Psychology Careers: Comprehensive Guide on Finding Jobs, Internships, Volunteering, and Training

Author: Shrima Chudal

Last Updated: January 11, 2024

Psychology Careers: Comprehensive Guide on Finding Jobs, Internships, Volunteering, and Training

The opportunities and career in psychology is increasing for the modern generation. In the post pandemic world, many psychological and mental health issues have emerged and so the demands of psychologist and mental health experts. If you are psychology and mental health aspirant, this might be the time to strive for a step ahead.

The term ‘Psychology’ is a broad term in itself and a single definition doesn’t justify the array of meaning it holds. The definition of psychology differs from one author to another. However, an in-depth study of the mind of humans and animals in the easiest way to understand Psychology.

Psychology is simply a branch of science that deals with the study of mind and mental states of humans and other animals along with their nature of behavior, actions and personality.

What degrees do psychology careers have?

A student pursuing or planning to pursue a career or jobs in psychology will have the option to study 4 different levels of psychology degrees. The first one is the Associate degree followed by the Bachelor’s degree, Master’s degree and a Doctoral degree in psychology.

What are the career option for a psychology student after completing an associate-level degree in psychology?

An associate degree is a 2-year undergraduate program commonly available in the community colleges. After the completion of  an associate degree students enroll for the bachelor’s degree in universities because only having an associate degree doesn’t get you qualified for entry level jobs in most of the cases. The median annual salary of a student completing an associate-level degree is $47,000.

However, students with associate degree can simply work with their professors under their supervision within the college. They can also work as a psychiatric technician in few mental hospitals, clinics or similar healthcare facilities. They can sometimes work as an assistant to counselors. They will be exposed to skilled-based trainings for counselling and techniques for expressing empathy and can also work as a volunteer to perform some social works in the community.

Associate level will provide you with abundant opportunities for internship within and outside of your college, hospitals and clinics, but finding jobs with just an associate degree is challenging. 

What are the career option for a psychology student after completing the Bachelor degree in psychology?

Bachelors degree is also an undergraduate level degree that takes about 4 years to complete. Students are allowed to choose between Bachelor of Arts (BA) or a Bachelor of Science (BS) in psychology. The median annual salary of a student completing a bachelor degree is $59,000.

Talking about the psychology jobs, completing a bachelor’s degree gives you an exposure to a wider scope of opportunities and network of people involved in the fields of psychology. The completion of Bachelor’s degree opens up an entry-level career options. You can work as a Psychiatric Technician, a career counselor and a rehabilitation specialist. You can also work as a teacher, a sales manager and a case manager. Not only limited to single industries but you can find jobs at different industries. You will get exposed to an upgraded level of trainings as required by your work. Some students can also work as a social worker with this degree of psychology.

What are the career option for a psychology student after completing the Masters degree in psychology?

Masters degree in psychology is a post-graduate level study and requires 1-2 years for completion. You can choose to perform the master degree either in specific field of interest or a general field of study. The median annual salary of a student completing a masters degree is $65,000.

According to the American Psychological Association (APA), The three most commonly studied masters degree in psychology are counseling psychology, general psychology and a clinical psychology and most of them can work as a counselor, psychologist, manager and social workers.

Some other career options for students completing this degree are:

  • Genetic Counselor,
  • HR Manager,
  • Therapist,
  • Rehabilitation Counselor,
  • School and Career Counselor
  • Substance abuse Counselor, and so on.

Students after the completion of masters degree in psychology are guaranteed to have a real world experience by working in their fields of personal interests along with various on-site training opportunities. 

What are the career option for a psychology student after completing the doctoral (Ph.D.) degree in psychology?

Doctoral degree in psychology is a top-most level of study which requires 4-7 years of completion. The minimum requirement for doctoral degree is the completion of masters degree in the related field of study. However, Bachelors degree with few years of work experience can also make you eligible to apply for Ph.D. or Psy.D. in psychology. The criteria may vary from one university to another. The median annual salary of a student completing a doctoral degree is $90,000.

APA has categorize three distinct doctoral programs as clinical, counseling and school psychology. A clinical psychology comprises collection and analysis of research data of people’s behavior and wellbeing. A counseling psychology puts major emphasis on the treatment of mental and emotional well-being. A school psychology identifies and treats mental health issues among children and adolescents.

People after completing the doctoral level in Psychology degree have no limitations for job opportunities. They have wide range of career options such as:

Clinical psychologists, Industrial & occupational psychologists, Forensic psychologists, Educational psychologist and Research psychologists. Students are eligible enough to provide effective skill-based training with specialized knowledge and expertise.

Conclusion: Psychology Careers About Jobs, Internships, Volunteering, and Training

Studying a psychological degree might be a personal field of interest but it is one of the highest demanded career options in today’s world. There are several levels of psychology-based degrees but the programs under each degrees and their duration of completion can entirely depend upon your college and university. And so does the eligibility criteria for the enrollment.

Almost all psychological programs help you to develop a comprehensive understanding on how human beings interact and behave with always showing a new area of research. There are countless universities and colleges offering excellent psychology courses and degrees both online and offline worldwide. However, exploring and deciding what’s best for you is always your choice to make.

Reference:

  • https://www.payscale.com/mypayscale.aspx
  • https://www.psychology.org/resources/counseling-therapy-psychology-differences/
  • https://www.psychology.org/careers/what-is-forensic-psychology/
  • https://www.psychology.org/degrees/masters/
  • https://www.psychology.org/careers/clinical-psychologist/
  • https://www.psychology.org/resources/differences-between-ba-and-bs-in-psychology/
  • https://www.psychology.org/degrees/phd/
  • https://www.psychology.org/careers/forensic-psychologist/
  • https://www.psychology.org/online-degrees/
  • https://www.psychology.org/resources/differences-between-psychology-and-psychiatry/
  • https://www.psychology.org/degrees/

About Author

Shrima is a public health graduate and a research enthusiast. She has a special interest in mental health and psychological well-being. She is currently working as a mental health advocate and as a researcher. She has also been conducting various school health programs to aware and educate children and adolescents about emerging health issues and ways to prevent them.She is currently employed in a leading medical and healthcare service provider of Kathmandu.

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