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Careers in Cognitive Psychology

Explore the career requirements for psychologists. Get knowledge of the skills, education and employment outlook to figure out if this is the right career option for you.

Career Overview

Cognitive psychology is the scientific study of the mind as an information processor. The cognitive approach believes that internal mental behavior can be scientifically studied using experiments. Cognitive psychology assumes that a mediational process occurs between stimulus/input and response/output. Take a look at the following chart for an overview of some significant aspects of this profession.

Typical Degree Master's degree
Education Field of Study Psychology
Key Skills Communication, ethics, problem-solving
Job Growth (2018-2028)* 14% (all psychologists)
Median Annual Salary (2018)* $79,010 (all psychologists)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

What Key Skills Are Required for a Psychologist?

An ideal candidate for a career in psychology must be an expert in a broad set of cognitive skills. Being well-versed in problem solving techniques and communication, with good analytical and emotional skills is very beneficial for cognitive psychologists. You should have a good hold of ethics and must display a high patience quotient. A solid comprehension of human nature and the issue at hand are also important.

Do I Need a Degree?

Having a degree is a necessity to become a psychologist. Earning a bachelor's degree or a master's degree in psychology can open the path of this profession to you. Other degrees that can be pursued include an associate degree in psychology, an undergraduate degree that typically takes 2 years to complete. A Ph.D. in Psychology can benefit your growth in this profession tremendously. A Ph.D. in a specialty like social, developmental, industrial-organizational, or experimental psychology can increase your chances in securing a job in comparison to your less informed competitors.

What Duties Come Under This Profession?

To have a strong hold over the domain of psychology, it is your duty to research well in order to be up to date with up-and-coming problem solving techniques. A psychologist may have to conduct scientific studies on behavior and brain function, along with observing, interviewing, and surveying individuals. One of the crucial roles of a psychologist includes identifying psychological, emotional, behavioral, or organizational issues in patients and diagnosing disorders. You may also test for patterns that will help you better understand and predict behavior of your patients, and thereafter discuss the treatment of problems with your clients.

Where Could I Work?

Depending upon the specialization you've done in psychology, you can explore various job opportunities. With a master's specialization in conflict, risk, and safety, you can work with the police or as a trainer, mediator, security researcher, or consultant. With a master's specialization in human factors and engineering psychology, you are as fit to work in the corporate world as you are to work in the research field. Your future job could include working as part of an interdisciplinary team, in which you are the linking pin between the design team and the user during the different stages of production. Psychology is a vast field and provides you with plentiful job opportunities.

What Can I Earn as a Psychologist?

According to The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary for psychologists was $79,010 as of 2018. Employment of psychologists is expected to grow by 14% between 2018 and 2028 (faster than average for all jobs). Thus, this field is likely to flourish since it's understood that qualified and skilled professionals will be needed to support people as far as their basic emotional and psychological needs are concerned. In the age of advancement of science and technology, the stress levels are only increasing; therefore, if you have have the right skills and a problem solving nature along with the passion to work as a psychologist, this can prove to be a very good career option for you.