Career Outlook For Psychologists

If you enjoy thinking about why people do the things they do, you might be interested in a career in psychology, the science of behavior. Although the field is rooted in the scientific method, it also requires creative thinking and general flexibility. The work can vary from day to day, and it generally incorporates new and ongoing research as well as technological breakthroughs. Here’s an overview of the current career outlook for psychologists.
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How Much Does A Psychologist Make?


Psychologists can make a substantial salary depending upon where they practice. Private practice psychologists typically earn more than professionals working in hospitals or government environments, but both professionals have the opportunity to earn a significant portion. The average salary in 2010 was $68,640 according to Currently, the median income of a psychologist is $82,877. The salary depends upon educational attainment, type of practice, region of the country and experience.

Recommended Psychology Programs

What are the Responsibilities of a Psychologist?

Psychologists observe the behavior of individuals and interpret how people react and relate to others and their environment. Instead of drugs, psychologists engage in talk therapy to treat patients who are ill and distressed. They are not able to prescribe drugs, but they can help patients develop a plan of action to move forward in their lives.

How Do You Become a Psychologist?

To practice in the field, a psychologist must have at least two to four years of psychology experience and a master’s degree, doctoral degree or another specialist degree. A license or certification will also be required to practice. They must be familiar with all the practices, procedures and concepts in the field. These professionals may report to a medical director. To be successful in the field, a general understanding and creativity is required.

Job Outlook for Psychologists

From 2010 to 2020, the occupation is expected to grow by 22 percent from 2010 to 2020. The growth rate is faster than average. Psychologists with a doctoral degree will have a better chance at obtaining a job than those with only a masters or specialist in school psychology.

What Does A Psychologist Make at Different Stages of a Career?

The top ten percent of psychologists have an earning potential of $111,810 or more. These psychologists have established their clientele and may have their own private practice. They can set their hours and accommodate clients on their schedules. They are experienced in the industry and may have written publications to share their knowledge with the masses. Experienced psychologists are often independent consultants.

The lowest 10 percent earn less than $39,200. These are typically entry level positions or psychologists who are just establishing their clientele. They have little to no experience and need time to practice their craft. They may work in hospitals, clinics, government and nursing homes.

What Do Psychologists Make in Different Geographic Areas?

States pay psychologists differently based upon the cost of living and demand. For instance, clinical psychologists receive some of the best pay rates in New Jersey. The typical salary is $92,380. New Mexico has some of the lowest pay rates at $61,880. In Florida, industrial psychologists are paid the highest at $126,640. Other geographic salaries include:

Illinois: Mean annual pay for psychologists is $64,270.

Arizona: This state has some of the highest pay rates of any type of psychologist at $101,100.

Rhode Island: This state has some of the lowest paid salaries at $60,240.

Greeley, Colorado: Colorado is also one of the best states for psychologists. The highest paid salaries for psychologists are often in excess of $170,280.

Minnesota: The highest payment for industrial psychologists is $124,430 in this area.

Salinas, California: Psychologists receive high wages of $166,700 in this area.

Houston, Texas: As an experienced psychologist, expect to receive $84,020.

Brockton, Massachusetts: A mean salary of $77,940 is offered to psychologists in Brockton.

How Much Do Psychologists Make with Differing Levels of Education?

Bachelors of Psychology Salary: The average salary is $34,000 annually.

Masters of Psychology Salary: The average salary ranges from $43,151 per year for a mental health counselor to $67, 563 for a nonprofit organization director. People with 20 years or more make $74, 433.

Doctoral of Psychology Salary: The salaries range from $64,140 to $145,500 depending upon the specialization. The median for all psychologists is $86,120.

How Much Do Different Types of Psychologists Earn?

Child Psychologists: In a private practice, a child psychologist may make $85,000 annually. To earn this amount, a doctorate is typically required.

Experimental or Research Psychologists: The average salary averages between $90,690 and $91,980 if employed in individual and family services or educational and support services. An experimental psychology doctoral degree is required for most positions. A bachelors and masters are required to reach this level of educational attainment.

Industrial Psychologists: Industrial psychologists earn a median salary of $87,330 according to 2010 statistics. This is one of the highest paying psychologists in the industry.

Clinical, School and Counseling Psychologists: These psychologists earn a median salary of $66,810 according to statistics.