The work of an educational psychologist often lies in the background, unseen by the average observer except when a final product is announced. Because of the title of doctor that often accompanies the profession, many ask, “Are educational psychiatrists certified?” The answer to that question lies in the laws of each individual state.
Workers in educational psychology have been around for thousands of years. Some trace the original practitioners as far back as Plato and identify Socrates as major contributors to the field. The recent growth in the practice is attributed to Edward Lee Thorndike who published the book Educational Psychology in 1903 and who in 1910 founded the publication of the journal by the same name that is still publishing today. Educational psychologists work with children and adults to discover their learning process, including emotional, social, and cognitive systems of learning into a program specifically designed for a given child, a school, an ethnic group, or a community. The field is not limited to the educational system but is also valued in the business sector as a means of gaining an advantage in the marketplace.
Where Do Educational Psychologists Find Work?
Educational psychologists work in a plethora of environments. Indeed, the recognition of educational psychology has expanded so fast as to make its presence known in several sectors of the social structure. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics educational psychologists are finding job growth in their specific field at 19 percent, a full 5 percent higher than that enjoyed by other psychology fields. The areas of concentration in practice includes working with individual students, ages 4-18 with learning disabilities, classes of students with learning disabilities, school education programs, ethnic diversity programs, district-level educational programs, state and federal level educational programs, and business educational platforms that facilitate the improvement of customer service, sales, and work environment knowledge.
One of the reasons those who gain an educational psychology degree find gainful employment nearly everywhere in the United States is the broadening effect of the education process that those with the degree have accomplished. Many who succeed in gaining the degree end up working in research, delving through charts, graphs, texts, and statistics developed in various studies and bringing them together towards a cumulative conclusion. Other degree recipients work as administrators of human resource divisions in large companies, while others may work in the public sector as department heads of special education programs at the school, district, or state levels. Still, others find employment as political lobbyists or organization therapists. Many graduates move into high administrative positions or serve as officials for federal level political positions. In effect, the limitations an educational psychiatrist enjoys in the workplace is only limited by the imagination of the applicant.
Related Resource: Top 5 Online Doctorate in Educational Psychology
What Credentials are Necessary?
The first hurdle to becoming an educational psychiatrist is a bachelor’s degree in psychology. Some people in some States find employment as an educational psychiatrist with a master’s degree but a Doctorate in Psychology is generally necessary to reach the level of an educational psychologist. The trail from high school through a bachelor’s degree and then a master’s and on to a doctorate takes a minimum of eight years. After graduating with your degree in hand, expect another two years of internship to receive a license, which is required to work without supervision, and pass the examination for professional practice in psychology to become fully certified as a practicing educational psychologist.