Do you love helping children? Do you also have a passion for psychology? If so, you might want to consider becoming a child psychologist.
A minimum of a master’s degree is often required while a PhD or PsyD are generally accepted. This means that you will have to dedicate several years to your education.
However, with an online degree program, you can shave some time off while getting a high-quality education that leads to a career in Child Psychology. Here is how you can set about doing that.
What is Child Psychology?
Child psychologists study the ways in which infants through adolescents learn and behave and how their environments impact them.
Developmental psychology is often a preferred specialty, as are adolescent or abnormal psychology. Parents seek help for children who have experienced trauma or are exhibiting symptoms of learning, mental, or physical disabilities.
While some work as clinical counselors, other child psychologists work as school counselors, researchers for community outreach programs, or advisors. Experienced child psychologists sometimes even end up working as professors.
What Does a Child Psychologist Do?
Child psychologists often work in private practices where they counsel clients one-on-one or in group therapy. Some network with local schools and healthcare programs.
They might also work in the court system, government, hospitals, daycares, or public-school systems. The overall objective is to help each client develop coping skills and build toward their own unique goals.
Types of Child Psychologists
There are three main areas of expertise in child psychology: abnormal, adolescent, and developmental. Abnormal psychology focuses on atypical issues, such as trauma, neglect, or abuse.
Adolescent psychology involves working with teenagers on issues like learning disabilities, anxiety, depression, and eating disorders.
Developmental psychology hones more on how children change as they grow. These psychologists look at cognitive and emotional developments the most closely.
Steps to Take to Become a Child Psychologist
First things first. You will need to enroll as an undergraduate student in a Bachelor of Psychology program. You will need to declare Psychology as your major and earn all your general and elective credits in order to graduate. Explore your niche in Child Psychology before you absolutely settle on it as a career.
You will need a Masters in Psychology for most positions. Browse online databases to find the best degree program after you have taken your GREs.
Once you’ve been accepted, start thinking about what you want to focus on in your thesis (unless you choose an exam track). If you are unsure of what you want to highlight, do some research. Find out the core issues facing the field of Child Psychology today.
Having a master’s degree in Psychology will open quite a few doors. However, you might still not be fully satisfied.
Applying for a doctoral program can help you broaden your career. You might also want to consider taking up an internship in the interim between your master’s and finishing your doctoral degree.
Update your resume to reflect your degree status and begin submitting your resume to desired job postings. Brush up on your interviewing skills before going in and be prepared to answer questions on why you would make an excellent child psychologist.
Ready to pursue your master’s in psychology? The best program for you is right at your fingertips. An online degree can lead to an impressive and fulfilling career as a child psychologist.