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Mental Health

Psychologist

Career data updated last on 9/22/2014
Psychologist Psychologists study the behavior, emotions and thinking processes of humans and animals to better understand their behavior. Clinical psychologists work directly with patients, using diagnostic tests and intervention techniques to help them deal with their problems. Psychologists may teach, conduct research, or serve as consultants or therapists.
Salary $34.87 hourly- $72,530 annually
Significant Points More than 1 out of 4 psychologists are self-employed, nearly four times the average for professional workers.
Specializations There are many areas of specialization in teaching, research, therapy or public service. Specific areas include:
  • Community psychology
  • Clinical psychology
  • Developmental psychology
  • Neuropsychology
  • Social psychology
  • Health psychology
  • Rehabilitation psychology
  • Educational/School psychology
  • Industrial-organizational psychology
  • Counseling psychology
  • Experimental or research psychology
  • Work Environment

    Psychologists work alone or with other specialists in hospitals, correctional institutions, mental health clinics, private practice, public schools, businesses, government agencies and research laboratories. A psychologist’s subfield and place of employment determine working conditions.

    Clinical, school, and counseling psychologists in private practice have their own offices and set their own hours. However, they often offer evening and weekend hours to accommodate their clients. Those employed in hospitals, nursing homes, and other health facilities may work shifts including evenings and weekends, while those who work in schools and clinics generally work regular hours. Psychologists employed as faculty by colleges and universities divide their time between teaching and research and also may have administrative responsibilities. Many have part-time consulting practices. Most psychologists in government and industry have structured schedules.

    High School Prep General college preparation is recommended: three courses in math including algebra I, algebra II and geometry, or a higher level math course for which algebra II is a prerequisite; three science courses including one biological science, one physical science and one lab course; four English units and two social studies units, including one in U.S. History; and two years of a second language.
    Academic Requirements

    A bachelor’s degree in psychology qualifies a person to assist psychologists and other professionals in community mental health centers, vocational rehabilitation offices, and correctional programs. School psychologists, industrial-organizational psychologists and some community mental health psychologists hold at least a master's degree in psychology. However, to become licensed as a clinical or counseling psychologist, you must have a doctorate in psychology. Most doctoral programs in psychology and clinical psychology involve five to seven years of study after receiving a bachelor's degree, including at least a one year internship. One year of supervised post-doctoral experience is required for licensure in Colorado. Also, psychologists must pass an examination by the Colorado Psychology Licensing Board.

    Psychologists in independent practice or those who offer any type of patient care—including clinical, counseling, and school psychologists—must meet certification or licensing requirements in all States and the District of Columbia. The National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) awards the Nationally Certified School Psychologist (NCSP) designation, recognizing professional competency in school psychology at a national level. The American Board of Professional Psychology (ABPP) recognizes professional achievement by awarding specialty certification, primarily in clinical psychology, clinical neuropsychology, and counseling, forensic, industrial-organizational, and school psychology.

    Schools/Organizations

    Adams State College
    Masters Degree Master's    On-line program available On-line program available
    Argosy University
    Doctoral Degree Doctoral    On-line program available On-line program available
    Masters Degree Master's    On-line program available On-line program available
    Colorado Christian University
    Masters Degree Master's
    Colorado State University
    Masters Degree Master's
    Denver Seminary
    Doctoral Degree Doctoral
    Grand Canyon University
    Masters Degree Master's    On-line program available On-line program available
    University of Colorado at Colorado Springs
    Masters Degree Master's
    University of Colorado-Boulder
    Doctoral Degree Doctoral
    University of Colorado-Denver
    Masters Degree Master's
    University of Denver
    Doctoral Degree Doctoral
    Masters Degree Master's
    University of Northern Colorado
    Doctoral Degree Doctoral
    Masters Degree Master's
    University of Phoenix
    Masters Degree Master's
    University of the Rockies
    Doctoral Degree Doctoral
    Masters Degree Master's

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