Schools with Undergraduate Psychiatry Degree Programs
No school offers an undergraduate degree program in psychiatry; however, you could enroll in an undergraduate degree program in psychiatric rehabilitation. Learn about program requirements and class topics.
Undergraduate degrees in psychiatry are not available; further education is required to enter that profession in the medical field. However, related programs in psychiatric rehabilitation are offered at the bachelor's level, and can prepare students for graduate study or to enter the workforce. Certifications might be required.
What Is an Undergraduate Psychiatry Degree Program?
There are no undergraduate psychiatry degree programs in the U.S. If you want to become a psychiatrist, you would need to complete an undergraduate degree program, followed by medical school. After earning a Doctor of Medicine (MD), you would need to complete a residency in psychiatry, after which you would be eligible for state licensing as a psychiatrist.
A bachelor's degree program in psychiatric rehabilitation could prepare you for entry-level work in human services, social work and some forms of therapy. While this is not a common degree program, it is offered at some colleges and universities in the U.S. This degree could help fulfill most of the requirements for admission to medical school, including classes in biology, chemistry, physics and mathematics.
What Schools Offer Bachelor's Degrees in Psychiatric Rehabilitation?
Bachelor's degrees are available in the field of study as psychiatric rehab and counseling programs. Psychology is also a relevant area of study with regard to bachelor's degree programs.
- Rutgers University offers a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Psychiatric Rehabilitation and Psychology
- Felician University offers a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Psychiatric Rehabilitation and Psychology
- Georgian Court University offers a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Psychiatric Rehabilitation and Psychology
What Will I Learn?
The curriculum is designed to prepare you to work with individuals with various forms of mental illness, such as depression, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. Studies in psychology will teach you to work one-on-one with patients who have unique needs and both physical and mental limitations. You'll also learn about processes through which people learn, phases of psychological treatment and methods in which behavior can be modified. Toward the end of the program, you could complete an internship or a practicum in which you would receive hands-on training in a mental-health setting, such as a psychiatric rehabilitation center.
What Classes Would I Take?
Beyond the general education requirements, a core of classes falls into the realm of psychology or social work, including psychopathology, social psychology and personality theory. The curriculum is heavy on group dynamics, communication, counseling and case management. Some programs have elective requirements in special education, substance abuse or abnormal psychology. You could also take classes in a minor, such as business administration, psychology or communication.
What Can I Do With My Degree?
Your degree will prepare you to work with psychiatric patients in community and mental health settings, such as clinics and mental health facilities. Some of the duties you might perform include helping patients find jobs, adequate housing and education programs. You might work with patients in individual and group settings, encouraging them to learn psychological and social skills necessary to lead fulfilling lives.
Once you gain some job experience, you might consider becoming a Certified Psychiatric Rehabilitation Practitioner (CPRP). Offered by the U.S. Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association, this certification is currently recognized in 12 U.S. states that require some form of licensing or certification for rehabilitation specialists. To take the CPRP exam, you'll need six months of work experience beyond your bachelor's degree. Work experience and completion of an associate's degree program or a certificate program in psychiatric rehabilitation would also qualify you to take the exam.
Bachelor's degrees in psychiatric rehabilitation and psychology prepare students to work with psychiatric patients in various settings, but those wishing to become psychiatrists will need to go to medical school.