A Career in
I want a career in psychology? How do you become a
psychologist? Well, to answer these questions from a truly international perspective is
extremely difficult. In many cases to become a "registered",
"chartered", "professional", psychologist depends up what country you
live in and your method of study. Many countries, even though bi-lateral agreements may
exist, have differing educational and professional experience requirements.
In the USA psychologists, who wish to practice clinical,
counselling or educational psychology usually require a Ph.D. in their chosen specialty. A
minimum period of practical experience ( internship ) and licensure or certification from
a State Registration Board. Also the qualification you hold must be from a university or
college that holds accreditation from one of the U.S. Department of Education regional
accrediting organizations. And finally, the course you completed must be recognized, not
in all cases though, by the American Psychological Association (APA).
In the United Kingdom the picture is slightly different.
Clinical Psychologists require "Chartered" status which is usually gained by
completing a British Psychological Society (BPS) recognized Masters degree at approved
Ignoring the obvious difference between the two recognition
processes the advantage of the American system is that its approach is extremely flexible
whereas the UK progression path is fixed and inflexible.
From these examples you can now understand why careers in
psychology have to start by observing the requirements of the country in which you live.
Therefore your first port of call should be the appropriate professional body for
psychology in your country. Refer here to PsychNet-UKs Professional
Bodies Page. If you intend qualifying as a psychologist outside the country
you eventually wish to practice in, ensure that your qualifications will be are accepted
on your return.
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