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If the human mind is fascinating to you, then perhaps you should consider pursuing a career as a psychologist. But are you hesitant because you don't know just what a psychologist does? Or how a psychologist spends their days? Or maybe you are wondering if you become a psychologist, then what type of work environment will you have to work within? Find schools that offer online psychology degree programs below.

As a psychologist, you will spend the majority of your time and efforts studying the human mind and attempting to determine why people do the things they do. In addition, psychologists often conduct a wide variety of research regarding different individual's actions. A psychologist's research is often conducted in the form of surveys, interviews, and lab testing.

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Typically, psychologists will work within an area of specialization, so if you decide to pursue a career as a psychologist you will need to consider what you would most like to specialize in. For instance, you could choose to specialize in mental problems or disorders, school psychology, a psychologist within a specific work place, or you could help individuals deal with divorce issues or counsel people regarding the death of a friend or family member. As a psychologist you may find yourself working within a team situation, or you may choose to have your own practice. If you operate your own psychology practice then you will have the luxury of setting your desired schedule of days and hours. However, keep in mind that you will probably find yourself working around your client's schedules, which could involve you working afternoons or weekends. Should you choose to be a psychologist for a school or a specific business, then you will work the same schedule as the other staff.

To become a psychologist you will need to acquire your degree from a college or university. Ideally, you will want to obtain a doctorate degree so that you are not limited in your job possibilities. Should you decide to pursue your doctorate degree it will probably take you from 5 to 7 years to complete this degree program. After completing your degree program you will need to obtain your licensure from the state you reside in. To be eligible to obtain the necessary license, you must have your degree, a considerable amount of field experience, and earn a passing score on your state's licensure exam. If you decide to become a psychologist who interacts and counsels with people you will need to be patient, compassionate, and be able to listen when they confide in you. Conversely, if you decide to be a psychologist who focuses more on the research aspects then you will need to be able to spend large amounts of time alone.

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As a psychologist you should have a good chance of finding gainful employment. The number of job positions for this career is almost limitless. The number of possible positions is also projected to grow in future years. So, if you are still thinking you want to be a psychologist then plan your degree program smartly, make the grades that will allow licensure and certification a breeze, and you will be enjoying your new career path in no time! Don't wait another second, conduct your research below and request information about how to receive your online psychology degree training.


Becoming a Psychologist

Irrespective of age, profession and social status, everyone needs psychological counseling and help. With increasing complications, work load and stress; demand for psychologists have augmented over the last few years. Contrary to popular belief, these professionals work in every field. They are required in management positions, in educational institutes and even in the sports industry. It is quite obvious that interpersonal and communication skills are essential for anyone who wants to excel as a psychologist.


Licensure, Training and Education
Most psychologists – clinical, counseling and research – are required to have a doctoral degree. If you are interested to pursue this career, you can obtain a Doctor of Psychology or a Ph.D. in Psychology.


The Doctor of Psychology degree is a clinical degree, which mostly emphasizes on practical work and exams. It does not usually include dissertation. A psychology Ph.D. is a research-based degree, which can be obtained after sitting for a comprehensive exam, and writing an original research. These usually include statistics and experimental procedure. A 1-year internship is often include in the internship program.


School psychologists usually need an advanced degree such as the education specialist degree (Ed.S.). They also need certification or licensure. The Ed.S. requires completion of at least 60 graduate semester credit hours, and supervised intership for 1,200 hours. School psychologists can have either a master’s degree or a doctoral degree in school psychology. Some of these programs include coursework in education and psychology as their work covers both education and mental health of students.


If you have a master’s degree in psychology, you can get a good job as an industrial-organizational psychologist. As a master’s graduate, you can also work as a psychological assistant in counseling, clinical or research field under the supervision of a doctoral psychologist. Your master’s degree will basically include courses like statistics, research design and industrial-organizational psychology, statistics, and research design.


In order enroll in a good master’s degree you are not required to have psychology major in undergraduate. However, coursework in experimental psychology, introductory psychology and statistics might be needed. A few doctoral degrees require that the applicants have a master’s in psychology but there are also school that accept applicants from other majors. If you have a bachelor’s degree in psychology, you can secure work in education, sales and business administration fields. To be able to practice psychology and use the title of psychologist, you will need licensure in most states. In fact, they must be licensed where they work if they practice independently. The licensing laws are different based on type of position and state of residence.


In general, clinical and counseling psychologists require a doctorate in psychology. They also must have internship experience, which should be minimum 1 to 2 years of professional experience. Finally, if you do not pass the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology, you will not be granted a license. You can get state specific information from the Provincial Psychology Boards and Association of State. Also note that licensed psychologists should complete continuing education courses to maintain their licenses.


Obtaining a certification can help demonstrate your professional expertise in a certain area. Most psychologists do not require certificates but there are clinics and hospitals that require certification. They expect candidates to possess a doctoral degree in psychology, certification and a state license. The American Board of Professional Psychology provides specialty certification in 15 diverse areas of psychology including rehabilitation, clinical health, and couple and family. You can get certification in neuropsychology from The American Board of Professional Neuropsychology. It is important that prospective psychologists must have either pre- or post-doctoral experience, including internship. An internship will help you gather experience in a very practical setting. To qualify for state licensure, you must complete internship. The number of hours varies from state to state.


Duties of a Psychologist

Job of a psychologist is to understand and explain the emotions, feelings, thought and behaviors of an individual by using an array of techniques such as observation, assessment and experimentation. They develop theories and try to comprehend what feelings and beliefs influence the patient.


Psychoanalysis, psychotherapy and controlled laboratory experiments are used to collect information and evaluate behavior. Sometimes, patients are asked to take personality, performance, intelligence and aptitude tests. Professional take a look at patterns of behavior and connection amid different events, and then use the information to test out different theories during treatment and research.


The job description of a typical psychologist have been provided below:
- Perform scientific studies of brain function and behavior
- Gather information through methods like observations, surveys and interviews
- Recognize psychological, behavioral, emotional and organizational issues, and then diagnose disorders using information gathered from research
- Study and identify certain behavioral or emotional patterns
- Test for patterns as it can help to better understand and forecast behavior
- Discuss the problems and treatment options with clients
- Write relevant articles, reports, and research papers to share their findings and also educate others


Salary and Job Outlook
In United States, the average annual salary for psychologists is around $72,580 and the hourly rate is $34.89. This amount is much more that most professions. The requirements to get a job in this field are quite difficult but the job outlook is great. According to 2014 data, there were 173,900 job positions for psychologists and it is expected that the number will rise 19% by the year 2024.


You must understand that competition for psychologist jobs vary based on specialty. You can secure a great job if your level of education obtained and experience is more than the other candidates. Even though these technical requirements are important, you must understand that communication and interpersonal skills play the most important role in this profession. If you have a master’s degree in relevant field, you can get licensure and certificates. These include internship, which will help boost your career as a psychologist. This is a great industry to work in, especially because the return on investment is significantly high.