If you are looking for a career that is fulfilling, counseling psychology may be the perfect answer. There are different specialties to choose from and a variety of trajectories to pursue. The following covers some of the most common job options that you may want to explore prior to obtaining your degree.
What Is Counseling Psychology?
There are numerous job titles that counseling psychology professionals can earn depending on the kind of work they choose and where they opt to be employed. Counseling psychologists and licensed mental health counselors are two of the most well-known job titles.
What Is An LMHC or Licensed Mental Health Counselor?
An LMHC or licensed mental health counselor works with patients to help them achieve mental wellness. These mental health professionals leverage different techniques and therapeutic frameworks based on their patients' needs. To become an LMHC, one needs a relevant graduate degree like a Master of Science in Counseling Psychology.
The average wage for an LMHC is approximately $27/hour. However, this wage can dramatically increase depending on your educational background, your specialty, your experience level and where you choose to practice. This position may be referred to as an LPC or Licensed Professional Counselor, depending on where you work.
What Is A Counseling Psychologist?
Counseling psychologists focus on increasing the well-being and emotional health of their patients. Counseling psychologists utilize various methods to treat and diagnose their patients. Most will have earned a doctorate or their Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology. The average wage for this position is approximately $40/hour.
How To Take the First Step For Your New Mental Health Career
If you would like to explore a career in counseling psychology, either option will be rewarding and fulfilling. Choosing the best career that aligns with your passions, interest and goals will offer you the greatest chance to enjoy a long and prosperous career.
If you wish to become a psychologist, you will have to earn some graduate-level education. Taking a Master of Science in Counseling Psychology is a positive place to start. Note that it isn't always necessary to specialize in a certain area of psychology to start that career. However, this can be an ideal way to jumpstart your options. If you are drawn to specialized work, you may choose to concentrate on that area of expertise as you pursue your studies.
Exploring Different Counseling Psychology Career Paths
There are many career paths related to each chosen specialty. The following are four career options you may want to investigate.
1. Child Psychology
There are many differences in environmental, biological, social and developmental differences between adolescents, children and adults. There are counseling psychologists that work with different age groups and specialize to understand key issues.
Child psychologists are commonly employed at rehabilitation centers, schools, juvenile detention facilities and universities, hospitals, private practice and mental health facilities.
2. Political, Gender and Cultural Psychology
The 3 subsets in the psychology field are political psychology, gender psychology and cultural psychology. Though they may be commonly discussed at the same time, they are three vastly different specialties.
Political psychology discusses the techniques, applying psychological frameworks and principles to political activities. Public perception of elected officials and voting are two examples. Counselors that specialize in this field commonly work for federal, state and local governments, private institutions, media outlets and think tanks.
Cultural psychology refers to the study of the different ways that culture impacts and is also impacted by people's psychology. Counselors and psychologists who specialize in this area commonly work in health clinics, research settings, community centers, hospitals and other locations where patients may have diversity in their cultural backgrounds.
Gender psychology studies how gender can impact an individual's psychology. Psychologists and counselors who specialize in this field commonly work directly with patients with gender-related problems and others work in research settings.
3. Forensic Psychology
Applying clinical psychology in regard to the law is where forensic psychologists come in. Together with counselors, forensic psychologists combine their clinical skills including evaluation, assessment and treatment in the legal system. They interview witnesses to determine how reliable they are and also work with kids to uncover abusive situations.
It is common for counselors and forensic psychologists to work with family and criminal courts, prisons, law firms, juvenile detention centers and police stations. They can also work as expert witnesses and consultants.
4. Health Psychology
Health psychology covers a particular portion of psychology that deals with how human health is influenced by social factors, psychological factors and biological factors. Psychologists rely on frameworks and psychological science to promote patient wellbeing and general health.
Health psychologists are commonly employed in rehabilitation centers, hospitals, private practices, private corporations, or health care clinics.