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How Much Do Environmental Psychologists Make?

Environmental psychology has existed as a subfield of the field for four decades. But years ago, environmental psychology was often concerned with homes, offices, and urban spaces, and exploring how people interacted and worked in those environments. Today the work is expanding significantly.

We are now more concerned about the effects that humanity has on the natural world and climate. The research that environmental psychologists perform is shaping policies that can preserve the world for centuries to come. (APA.org)

According to some sources, there are two types of environmental psychologists:

  • Conservation psychologists: Focused on the development of environmental attitudes. They could investigation how and why some people value nature. Another research focus is the study of behaviors towards natural resources and nature.
  • Ecopsychology: Studies the ties between environmental and societal degradation. This type of psychology sees the well being of humans to be tied to the well being of the environment.

Environmental psychologists work in government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and non-governmental organizations. They may apply psychological expertise to urban planning, interior and environmental design, and climate change. Those who want to teach at a university may teach in developmental or social psychology.

Some environmental psychologists work in research. They study how people work and respond to their environment at work and at home. Their research could focus on why some people recycle, what causes some to try to help the environment, and why certain areas make people feel productive and happy.

Most who work in this field has a Ph.D. in environmental psychology, which takes four or six years to earn. Keep reading if you want to learn how much you can make as an environmental psychologist.

Environmental Psychologist Salary Information

Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median wage for all psychologists is $79,000. But the top 10% of psychologists make a median salary of $129,000. Environmental psychologists with a Ph.D. will make the most money.  (BLS.gov)

The median salaries for psychologists also will depend on the industry in which they work:

  • Government: $96,400
  • Hospitals: $86,500
  • Ambulatory healthcare services: $79,100
  • Elementary and secondary schools: $75,800

With a Ph.D. in environmental psychology, you could become a college professor. BLS reports the median wage for psychology professors is $76,700. (BLS.gov). At public universities, the median income for a college teacher is $81,200. At private schools, the wage for college professors is $78,500.

APA.org

According to the American Psychological Association, salaries for these psychologists depend on geographic location, work setting, degree, and job experience. Psychologists in research positions, no matter the specialty, made a salary of $90,000. Psychologists in research administration positions can make a median salary of $110,000, and doctoral-level research positions start at $65,000. (APA.org)

Payscale.com

This website does not provide salaries for environmental psychologists, but it does note that the average salary for psychologists in research and development is $51,000, with salaries ranging from $39,000 to $85,000. (Payscale.com)

Ziprecruiter.com

This website states the average salary for environmental psychologists is $81,400, with a range between $19,500 and $157,000. Most environmental psychologists earn between $50,000 and $101,500. (Ziprecruiter.com)

Job Outlook for Environmental Psychologists

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the employment outlook for all psychologists is strong through 2028. Jobs will increase by 14% by that year for all psychologist specialties, which is much faster than average.

Job demand for educational, counseling and clinical psychologists should increase because there is greater demand for psychological services in schools, mental health centers, social service agencies, and hospitals. As more people and companies are concerned about the environment, there should be more need for environmental psychologists as well. (BLS.gov)

Summary

The outlook for environmental psychologists in the job world is solid. There should be plenty of jobs available for these psychologists in consulting firms, where they provide psychological expertise to industry and government agencies. They also can be employed by planning, housing, and environmental agencies.

Some environmental psychologists may work for environmental nonprofits and think tanks. With a Ph.D. in psychology, you can earn a salary of at least $65,000 and more than $100,000 in some industries.

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