Master Degree In Psychology Jobs – Whether it’s an addiction counselor helping a patient, a startup trying to figure out what drives consumers, or a teacher wondering how best to reach their struggling student, the importance of psychology and in today’s world can be seen almost everywhere. With that in mind, you may be asking yourself, “what job might require a psychology degree?” The short answer is: certain apprenticeships or consultants who treat patients – but more on that later. Whether you want to earn a doctorate, earn a teaching degree, or become a psychologist, taking psychology classes—and in some cases, earning a psychology degree—can be an integral part of helping you achieve your goals.
If you’re interested in working in psychology but aren’t sure you want to pursue a psychology degree, there are still options! You may be surprised to learn that some psychology-related jobs don’t always require a psychology degree. To help you think about your options, let’s look at the education requirements and salary options for various professions directly or indirectly related to psychology.
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You probably won’t be surprised at the many jobs that require a psychology degree. For example, it makes sense that psychologists and psychiatrists get a bachelor’s degree in psychology. But did you know that post-secondary teachers—which include psychology professors—must earn a doctorate in their field to teach at the university level
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? Below are examples of career options in which you will likely need a psychology degree to qualify.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), educational requirements for postsecondary teachers will vary between educational institutions. However, professors who work at four-year universities and colleges are more likely to be required to obtain a doctorate in their field. Two-year colleges or technical schools may hire teachers with only a master’s degree, but competition from candidates who already have a Ph.D. they can potentially make it more difficult to get apprenticeships. If part of your job involves preparing students for psychology careers that require licensure, certification, or registration, you may benefit from obtaining the same type of psychology credential.
Educational requirements for psychologists vary by specialty. For example, most clinical, counseling, and research psychologists must have a Ph.D. in psychology or a doctorate in psychology (Psy.D.). While a doctorate is a research degree that ends with an exam and a thesis based on your original research—the Psy.D. is a clinical degree often based on practical work and examinations. In both cases, students may be required to complete a one-year internship as part of the doctoral program.
If you are interested in becoming a school psychologist, you may want to obtain an advanced or specialist degree (such as an Ed.S. degree), a doctorate in school psychology, or in some cases a master’s degree. If your goal is to become an industrial-organizational psychologist, a master’s degree in psychology may be sufficient, possibly covering topics including industrial-organizational psychology, research design, and statistics.
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Regardless of specialty, all psychologists must also obtain a license or certification from the state in which they work.
Rehabilitation counselors generally must obtain a master’s degree in rehabilitation counseling or a related field. A bachelor’s degree in most fields is sufficient for entry into a master’s program that includes the skills, theories, and techniques necessary to provide effective mental health counseling. Experience or supervised training such as an internship may also be required. A key component of training is learning how to assess client needs, implement employment strategies, and understand the medical and psychological aspects of a particular disability. Some jobs may also require a certificate or license depending on where you live.
To qualify as a mental health counselor, you generally need a master’s degree in psychology, counseling, social work, marriage and family therapy, or a related field. Counseling programs are designed to help students learn how to recognize the symptoms of mental and emotional disorders and how to use effective strategies to cope with these disorders. A bachelor’s degree in most fields can be acceptable for entry into a master’s program. You must also be licensed to practice, which requires a master’s degree; 2000 to 4000 hours of supervised clinical experience; has a state recognized exam; and annual continuing education courses.
Since psychiatrists are actually doctors who specialize in the provision of mental health, the educational requirements are significant. According to the American Psychiatric Association (APA), to qualify as a psychiatrist, you must complete graduate school, medical school and a four-year residency in psychiatry. In some cases, you may also be required to complete additional specialized community training. You must also pass written and oral exams to obtain a state license to practice medicine before completing your hospital residency training. This is followed by at least three additional years of psychiatric residency before you qualify to take a voluntary written and oral examination by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology to become a board-certified psychiatrist.
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When it comes to jobs that probably don’t require a degree in psychology, there are more options than you might expect. For example, according to the BLS, fields such as substance abuse and behavioral disorders can allow you to practice with a wide range of educational experience, including anything from a high school diploma and certificate to a master’s degree.
. Listed below are four careers that do not specifically require a degree in psychology before entering the field.
According to the BLS, it is common for psychiatric technicians to begin this career after earning a post-secondary certificate in psychiatric technology or mental health technology. These types of programs can often be found at community colleges or technical schools and include courses in psychology, biology and counseling. Certificate and associate programs can last from one semester to two years and may include supervised work experience. However, the minimum educational requirement to become a psychiatric technician is a high school diploma or equivalent.
The minimum educational requirement for the profession of social worker is a high school diploma; however, some employers may prefer candidates with relevant work experience or post-secondary education. To that end, earning a certificate or associate degree in social services, gerontology, or the social or behavioral sciences could benefit this career. If you choose to enroll in a humanitarian services diploma program, you can learn skills including how to observe and interview patients; how to implement treatment plans; and how to work with people in crisis situations. Your studies may also include a fieldwork component.
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Education and training requirements for childcare workers vary between countries. Some require workers to have a high school diploma, while others have no educational requirements for entry-level positions. However, if you are interested in a higher position, getting a post-secondary education or early childhood education can help you qualify. At a minimum, Head Start workers must be enrolled in a program that earns them some type of post-secondary degree in early childhood education or child development. Some states require child care centers to be licensed and/or workers to have a nationally recognized certification, such as the Child Development Associate (DCA) offered by the Council on Professional Recognition. We recommend that you review the specific licensing and certification requirements for your state.
Educational requirements for substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors can vary from a high school diploma and certificate to a master’s degree – depending on where you work, your role, state regulation and your level of responsibility. The more education you have, the more services you can likely provide to clients, such as one-on-one consultations. All substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors in private practice must be licensed. Licensing requirements vary depending on where you live, but all states require a master’s degree; supervised clinical experience; that you have passed a state-recognized exam; and continuing education annually. For more information, contact the State Council.
When it comes to jobs for psychology majors still in school, it makes sense to consider positions that can help you gain relevant experience in the field. Applying for psychology internships in private practices, clinics, hospitals, rehabilitation facilities or mental health centers is a great place to start. Check with your school’s psychology department and student career center for relevant internship listings, search online, and use your personal and professional contacts both in person and through social media sites like LinkedIn. Another option that will help you gain valuable experience is to work as a teaching assistant for a psychology professor. Ask your psychology professors if any of them are looking for help or have a colleague who needs it.
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