference the appropriate chapters, identify and define each relevant concept, and explain why the psychological concepts you focus on are or will be relevant to your career and your future life.  You will be expected to use specific examples of how the concepts will be relevant to your career. Merely saying a concept is important is not sufficient. You must be specific about how it will benefit you in your career.

For the journal article, you will be integrating the article and its content into your paper to highlight its significance to your chosen field of study rather than merely citing it.  You will be using the journal article to discuss its relationship to one of the concepts or topics you have selected as important to your career.  Note that you will be discussing the article and the implication of its findings for your career in some detail, not merely mentioning it in passing. 

Your paper must be done using APA formatting style which includes:

  1. A title page with the title in the middle of the page
  2. Page numbering in the upper right corner beginning with 1 on the title page
  3. In-text citations in APA format (that means the citation follows either the quote or the paraphrase of the information provided)
  4. A reference page at the end (called References) in APA format

Professional Journals

What is a professional journal? 

A professional journal is also known as a peer reviewed or scholarly journal. A professional journal publishes research articles by professionals in a particular field. Research articles are often lengthy and may contain tables and graphs.

What IS NOT a professional journal?

A newspaper article, an entry in a dictionary or encyclopedia, an article from a magazine (Time, Newsweek, Psychology Today, etc.) or an article you got from a website. (To access professional articles on websites, you usually have to have a subscription to the institution that publishes the journal. Some may be accessed for free, but usually it is the older back issues.)

How do you find these professional journals in the library's databases?

See the section titled "Databases- Searching" in this research guide. It has an example on how to search for this type of article.