Counseling Psychologist


What Are Counseling Psychologists?

counseling psychologistCounseling Psychologist serves and sustains an effective focus on facilitating individual functioning across the entire life period. They participate in a variety of actions including research, teaching, career development, construction and supervision, managing power, psychotherapeutic and counseling practice. Basically, the specialties of counseling psychologists pay sound concentration to educational, professional, mental, organizational, health-related and political concerns.

They work with varied client groups together with children, families, politicians, adults, couples and groups. They do various munificent psychotherapeutic and research works to make change in unusual environment, including evaluation formulation of the onset and continuance of psychological predicaments, training and supervision, planning and implementation of treatment. Moreover, they invent an intellectual rationalization of the client’s issues.

Quick Facts
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics.
2016 Median Annual Sallary0
Typical Entry-Level Education
Typical On-The-Job Training
Work Experience In A Related Occupation
Projected Job Openings 2014 - 20240
Employment Change 2014 - 20240
Projected Growth 2014 - 2024%

Steps to Become a Counseling Psychologist

To become a Counseling Psychologist and start career; research, educational requirements, training, licensure information, devotion to clients and experience are very much required. In spite of these, some important steps are highly needed to become a counseling psychologist. These steps are mentioned below:
  • Education:

    Most clinical, counseling, and research psychologists require a doctoral level. Students can complete a Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) or Ph.D. in psychology degree. A Ph.D. in psychology is a study level that is obtained after going for a detailed exam and writing a dissertation predicated on original research. Ph.D. programs typically include training on figures and experimental steps. The Psy.D. is a clinical level often predicated on sensible work and examinations rather than dissertation. In clinical, counseling, or health service adjustments, students usually complete a 1-time internship within the doctoral program.

    • Post-doctoral Training: 40%
    • Master's Degree: 27%
    • Doctoral Degree: 25%
  • Licenses & Accreditations:

    Licensing laws differ by position type and by state. Most counseling psychologists require a doctorate in psychology, an internship, with least one to two 24 months of supervised professional experience. In addition, they must complete the Assessment for Professional Practice in Psychology. In many state governments, accredited psychologists must complete carrying on education lessons to keep their licenses.

  • Training:

    Most possible psychologists will need to have pre- or postdoctoral supervised experience, including an internship. Internships allow students to get experience within an applied setting. Prospects must complete an internship before they can be eligible for state licensure. The requirement for number of hours of the internship may vary by state.

Job Outlook


Below are national percentile wage estimates for this occupation in United States.
PERCENTILE 10% 25% 50% 75% 90%
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics.
Hourly Wage $20.11 $26.47 $35.23 $46.11 $57.85
Annual Wage $41,830 $55,050 $73,270 $95,910 $120,320

Industries with Highest Levels of Employment in This Occupation:

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics.
Elementary and Secondary Schools 44,280 0.53 $36.38 $75,670
Offices of Other Health Practitioners 15,600 1.86 $43.04 $89,530
Individual and Family Services 6,930 0.41 $36.01 $74,910
Outpatient Care Centers 5,960 0.71 $36.07 $75,020
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals 5,680 0.10 $40.13 $83,480

Top Paying Industries for This Occupation:

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics.
Specialty (except Psychiatric and Substance Abuse) Hospitals 460 0.18 $45.02 $93,650
Offices of Other Health Practitioners 15,600 1.86 $43.04 $89,530
Offices of Physicians 4,650 0.18 $41.45 $86,220
Management of Companies and Enterprises 390 0.02 $41.43 $86,180
Employment Services 370 0.01 $41.22 $85,750

States with Highest Employment Level in This Occupation:

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics.
California 18,990 1.55 $43.37 $90,210
New York 11,230 1.61 $43 $89,430
Texas 5,820 0.64 $31.40 $65,310
Pennsylvania 5,040 1.14 $34.92 $72,640
Massachusetts 4,900 1.84 $36.32 $75,550

Top Paying States for This Occupation:

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics.
New Jersey 3,600 1.18 $45.50 $94,650
South Dakota 250 0.79 $45.08 $93,760
California 18,990 1.55 $43.37 $90,210
New York 11,230 1.61 $43 $89,430
Oregon 1,130 0.82 $41.91 $87,170

Key Attributes

Every field has basic requirements for people having different skills, abilities and knowledge. Understanding these requirements will help you find right career path for you. Below are few such key attributes that a Counseling Psychologist should have.


20 displayed
  • Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Science: Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
  • Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Active Learning: Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Learning Strategies: Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.
  • Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Coordination: Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Persuasion: Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.
  • Negotiation: Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.
  • Instructing: Teaching others how to do something.
  • Service Orientation: Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Complex Problem Solving: Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Systems Evaluation: Identifying measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.
  • Time Management: Managing one's own time and the time of others.
  • Management of Personnel Resources: Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.


7 displayed
  • Customer and Personal Service: Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Sociology and Anthropology: Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.
  • English Language: Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Clerical: Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
  • Education and Training: Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • Psychology: Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Therapy and Counseling: Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.


15 displayed
  • Oral Comprehension: The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Written Comprehension: The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Oral Expression: The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Written Expression: The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Fluency of Ideas: The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).
  • Originality: The ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem.
  • Problem Sensitivity: The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Deductive Reasoning: The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Inductive Reasoning: The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Information Ordering: The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
  • Category Flexibility: The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
  • Selective Attention: The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
  • Near Vision: The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Speech Recognition: The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
  • Speech Clarity: The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.

What They Do?


13 displayed
  • Collect information about individuals or clients, using interviews, case histories, observational techniques, and other assessment methods.
  • Develop therapeutic and treatment plans based on clients' interests, abilities, or needs.
  • Analyze data, such as interview notes, test results, or reference manuals, to identify symptoms or to diagnose the nature of clients' problems.
  • Advise clients on how they could be helped by counseling.
  • Evaluate the results of counseling methods to determine the reliability and validity of treatments.
  • Refer clients to specialists or to other institutions for noncounseling treatment of problems.
  • Select, administer, and interpret psychological tests to assess intelligence, aptitudes, abilities, or interests.
  • Conduct research to develop or improve diagnostic or therapeutic counseling techniques.
  • Document patient information including session notes, progress notes, recommendations, and treatment plans.
  • Counsel individuals, groups, or families to help them understand problems, deal with crisis situations, define goals, and develop realistic action plans.
  • Supervise interns, clinicians in training, and other counselors.
  • Consult with other professionals, agencies, or universities to discuss therapies, treatments, counseling resources or techniques, and to share occupational information.
  • Provide consulting services, including educational programs, outreach programs, or prevention talks to schools, social service agencies, businesses, or the general public.

Work Activities

28 displayed
  • Getting Information: Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings: Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events: Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
  • Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People: Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
  • Processing Information: Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
  • Analyzing Data or Information: Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems: Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
  • Thinking Creatively: Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge: Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
  • Developing Objectives and Strategies: Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.
  • Scheduling Work and Activities: Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work: Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
  • Interacting With Computers: Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
  • Documenting/Recording Information: Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
  • Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others: Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates: Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization: Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships: Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
  • Assisting and Caring for Others: Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.
  • Selling or Influencing Others: Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.
  • Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others: Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.
  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public: Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.
  • Developing and Building Teams: Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.
  • Training and Teaching Others: Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
  • Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates: Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.
  • Coaching and Developing Others: Identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills.
  • Provide Consultation and Advice to Others: Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics.
  • Performing Administrative Activities: Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.

Work Context

17 displayed
  • Telephone: 86% responded "Every day"
  • Electronic Mail: 88% responded "Every day"
  • Letters and Memos: 21% responded "Every day"
  • Contact With Others: 69% responded "Constant contact with others"
  • Work With Work Group or Team: 38% responded "Extremely important"
  • Deal With External Customers: 60% responded "Extremely important"
  • Coordinate or Lead Others: 24% responded "Extremely important"
  • Responsibility for Outcomes and Results: 29% responded "Very high responsibility"
  • Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People: 15% responded "Every day"
  • Indoors, Environmentally Controlled: 98% responded "Every day"
  • Spend Time Sitting: 69% responded "Continually or almost continually"
  • Consequence of Error: 38% responded "Extremely serious"
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results: 58% responded "Very important results"
  • Frequency of Decision Making: 72% responded "Every day"
  • Freedom to Make Decisions: 91% responded "A lot of freedom"
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work: 79% responded "A lot of freedom"
  • Time Pressure: 21% responded "Every day"

Job Zone

  • Title: Job Zone Five: Extensive Preparation Needed
  • Education: Most of these occupations require graduate school. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D. (law degree).
  • Related Experience: Extensive skill, knowledge, and experience are needed for these occupations. Many require more than five years of experience. For example, surgeons must complete four years of college and an additional five to seven years of specialized medical training to be able to do their job.
  • Job Training: Employees may need some on-the-job training, but most of these occupations assume that the person will already have the required skills, knowledge, work-related experience, and/or training.
  • Job Zone Examples: These occupations often involve coordinating, training, supervising, or managing the activities of others to accomplish goals. Very advanced communication and organizational skills are required. Examples include librarians, lawyers, astronomers, biologists, clergy, surgeons, and veterinarians.
  • SVP Range: (8.0 and above)

Find Your State Licensing Requirements

Whether you need to complete an internship or a doctoral degree, licensing requirements may vary from state to state. Click name of state below to find licensing requirement for that particular state.

Popular School Rankings

Related Careers

Pin It on Pinterest

You found this content helpful?

Let's share this piece of information with your friends!