After high school, it seems that many students choose a business major simply because it’s ‘safe’ — in other words, a business degree is bound to be a lucrative one. While owning a tanning salon or working on Wall Street may allow for a life of luxury, there’s an even higher-paying and more rewarding option: a psychology degree.Some psychologists and psychiatrists have a salary large enough to afford a new car every year. A psychology degree can lead to many rewarding careers for people who want to do something that with have a positive impact (and possibly ripple effect) on others. Here are some of the highest paying jobs one can get with a psychology degree.
Child psychiatrist – $189,301 average
A child psychiatrist can make close to a half million dollars in just one year. The job requires the psychiatrist to treat mental, emotional, and behavioural disorders in kids ranging from ages as young as 2 or 3 to about 14 or 15. An advanced degree in psychology is required; the student must then move on to eight years of training. Four of those eight years would be at a psychiatric residency and the other four would be spent in medical school.
Engineering Psychologist – $108,348
The psychology of engineering studies human behaviour and capability in regards to technology. For example, some technology may frustrate and hinder some of its users when its initial purpose was to make life easier for those very people. Frustration using an ATM machine may leave the person blaming his or herself for their inability to operate it properly. However, it seems like today people are more and more willing (and eager) to blame the technology for the mistake before stopping to think if they might be doing something incorrectly. On a larger scale, engineering psychology students might get their degree in hopes of studying the effects and interactions with aviation technology or dangerous nuclear weapons. Overall system performance is also examined in hopes of improving the ways technology fits into our lives, aspiring to create a more user friendly and helpful experience.
Forensic Psychologist – $117,470 for top 10%
Pursuing a psychology degree is hard enough, but becoming one of the top forensic psychologists in the nation is a tedious battle. For the person who hates the grossly inaccurate joke that is CSI and loves real-life crime-solving, it can be a thrilling journey. Forensic psychologists first need a doctorate degree before taking on years of specific clinical experience. Forensic psychologists have a number of responsibilities. They evaluate criminals, interviewing them to decide whether or not they are fit to stand trial. Forensic psychologists also testify during the trial, whether it’s about their diagnoses of a suspect or victim’s mental state or to analyse behaviours. The federal government has the highest demand for forensic psychologists out of anywhere else, and employs over 5,000 of these psychologists with an average salary of $85,000 (09).
Be Dr. Phil – $80 million
This would be the most lucrative use of your psychology degree, but it’s impossible, so you should probably just get over it now. Famous in the 90s after appearing on Oprah, Dr. Phil’s career took off and he became one of the largest television personalities in America. He was already getting in trouble with the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists for hiring a former patient, which the board said was inappropriate. Dr. Phil was criticised for his show but was allowed to continue broadcasting even after his psychology degree was retired because the board ruled that it was an entertainment show — not a psychology one. The trashiness of his show can support that statement; Dr. Phil was chastised by medical professionals and media alike when he randomly visited Britney Spears in her hospital room after she had a mental breakdown, hoping to convince her family to hold an “intervention” on his show.
Industrial-Organizational Psychologists – $102,570 average
That’s a mouthful. This psychology degree involves big business, which is always full of money that could be better used feeding all the starving and suffering people around the world. But this is America, where all is nothing and you’re nothing if you don’t have it all. Industrial organizational psychologists are responsible for using psychology to create business policies and better understand the way a successful business model works, considering the psychology of the personnel and the way in which they are treated. It may also involve employee screening (for jobs such as police officer, FBI, security officer or other job which requires the employee to carry a firearm). The psychologist may also work directly with employees to help improve the workplace and productivity.
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