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Clinical Psychologist Pay Scale

Career News August 9, 2013

How much can you make if you find a job as a clinical psychologist? This truly depends on what your specialty of training is, as well as the career path you decide to take. Psychology pays well in general, but “in general” truly depends on how much you can prove your value to an institution or a community.

Clinical Psychology and the Business World

For starters, understand that clinical psychology is one of the largest specialty areas in psychology, so the competition is intense. Licensed clinical psychologists work in many different settings, such as private practice clinics, larger community clinics, fast-paced hospitals, or even in private or educational academic settings. Even so, your skills will be put to the test and everything you studied for will come to fruition, since all of these avenues of clinical psychology will still involve prevention, diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders and disease.

On average, salaries for this profession averaged just over $87,000 annually. Only fifteen percent of all surveyed psychologists are believed to work among groups. However, well over fifty percent work in private practice. A more realistic figure would be that professionals make between $50,000 and $90,000 annually, but this depends on how many years of experience and education the doctor has. There is also a difference in pay according to the location of the office and the type of work station involved. For example, a clinical psychologist in private practice with only a few years of experience would probably make closer to $50,000 annually, as compared to a doctor that has over 15 years of experience, who brings in twice that amount.

How Can You Make More?

Those working in clinical psychology can look forward to a promising career, as well as a steady paycheck. The forecast for this career path, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, is set to increase by twelve percent over the next decade. Of course, the source also states the pay range can change according to your specialty, as well as your school and years of experience. Nevertheless, salaries are expected to stay about the same even as the years continue.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics further reports that divisions within clinical psychology, such as a clinical doctor, counselor and school counselor, make slightly above average (just over $60,000 a year). Salaries can increase as your experience increases. Along with experience, your new credentials and certifications can also add value to your position, causing a salary hike. The best paid doctors in the profession can make well over $100,000 annually and are among the top ten percent. The middle income level can earn between $48,000 and $82,000 annually and are fifty percent of the entire profession.

Lastly, consider additional prospects of working in outpatient mental health, substance abuse clinics, law enforcement, and correctional facilities. You can also work with law enforcement on a variety of local community tasks.

This is a great career for a person who wants to reach out to others and use his or her skills to assist people in making positive changes. The opportunities are vast, and it does not require a life commitment—just academic discipline.

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