How to become a Psychologist
Are you interested in the sciences and human behaviours? Are you a good listener who will empathise and not judge people?
What is a Psychologist?
Psychologists are healthcare professionals who assess, diagnose and treat mental, emotional and behavioural disorders. They work to reduce stress and improve the psychological health of their patients.
As a psychologist, you would be utilizing different methods to assess your client’s needs, abilities and behaviours such as psychometric tests, interviews and direct observation. You would need to create, implement and monitor appropriate treatment programs including therapy, counseling or advice in order to address different mental health issues like anxiety, depression, addiction, social and interpersonal problems and challenging behaviour.
Psychologists also provide consultation to other professionals in order to help them take a psychological approach to their work. Generally, they have specialisations like educational psychology, clinical psychology, occupational psychology or sports psychology.
Being a psychologist would require you to have a keen interest in science and human behaviour. Since you will be working as part of a multidisciplinary team of doctors, nurses, education professionals, psychiatrists, social workers and health visitors, you need to have excellent communication, listening and teamwork skills. You also need to have the ability to keep confidentiality as well as maturity, empathy and patience.
Hours & Conditions:
Psychologists usually see their clients in a consultation room or they could visit clients at home. Aside from private practice, you may find work in hospitals, educational institutions, correctional facilities, rehabilitation centers and sports facilities.
Psychologists usually work a standard number of hours from Monday to Friday. Depending on your specialty, you may need to see clients outside work hours. There may also be part time work opportunities available.
How to become a Psychologist: Qualifications
To pursue a career as a psychologist, you would need a four year undergraduate degree in psychology and then to complete either an accredited 2-year postgraduate qualification or two years of supervised experience with a registered psychologist.
To get into the degree courses, you would need to gain your secondary school certificate or an equivalent with English. You would also be required to complete an appropriate bachelor’s degree in order to enter postgraduate courses.
Because psychology is a regulated profession, you need to register with the Psychology Board of Australia http://www.psychologyboard.gov.au/ which is part of the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency.
To look at courses that will help you find a role as a psychologist, check out
The job outlook for psychologists is positive and expected to grow in the coming years. There is an increasing demand for psychological services in various settings including schools, hospitals, social services agencies and mental health centers. Psychologists are also important to an ageing population, they help people cope with the mental and physical changes that come with growing old. Finally, psychologists also have an increasingly vital role in schools where they closely work with students, especially those with special needs, learning disabilities and behavioural issues.