PSYCHOLOGIST By: Stephanie Contreras

Nature of Work-

Psychologists study cognitive, emotional, and social processes and behavior by observing, interpreting, and recording how people relate to one another and their environments

Training, Qualifications and Advancement

Most clinical, counseling, and research psychologists need a doctoral degree. School psychologists need an advanced degree and certification or licensure to work. Prospective practicing psychologists must have pre - or post-doctoral supervised experience, including an internship. Internships allow students to gain experience in an applied setting. Candidates must complete an internship before they can qualify for state licensure. The required number of hours of the internship varies by state.


Some psychologists work alone, doing independent research, consulting with clients, or counseling patients. Others work as part of a healthcare team, collaborating with physicians, social workers, and others to treat illness and promote overall wellness.

Many clinical and counseling psychologists work in private practice. Others work in outpatient clinics, hospitals, rehabilitation facilities, and community and mental health centers.

Industrial-organizational psychologists work in business settings or human resources offices. They may also work in federal or state agencies, consulting firms, or private research organizations.

Job Outlook

Employment of industrial-organizational psychologists is projected to grow 19 percent from 2014 to 2024, much faster than the average for all occupations. However, because it is a small occupation, the fast growth will result in only about 400 new jobs over the 10-year period. Organizations will continue to use industrial-organizational psychologists to help select and keep employees, increase organizational productivity and efficiency, and improve office morale.

Projections Data


Psychologists , 173,900 206,400

Clinical, counseling, and school psychologists , 155,300 185,900

Industrial- organizational psychologist , 2 2,000 2,300

Psychologists, all other 16,600 18,300


Median annual wages for psychologists in May 2015 were as follows:

Psychologists, all other $94,590

Industrial-organizational psychologists $77,350

Clinical, counseling, and school psychologists $70,580

In May 2015, the median annual wages for psychologists in the top industries in which they worked were as follows:

Government $90,620

Hospitals; state, local, and private $81,430

Elementary and secondary schools; state, local, and private $71,300

Offices of mental health practitioners (except physicians) $70,470

Individual and family services $59,910

Related Occupations

• Anthropologists and Archeologists

• Mental Health Counselors and Marriage and Family Therapists

• Postsecondary Teachers

• School and Career Counselors

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