Education Career Articles

Connect Facebook Connect Twitter Connect Google+ Connect Pinterest Connect Stumbleupon

Master’s Degree Programs in Health Psychology Overview

Majors Overview January 2, 2016

This article talks about master’s degree programs in health psychology and their education requirements, coursework, career choices, job and wage outlook, and continuing education choices.

Master’s Programs in Health Psychology

A master’s program in psychology with a specialization in health psychology is common. A master’s degree in health psychology, such as the Master of Health Psychology or Master of Science (M.S.) in Health Psychology, is rare. The focus of these programs is on the mind-body link between the brain and disease prevention, illness, and management of chronic illnesses.

In the relatively new academic field of health psychology, students learn about designing and evaluating programs aimed at encouraging healthy habits. They also learn about using psychology in managing and preventing chronic illnesses such as heart disease or diabetes. They may also choose to pursue clinical studies. A practicum or internship is in most programs, and students must usually research and defend a thesis. Some states permit graduates to practice as counselors, but the majority prefer to go on to earn a doctoral degree.

Education Requirements

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a bachelor’s degree in psychology or sociology or another related field. While a health psychology concentration is in some programs at the bachelor’s level, schools accept a general bachelor’s degree in psychology or any specialization. Additionally, applicants may have to satisfy a minimum GPA standard, but may not have to submit an acceptable Graduate Record Exam (GRE) score.

Coursework

Some general psychology classes are taken, in addition to health psychology specific classes. Students in some programs are offered the choice of an additional concentration in research, teaching or clinical practice – involving work with patients. Students in most programs are required to complete an internship or practicum that relates specifically to health psychology, in addition to an oral defense of a thesis crafted from original research. Core coursework may cover topic areas such as:

•Intervention techniques
•Psychopharmacology
•Mental health and wellness
•Abnormal psychology
•Statistics
•Biological sources of mental health problems

Career Choices

Program graduates from a master’s degree program in health psychology or psychology can seek careers in hospitals, community mental health agencies, or rehabilitation facilities. While a health psychologist typically needs to have a doctorate, those who complete a master’s degree program in the field can choose from possible job options such as:

•Community Counselor
•Health psychology research assistant
•Social worker

Job and Wage Outlook

Over the 2010 – 2020 decade, counselor, social worker and other community and social service specialists are expected to witness a 26% job growth (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). In May 2014, healthcare social workers brought in an average annual wage of $53,590 while community and social service specialists earned median wages of $43,740 (BLS).

Continuing Education Choices

In many states, students with a master’s degree can seek licensure as counselors. However, the majority of students opt for continuing education via a doctorate in the field such as the Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Health Psychology. Graduates will get training for licensure as psychologists who seek more job choices in both research or patient care settings. In many states, license holders are required to renew their licenses annually through continuing education classes.

Searching Searching ...

Matching School Ads
5 Program(s) Found
  • Does psychology interest you? See if Grand Canyon University could be a good fit for your journey in discovering the human mind!
  • GCU offers a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Master of Science in Psychology with an emphasis in either General Psychology or Industrial & Organizational Psychology.
  • The College of Humanities and Social Sciences at GCU provides a job focused education, blending the study of traditional humanities in a modern context.
  • GCU offers a variety of learning options, including: traditional degree programs offered at our main campus, online degrees, or evening classes meeting once a week at various locations.
  • Founded in 1949, GCU is a regionally accredited, private Christian university and is recognized as offering some of the best online education programs in the nation.
  • Request information and learn more about our program offerings, start dates, financial aid and more!
Good for Working Adults
  • Accredited
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
5 Program(s) Found
  • Designated a 2015 Military Friendly School by Victory Media for the 4th consecutive year.
  • Listed on the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll in 2013, for the sixth consecutive year
  • Links students to hundreds of training opportunities (beyond their traditional internships and practicum) at their many “partner agencies” in each of their local communities.
  • Accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WUSCUC).
Good for Working Adults
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Financial Aid
1 Program(s) Found
  • Earn your Bachelor of Arts in Psychology - 100% online
  • South University brings over 115 years of tradition and achievement to a supportive online classroom
  • Topics covered include psychological disorders, personality development, social perception, and more
  • Concentrations include Behavioral Health, General Psychology, and Experimental/Research
  • We're now Non-Profit.
Good for Working Adults
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
  • eLearners.com Helps You Find the Right College within Minutes.
  • Get Matched to the Perfect Psychology Degree Programs From Top Colleges Here.
  • Learn at Your Own Pace and Get Qualified to Pursue a Career You Will Love.
  • Answer a Few Questions and You Are One Step Closer to Enroll in a Top College!
  • Online Courses

Searching Searching ...

Matching School Ads
5 Program(s) Found
  • Why Earn Your Degree from GCU?
  • Options: Choose from a variety of undergraduate and graduate degree programs in Business, Nursing, Psychology, Education & more!
  • Convenience: Complete courses online, on campus, or a combination of both!
  • Earlier Graduation: Our 4-credit courses allow you to complete your degree program in less time.
  • Transfer Friendly: We will request your transcripts, evaluate your graduate coursework, and determine your anticipated graduation date within 24 hours.
  • Quality: Grand Canyon University was founded in 1949 and is regionally accredited. Learn more today!
Good for Working Adults
  • Accredited
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
5 Program(s) Found
  • Designated a 2015 Military Friendly School by Victory Media for the 4th consecutive year.
  • Listed on the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll in 2013, for the sixth consecutive year
  • Links students to hundreds of training opportunities (beyond their traditional internships and practicum) at their many “partner agencies” in each of their local communities.
  • Accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WUSCUC).
Good for Working Adults
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Financial Aid
1 Program(s) Found
  • Online Bachelor's programs include BBA, Criminal Justice, Psychology, IT, Healthcare Management & Public Health
  • Over 115 years of delivering quality education and personalized attention to students
  • Provide a range of campus experiences and services online including advising, tutoring, student community, and career services
  • Give students and alumni access to career assistants who help with resumes, cover letters, job hunting, and more.
  • We're now Non-Profit.
Good for Working Adults
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
  • Interested in Changing the Lives of Patients and People with Each New Discussion? Get Educated in the Psychology Field.
  • Build the Capabilities and Connections to Power Your Future.
  • Psychology, Human Services, Social Work Degree Programs and More From Top Colleges that Fit Your Needs.
  • Find Schools Online or Near You & Get Info for FREE Today!
  • Online Courses

Login to your account

Can't remember your Password ?

Register for this site!