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Forensic Psychology

What was the path you took to become a forensic psychologist? Are there multiple pathways? - #forensic #forensics #psychology

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Jonah’s Answer

I’m actually an LCSW (Licensed Clinical Social Worker), and I work as a supervisor in a jail setting. Most of my peers are psychologists, and they make perhaps a little more money, burly we do the same job. I started out working in mental health and addiction in a number of different settings, both inpatient and outpatient, and I had most of the experience I needed to do my current job. You don’t have to be a psychologist in order to work in forensics. You do need at least a Master’s degree in social work or counseling. You might consider doing internships with this population. You can also do volunteer work with organizations that assist people who are transitioning back into the community. The more exposure you can get, the better you’ll be able to decide whether this is the field for you.

Jonah recommends the following next steps:

Volunteering
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Nantia’s Answer

Well I am a psychology major right now, and I have knocked out the pre-requistes for my psychology part. I would say I would look into the program and college you are applying for because there are some colleges that do not offer forensic psychology. Also make sure to get Psych 101, abnormal psychology and things of that nature.

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Milagros’s Answer

I met people in the field of Forensic Psychology and they don't do that well. I recommend you do a master in mental health or clinical psychology and that way you have a broader area to work. With that you can work with any population and some colleges offer one class of forensic psychology instead of doing a whole master program in that and then being limited to just one area. It's not an easy field at all and many people ended up leaving.
Use this website to find more info about any career: https://www.onetonline.org/

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Angela’s Answer

There are multiple pathways and this is the pathway I took. I obtained a bachelors in psychology. I gained experience working as a psychology trainee inside of a prison. I then applied to graduate programs that allowed me to specialize in psychology-law. I obtained my masters and PhD in clinical psychology with a subspecialty in psychology law. I completed an internship that allowed me to work in a correctional facility I obtained a full-time position as a forensic psychologist at the prison where I did my internship.

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Michael’s Answer

I would put it this way--there are straight paths and winding paths, and some of the suggestions below will cost you extra years, and thousands of dollars, to get the same place as the straight path result.

You can waste time and lose years of income or you can get it done.

To be a psychologist you must have a doctorate in clinical or counseling psychology. As of 1968, the American Psychological Association has reserved the term psychologist for people who hold a Ph.D. or PsyD. You can go straight from Bachelors to PsyD without a Masters's degree at all. Even if you go the Ph.D. route, do it in a Ph.D. program, not as a stand-alone Masters--the Doctoral program will make you retake courses, maybe even redo the thesis if it isn't "doctoral program quality".

The degree must be APA approved or you will have trouble getting licensed, board-certified, and employment.

Bachelors = 4 Years
Ph.D. or PsyD = 4 years
Clinical Internship = 1 year (required for Ph.D.)
Fellowship (typically) = 1-2 years (salaried while you get your license)

Done. Anything else is gravy and will cost you time. A typical route would be to go to a forensic program, like i.e. Sam Houston State (located next to the famous Huntsville Prison Complex) internship and employment with the Burea of Prisons which will intern you at GS-11, Fellow you at GS-12 and when you get licensed move you to GS-13.

You will break even in year 8 and turn a profit at year 9.






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David’s Answer

The typical major for a prospective for forensic psychologist is psychology, but you may also pursue a criminal justice degree to knock out the undergraduate portion of your pursuit. Obviously, you want to focus your electives on subjects like forensic, criminal justice, and psychology. Depending on the program and the level, a degree in forensic psychology will take anywhere from two to six years on average to complete, with master's-level degrees taking two to four years and doctorate-level degrees taking four to six years, you are looking at four to ten years or more depend on the time amount you are using to obtain this profession.

Steps to Becoming a Forensic Psychologist:

1. Obtain a bachelor's degree.
2. Get a master's degree in forensic psychology (if necessary)
3. Pursue a law degree (optional).
4. Earn a doctorate psychology degree.
5. Obtain State Licensure.
6. Become board certified.

Thank you, I can attest to this advice because I am in the process of becoming a forensic psychologist. Currently in my Masters program in hopes to get my PsyD in clinical psychology with a specialization in forensic psychology. Brianna Itson

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