In simple terms, definition of psychology can be: a branch of medical science that relates to mental health. Clinical psychology can be considered as a part of scientific approach toward understanding of theoretical and practical aspects. Also, part of clinical psychology is analyzing, diagnosing and preventing, and also helping with mental distress or dysfunctional behavior.
What is clinical psychology?
Clinical psychologist job is usually related for clinical environment such as hospital, clinics, etc. The job of the clinical psychologist is making an assessment of patient current conditions. With further specialization, they can also treat patients suffering from various medical conditions such as schizophrenia, depression, personality disorders. The problems psychologists deal with are many personal disorders, family and relationship problems, addiction problems, and eating disorders. They also work as counselors providing advices to the persons to help them come out of confusions, grief and similar life situations. American Psychology Association research office survey showed that average clinical psychologist salary is $72,000.
How to become a clinical psychologist?
Clinical psychology training, after bachelor degree can last for 4 to 6 more years. After gaining bachelor degree, psychologist can work as an assistant of a licensed psychologist. On the other side, if one finishes Ph. D. training, many perspectives are opening. Furthermore, it is possible to benefit from working as an assistant for twelve months and gaining clinical experience in nursing, a social service for disabled people under a supervision of a qualified clinical psychologist.
Clinical psychologists apply various psychological methods to bring positive changes on treated subjects. Some of those methods are: using various psychological tests that help them to understand behavior and needs treated subjects have. Such tests are psychometric tests, observation of subject’s behavior (direct and indirect) and interviews. Also, they have to cooperate with different working teams such as doctors, social workers, psychiatrists, different kinds of occupational therapists, etc. Planning and execution of various treatment plans is also part of a clinical psychologist’s job description. It is especially important that the clinical psychology expert devise proper treatment for more serious mental disorders such as schizophrenia and depression. There is also a bureaucratic part of clinical psychologist’s job. Maintaining files and medical histories of a treated subject is very important part of this occupation. It is important because a record allows a psychologist to track the subject’s progress in treatment and response on different treatment techniques.
In this field of psychology, there are many prospects, especially for those with specialization in one particular area of clinical psychology.