Where Can I Obtain Education For a Career in Psychology?

There are many degree levels available for psychology. Regardless of the career path you're on, many schools offer programs that will help you reach your career goals. Read on for some educational options leading to a career in psychology. Schools offering Psychology degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Overview of Psychology Education Programs

Most people going into psychology obtain a minimum of a graduate degree. However, a two-year degree program at a community college can provide an opportunity to see if you like the field. A bachelor's program at a four-year college or university can prepare you for some positions, as well as provide a framework for your graduate work.

Important Facts about Studying Psychology

Degree Levels Undergraduate, graduate
Concentrations Behavioral neuroscience, clinical psychology, cognitive psychology, developmental science, social psychology
Online Availability Fully online programs available
Possible Careers Social work, sales, teaching, school psychology

Associate's Degree

You'll find associate's degree programs in psychology at community colleges. These programs don't usually prepare you for a specific job, but they can provide valuable education and coursework that you can transfer to a four-year degree program. A two-year Associate of Science in Psychology program likely will involve general introductory courses in social psychology, human relations, child development, and abnormal behavior. You'll also take general education classes in order to transfer to a four-year college or university.

Bachelor's Degree

A bachelor's degree program in psychology can provide you with the required coursework for a graduate program in psychology. It also can prepare you for a variety of careers, ranging from education to health services. You also can find work with the federal government, though these jobs are more competitive.

Coursework for a bachelor's program in psychology typically will provide you with introductory courses in various areas related to psychology. Depending on the school, you may be required to take an introductory psychology course, followed by classes in a variety of electives, such as developmental or social psychology. You'll also take courses in statistics and research, which you'll need for entrance to a graduate program.

Graduate Education

At the graduate level, you're preparing for a career as a psychologist. There are several degree tracks available. According to the BLS, you'll need a doctorate to work independently in this field, whether in research or as a clinician, although some jobs in organizational psychology may be open to you with a master's degree.

Master's Degree

Master's degree programs are available in various specialties, such as forensic psychology and organizational/industrial psychology, as well as general psychology. Your curriculum will depend on your specialty; programs generally consist of 30-33 units and may include coursework in personality psychology, gender roles, learning, child psychology, memory, statistics, and research. You may have to complete a thesis in a master's program, though some programs do have non-thesis options.

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

At the doctoral level, you'll specialize in an area like clinical psychology, behavioral neuroscience, or social psychology. Ph.D. programs generally take around five years of full-time study to complete and include a dissertation.

Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.)

Psy.D. programs also can prepare you to work as a psychologist. They tend to be more clinically focused, may not require a dissertation and may not take as long to complete as Ph.D. programs.

Education Specialist Degree (Ed.S.)

If you're interested in becoming a school psychologist, an education specialist degree might be the way to go. This graduate degree generally takes three years to complete. You'll undertake an internship and courses in areas such as cognitive assessment, ethical and legal issues, school organizational structure, and instructional design.

The BLS reported that the median salary for clinical, counseling and school psychologists was $76,990 as of May 2018. Industrial-organizational psychologists were reported to have a median salary of $97,260, and psychologists working for the government had a median salary of $96,410 as of May 2018 (www.bls.gov).

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Walden University

    Walden University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Walden University:

    • Doctoral
    • Master

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  • Liberty University

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    Popular programs at Liberty University:

    • Doctoral
    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees

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  • Capella University

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    Popular programs at Capella University:

    • Doctoral
    • Master
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  • Purdue University Global

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  • Southern New Hampshire University

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  • Colorado Christian University

    Colorado Christian University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Colorado Christian University:

    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees
    • Associate Programs

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  • Regent University

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    Popular programs at Regent University:

    • Doctoral
    • Master
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  • Ashford University

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  • Northcentral University

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  • Grand Canyon University

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    Popular programs at Grand Canyon University:

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