What is Cognitive Psychology?
Cognitive Psychology is the psychological study of thought processes. The basic idea is that the human mind can be studied using the scientific method. Various human cognitions that can be studied include memory, perception, language processing, learning and even concept formation. Cognitive psychology even has applications in computer science, linguistics and neuroscience. Students interested in becoming cognitive psychologists can expect to spend a lot of time in school.
Understanding different mental states is an important part of cognitive psychology. Different mental states that can be studied are desire, knowledge and motivation, to name a few. Psychologists that are interested in developmental, social or abnormal psychology can all apply cognitive theories to their research and work. Fans of Freudian psychology will be disappointed in the lack of introspection involved in cognitive psychology. The scientific method is strictly adhered to while conducting cognitive research. How people process information remains the core component of cognitive psychology.
Research in cognitive psychology leads scientists and psychologists to theories in human behavior that have application for public, private and educational sectors. By applying research discovered by cognitive psychologists, scientists have been able to create such medical advancements as the retinal and cochlear implant. Cognitive psychological studies have played a large part in developments in artificial intelligence. Cognitive psychology research has extended into marketing and human resources for large corporations as well. Options for studying human perceptions and applications are endless.
Cognitive Psychologist Education
Cognitive psychologists should expect to earn at least a master’s degree to attain jobs in this competitive field. Doctorate degrees are highly recommended. Most students at the post-graduate level can expect to dedicate a large amount of time to research. In addition to educational expectations, licensing requirements may vary from state to state. Some cognitive psychologists may find employment options to be limited at the undergraduate level. Having a master’s degree is a must for suitable employment opportunities. Those with doctorate degrees will have the best choices for employment. Even licensed cognitive psychologists find that continuing their education only furthers to enhance their understanding of the ever expanding field of cognitive psychology.
Cognitive Psychologist Salary
Teaching and administration positions are common for people that become cognitive psychologists. There are even opportunities in corporate positions such as marketing and branding. The average pay for cognitive psychologists was approximately $90,000 in 2010. Many cognitive psychologists find the educational sector to be incredibly rewarding. Cognitive psychologists in corporate offices tend to earn more money than teachers and administrators. Cognitive psychologists that are just starting out can expect to earn around $41,000. The upper end of the pay scale can tip over $117,000.
What do Cognitive Psychologists do?
Cognitive psychologists are often found in the private and educational sector. Cognitive psychologists strive to discover how knowledge is applied by basic human discovery. The typical day for a cognitive psychologist can vary widely depending upon what type of organization they work for. Teachers and professors will spend time developing lesson plans and teaching classes. Those in corporate positions may implement and execute marketing campaigns and branding strategies. There are many different career paths available for cognitive psychologists. There are even clinical opportunities available for cognitive psychologists that are interested in hands-on research. Studying and continuing to educate one’s self in the field of cognitive psychology remains an important element of practicing in this field.
Listed below are some fantastic resources for students interested in becoming cognitive psychologists.
The AACBP The American Academy of Cognitive and Behavioral Psychology has a great website for future cognitive psychologists. Their website includes information on education and licensing.
Cognitive Daily Cognitive Daily is an archived blog for relevant psychological news.
Psychology Press Psychology Press has a great list of books, journals and websites for cognitive psychologists.
Ashbourne College’s Psychology Blog This Psychology Blog has a wealth of information for those interested in the field of cognitive psychology.
Simply Psychology Simply Psychology has an entire section of their website dedicated to cognitive psychology.
Cognitive psychologists can choose a wide variety of career fields to work in. Understanding thought processes remains the main objective of cognitive psychologists. Adhering to the scientific method is required of those interested in this field. In cognitive psychology, the name of the game is education. The more education one attains, the better job opportunities are available. Although the educational journey is long, it is incredibly rewarding. Cognitive psychologists get the chance to help people through educational, corporate, research and clinical positions.