Schooling for neuropsychology

F. Frank LeFever flefever at
Mon Jan 6 23:01:56 EST 1997

In <32CDAA28.24C1 at> Steve Sperry <ssperry at>
>I am a student at James Madison University and would like to find out
>how to approach entering the field of neuropsychology.  Particularly
>I should major in Psychology and then go to grad school or med school
>study the biologics of the field, or to major in bio and then study
>psychologics in grad school.  Any Suggestions?
"Neuropsychology" as an area of research is practiced by some
psychologists, some neurologists and some others, using tools of their
special disciplines in collaboration with others.  "Neuropsychologists"
are increasingly Clinical Neuropsychologists but many of us still
include experimental research as an important part of our activities.

To practice as a Clinical Neuropsychologist, one must be a
Psychologist, so the choice is clear (if this is your intent): prepare
for admission to a doctoral program in psychology, at a place which has
a neuropsychology program.

I would suggest the minimum undergrad psychology required for grad
admission--experimental psych, statistics? 1-2 more?  Learning, memory,
perception?  Much of it will be repeated in your first year of grad
school!  Take this opportunity to do what undergrads do well: absorb an
enormous amount of basic science & math tools--physiology,
neuroanatomy, etc., etc.

Depending on the grad program, you may be abler to build on this with
grad courses outside the psych department, but if nothing else this
will let you get a lot more out of the psych "neuro" courses in the
neuropsych program.

If you DO go to med school, you will almost certainly earn mmore
money--but may be handicapped intellectually...  (i.e. re experimental
procedure, behavior theory, cognitive theory, etc.) And maybe
handicapped motivationally: your time will be too valuable for

For up-to-date (and more systematic, more authoritative) advice re
neuropsych grad programs, call American Psychological Association in
Washington DC (use directory assistance. 555-1212!) and ask to be put
in touch with Division 40.

Also, contact International Neuropsychological Society:

ins at

Frank LeFever
New York Neuropsychology Group

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