Top Psychology Careers for 2011


By Vera Mosely

Do you want to find a well-paying job in the field of psychology? Here are the top options in 2011.

Psychology is a fascinating field. Many people are interested in getting psychology degrees so that they can spend their lives helping people. However, it’s also important that you are able to make a lucrative living in this field. Some psychology careers are more promising than others when it comes to finding employment that pays well. If you want to know what those careers are then look no further.

Here are some of the top psychology careers for 2011:

School Psychologist. U.S. News named this as one of the 50 best careers of 2011 across all industries. They report that there will be an 11 percent jump in the number of school psychology jobs available between 2008 and 2018 thanks in part to the fact that there has recently been an increased effort to provide good mental health services to students. The earning potential for school psychologists ranges from a respectable $40,000 per year to a really good six-figure income.

Industrial or Organizational Psychologists. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has an Occupational Outlook Handbook that predicts job opportunities. The percent change from 2008 to 2018 for people working as industrial psychologists is a large one at 26 percent. It is important to note that this is a fairly niche field. Out of the nearly 200,000 people that it is expected will be working in the field of psychology by 2018, fewer than 3,000 will be working in this particular niche. That can mean that it’s a competitive field that is tough to get a job in. However, since it’s a popular and growing niche, it can be a great opportunity for those people who do secure employment in this area of psychology. It’s important to know also that this is a really high-paying job with a mean annual wage of $102,570 according to the BLS. Your exact wage will depend in part on the industry that you choose to work in. For example, the annual mean wage for industrial psychologists working in the management, scientific and consulting niche is more than $121,000. In contrast, those people doing industry psychology for colleges and universities earn only an annual mean wage of just over $72,000.

Substance Abuse and Behavioral Disorder Counseling. You don’t necessarily have to have a psychology degree to work in substance abuse counseling. However, you can earn more money with the degree than without one. The BLS reports that there’s an anticipated 21 percent increase in the number of jobs that will be available in this field between 2008 and 2018. The industry is already on the rise so it’s a good option for people seeking employment as counselors in 2011. If you have an interest in substance abuse issues then you might want to explore this option as you move forward in your search for a career.

Mental Health Counselors. Again, you may or may not require a psychology degree to enter this fast growing counseling field. It’s an important one to pay attention to, though. That’s because the BLS predicts a 24 percent employment increase in this field from 2008 to 2018. That’s a much higher employment rate than many other fields. If you’re concerned about being able to find a job in the current economy then make a mental note that this is one field that’s hiring.

Marriage and Family Therapy. The economic situation has caused a lot of strife in many homes. If you want to help people who are suffering from these problems then you may consider going into marriage and family counseling. This is an area of psychology that won’t experience as much immediate growth is some of the other niches. However, there will always be a need for this job in our society.

How important is it to you that the area of psychology you are studying has a high employment outlook for the near future?

Author Information

Vera Mosley is an expert on a variety of topics including psychology programs and education. She is also a freelance writer for offers a variety of programs including io psychology and a masters in psychology.


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Categories: Education Tips