CAREER GUIDE FOR PSYCHOLOGIST- COUNSELING
SOC Code: 19-3031.03
Pay Band(s): 4, 5, and 6 (Salary Structure)
Standard Occupational Description: Assess and evaluate individuals' problems through the use of case history, interview, and observation and provide individual or group counseling services to assist individuals in achieving more effective personal, social, educational, and vocational development and adjustment.
Counseling Psychologist positions in the Commonwealth are assigned to the following Roles in the Psychological Services Career Group:
While Counseling Psychologists within the Commonwealth are all located within the Psychological Services Career Group, individuals may want to pursue other opportunities within the Commonwealth depending upon individual training, education, knowledge, skills, abilities, and interests.
Other Career Group(s) that may be of interest are:
SKILLS, KNOWLEDGE, ABILITIES AND TASKS
(Technical and Functional Expertise)
The Knowledge of:
The Ability to:
Like people, occupations have traits or characteristics. These characteristics give important clues about the nature of the work and work environment, and give you an opportunity to match your own personal interests to a specific occupation. When you choose a job in an occupation that matches your own interests you have taken an important step in planning a successful and rewarding career.
The occupation of Counseling Psychologist has Social, Investigative and Artistic characteristics as described below:
Social Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
Investigative Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
Artistic Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
LICENSURE, REGISTRATION, OR CERTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS
Licensure is required for Counseling Psychologist positions in state government.
The Virginia Board of Psychology regulates licensing of Counseling Psychologists. Information for licensing of Counseling Psychologist can be found on the Department of Health Professions' web site at: http://www.dhp.state.va.us/boards.htm
The American Board of Professional Psychology (ABPP) recognizes professional achievement by awarding specialty certification, primarily in clinical psychology, clinical neuropsychology, and counseling, forensic, industrial-organizational, and school psychology. Candidates for ABPP certification need a doctorate in psychology, postdoctoral training in their specialty, 5 years of experience, professional endorsements, and a passing grade on an examination.
EDUCATIONAL, TRAINING, AND LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES
The Department of Labor provides the following information:
Counseling psychologists use various techniques, including interviewing and testing, to advise people on how to deal with problems of everyday living. They work in settings such as university counseling centers, hospitals, and individual or group practices.
A doctoral degree usually is required for employment as an independent licensed clinical or counseling psychologist. Psychologists with a Ph.D. qualify for a wide range of teaching, research, clinical, and counseling positions in universities, healthcare services, elementary and secondary schools, private industry, and government. Psychologists with a Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) degree usually work in clinical positions or in private practices.
A doctoral degree usually requires 5 to 7 years of graduate study. The Ph.D. degree culminates in a dissertation based on original research. Courses in quantitative research methods, which include the use of computer-based analysis, are an integral part of graduate study and are necessary to complete the dissertation. The Psy.D. may be based on practical work and examinations rather than a dissertation. In clinical or counseling psychology, the requirements for the doctoral degree usually include at least a 1-year internship.
Persons with a master's degree in psychology may work as industrial-organizational psychologists or school psychologists. They also may work as psychological assistants, under the supervision of doctoral-level psychologists, and conduct research or psychological evaluations. A master's degree in psychology requires at least 2 years of full-time graduate study. Requirements usually include practical experience in an applied setting and a master's thesis based on an original research project. Competition for admission to graduate programs is keen. Some universities require applicants to have an undergraduate major in psychology. Others prefer only coursework in basic psychology with courses in the biological, physical, and social sciences; and statistics and mathematics.
A bachelor's degree in psychology qualifies a person to assist psychologists and other professionals in community mental health centers, vocational rehabilitation offices, and correctional programs. They may work as research or administrative assistants or become sales or management trainees in business. Some work as technicians in related fields, such as marketing research.
The State Council of Higher Education of Virginia lists many Virginia educational institutions offering programs in psychology on their web site: http://research.schev.edu/degreeinventory/inventory_
For more information on this career and a listing of educational institutions offering programs for psychologists visit the Virginia Area Health Education Centers program at their web site: http://www.ahec.vcu.edu/hcmanual.htm
Competencies are a set of identified behaviors, knowledge, skills, and abilities that directly and positively impact the success of employees and the organization. Competencies can be observed and measured. When consistently demonstrated, competencies make employees particularly effective in their work. Competencies help lay out a road map to career success. You can use the Commonwealth Competencies to help improve your individual performance by adopting behaviors that make high performing employees successful in their jobs. In this way, you can use the Commonwealth Competencies for your further professional development.
The Commonwealth Competencies are:
The above competencies may be applied to employees throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. They can be rank-ordered by agencies and hiring managers to represent the needs of a specific job. The rank ordering will change depending upon the occupation, an organization's priorities, the actual job requirements, and the supervisor's preferences.
Career success is both about what you do (applying your technical knowledge, skills, and ability) and how you do it (the consistent behaviors you demonstrate and choose to use) while interacting and communicating with others. Hopefully, by studying the Commonwealth competencies, identifying your developmental opportunities, and working to refine your own competence, you can take charge of your career!
For additional information about the Commonwealth Competencies go to: http://jobs.state.va.us/cc_planningctr.htm. For the competencies, we first list the competencies and then define each. Finally, we list competency indicators; to describe what successful performance looks like.
COMMONWEALTH CAREER PATH
Career opportunities in the Commonwealth are not limited to moving up to the next highest role and pay band, changing positions, or to becoming a supervisor. That's because most roles describe a broad group of occupationally related positions that perform a range of work that requires increased knowledge and skills. For that reason, Commonwealth roles describe the career paths within the same or higher-level role for the same or different Career Group. The broad salary range and the Commonwealth's pay practices provide flexibility in recognizing career development and advancement. (Salary Structure)
For example: Counseling Psychologist
Sample Career Path
Psychologist I/Psychology Associate I
The Psychologist I/Psychology Associate I role provides career tracks for licensed psychologists and unlicensed associates who are responsible for conducting psychological assessments and administering, scoring and interpreting a variety of psychological tests. Psychologists/Psychology Associates I provide treatment to clients using didactic, psychotherapeutic and behavioral techniques and principles to include individual, group, and family services, crisis intervention and risk assessment, and counseling. All work is performed by, or under the supervision of a higher-level clinical psychologist.
Psychologist II/Psychology Associate II
The Psychologist II/Psychology Associate II role provides career tracks for advanced-level licensed psychologists and unlicensed associates who deliver a variety of comprehensive psychological services to clients. Services may include complex diagnostic testing and evaluation, treatment planning and intervention, applied behavior analysis, individual, group and family therapy, research, and staff training. May supervise subordinate psychologists, associates, therapists, and counselors and develop treatment policy for the assigned program area. Exercises independent judgment regarding individual client care.
Psychologist III/Psychology Associate III
The Psychologist III/Psychologist Associate III role provides career tracks for expert-level licensed psychologists and unlicensed associates who provide the full range of direct services to clients and/or clinical and administrative supervision to staff in caseload management, resource allocation, clinical decisions, crisis intervention, and on-going program planning and implementation. May provide and oversee the development, implementation and evaluation of policy, services, and programs.
The Psychology Manager role is for managers that are responsible for long-range activities associated with administering and directing the design and delivery of comprehensive psychological services programs.
ADDITIONAL OCCUPATIONAL INFORMATION CAN BE FOUND AT:
O*NET (Occupational Information Network)
Virginia Employment Commission
Career One Stop
Virginia Career Resource Network
American Psychological Association
Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards
American Board of Professional Psychology