When time comes and thousands of students are ready to begin their studies, it is always challenging for prospective students to choose one specific major out of the variety of specializations. Major colleges and universities offer around hundred of different undergraduate programs: students can choose to major in biomedical engineering, exercise physiology, stage and theatre management, sport administration, sociology, Judaic studies, medical anthropology, and many other exciting specializations that can satisfy anybody’s interests. There are, however, a number of majors that are especially popular with college students. These programs include liberal arts, humanities, English language and literature, teacher education, accounting, nursing, criminal justice, and psychology. All these are really great majors that give students a lot of opportunities to find fantastic job positions and build a successful career. In this post we would like to talk about getting a degree in psychology.
So What IS Psychology?
The career in psychology is one of the ‘young’ careers, but today numerous companies and organization requires a specialist in this field. What do psychologists do? Their main goal is to help people adapt to everyday life, get rid of all the negative emotions, mental problems, and solve various problems. Psychologists are needed in school, colleges, universities, medical organizations, and law enforcement institutions. There are a number of characteristics that psychologists are supposed to have (required university training and clinical skills will definitely help students develop them): a psychologist should be optimistic and should be able to recognize his/her patients’ emotions and feelings; a psychologist should be confident, patient, and attentive to his/her patients; it is important that this specialist treats every single patient the same way; he/she should be mentally stable and sociable.
There Are Many Ways to Be Valuable
Certainly, the way of becoming a practitioner psychologist is not the only one. Psychology students can get their PH.D. and become researchers, developing the field by holding experiments and publishing articles that will demonstrate their unique findings. In fact, there are a few types of psychology. Distinguishing them might give prospective students a better idea of which possible career paths they can choose if they decide to major in this field. Clinical psychologists usually work with people who suffer some mental disorders or have abnormal behavior and require professional help. Counseling psychologists help people solve their personal issues or problems related to family, career, or community.
The next type is cognitive psychology: this is a very interesting field because it studies all the mental processes; cognitive psychologists examine the ways people process information and respond to this information. Numerous findings in this area of study are used in other fields of psychology. Social psychology is another extremely useful discipline because its goal is to study how individuals behave in society. This field focuses on such issues as leadership, prejudices, and stereotypes; it examines how individuals act when influenced by other individuals, how relationships are built, and how social roles function. For those who are interested in the way people change with time, there is another discipline – developmental psychology.
Professionals in this area focus on the human development and study changes in children and adults. In this field attention is paid to the issues of nature and nurture: by nature we mean the process of a person’s biological developments whereas by nurture we mean the way that the environment affects an individual. School psychology, in turn, concentrates on working with children and their families and the school process. Finally, there are psychologists whose main concern is improvement of employee’s performance and their satisfaction with their working place.
OF Advantages and Disadvantages
As you can see, there are a lot of ways of applying your professional skills in case you decide to become a psychologist. Opportunities are endless, and this is one of the good reasons to choose this discipline as your major. In the USA the average annual salary of a psychologist is $88,000, which is a very decent number. Of course, this number can go down or up depending on a professional’s experience, company, and level of education.
During their education at college or university psychologists acquire a lot of transferrable skills that can be used in many other professions, so if for some reason a psychology major graduate does not feel like building a career in this area, there will be always other great opportunities for him/her. The major in psychology lets students better understand not only other people but also themselves, and this is a very helpful skill for every person. Besides, specialists in this field have a unique opportunity to become self-employed and have flexible working hours and be independent. In addition to the fact that they are helping people every day, this detail makes the profession of a psychologist even more attractive.
However, just like any other profession, this profession has disadvantages as well. Becoming a practitioner requires more than just a degree, so if you expect to quickly get your diploma and start making money right away, you should keep in mind that you will have to spend a lot of time on training and, most likely, on getting a higher degree. This is a very stressful job, so in case you feel people can easily annoy you, think twice before declaring your major in psychology – your future patients will not be easy people.
Certainly, every single career has disadvantages, and everything depends on whether you are ready to work hard and become successful and get your dream job. All we know is that a career in psychology is extremely interesting, so do not hesitate to major in this discipline if you truly like it.