I have a 500 GB hard drive, and I need more space - I want to go up to 1TB of space.
Is it possible to swap out hard drives and carry all my installed software, documents, images, settings, etc. over to the new hard drive?
Yes, it is possible!
Word of warning if you are using Adobe products: do remember to deactivate them before moving to the new disk and running their software; you may need to do this with other software that has stringent licensing requirements.
Otherwise, all you need to do is:
You can make an exact copy of your internal HD via Carbon Copy Cloner (freeware). I recommend that you first check your MacBook Pro Model if you can use a standard 2,5" SATA HD. Then you just have to:
For disassembling your MacBook Pro you should check out several model-specific Guides you can find f.e. at iFixit.com.