Psychology is one of the top five occupations that will have a growing demand by 2022. But how do you become a psychologist?
What does it take to be successful in this field? Stay tuned as we explore these questions together!
FAQs about Becoming a Psychologist
1. How long will it take to become a psychologist?
It depends on the type of psychology you want to pursue and whether you have the necessary degrees. For example, many positions require at least an undergraduate degree in Psychology and either a;
- Ph.D. (Doctorate), which requires four years of schooling plus two additional years working under a supervisor
- Or a PsyD (Psychology Doctorate), which is a five-year program with three more post-doctoral fellowship training requirements
You should also consider state licensing restrictions, meaning these timelines are often lengthened significantly depending on where one lives!
2. What credentials do I need to become a psychologist?
This will depend on your chosen field and state of residence.
While an undergraduate degree might be enough, some jobs will require you to have a master’s degree or higher.
While certification is necessary for some positions, others require you to have experience working under supervision before getting certified.
Finally, you’ll need to pass at least one exam to receive your practicing license from any state.
Often, it’s the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP).
3. How much money does a psychologist make?
Psychologists can earn anywhere from $30,000 a year to $200,000. The amount you make depends on several factors such as your degree level, psychology specialization, experience in the field, who your employer is, and the location.
Steps to Becoming a Psychologist
The path to becoming a licensed psychologist can take up to eight years. Typically, you must complete at least four steps to get there.
1. Get a bachelor’s degree
If you want to be a psychologist, the first thing you should do is earn your bachelor’s degree. It can be in any subject, but it may help to major in social work or psychology since those majors are great for careers with psychologists.
2. Go for the Master’s or doctorate in psychology
Your second step after earning your bachelor’s degree in psychology will depend on your career goals and state requirements. Would you like to focus on social work, marriage therapy, or child psychology?
Another consideration to help you decide between getting a master’s or doctorate is the job opportunities. Typically, Doctoral degrees present more work opportunities and lead to higher-paying jobs.
3. Finish a post-doctoral or internship program
Upon completing a master’s or doctoral degree program in psychology, you must complete an internship, which will provide hands-on training for your future career. Most states require 1,500 to 2,000 hours of supervised professional experience and at least one year with supervision from licensed psychologists.
4. Get your practicing license
The licensing requirements for psychologists vary per state. Psychologists must meet the necessary education and professional requisites set by their respective states before taking a final exam to become licensed professionals. The ASPPB offers resources on how you can be evaluated and guidelines on your best course of action, depending on where you live or work within the US (or abroad).
Different Psychology Degrees
Psychology is vast, with many areas in which you can specialize.
You can start with an associate’s degree and go all the way up to a doctorate’s degree. Besides, you can focus on clinical science or industrial-organizational research.
Overall, there are plenty of options for those interested in pursuing this career path.
1. PsyD in Psychology
The Doctor of Psychology degree is for students more interested in providing counseling services than focusing on research. PsyD psychology programs focus more on clinical work, and the program takes four to six years to complete.
Career options include roles working directly with people in need, either as a counselor or therapist when you have your Ph.D. from an accredited university!
2. EdD in Psychology
The EdD in Psychology allows students to develop skills and knowledge that help them become better educators.
Career options for an educator with a master’s degree in psychology include being the head of school, chief academic officer, or community service manager- all positions where they can share their passion for teaching!
3. EdS in Psychology
Students who choose to enroll in the Educational Specialist (EdS) program for School Psychology will learn how to assess and diagnose children.
They can also implement targeted, evidence-based interventions that are tailored towards each child’s needs. Students typically go on this educational journey over three years while learning all of these tricks of the trade.
Why Become a Psychologist?
Psychology is a rewarding and challenging career that provides the chance to impact people’s lives. You’ll find success in helping others, have the opportunity to work less and earn more money, run your own business from home, or on the go as an entrepreneur. Also, every day as a psychologist is a new day to meet and make new friends