If you are considering a career in social psychology, there are numerous career paths you will be able to take in this particular industry. Social psychology may appeal to people who have an interest in helping others be productive, mentally-healthy and self-sustaining individuals.
A Closer Look at Social Psychology
Understanding social psychology is an easy enough task. This specific type of psychology studies the behavior, thought and feeling patterns of people and how these things are influenced by other people. Social psychology is an absolute in-depth study of how a person is affected by the actions and presence of others.
Because most people are affected in one way or another by people around them, social psychology is a very broad field. This area of psychology can focus on helping abuse victims overcome fear of people and begin cultivating healthy coping skills that leads to the person entering back into a healthy and productive life. This area of psychology can also help people with learning disorders or mental disorders overcome their anxiety when they are around others.
This form of psychology is also used to help people perform better in school and business settings and to learn to interact and communicate with people in a clear and concise manner. People who have extreme shyness issues or self-esteem issues are often referred to a social psychologist if they are unable to conquer these issues and live life happily and constructively. Because of the broadness of the field and the multiple types of issues that this form of psychology can address, people who enter into this profession can choose specific areas of study to focus on, or they can provide general help, counseling and services to individuals.
Social Psychology Course Work and Degrees
A Bachelor of Science in Social Psychology is the foundation degree for pursuing a career in this area of behavioral science. Courses in this degree program include Intro to Psychology, Social Psychology, Psychology Ethical Issues, Social Science Statistics, Social Inequality, Human Growth and Development and Social Science Research. Although each educational institution will have its own specific courses that must be completed to obtain a bachelors degree in this field of study, these are the core classes that will be required at most major institutes.
A master’s degree and PhD degrees are also available. Individuals who want to enter into counseling on a professional level must have obtained a minimum of a master’s degree in this field. PhD degrees will qualify a person to take an exam to become a doctor in social science or psychology or a professor at a university level.
Social Psychologist Salary
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, across the nation, the average salary for social psychologists is $68,000 per year. This amounts to approximately $33.00 per hour. Individuals who pursue their PhD and who gain quality work experience within the field will stand an excellent chance of making a significantly-larger amount of money than this national average for standard psychologists in the nation.
Supervised internships must be completed before an individual will be able to work independently as social psychologists. State exams must also be passed, although a person can begin a paid internship before the exam has been taken. People who pursue master’s degrees and PhDs in social psychology will have an opportunity to earn six figure incomes on an annual basis.
What Does A Social Psychologist Do?
The primary duty of a social psychologist is to identify and diagnose mental illnesses and problems. Within the realm of social psychology, not all disorders are acute and permanent. Many people simply need a professional social psychologist to help them to identify problem areas that negatively affect their ability to display good coping skills and to be productive in society.
There are numerous situations and persons that can impact a person’s ability to be constructive and productive in life. It is the duty of a social psychologist to recognize core issues and to form a treatment plan to help the individual overcome the issues.
A social psychologist can operate a private practice, work at a mental health hospital or institution or be employed by a behavioral science research foundation. Children’s hospitals and government agencies also employee social psychologists to help children overcome a variety of mental and physical disorders and disabilities.
A typical day in a social psychologist’s professional life may include visiting a number of patients within a clinic or institution, seeing patients in a private office, taking notes, recording visits, identifying problems, diagnosing disorders and illnesses and coming up with treatment plans.
Social Psychology Resources
Social Psychology Network: A place to network with professionals and to gain inside education and professional opportunities information.
The Situationist: A social psychology blog uncovering in-depth information and current news on social psychology.
American Psychology Association: A professional organization for social and behavioral science students and professionals.