Posted on: May 2, 2019 Posted by: James McQuiston Comments: 0

In this knowledge based economy, those who have more knowledge and more advanced skills have more advantage and opportunities for growth and success. In the past, having a college degree was all that it took to join the workforce and to succeed in it and to have that slice of American dream within reach. However, as life became more technologically advanced, more complicated and more demanding, being able to succeed in life becomes more difficult. There are a number of ways in which we can gain a competitive advantage whether be it in our profession or business but one that cuts across domains, is education. Having a graduate degree such as a PsyD or a doctor in psychology degree can immensely propel your profession or career to greater things.

Graduate Degrees

                A college degree in any field is needed to be able to get well-paying jobs with better benefits and incentives. Almost all research have clearly pointed out that education is the single factor that can alleviate the social status of an individual. Just as there are many college degree programs, there are also many graduate degree programs either a master’s or a doctoral degree. Many universities offer programs that allow you to complete both in an accelerated program, upon graduating, you get both a doctoral and master’s diploma. Many students do prefer such programs as completing two programs in the same amount of time is more cost-efficient. Highly technical and specialized fields however have few options in terms of institutions that offer graduate programs. There are still more schools that have PsyD or doctoral programs for psychology than engineering or biotechnology.

Is an MS or Ph.D Important?

                In the past, getting a college degree is an achievement in itself, and it still is, and even having one would still get you better opportunities than those who have not finished a college degree. However in order to be more attractive to potential employers or clients, a doctoral degree like PsyD is a must. Having a doctoral degree is also a testament to your personal drive and commitment to seek continued improvement and growth. If a client would decide between therapists who have a doctoral degree and one that only has a bachelor’s degree, then the choice definitely would be the one with the highest educational attainment.  A true professional would always want to be armed with the skills and knowledge that will inspire trust and respect for his and her abilities.

What is a PsyD

                A PsyD is a doctoral degree in clinical psychology and one that is in accordance with the state requirements for the licensure in clinical psychology. It is a doctoral degree that builds upon the masters in counselling program and trains practitioners to become leaders and innovators in the field of clinical psychology. Moreover, the PsyD in clinical psychology can be completed in three to four years depending on your academic qualifications when you entered the program. For example, if you have completed a bachelor’s degree in psychology, then you can complete the Psy.D. program in four years, and must take and pass the comprehensive exam for the master’s program after two years of regular classes. If you have already completed a master’s degree, then it would take you three years to complete the PsyD program.

Program Goals

                The PsyD in clinical psychology program have been designed to meet all of the educational requirements necessary for the application of the license in psychology to practice as well as the state licensure for clinical counselor and the marriage and family therapist. The program goals of the Psy.D include the development of leadership capacities for the improvement of the practice and profession of psychology, as well as to enhance creative inquiry practices and skills that would further the profession in psychology. Moreover, the program also aim to train students to be able to articulate the key concepts in psychopathology in all human systems as well as apply the said principles to actual practice. Also to implement appropriate use of psychological assessment and for celebrating individual differences and diversity. Lastly, to enable the student to develop competencies in transformative learning principles and bringing this into the clinical context. All of these are designed to provide students with the most relevant learning experiences that will contribute immensely to their knowledge and skills.

The Importance of Clinical Supervision

                The PsyD in clinical psychology only accepts students who intend to work in the counseling and clinical psychology profession as the program is designed to imbue such students with competencies and skills that would allow them to become better practitioners and clinical psychologists. A hallmark of the quality of a program is found in its curriculum, or the program of study that has been chosen and designed to provide the courses and learning experiences that would ensue optimum learning and mastery of skills. Aside from the academic requirements, you should also give importance to the clinical practicum and supervision that is always required to complete the program.

The practicum is the period in which all the theoretical and conceptual learning is brought into real-life applications. This is where different kinds of clients present themselves and you are tasked to provide the most appropriate psychological assessment and treatment for the client. This is where all the things that was learned during the academic preparations are put into actual practice. This also would help the student decide whether he or she is built for the profession. Sometimes students do get into the profession because they want to really help other people but may not have the grasp of the theories and principles in psychology.

Is It for You?

                It takes a certain kind of person and personality to take on psychology as a profession and aside from the academic rigor is the compassion and heart of service. Many go through the discipline because they believed that it will make them famous or that it affords them a certain kind of privilege. The truth is, psychology is a helping profession and the PsyD program trains its students to become more equipped to help others.

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