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The growth rate for employment as a psychologist is above average due to an increased demand for these services in hospitals, schools, mental health centers, social service agencies, consulting firms and substance abuse clinics. Further, the average earnings enjoyed by industrial-organizational psychologists as of 2004 were $71,400. Online psychology programs give people the opportunity to study for a career in this challenging, rapidly growing field without compromising their other daily activities.

Students pursuing psychology online degrees learn about the human mind and behavior and its biological, social and cognitive bases, as well how to apply this knowledge to practical problems. Student enrolled in online psychology programs can choose to specialize in areas of psychology such as educational, child, clinical, sport, forensic, industrial, organizational, social and marriage and family therapy. The U.S Department of Labor reports that four out of ten psychologists are self-employed. The remaining psychologists work at places such as public and private schools, hospitals, state and federal government, correctional institutions, market research firms, advertising agencies, day care centers, mental health care providers and PR firms. Dynamic positions held by psychology graduates include media buyer, copywriter, art therapist, retail buyer, teacher, child welfare caseworker and public relations specialist. A wide variety of exciting employment options exist for students who earn psychology degrees online.

In order to work as a psychologist, students must fulfill the required course of education, usually a doctorate, then complete an internship and gain one to two years of professional experience. Sometimes psychology students are also required to complete a thesis or original research paper. At this point, the student can take the application state licensing qualifying examination to become a psychologist. Most of the state licensing boards give a standardized test, but equirements vary from state to state. Some states also require continuing education to renew a psychology license.

Online psychology programs make it easy for busy professionals to fit continuing education requirements into their hectic schedules. Doctoral training programs in counseling, school and clinical psychology are accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA). The National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education and the National Association of School Psychologists are also involved with accreditation of school psychology advanced degree programs. It typically takes students five to eight years to complete psychology online degrees.

In 2004, psychologists held approximately 179,000 jobs. With the variety of interesting employment opportunities that exist in the psychology field today, online psychology programs afford students a chance for career advancement while they balance their work and family responsibilities.

About the Author

Mary Jackson is a web contributor for where you find answers, information and advice on distance learning colleges, accredited online degrees and online courses. See more related information on psychology degrees online colleges.