Psychologists

Annual Earnings Percentiles

Skill Scores

  • supported icon 96

    Supported

  • analytical icon 88

    Analytical

  • creative icon 88

    Creative

  • social icon 80

    Social

  • purpose icon 77

    Purpose

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College Majors

Showing data from the American Community Survey for the following US Census occupation categories:

Bachelor's degree majors are shown.

  • Psychologists

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    What Psychologists Do

    Psychologists study cognitive, emotional, and social processes and behavior by observing, interpreting, and recording how people relate to one another and their environments.

    Work Environment

    Some psychologists work independently, conducting research, consulting with clients, or working with patients. Others work as part of a healthcare team, collaborating with physicians and social workers or in school settings, working with students, teachers, parents, and other educators. Those in private practice often work evenings and weekends to accommodate clients.

    How to Become a Psychologist

    Although psychologists typically need a doctoral degree in psychology, a master’s degree is sufficient for some positions. Psychologists in independent practice also need a license.

    Job Outlook

    Employment of psychologists is projected to grow 19 percent from 2014 to 2024, much faster than the average for all occupations. Job prospects should be best for those who have a doctoral degree in an applied specialty.

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    Job Trends for Psychologists

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    This occupation supported 160,100 jobs in 2012 and 173,900 jobs in 2014, reflecting an increase of 8.6%. In 2012, this occupation was projected to increase by 11.7% in 2022 to 178,900 jobs. As of 2014, to keep pace with prediction, the expected number of jobs was 163,800, compared with an observed value of 173,900, 6.2% higher than expected. This indicates current employment trends are much better than the 2012 trend within this occupation. In 2014, this occupation was projected to increase by 20.4% in 2024 to 206,500 jobs. Linear extrapolation of the 2012 projection for 2022 results in an expected number of 182,600 jobs for 2024, 11.6% lower than the 2014 projection for 2024. This indicates expectations for future employment trends are much better than the 2012 trend within this occupation.

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