3 answers

What Psychology education/degree is right for me?

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I want to make good money and have an enjoyable job that I look forward to. I'm interested in the Counselling stream for Psychology, but I'm not sure what the recommended education level is for counselling-related jobs. I've heard a Master's degree is recommended as the minimum level of education needed for such jobs. Is it possible to get a job in such a career with only a Bachelor's? #psychology #therapy #counseling #clinical-psychology #therapists #counseling-psychology

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3 answers

Linda Ann’s Answer

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Generally speaking, a master's level credential is required for counseling...With few exceptions, one cannot call oneself a "psychologist" in any state in the USA without a doctorate. Licensing/ credentially for counselors and psychologists are done at the state level, with requirements varying from one state to the next. Both counselors and psychologists generally are required to take a national, credentially examination.


There are positions in the USA for bachelor's level folks called "Therapeutic Support Specialists" which may involve some counseling of children. Even Guidance Counselors in educational settings need a masters degree in most states here in the USA.


I suggest the two following websites for more information (including information about starting salaries, which generally are NOT very high):


American Counseling Association: https://www.counseling.org/about-us/about-aca
American Psychological Association: www.apa.org


I wish you the best in your career journey!!

Thank you for the advice! Looking at it now, I'm glad I changed my focus to a different part of the psychological field. Deana A.
You are very welcome. Glad that I could be of some assistance to you. Linda Ann Robinson, Ph.D.
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Penny’s Answer

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Hi Deana,
What type of counseling are you interested in pursuing? Linda is correct in that you would need at least a masters and honestly a doctorate would be best. You might want to consider a Masters in Social Work - I think you will find more opportunities in that field at the masters level. I recommend you compare the two fields. Whatever choice you make, either field would be very rewarding. Good Luck!

I actually want to start a non profit organization to improve the mental health of students, so my interest has moved from a psychology degree to a social work degree, although psychology will still be a big part of what I do. Thank you for thinking of me. Deana A.
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Scott D.’s Answer

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The short answer is you will need a master's degree and not just any will do. In most states you will need a program that has 60 credits at a minimum so a generic counseling degree that only takes 33-36 credits to complete will not do. You also will need at least 2 years of supervised clinical work to take the licensing exams. This easier than getting licensed as a psychologist but is more involved than getting an LCSW as most of those programs only require half as much supervision to get licensed.

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