Psychologists diagnose and treat mental and behavioral disorders and provide counseling to people with various problems. They work with individuals, couples, groups, and/or families to identify and manage problems in the home, workplace, or community. Clinical psychologists often specialize in specific type of psychological treatment. Counseling psychologists provide guidance and advice in individual and group therapy sessions for changing behaviors. School psychologists specialize in the social and academic development of elementary, middle, and high school students. Some of the job responsibilities of psychologists include:
- Diagnosing and providing treatment to individuals for mental and emotional disorders
- Collaborating with physicians or social workers to help treat patients
- Providing psychological treatment and counseling for couples, groups, and families
- Conducting scientific studies of behavior and brain function
According to the BLS, employment of psychologists is projected to grow 22% from 2010 to 2020. An increasing demand for psychological services in schools, hospitals, and social service agencies, as well as among veterans and individuals with autism is stimulating this job growth. Psychologists will also be in demand to serve the mental and emotional health needs of the nation's growing senior-aged population.Read More
Job Growth for
Becoming a Psychologist
Clinical and counseling psychologists typically need a doctoral degree in psychology. Doctoral programs usually require that candidates complete an on-site internship, practicum, or residency in a clinical, counseling, or other health service setting. School psychologists must hold a master's, specialist, or doctoral degree in school psychology.
A Ph.D. in psychology qualifies individuals for teaching, research and clinical positions in a variety of industries. Psychologists with a Psy.D. degree typically work to provide direct mental health services in applied settings. A doctor of education or Ed.D. degree is a good option for school psychologists. Ph.D. and Psy.D. candidates usually begin their program of study with a bachelor's degree.
A sampling of classes you may take in a doctoral program in psychology, drawn from course listings for Walden University's doctor of philosophy in psychology with a clinical psychology specialization, include the following:
- Social Psychology
- Qualitative Reasoning and Analysis
- Personality Assessment
- Clinical Psychopharmacology
In most states, using the title "psychologist" requires licensure or certification and all practicing psychologists must be state-licensed or certified. State requirements can be found on the website for the Association of State and Provincial Licensing Boards. Licensure or certification for school psychologists comes from the state's department of education. State requirements for licensure or certification for school psychologists in available from the National Association of School Psychologists.