How to Become a Child Psychologist

how to become a child psychologistAn individual who enjoys working with children and is interested in helping them might want to learn about how to become a child psychologist. A child psychologist is a professional who is trained to observe and interpret how children relate to other people. The specific job duties of a child psychologist may include: conducting scientific studies, identifying behavioral patterns, identifying common mental problems and carrying out treatment plans.

Child psychologists can work in schools, hospitals, government agencies and mental health centers. Additionally, some child psychologists choose to open their own practice.

More About How To Become A Child Psychologist

All psychologists are required to possess at least a master’s degree before they can practice. Students usually earn a bachelor’s degree in psychology or a related field before they attend graduate school. Child psychology majors are required to spend a lot of time outside the classroom conducting research and applying the skills that they learned in clinical settings.

Once students successfully complete their master’s degree, they will need to become certified in child psychology. The American Board of Psychology is responsible for awarding certification. Additionally, child psychologists who wish to open their open practice will need to get their license. Licensing requirements can vary greatly, depending on the state. Association of State and Provincial Licensing Boards are responsible for licensing psychologists in the United States and Canada.

How To Become A Child Psychologist: Preparation

Students who are interested in a career in child psychology should start preparing early. High school and college students should make sure that they take introductory courses in psychology and sociology. They should also spend time working with children. Volunteering at a daycare or preschool is a great way to get experience in this field.

How To Become A Child Psychologist: Necessary Skills

Because child psychologists spend most of their time interacting with children, they are required to be patient and understanding. A child psychologist must also have strong analytical skills. Trustworthiness is another important quality. Children do not feel comfortable talking to someone unless they feel that the person is worthy of their trust.

What is the job outlook like for a child psychologist?

Now that you know to become a child psychologist, it’s time to look at what it will mean for a career. The field of psychology is expected to grow by 20 percent within the next 10 years. This is faster than the national average for all other job fields. There has been an increased demand for child psychologists to work in school and hospital settings. However, it is important to note that jobs may be more plentiful in some areas than others. Even though psychologists can practice with a master’s degree, they are strongly advised to get a doctorate degree. Having a doctorate degree will also increase a child psychologist’s chances of finding a job.

What is the average salary for a child psychologist?

The average salary for a child psychologist is around $68,000 per year. Most child psychologists start off making about $30,000 per year. A child psychologist who has had 10 or more years of experience can make over $80,000 per year. The setting that a child psychologist chooses to work in will also have an impact on the annual salary.

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