Psychology Career Options

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Psychology is a field in which there are many different career options. Depending on the type of degree that one holds, career choices can range from school psychologist, to case worker, or even career counselor. While there are many employers in the field of psychology that offer entry level jobs for those with an undergraduate degree, others will require an advanced degree such as a master’s degree. Salaries for the different careers in psychology widely vary but one can get a good sense of the average salary in a specific field from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. Continue reading to learn about some of the many career options available for those with a degree in psychology.

School Psychologist

School psychologists work with adolescents in educational settings. They help children to deal with academic problems, social problems, and at times emotional problems. School psychology is a fast growing field and due to the demand for qualified professionals, there tends to be many job opportunities. While the requirements to become a school psychologist vary by state, most require an advanced degree along with a certain number of hours in an internship. Just as requirements vary by state, so does salary however an average salary for a school psychologist is somewhere between $60,000 and $70,000 per year.

Forensic Psychologist

A forensic psychologist applies psychology to the fields of law and criminal justice. It is a popular career within the field of psychology and offers room for growth. Forensic psychologists often work to help with child abuse investigations, insurance claims, and child custody disputes. On average, forensic psychologists earn more than $70,000 per year. Those looking to work in the forensic psychology research field only need to hold a bachelor’s degree however to become certified, one must hold a master’s degree or PhD. It is also beneficial for those looking to get into the field of forensic psychologist to have some type of educational background in law enforcement in addition to psychology.


A caseworker is essentially a type of social worker that takes on cases and then provides the subjects of these cases with information, advocacy, or other types of services. Caseworkers are often employed by government agencies to work with children in troubled families. In order to work as a caseworker, one must hold at least a bachelor’s degree. While a bachelor’s degree in social work specifically is available, those with a psychology background are also qualified to enter the field. There are often certification requirements to become a caseworker in addition to the education requirements. On average, caseworkers make between $30,000 and $50,000 per year.

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Behavioral Therapist

Behavioral therapists work with individuals to help them understand how changing their behavior can help them change how they feel. They will work on increasing a patient’s engagement in positive activities. One form of behavioral therapy is cognitive behavioral therapy. In order to become a behavioral therapist one must hold a master’s degree at minimum and state licensing is also required. Many behavioral therapists hold doctorate degrees. On average, behavioral therapists earn between $35,000 and $40,000 annually.

Special Education Teacher

While not necessarily directly related to the field of psychology it can be beneficial for those looking to work in special education to have a background in psychology. Special education teachers will work with students with various disabilities. At minimum, to become a special education teacher, one will need to hold a bachelor’s degree, and complete a special education training program. This field is expected to continue to grow due to a shortage of qualified special education teachers. Special education teachers, on average, earn $50,000 annually.

Sports Psychologist

Sports psychologists deal with the psychological aspects of different types of athletics. They will generally work in areas such as performance and motivation. Two big aspects of sports psychology are using sports to help improve physical and mental health, and improving overall athletic performance. Most careers in sports psychology require at least a master’s degree and some require a doctorate degree. Sports psychologists, on average, earn between $85,000 and $90,000 per year.

In addition to the psychology related career options listed above, there are countless other career choices available for those with a psychology related degree. Given all of the career options available, it is important to do thorough research to learn about degree requirements, average salaries, and more.

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About the Author: Ann Steele

This website is co-authored by Ann Steele, a Marriage and Family Therapist in San Diego with extensive experience with children and adolescents. Ann Steele attended American School Of Psychology & Argosy University Online. She especially enjoys using music therapy for mental and emotional well-being.

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