Types of Masters in Psychology Degrees | HealthGrad (2023)

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Types of Masters in Psychology Degrees | HealthGrad (2)

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For professionals who want to work as practicing psychologists, you must at least earn your master’s degree in psychology. Once you have earned that degree and have passed your certification examination, you can practice in a variety of well-paid types of psychologist specialties. This is a solid choice of career; the Bureau of Labor Statistics states that demand for psychologists generally will increase 19% by 2024.

But what are the common types of psychology specialty degrees that require a master’s? They are:

  • Clinical psychology: Assess, diagnose and treat common mental, emotional and behavioral problems. Clinical psychologists use different types of strategies depending upon their belief systems and education, but they generally interview patients, provide diagnostic tests, and offer individual, group and family therapy. Some clinical psychologists also offer behavior modification programs.
  • Counseling psychology: This type of psychologist is related to clinical, but the latter is more focused on a specific clinical diagnosis, whereas a counseling psychologist is helping the patient to deal with the problems of life, such as at home, in marriage or the workplace. Through counseling, they help their patients to learn how to manage their problems more effectively.
  • Organizational psychology: This type of psychology applies advanced psychological principles to the workplace by using psychology and research techniques to solve problems in the workplace. They work on things such as workplace productivity, management of work styles, employee morale, and hiring practices.
  • School psychology: Focuses on the application of psychology onto education and developmental issues in children. They often address student learning issues and problems with behavior. They also design and implement plans for better academic performance. Further, they counsel students and families about how to do better in school, and deal with problems in the home.

Specifically, the demand for clinical, counseling and school psychologists is expected to increase by 20% in the next eight years. This is being driven by more demand for all types of serves in the psychological field, as people are living longer and more active lives than ever before.

A master’s in psychology is the minimum required degree for the above psychology specialties, and a doctoral degree is often preferred. For those who wish to work in their own private practice, you eventually will need to earn your Ph.D. or Doctor of Psychology degree. All of these specialities require you to complete a lengthy clinical internship. Also, you need to pass the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology that is administered by the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards.

Also, the American Board of Professional Psychology provides specialty certification in more than 15 areas of the field, including clinical health, couples and families, rehabilitation and counseling. This type of certification may not be required for your employer, but some healthcare providers may require it.

All potential practicing psychologists have to have pre or post doctoral clinical experience that is closely monitored by a practicing psychologist with a doctoral Psyddegree. You may work as a psychologist in that professor’s practice under his or her supervision.

Master of Psychology Curriculum Overview

Graduates with a master’s degree can work with supervision as one of the above types of psychologists. Industrial-organizational psychologists can practice in their field with just a master’s degree, however. Many master’s in psychology programs are focused on preparing you for earning your doctoral degree. If you want to get a terminal master’s degree, you need to choose a program that offers that option.

Most master’s programs in psychology do not require you to have a bachelor’s in psychology. You will need to have background coursework in psychology, sociology, research design and statistics.

Any of the psychology specialties you choose will require you to do a lengthy clinical internship of 750-1000 hours.

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Below are more details about online universities and curricula for the various master’s in psychology specialties.

Master’s in Clinical Psychology

If you want to be a clinical psychologist, consider the online program that is offered by Argosy University. The first year of this Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology provides you with the foundation that you need, which is followed by a one year practicum and more classes. The program stresses the development of the skills, techniques and knowledge that you need to perform at a master’s level in clinical psychology.

This two year full time program requires you to complete 50 credit hours, including these classes:

  • Child and Adolescent Development
  • Personal and Professional Development
  • Professional Issues – Ethics, Conduct and Law
  • Statistics
  • Health and Dysfunction I and II
  • Survey of Diversity and Multicultural Psychology
  • Cognitive Assessment
  • Personality Assessment

Master’s in Counseling Psychology

Liberty University offers an excellent online master of Arts in Professional Counseling that prepare you for professional licensure. The mission of this two year program is to provide the world with ethically and spiritually aware counselors who have the skills to promote mental wellness among the US population.

This program can be completed mostly online but there are three on campus intensives that you must attend throughout the two years. A three credit hour internship is also required. Required classes include:

  • Ethical and Legal Issues in Counseling
  • Human Growth and Development
  • Multicultural Counseling
  • Counseling Techniques and the Helping Relationship
  • Theories of Counseling
  • Group Counseling
  • Research and Program Evaluation
  • Career Development and Counseling
  • Marriage and Family Counseling
  • Crisis Counseling

Master’s in Industrial-Organizational Psychology

California Southern University offers a Master of Science in Industrial/Organizational Psychology that is a great option for professionals who are interested in both business and psychology. As an organizational psychologist, you will will work to enhance office productivity, improve how teams of employees work together and work on customer retention efforts, among other things.

This type of advanced degree in psychology can open doors to some of the most lucrative psychology jobs in the country. BLS reports that the median salary in this field is $77,580.

This university offers a strong online education with its School of Behavioral Sciences, with a highly gifted faculty and dedicated administrative staff. In addition to the regular master of psychology core courses that you take, you also will take these following I/O courses:

  • Interpersonal Conflict in the Workplace
  • Myers-Briggs Type Indicator
  • Consulting in Business, Education and Mental Health
  • Organizational Psychology
  • Cognitive Behavioral Psychotherapy

Master’s in School Psychology

John Carroll University offers a full time school psychology program that results in a Master of Education in School Psychology. Most students can complete this program in three years. This fully accredited master in psychology program employs a data driven decision making process to improve the development and monitoring of effective services to children and youth. It also uses a systematic approach to develop and model mental health services and interventions that improve social skills for children.

Course requirements for this program are:

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  • The Exceptional Learner
  • Orientation to the Educational Environment
  • Tests and Measurements
  • Developmental Psychology
  • Learning and Teaching
  • Psychoeducational Evaluation I and II
  • The Role and Function of the School Psychologist
  • Counseling Theories
  • Counseling Techniques and Practices

Each of these masters in psychology specialties offers strong job demand and good salaries. Whichever you choose, you will be able to have a major impact on the practice of psychology in your area.

FAQs

Which is better MA psychology or MSc psychology? ›

An MSc degree is likely to be more focused on research and the sciences, while an MA may be more focused on the arts and humanities aspects of psychology.

What degree do I need to do a masters in psychology? ›

Most university entry requirements ask for at least a 2:2 undergraduate degree to enrol on an MSc Psychology. This can be in any subject – including a psychology degree that wasn't accredited by the BPS.

Is a masters in psychology a good idea? ›

While the average psychology professional with an undergraduate degree makes approximately $33,000 annually, those who acquire a master's degree earn an average of $64,000 annually. This means that pursuing a master's in psychology is a great idea for anyone looking to boost their earning potential.

Which field of psychology is best? ›

Top 5 Highest-Paying Psychology Careers
  • Outpatient Care Center Psychologist. ...
  • Industrial-Organizational Psychologist. ...
  • Forensic Psychologist. ...
  • Military Psychologist. ...
  • Psychiatrist. ...
  • Education.

Which masters degree is the easiest? ›

Following is the list of easiest masters degrees that one can choose to specialize in.
  • Masters of Fine Arts (MFA)
  • Masters of Arts (MA)
  • Masters in Mass Communication.
  • Masters of Psychology.
  • Masters of Finance.
  • Masters of Human Resource Management (MHRM)
  • Masters of Business Administration (MBA)
  • Masters of Science (MSc)

Is a psychology masters difficult? ›

Psychology is one of the more difficult degrees and many of your assignments will require you to cite your sources and will require you to back up a lot of the arguments that you have.

Can I be a psychologist with MA? ›

After finishing your MA/MSc in Psychology, you can proceed to become a registered psychologist. For that, you'll need to do an additional two-year MPhil course in Psychology from an institute recognised by the Rehabilitation Council of India (RCI). This is a purely professional course that entails hands-on training.

Is Masters in psychology tough? ›

Masters in Clinical Psychology is a challenging career which will require skilled expertise with necessary academic knowledge. Professionals will be required to be at the top of their game and think innovatively depending on their field of employment.

Can I apply for masters in psychology without bachelors in psychology? ›

But there are a few common requirements you should have in mind: A graduated Bachelor's degree. If you haven't graduated a Psychology Bachelor's you may be required to take a pre-Master's before applying to the actual Master's.

Can any graduate do masters in psychology? ›

The basic eligibility for pursuing admission to MSc Psychology program, candidates must hold a bachelor degree in any Psychology courses from a recognized university with an aggregate of at least 50% marks. MSc Psychology Distance Education is available in colleges like IGNOU, IMTS Institute, Jain University etc.

Can you diagnose with a Masters in psychology? ›

The masters of clinical psychology program teaches students to diagnose mental illness, and treat and prevent mental health disorders through coursework, supervised practice, and top research approaches.

What is the difference between MA and MS in psychology? ›

The key difference between the two degrees is that the former focuses on arts and humanities while the latter is geared more toward scientific and technical fields. To decide whether a Master of Arts or a Master of Science is the right choice for you, consider two key factors: Your personal and professional interests.

What should I pursue after a Masters in Psychology? ›

What Can You Do With a Master's in Psychology?
  • Pursue Clinical Psychology. ...
  • Become a Counselor. ...
  • Work an Office Job. ...
  • Doctor of Criminal Justice. ...
  • Doctor of Public Health. ...
  • Doctor of Education. ...
  • Doctor of Anthropology or Archaeology.

Which psychology is most in demand? ›

14 Psychology Jobs in High Demand
  1. Vocational/Career Counselor. ...
  2. School Psychologist. ...
  3. Family Marriage Counselor. ...
  4. Engineering Psychologist. ...
  5. Industrial-Organizational (I/O) Psychologist. ...
  6. Clinical Psychologist. ...
  7. Forensic Psychologist. ...
  8. Geropsychologist.
7 Jan 2022

Which field of psychology is the easiest? ›

At the graduate level, the master's degree in industrial-organizational psychology is probably the easiest to attain. As doctorates go, the Doctor of Psychology (Psy. D.) degree may be easier than the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.

Which psychology is best for future? ›

You may want to consider these professions as you consider your future career options.
  • Family Marriage Counselor. ...
  • Forensic Psychologist. ...
  • Genetics Counselor. ...
  • Engineering Psychologist. ...
  • Clinical Psychologist. ...
  • Industrial-Organizational Psychologist. ...
  • Sports Psychologist. ...
  • Psychiatrist.

What are the 2 most common master's degrees called? ›

The two most common titles of master's degrees are the Master of Arts (MA/M.A./A.M) and Master of Science (MSc/M.Sc./M.S./S.M.) degrees, which normally consist of a mixture of research and taught material.

What masters degree is most popular? ›

Most in-demand master's degrees
  1. Business administration. A Master of Business Administration degree, or MBA , is the most popular graduate degree available. ...
  2. Health care administration. ...
  3. Engineering. ...
  4. Computer and information sciences. ...
  5. Nurse anesthesia. ...
  6. Human resources management. ...
  7. Physician assistant. ...
  8. Math.

What is the most respected masters degree? ›

Master of Business Administration (MBA)

A master's degree in business administration takes the coveted first spot on the list of the top eight highest-paying master's degrees, primarily due to the broad array of concentrations and high-paying careers that recipients of this degree go on to pursue.

What is the hardest type of psychology? ›

1. Parapsychology. By its very nature, parapsychology is even more vague than “traditional” mental health practices. It's the study of nonquantifiable phenomena, such as telepathy, telekinesis, extrasensory perception, and mind reading.

How do I prepare for a Masters in psychology? ›

You can also give tests to analyse your preparation.
...
For preparation:
  1. Know the updated syllabus, marking, paper pattern etc.
  2. Start with the books of class 11th and 12th NCERT, this will help you with basic concepts and understanding.
  3. A reference book called "Intro. to psychology" by Robert Baron is a must.

How long does it take to finish a masters in psychology? ›

For motivated students, a master's in psychology program can take anywhere from two to four years to complete. While this is a more significant time commitment, many master's degree in psychology students are prepared for this after completing their undergraduate.

Can I get a job after masters in psychology? ›

There are a number of fields where a psychology graduate can make a successful career. Such fields are of health psychology, clinical psychology, sports psychology, educational psychology, school counseling, industrial psychology, social work, and counseling psychology.

Can I work in hospital after MA psychology? ›

Check the list below for the top organizations that hire MA Psychology graduates: Universities. Hospitals. Media Houses.

Can I use DR after MA psychology? ›

No you can not be called a doctor as clinical psychologists are people who have earned a master's degree in clinical psychology. Those with a Master's degree in psychology, cannot use the title "Dr" until they have a Doctorate.

Which psychology is best for future? ›

You may want to consider these professions as you consider your future career options.
  • Family Marriage Counselor. ...
  • Forensic Psychologist. ...
  • Genetics Counselor. ...
  • Engineering Psychologist. ...
  • Clinical Psychologist. ...
  • Industrial-Organizational Psychologist. ...
  • Sports Psychologist. ...
  • Psychiatrist.

Which country is best for masters in psychology? ›

Best Countries to Study Psychology
  • UK.
  • France.
  • Denmark.
  • The Netherlands.
  • Australia.
  • Canada.
  • Germany.
  • Italy.

What is the most respected masters degree? ›

Master of Business Administration (MBA)

A master's degree in business administration takes the coveted first spot on the list of the top eight highest-paying master's degrees, primarily due to the broad array of concentrations and high-paying careers that recipients of this degree go on to pursue.

Which master's degree is most in demand? ›

Most in-demand master's degrees
  1. Business administration. A Master of Business Administration degree, or MBA , is the most popular graduate degree available. ...
  2. Health care administration. ...
  3. Engineering. ...
  4. Computer and information sciences. ...
  5. Nurse anesthesia. ...
  6. Human resources management. ...
  7. Physician assistant. ...
  8. Math.

Which psychology is most in demand? ›

14 Psychology Jobs in High Demand
  1. Vocational/Career Counselor. ...
  2. School Psychologist. ...
  3. Family Marriage Counselor. ...
  4. Engineering Psychologist. ...
  5. Industrial-Organizational (I/O) Psychologist. ...
  6. Clinical Psychologist. ...
  7. Forensic Psychologist. ...
  8. Geropsychologist.
7 Jan 2022

Which field of psychology is the easiest? ›

At the graduate level, the master's degree in industrial-organizational psychology is probably the easiest to attain. As doctorates go, the Doctor of Psychology (Psy. D.) degree may be easier than the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.

What field of psychology has the most jobs? ›

Clinical Psychology is the single largest employment area in Psychology, but there is still plenty of opportunity for prospective students and professionals. The high-paying jobs in this industry require doctorate study in clinical psychology, which are highly competitive, and most programs require a 1 year internship.

Can I go abroad with a psychology degree? ›

However, there are also several opportunities to study psychology abroad, whether in the summer, for a semester, or for an entire year, in places like Australia, South America and Asia too. Just as having a psychology degree prepares you for versatile career paths, so too do your options for study abroad vary.

Is psychologist a doctor? ›

Psychiatrists are medical doctors, psychologists are not. Psychiatrists prescribe medication, psychologists can't. Psychiatrists diagnose illness, manage treatment and provide a range of therapies for complex and serious mental illness. Psychologists focus on providing psychotherapy (talk therapy) to help patients.

Where are psychologists paid the most? ›

Below is a list of the top-10 highest-paying states for psychologists.
  • California average psychologist salary: $108,350.
  • Oregon average psychologist salary: $103,870.
  • New Jersey average psychologist salary: $98,470.
  • Hawaii average psychologist salary: $94,550.
  • New York average psychologist salary: $94,140.
12 Jan 2020

Which masters degree is highly paid? ›

Read on to discover our round-up of the top 10 highest paying masters degrees.
...
Here is our pick of 10 highest paying masters degrees in 2022.
S noMasters degreesSalary
1Business Administration$170,000 per year
2Engineering$120,000 per year
3Petroleum Engineering$110,000 per year
4Physics$110,000 per year
6 more rows
8 Feb 2022

Which master degree is most valuable in future? ›

Table of contents:
  • Computer Science & IT – One of the Best Master's Degree for the Future.
  • Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning.
  • Nursing – Top Master's Degree for the Future.
  • Master's in Business & Management Studies.
  • Master in Biological Sciences (Bioinformatics)
  • Master's in Communications & Media Studies.
11 May 2022

Which degree has the most value? ›

25 of the most valuable majors for college students
  • Biomedical engineering. ...
  • Computer science. ...
  • Marine engineering. ...
  • Pharmaceutical sciences. ...
  • Computer engineering. ...
  • Electrical engineering. ...
  • Finance. ...
  • Software engineering.

Which masters degree is most in demand 2022? ›

5 Most In-Demand Master's Degrees in 2022
  • Business administration. A Master of Business Administration, or MBA, is one of the most highly sought-after master's degrees globally and a stepping stone to C-suites jobs at big organisations. ...
  • Healthcare administration. ...
  • Computer science. ...
  • Marketing.
14 Jan 2022

Which Masters course is best for future? ›

Best Graduate Degrees for the Future
  • Marketing.
  • Human resources.
  • Business ethics.
  • Business law.
  • Accounting.
  • Finance.
  • Economics.
  • Business policies.

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