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What is the Salary Outlook for Clinical Psychologists?

Nearly 40 percent of all psychologists are self-employed. They usually work in private practice, but many of them work as private consultants independently. Although the job market for graduates from psychology degree programs, and the medical field in general, is expected to attain rapid growth, it will vary depending upon the specialization the psychologist chooses.

  • School psychologists, clinical psychologists, and private counselors will appreciate a growth of at least 11 percent. The largest jump is expected to be in the field of industrial-organizational psychologists. They are expected to have a growth rate of 26 percent in the job market. Psychologists in other fields should see a growth rate of 14 percent over the next several years. Students are finding that acceptance to graduate programs is very competitive. For psychology students who want to have the most in job opportunities, they should plan on getting a doctorate in one of the subfields. This could include one of the health fields such as sports psychology. They should concentrate on the master's in industrial-organization. They should never quit with a Bachelors, since the job prospects for graduates holding only a Bachelors are extremely limited.
  • The specialty areas in clinical psychology in which graduates are in demand are neuropsychology, geropsychology, child psychology, and health psychology. Neuropsychologists study how the brain and human behavior are related. Neuropsychologists often work with stroke victims and patients with head and brain injuries. Health psychologists study how social factors, psychological, and biological factors affect our health or illness that develops. They assist patients with preventing serious medical disorders through counseling. They also help patients who must to adjust to illness and help with treatments. Quality of life is essential and the therapist helps patients to achieve the best quality of life possible. It's highly recommended for students pursuing a degree in psychology focus on one of these specialty areas, since the annual salaries are higher than in some of the other fields. In 2008, clinical, counseling, and school psychologists made approximately $64,140. However, this varied depending on the facility and the location. Some psychologists earned anywhere from $48,700 and $82,800. In the lowest 10 percent, were psychologists earning somewhere less than $37,900. The highest 10 percent of psychologists earned $106,840.
  • This was further broken down by the industry in which the psychologists worked. Those were employed in the office of health practitioners earned an average annual salary of 468,400. School psychologists in elementary and secondary schools earned an annual salary of $65,710. Psychologists who were employed by state government agencies earned on the average of $63,710. Those who worked in outpatient care centers earned an average of $59,130, and those who worked in individual or family services earned an average salary of $57,440. Industrial-organizational psychologists the same year earned approximately $77,010. In the middle of the spectrum were those who were earning approximately $54,100 up to $115,720. At the lowest end of the scale were the 10 percent who earned somewhat less than $38,690, to those at the very highest end of the scale who earned over $149,120. During that same time, only 31 percent of all of those employed in the field of psychology belonged to a union.

The salary alone is unlikely to be a consideration when choosing a specialty within clinical psychology. Choices regarding what field of psychology to work in will often depend on your personal interests. You will want to consider what types of clinical psychology are most personally appealing to you before deciding which field to enter. Regardless of which field you choose, you can be sure that you will enjoy a good salary that is likely to increase in coming years.

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