James Madison University

Student Responsibilities

Students with a cumulative 3.0 GPA are preferred. Seniors are given preference, with Juniors accepted if there are open spaces. A Junior may be considered in the same group as seniors if the Junior plans to do an honors thesis or is planning to spend part of their senior year abroad. Interested Juniors of any status are encouraged to apply, however, as a way of planning for their senior year and becoming acquainted with the course coordinator.

Students must apply and be selected for the course. Typically more students apply than can be accommodated. The application deadline is generally the third week of the semester. (Thus, a January deadline if field placement is taken in the fall and a September deadline for field placement in the spring semester). Check with the course instructor for specific deadlines which can vary from one semester to another. This information may also be noted in the E-mail News and on the electronic sign.

Students who are selected for enrollment in Psychology 495 choose three sites and several alternates for an interview. Interviews are set. The sites will then make offers to the students. The student can choose a placement from the offers received. No site is required to take students or to take a particular number. If none of the initial sites are suitable, interviews can be arranged at additional sites until a suitable site placement is found. Thus, site selection is a competitive process similar to a job interview.

After the initial group of students is placed, students on the waiting list can be matched, if possible and if the course still has room, with openings at remaining sites.

Agency descriptions are available on-line at the Psychology Department website. Prospective students should review the available placements prior to their initial interview with the course coordinator.

Students are expected to demonstrate a capacity for mature, professional behavior. Students will be expected to complete readings, reports, and other assignments given by the coordinator and supervisor. Since Field Placement is a "capstone" course, requirements include an APA style paper integrating the student’s experience and an hour-long presentation. Please see syllabus for a list of specific requirements. Students are expected to read and to be familiar with the Ethical Principles of Psychologists. The coordinator and the agency supervisor will jointly determine a program of activities individually prescribed to meet the needs of the student. The student will be included in this process.