11 Exciting Areas of Psychology to Specialize with a Doctorate Degree
Earning your doctorate in psychology is a path to an exciting, diverse and financially rewarding career. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) states that the growth of psychologist jobs will increase by 22% by 2020, which means your skills will be in high demand for years to come.
Income in this field also is solid: The median pay for all psychologists in the US is $68,300, but those in the top 10% with doctorates earn $110,000 per year and more.
Some of the most high growth and exciting areas to work with your doctorate in psychology include these:
#1 Counseling Psychology
This particular specialization within the field of psychology also many areas of focus that fall within it. There are many types of counseling, such as:
- Mental Health
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Religious Oriented
In addition to these, there are many others. Each of these different areas within counseling are created to supplement the particular needs of the people seeking out help for a particular kind of problem.
#2 Developmental Psychology
The study of human development and its impact on decisions and perspectives is a very exciting field to those with similar professional interests. By spending time analyzing and studying the way that individual thoughts evolve through stages of development, a greater understanding of why people do the things they do can be obtained.
#3 Clinical Psychology
Involving the scientific side of psychology, those interested in the application of proven research results to real world everyday situations will find the most in this specialization. This is another example of a specialization that has options of focus within it. Some of these are:
- Clinical Neuropsychology
- Forensic/Correctional Psychology
- Health Psychology
- Marriage and Family Therapy
- Sport Neuroperformance
#4 Behavioral Psychology
The belief that behaviors can indicate and predict future outcomes is a element of this study. The belief that empirical evidence represents the greatest likelihood of determining motivations and demotivating factors.
By studying the existing theories on behavior and learning, there are four approaches that create conceptualizations that can direct treatments in a particular fashion. These approaches are:
- Applied behavior analysis
- Behavior therapy
- Cognitive-behavior therapy
- Cognitive therapy
#5 School Psychology
For those that have a need to help young people in schools in dealing with the trials and tribulations of those years of their life, this specialization would be a good choice. The program will enrich the skills of existing practitioners by adding the ability of:
#6 Forensic Psychology
This area of psychology focuses on the forensic field and how the study and research of psychology can provide clues to certain investigations. Introducing new areas for research and applying existing research to the forensic field increases level of expertise of graduates.
This normally falls within a clinical program, so the choice of specializing in forensics does not supersede the clinical training importance of the curriculum. The forensic classes are what the focus of the allowed electives are selected.
The ability to address issues of growing old in a manner that improves the quality of life for older adults is this field of study called geropsychology.
The belief in this area is that by applying psychology knowledge to the individual challenges that older people are faced with, they can improve their mental health and well being.
#8 Organizational Psychology
For those interested in the business world and all of the variety of issues arise between people and their employment, this field would be particularly fascinating. The area of human resources is constantly challenged with decisions that impact the relative functioning of their people.
Making policies and procedures that support the proper and fair dealings with all employees create less stress and conflict in the workplace. By being knowledgable about current theories and research involving diversity and ethics, the workplace can be designed and maintained in a more efficient manner.
#9 Sports Psychology
The exciting field of sports and professional athletics is very popular in our society. This field of sports psychology involves working with athletes of all kinds in their sports endeavors as well as in their personal lives.
The issues that effect people involved in physical pursuits create the need for this specialized field. The professionals in the industry of sports psychology will need to be adequately trained in addressing those issues and the unique environment that exists within professional and amateur athletics as well as the organizations that support those activities.
#10 Quantitative Psychology
Research and measurement can be done in order to track behaviors and outcomes of various people in various situations. For those professionals interested in the scientific study behind the clinical offices, the excitement might be in this field.
The statistical analyses that are involved in drawing conclusions over large samples of data involves extensive use of statistical modeling, evaluate and create methodologies, while creating results to be used by all areas of psychological practice.
#11 Engineering Psychology
The study of people in their workplace, and the creation of efficient practices and policies is the work of an engineering psychologist. They are constantly keeping in check the modern innovations that are coming out, as well as investigating their workplaces for new technologies.
In this way, they can help shape entire new lines of equipment or machinery that can assist in maximizing the output of the individual workers within their facility.