Explore the vast world of psychology and discover the numerous career paths it has to offer, each with its unique salary prospects. Knowing which careers pay the most, especially in challenging economic times, is vital. Hence, this guide brings you the psychology careers with the highest annual salaries, along with the education and training necessary to succeed in them. Remember, salaries can fluctuate significantly based on factors like experience, education, location, and more.
Highest paying psychology careers:
- Psychiatrist: average annual salary $220,380
- Industrial-Organisational Psychologist: average annual salary $97,260
- Neuropsychologist: average annual salary $93,440
- Clinical Psychologist: average annual salary $76,990
- School Psychologist: average annual salary $76,990
Education required for Highest paying psychology careers:
- Psychiatrist: Medical degree (MD) and residency in psychiatry
- Industrial-Organisational Psychologist: Master's or PhD in I/O psychology
- Neuropsychologist: PhD or PsyD in clinical or counselling psychology
- Clinical Psychologist: PhD or PsyD in clinical or counselling psychology
- School Psychologist: Master's or Specialist degree in school psychology.
Keep in mind, these are just average salaries and can vary greatly based on various factors.
Now let's take a closer look at these careers in psychology :
Average Yearly Salary:$200,000 - $216,090
To become a psychiatrist, one must follow a rigorous educational and training path, starting with obtaining a bachelor's degree, then attending medical school, and finally undergoing a four-year residency. This amounts to approximately 8 years of post-undergraduate study. As medical doctors who specialise in diagnosing and treating mental illnesses and disorders, psychiatrists are in one of the highest paying fields in psychology. Despite this, salaries in the field can still vary widely depending on various factors such as geographic location, area of specialisation, and the type of services provided. For instance, a psychiatrist working in a physician's office typically earns less annually ($222,460) compared to one working in an outpatient care centre ($233,920). Thus making it one of the highest paying psychology careers.
2. Industrial-Organisational Psychologist
Average Yearly Salary: $90,000 - $102,530
Next up on our list of highest paying jobs with a psychology degree is, Industrial-Organisational Psychologist. To work in the field of industrial-organisational psychology, most professionals hold a doctorate degree, leading to more job opportunities and higher salaries. However, there are still some job opportunities available for those with a master's degree. These psychologists work with companies and corporations, utilising psychological principles to enhance decision making in hiring, increase productivity, and conduct market research. The salaries for this profession can vary greatly based on experience, with the top earners making over $250,000 annually. A typical starting salary for a doctoral graduate is around $57,500 a year.
Wondering about the best universities for a degree in psychology? Read our 10 Best Psychology Universities For Psych Majors blog to learn more about them!
Average Yearly Salary: $80,000 - $93,440
To become a neuropsychologist, one must obtain a doctorate degree in neuropsychology or clinical neuropsychology. They examine the relationship between behaviour, cognition, and emotion and the physical structures and functions of the brain. This can involve conducting brain scans, administering cognitive tests, exploring the impact of drugs and substances on the nervous system, and treating individuals with brain injuries. Neuropsychologists work in a range of settings including hospitals, mental health clinics, colleges and universities, research centres, and pharmaceutical labs. Hence it is one of the highest paying jobs with a psychology degree.
4. Engineering Psychologist
Average Yearly Salary: $75,000 - $90,340
Next up on our list of highest paying jobs with a psychology degree is, Engineering Psychologist. Psychologists with master's degrees can find some entry-level jobs, however, those with doctorate degrees will have an easier time securing employment and earn higher salaries. Engineering psychologists, also called human factors engineers, blend the concepts of psychology and engineering to enhance system design and operation, as well as technology and machinery, by examining human behaviour and capabilities. They work in various settings to boost efficiency and decrease risks while minimising injuries. The salary of engineering psychologists depends on their place of work, with higher earnings being common in the private sector compared to working in a university environment.
5. Psychology Teacher
Average Yearly Salary: $60,000 - $85,050
Next up on our list of highest paying jobs with a psychology degree is, a Psychology Teacher. To teach psychology at the postsecondary level, one must hold a master's or doctoral degree. Meanwhile, high school psychology teachers must have a bachelor's degree and secure state certification. These teachers impart knowledge and skills in psychology, counselling, and related fields to students, grooming the future psychologists and professionals in related careers. They also engage in psychological research and publish their findings for the university. On average, university psychology teachers earn $85,320 annually, while junior college teachers earn $84,280. However, those teaching at top universities and research institutions can expect starting salaries of around $110,000. High school psychology teachers, who are relatively rare, earn approximately $60,000 per year.
6. Clinical Psychologist
Average Yearly Salary: $60,000 - $81,330
Clinical psychologists require a Ph.D. or Psy.D. in psychology to practise. They undergo a one or two year supervised residency, followed by passing state licensing exams. Clinical psychology is the largest field within psychology and its professionals are responsible for evaluating, diagnosing, treating, and preventing mental health issues. They can work in various environments like mental health clinics, hospitals, and private practices. Salary for clinical psychologists varies widely, with the most significant factor being years of experience. A clinician with 5 years of experience earns approximately $60,000 per year, whereas a clinician with 14 years of experience earns roughly $115,000 annually. Thus making it one of the highest paying jobs with psychology degree
7. Counselling Psychologist
Average Yearly Salary: $60,000 - $81,330
To practise as a counselling psychologist, one must get a Ph.D., Psy.D., or Ed.D. degree. Counselling psychology and clinical psychology are closely related, performing similar tasks such as mental health treatment and psychotherapy. The main difference is that clinical psychologists typically treat individuals with severe mental disorders, while counselling psychologists treat those with less severe disorders. Some counselling psychologists opt for alternative career paths like teaching at universities, conducting research, or providing vocational counselling instead of directly working with clients. Hence it is one of the highest paying jobs with a psychology degree.
8. School Psychologist
Average Yearly Salary: $77,430
In general, school psychologists are required to complete a school psychology specialised programme. These programmes conclude with a master's degree or an Ed.S. after 60 hours of graduate-level instruction. A doctorate is a degree that roughly one-third of professionals in this sector possess. In order to support children's success not only emotionally and mentally but also academically, school psychologists collaborate closely with other professionals in the educational system, including teachers, counsellors, administrators, and parents. Assessing and identifying learning issues, providing counselling to kids, creating behavioural treatments, and creating supportive learning environments are all part of a school psychologist's job description. Over the next ten years, school psychologists' employment prospects are predicted to increase by 11%. Thus making it one of the highest paying psychology careers
9. Forensic Psychologist
Average Yearly Salary: $61,220
Although some positions are open to those with a master's degree, the majority of forensic psychologists hold a PhD. Forensic psychologists operate in the legal and law enforcement sectors, applying their understanding of psychology to solve crimes and comprehend offenders. They may create psychological profiles of criminals, look into domestic and child abuse situations, provide testimony in court, resolve custody disputes, and educate law enforcement personnel.
10. Sports Psychologist
Average Yearly Salary: $60,000
A master's or doctorate in sports psychology is often required, as well as a graduate-level degree in a field closely connected to sports psychology, such as clinical psychology or counselling. Sports psychologists use their understanding of psychology in the fields of athletics and sports. They strive to comprehend and maximise an athlete's motivation and potential in order to help them perform better, train more efficiently, and recover from injuries faster. Depending on the fields in which they work, salaries differ. Sports psychologists that assist with athletes in professional leagues may make well over $100,000 annually, with average wages between $50,000 and $85,000 making it one of the highest paying jobs with psychology degree
So there you have it, folks! With a psychology degree, the possibilities for high-paying careers are endless. Whether you're drawn to the criminal justice system, healthcare, or even the tech industry, there's a path for you to make a difference and earn a lucrative living. So what are you waiting for? Pursue your passion and unleash your earning potential with a psychology degree today.
Check out our Guide On How To Pay Tuition Fees For International Students to help you pay your fees for a degree in psychology seamlessly! Write a flawless essay for a scholarship to take some load off with our guide on How to Write a Scholarship Essay!