Top Psychology Degree Concentrations

Female counselor speaking with young patient holding glasses

Students who are interested in studying human behavior can earn a psychology degree. Psychology is a versatile field. Even at the undergraduate level there are concentrations available in psychology degree programs. This means that while learning about the basics of psychology, students can specialize in certain fields. This is an excellent choice for future counselors, therapists, researchers and others who already know what career path they would like to follow.

School Psychology

A school psychologist earns their license in order to work with students in the school setting. They may work hand-in-hand with social workers, teachers, administrators and parents. Their caseload generally involves helping students succeed academically. Academic troubles may relate to learning disabilities, abuse, neglect or other conditions in a child's life. School psychologists are also deciding factors in whether or not students qualify for special education. These specially trained psychologists need to earn a minimum of a master’s degree in psychology and require certification to work in public schools.

Adolescent and Child Development

Closely related to the school psychologist, is the child or adolescent development specialist. A psychology degree graduate who wants to choose a concentration that relates to a specific group or age range can specialize in adolescence or childhood. They become experts in how the brain and human behavior develops at certain stages of their lives. Psychology students who earned degrees in adolescent and child development look at learning, behavior and family dynamics. They may go on to become family therapists or eventually specialize in school psychology and work with students.

Organizational and Industrial Psychology

Psychologists who are interested in how people become and stay motivated in the workplace can earn a specialized degree in organizational and industrial psychology. This field focuses primarily on workers and workplace dynamics. Industrial psychologists work with employees to find out how they feel about their jobs and what can be done to improve their experience and productivity. They also ensure the psychological safety of the workplace.

Clinical Psychology

Psychology degree graduates who intend to work with real patients as therapists or counselors may pick clinical psychology as their specialization. In this case, they will receive training and experience working with people in settings like counseling centers and therapy practices. They take coursework that involves several research and statistical classes. Additionally, a clinical psychology degree can lead someone to become a psychiatrist, which allows them to support clients with medication.

Abnormal Psychology

A psychology degree student who is looking to work with patients whose behaviors and mental statuses deviate from the norm study abnormal psychology. Psychologists who study in this concentration are able to diagnose mental disorders such as depression and schizophrenia. They take coursework in diagnosing and learning about treatments available for people who are struggling with atypical thoughts, behaviors and feelings.

If you are interested in becoming a practicing psychologist, join us for any of our psychology degree programs at Grand Canyon University today. The College of Humanities and Social Sciences offers undergraduate psychology degrees with specialization in family dynamics forensic psychology and performance and sport psychology. Additionally, we offer several degree specializations in sociology, counseling and behavioral health science. Our graduate psychologies in forensic psychology, geropsychology, health psychology are just a few of the advanced degrees we offer. Learn more about our programs by visiting our website or clicking on the Request Info button at the top of this page.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University. Any sources cited were accurate as of the publish date.