Although, I do not feel I am either a scholar practitioner or practitioner scholar yet, my course work at Capella University will prepare me for the journey. Keywords: scholar, practitioner, practitioner-scholar, scholar-practitioner, research ? Scholar-Practitioner Model versus Practitioner-Model and its Impact on My Professional Development Reflecting on how I might become a practitioner-scholar, I realize the importance of understanding the distinction between scholar, practitioner, scholar-practitioner and practitioner-scholar, first. Scholars are wise master in their discipline, and distinguished leaders in their field.
In the field of psychology, I view scholars primarily as one that works in the academic setting. Practitioners are professionals who work within the community or corporate setting. Practitioners work within a particular career, driven by the needs of their clients (Peterson, 2006). Scholar-practitioners and practitioner-scholars differ in how they view the application of knowledge acquired. According to Wasserman and Kram (2009), scholar-practitioners bonded by theory, seek to generate knowledge first as the way to apply knowledge to the world.
Practitioners-scholars first guide themselves by the needs of the client, and then on the knowledge drawn from research-based theories to improve clients well being (Peterson, 2006). Wasserman and Kram (2009) view the concept scholar-practitioner and practitioner-scholar as a continuum. The continuum reflects the view that as psychologist we all hold the doctrine of studying the mind, its affects on behavior and ways through research and practice, we can improve humankind (Wasserman and Kram, 2009). Reflecting on the models, I realized neither describes where I am now.
I currently view myself as a learner, a student with goals of becoming a successful practitioner-scholar. My success as a practitioner-scholar lies in acquiring knowledge of the history of psychology, becoming an analytical researcher and applying these skills to produce invaluable forms of communication. In order to become a successful practitioner-scholar, acquiring knowledge of the history of psychology is quintessential in my long-term plans to becoming a practitioner-scholar. The history of psychology in America and its role in the education setting and community at large dates back to after World War II (Peterson 2006).
Intellectually gifted scientists who were brilliant researchers became the scholars of psychology. As scholars, they taught from a scientist, research perceptive. Therefore, when psychologists begin to leave the academic setting of universities and enter professional careers, they did so as science or scholar practitioners (Peterson 2006). According to Peterson (2006), education by scientists, training as scholars, with little to no professional preparation, sparked the great debate between the two models.
The old saying, “you don’t know where you are going until you know where you’ve been”, holds true here. Embracing the foundation of psychology provides me with a greater sense of respect for those who oppose the practitioner-scholar model. However, embarking on a journey to refute the opposition is exciting, and becoming an analytical researcher along the way, will support my plan in becoming a distinguish leader in the psychology community as a practitioner-scholar. Understanding the history of psychology laid the groundwork in my plans to becoming a practitioner-scholar.
Effective research will sharpen critical thinking skills, deepen analytical skills and overall continue to increase my knowledge of the study of psychology bringing me closer to becoming a practitioner-scholar. The ability to systematically identify and implement the necessary change is critical to a practitioner-scholar (Peterson 2006). Research is necessary as a practitioner-scholar because I need to think as a researcher in the context of my environment, to effectively and critical analyze the needs of my client.
Although, research would not be a key element in my daily work as a practitioner-scholar, my ability to master research as a graduate student will lay the groundwork for how well I can effectively communicate my theories or notions learned from research and client assessments. The rigors process of graduate school, learning the principle behind theories and applying research to support my writing will create invaluable forms of communication. Drawing from my previous work experience as a real estate broker, owner of a staffing agency and currently as an advocate for children with autism, I know communication is the ultimate key to success.
Simply put, you are only as good as you can sell yourself in this day and time. As grounded, as a psychologist should be in theory, practitioners have to be flexible within the world that they work in. The earlier issues faced by psychologist after World War II, according to Peterson (2006), was their inability to relate to their clients without communicating in the form of science, which is how they learned. This issue, open the initial search for practitioner-scholars (Peterson). Words have meaning and leave a lasting impression on the world at large.
Producing quality, effective and valuable forms of communication as it relates to the context of your environment, provides for a successful career as a practitioner-scholar. Ultimately, acquisition of all these skills will bring me closer to becoming a practitioner-scholar. The history of psychology helps me understand why the models are debated and thought of as mutually exclusive. Although, I currently identify as a learner, the goals I have planned for myself directly align with the skills needed to become a practitioner-scholar.
The intense process of graduate school including the massive amounts of work, papers, research and discussion questions answer will all help me become a practitioner-scholar. My understanding of the history of psychology, analytical research skills and becoming an invaluable communicator will all be skills needed to maintain beyond graduate level studies. As a learner of this model at Capella University, I fully expect to find myself starring back at a practitioner-scholar soon, when I look in the mirror. References Peterson, D. R. (1991).
Connection and disconnection of research and practice in the education of professional.. American Psychologist, 46(4), 422. Retrieved from http://ezproxy. library. capella. edu/login? url=http://search. ebscohost. com/login. aspx? direct=true&db=aph&AN=9104223512&site=ehost-live&scope=site Wasserman, I. C. , & Kram, K. E. (2009). Enacting the scholar-practitioner role: An exploration of narratives. Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 45(1), 12-38. Retrieved from http://ezproxy. library. capella. edu/login? url=http://search. ebscohost. com/login. aspx? direct=true&db=bth&AN=36658601&site=ehost-live&scope=site