The employment outlook for careers in psychology looks good now and in the foreseeable future. The constant references to mental health issues are putting these workers in constant demand. Although the overall employment outlook looks positive, the actual growth will also demand on the area of psychology in which an individual is trained. Here is some information on psychology careers as well as training required to join this rewarding field.
Employment Outlook for Psychologist Careers
The employment outlook for psychologists varies not only by the type of psychologist an individual is but also the place of employment. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) did predict that psychologists overall could expect a job growth of 14 percent from 2016 to 2026. While industrial-organizational psychologists were only predicted to see an eight percent job growth, school psychologists are expected to experience a 14 percent growth.
Wages for psychologists also vary by specialty and place of employment. As of May 2016, psychologists earned a median annual wage of $75,230 with the wages ranging from $41,000 to more than $121,000. Years of training and certifications also play a role in wage potential. Surprisingly enough, clinical and school psychologists, of which there is the highest demand, are in the lower end of the wages.
Types of Psychologist Careers
Psychology is a vast field that offers many areas of specialization. Below are some of the different types of psychologists a student may choose to become through study.
• School psychologist
• Clinical psychologist
• Community psychologist
• Engineering psychologist
• Educational psychologist
• Industrial/Organizational psychologist
• Child psychologist
• Developmental psychologist
• Forensic psychologist
The American Psychological Association predicts that the psychologists who will have the most positive career outlooks are those working in the areas of neuropsychology, geropsychology and I/O psychology.
Training Required for Psychologist Careers
Becoming a psychologist requires a lot of education. Industrial-organizational psychologists and some counselors can start their careers with just a master’s degree, but most counseling, clinical, research and school psychologists must have a doctoral degree. They can choose from one of two doctoral degrees.
• Ph.D. in Psychology – This research degree requires the student to write a research-based dissertation and pass a comprehensive exam.
• Psy.D, (Doctor of Psychology) –This clinical degree requires the student to pass an examination and complete practical work.
Candidates pursuing careers as clinical, counseling or school psychologists must earn advanced degrees and complete a one-year internship. All the states require psychologists be licensed, which generally involves passing the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology. In most cases, the aspiring psychologist must have from one to two years of professional experience to be eligible for licensure.
Other licensing requirements vary from state to state. Information on a specific state’s requirements can be found through the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards. Certification is also a requirement for candidates interested in working as psychologists. The American Board of Professional Psychology offers specialty certification exams in 15 areas of psychology.
Psychology is important in many areas of our lives from research on life-threatening diseases and being able to study the human mind to helping troubled youth. It’s also an important career choice because it offers so many areas of specialization. These are just a few of the reasons why psychology careers continue to have a good employment growth.