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Career Opportunities and Work Life

"If you are looking for a great general education, then psychology would provide you with the tools to get an entry-level position in many fields of work," says interim dean of Arts and Sciences and psychology instructor, Dr. Denise Scameheorn. "If you are looking to have a career in the professional field of psychology, you will need more than a bachelor's degree."

Bachelor's Degree
There is value in a bachelor's degree. Although most who stop at a bachelor's level do not enter into a career in psychology, many find the knowledge irreplaceable. Insight into human behavior and development can help you whether you are a parent, manager, or other type of professional.

Future employers will recognize the value of a bachelor's in psychology. Particular training in scientific methodology will teach you to be thorough, objective, analytical, logical and well written.

Employment is available in administrative support, education, interviewing, public affairs, and service industries.

Master's Degree
Once accepted into a master's psychology program, your studies will focus on industrial/organizational topics, statistics and research design. If you choose to stop at this level, you are eligible to apply for a limited licensure in any state. A limited licensure allows you to practice clinical psychology under the supervision of a fully licensed psychologist.

Other career opportunities are available in health care, education, data analysis, government, and organizational development.

Doctoral Degree
Once you have completed the assigned coursework, you must pass a comprehensive exam and write and defend your dissertation. If you choose to work as a psychologist, counselor, school counselor or other health service filed, you must have a one-year internship. At this point you may apply for licensure.

Every state differs in licensing criteria. Check the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards website for more information.

The highest paid and greatest ranges of job opportunities are available at this educational level. Many find careers in the for-profit, academic and self-employment areas.

Subfields of Psychology
According to LMC psychology instructor Dr. Denise Scameheorn, the field of psychology covers both research and practice. Because of this, psychologists can specialize in many different areas.

Some areas include:

  • Clinical psychology
  • Cognitive and perceptual psychology
  • Counseling psychology
  • Developmental psychology
  • Educational psychology
  • Experimental psychology
  • Forensic psychology
  • Industrial/organizational psychology
  • Rehabilitation psychology

Employment Outlook
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the national need for psychologists is expected to increase by 22 percent by 2020. In Michigan, job growth is predicted to increase by 5 percent by the same year.

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