2021 Psychology Degree Guide
The field of Psychology involves the scientific study of the human mind and human behavior. There are a variety of majors and concentrations available for students to choose a specialization in a certain interest. Coursework involves work in the lab and the library conducting research, as well as group project assignments and time spent in the field interacting with clients and patients.
There are a few different majors that are available to you depending on what college you choose. You can choose to pursue your degree in General Psychology allows you to study behavior and research methods as you answering difficult and thought provoking questions. For more practical training, you may want to choose to study Clinical, Counseling, and Applied Psychology. This is a great choice for those who wish to pursue careers as counselors. Students can also major in Child Development and Psychology in order to learn how people develop and grow through their life.
An Increase in Psychology Degrees
Psychology was the 7th most popular major in the 2018-2019 school year. Colleges in the United States reported awarding 177,655 degrees in this year alone. This is a difference of 2,398 over the prior year, a growth of 1.3%.
The United States has 1,699 different schools where you can get a degree in psychology. This year's Best Colleges for Psychology ranking compares 782 of them to identify the best overall programs in the country. Explore this or one of our many other custom psychology rankings further below.
What Are The Requirements For a Degree in Psychology
The field of Psychology requires a student who is deeply interested in people and also enjoys math and science. You will be spending time writing lab reports as well as research papers. Students develop adept critical thinking skills as they analyze scientific papers, gather research and make observation. You will also work with numbers and formulas to analyze data.
Students should have a passion for working with people and a desire to help people lead better lives. Many majors involve an internship or some sort of field work. Make good use of any practical experience in order to help you find a job later on. Work in the field also helps you empathize with others and become a better listener.
Prior Education for a Psychology Program
A high school diploma or equivalent is typically required for most psychology degree programs and many students will need a minimum GPA and SAT/ACT score depending on the school. In addition to these basic psychology program qualifications, to serve in some psychology careers, special certification may be required outside of your degree.
Psychology Degree Types
There are various different levels of psychology degrees. You can get anything from a associate's degree in psychology to the highest psychology degree, a professional practice doctorate. How long it takes to complete some common psychology degree levels is shown below.
|Degree||Credit Requirements||Typical Program Length|
|Associate Degree||60-70 credits||2 years|
|Bachelor’s Degree||120 credits||4 years|
|Master’s Degree||50-70 credits||1-3 years|
|Doctorate||Program required coursework including thesis or dissertation||At least 4 years|
A bachelor's degree is the most common level of education achieved by those in careers related to psychology, with approximately 29.4% of workers getting one. Find out other typical degree levels for psychology workers below.
|Level of Education||Percentage of Workers|
This of course varies depending on which psychology career you choose.
A major in the field of Psychology is usually a stepping stone for an advanced degree. A master's degree will allow you to become a school psychologist or work in some areas of counseling. A doctorate degree is required to become a psychologist. If student choose not to continue their education they may be able to find jobs in social work, marketing, sales, human resources or any other field that involves interacting and understanding people.
Solid Growth Projected for Psychology Careers
Want a job when you graduate with your psychology degree? Psychology careers are expected to grow 9.1% between 2016 and 2026.
The following options are some of the most in-demand careers related to psychology.
|Occupation Name||Projected Jobs||Expected Growth|
|Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists||168,500||14.2%|
How Much Money Do Psychology Grads Make?
Recently graduated psychology students earned an average of $33,462 in 2017-2018. Earnings can range from as low as $10,400 to as high as $93,100. As you might expect, salaries for psychology graduates vary depending on the level of education that was acquired.
Highest Paid Psychology Careers
Salaries for psychology graduates can vary widely by the occupation you choose as well. The following table shows the top 5 highest paying careers psychology grads often go into.
|Occupation Name||Median Average Salary|
|Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists||$85,340|
Getting Your Psychology Degree
With over 5,797 different psychology degree programs to choose from, finding the best fit for you can be a challenge. Fortunately you have come to the right place. We have analyzed all of these schools to come up with hundreds of unbiased psychology school rankings to help you with this.
Top Ranking Lists for Psychology
Study Areas in Psychology
Psychology Majors to Study
|Clinical, Counseling & Applied Psychology||30,532|
|Child Development & Psychology||13,150|
Majors Similar to Psychology
|Related Major||Annual Graduates|
|Communication & Journalism||122,154|
|Family, Consumer & Human Sciences||59,281|
Southern New Hampshire University
You have goals. Southern New Hampshire University can help you get there. Whether you need a bachelor's degree to get into a career or want a master's degree to move up in your current career, SNHU has an online program for you. Find your degree from over 200 online programs ... Learn More >
Building on Purdue’s mission to provide greater access to affordable, world-class education, Purdue University Global delivers a fully personalized online experience that’s tailored to working adults. By opening the doors to adults who need flexibility to fit learning into their busy lives, we make it possible to achieve a high-quality education from the prestigious Purdue University system—completely online ... Learn More >
Grand Canyon University (GCU)
With a spotlight on intellectual creativity and innovation for the 21stcentury, the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at GCU provides a job focused education. It blends the study of traditional humanities in a modern context. Through academic inquiry and beyond the box thinking, the college advances our society and its accomplishments ... Learn More >
Northcentral University (NCU) was founded to provide accessible, high-quality, online graduate degrees to working professionals. As a regionally accredited, online university, NCU serves students worldwide, focusing on Doctoral and Master's degree programs in the Schools of Business and Technology Management, Education, Psychology, and Marriage and Family Sciences ... Learn More >
Colorado Technical University (CTU)
CTU could help you connect to what matters most: a powerful professional community, aculty who are real-world professionals, and innovative technology ... Learn More >