Answers to Some of the Most Common Questions about Psychology Online Degrees

There are many wonderful nuggets of truth that you can discover about humans, how we think, and what makes us who we are. The ultimate goal of studying psychology is to better understand eh human mind and ‘spirit’ and to work to help people live at pace with themselves and the world around them.

Yes. Many schools offer psychology online degrees. However, while a program may offer online coursework, all graduate psychology programs require in-person internship or practicum experiences. Typically, online students complete these at sites in their home communities. Students should seek out regionally accredited online psychology degree programs.

To earn licensure in psychology, you must hold a degree from an accredited institution. Psychology licensing exams require candidates to graduate from an accredited program. Additionally, credits earned at an unaccredited institution may not transfer to accredited schools, and employers often will not recognize degrees from unaccredited institutions.

If you just want a basic foundation to be able to understand human thought processes, which can be helpful in sales and customer service type jobs, you can look at taking free basics classes or taking a 1 year certificate program from a local college. To go into an actual psychology field you will need at the minimum a 2-3 year Bachelor’s Degree. Many jobs need a Master’s Degree and if you want to have your own private business or work for yourself, you will most likely need a Doctorate Degree. The requirements vary depending on the career field, where you live, what the job details involves, and what the legal requirements are in your area.

This depends on which degree track you select, whether you enroll full or part time online psychology degree, and the individual program requirements. For example, a bachelor’s in psychology may take 3-4 years, a master’s in psychology may take 5 to 6 years, and a doctorate can take an additional 8 to 10 years.

It is listed among the sciences and your degrees earned point to it being a science, but the various fields of psychology have had a long and restless history with ‘hard science’ fields. The main reason for this is because unlike chemistry or medicine, psychology deals with the mind and emotions. These are intangible things. You can see a chemical reaction take place to prove a theory, but you cannot see the actual thought processes of the mind. You see the end results of those thought processes but some argue that is not enough to be considered real science. The debate will likely continue to be waged for years to come, but for your education and career, yes psychology generally is seen as and considered to be a real field of science.

Cognitive biases are when you interject your own preconceived ideas, thoughts, or notions into a situation, and thus affect the outcome or how you and others view the results. Bias is to be avoided as much as possible in psychology so knowing some of the most common forms of bias is helpful. Some common biases to look out for include:

Self-Serving Attribution – the temptation to look at progress and desirable results as being your own doing as the psychologist and the failures and mistakes as being the fault of your client.

Own Race Bias – As the name implies this bias comes from assuming people relate to their own race easier or that if races are different then there is an automatic resistance.

Ultimate Attribution – This is the tendency to see attributes in an individual and then put that attribute onto the entire race or group- blacks like rap, white can’t play basketball, and Asian are short.

In-Group Bias – One of the hardest to overcome, this bias is where you think more positively or act more helpful towards people or ideas that line up with your own personal thoughts, views, ideas, beliefs, and theories.

Illusory Correlation  We can thank many stereotypes on this bias type since it states that people will tend to see correlations or relationships between events and factors that really are not related at all.
There are many, many other biases to be aware of and as you work, research, and explore, you will come across many of these and be faced with the challenge of keeping them out of your work as a psychologist.

Although most states require a doctoral degree in psychology to earn a clinical licensure, many states allow those with a master’s degree to practice in certain areas, such as counseling. Some students may choose to pursue an educational psychology degree, which would allow them to practice as a school counselor in many states. Industrial and organizational psychology positions also often require a master’s degree rather than a doctorate.

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