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how many years of college do you need to be a forensic psychologist?

I would like to go into the forensics, more specifically phycology, and I was curious as to how long I should expect to go to college for. #psychology #forensics

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Miko’s Answer

Hi Madison! Here is a guide that should be helpful with your career in forensics. I would also suggest reaching out to your local police department and see if they have any student volunteers or shadowing that you could do while in school. Good luck to you and your career choice!

https://www.forensicscolleges.com/blog/htb/how-to-become-forensic-psychologist
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David’s Answer

To be a Licensed Psychologist in the United States, you would need a doctoral degree from an accredited institution, either a PsyD or PhD. PsyD programs are more clinically oriented and require usually 2 internships and an APA-accredited internship. Generally these take 3-5 years to complete and this is after you have a bachelor's degree in Psychology or a related field. After a year of post-doctoral supervision you can qualify to take the licensing exam. So generally the process just to become a psychologist will realistically take 8-10 years. Licensing is done by individual states, although you only have to pass the full exam once. There is a clearinghouse of sorts where you can use the scores if you want to get licensed in additional states. You would need specialized coursework and or a fellowship in forensic psychology to qualify as a forensic psychologist. Usually they work in correctional settings, such as I do, or testifying in court. If you're looking to do investigative work, such as working for the FBI, the career path is not as clear. You may want to reach out to the FBI or large police departments to see what information that they can provide. Good luck with everything.

David recommends the following next steps:

You can Google graduate and professional schools in Psychology with focus on forensic psychology to find schools that would provide the best background in forensic psychology.
Google "requirements for forensic psychologists."
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