August 23, 2012

Counseling Careers with a Psychology Degree

Counseling is the largest specialty area in psychology and encompasses a wide variety of treatments for clients with various symptoms and conditions. Counseling can benefit individuals throughout every stage of life. Counseling psychologists work with clients with a variety of situations, including emotional, social, psychological, educational, career, vocational, business, family and marriage relationships, addictions and other issues.

What Type of Work Do They Do?

There are basically two sub-fields of graduate level psychology. Clinical psychology usually deals with more severe cases of mental illness and takes a more medical approach to diagnose and treat patients. Counseling psychology treats less severe cases and uses psycho-therapeutic techniques. Both sub-fields branch into other areas of psychology and counseling, and approaches vary with specialty, education level and training.

If you want a career in counseling, there are several options to choose. The specialty or type of client you work with in some ways depends on your level of education and helps to answer the question, “What can I do with a psychology degree?

In each case, the education level for a discipline is entry-level. Education and licensing will vary by state, type of organization or company.

Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology

Opportunities are somewhat limited at this educational level. Some examples include:

* Social and Human Services Assistants (social worker)
* School Counselor
* Substance Abuse and Behavioral Disorder Counselors

While you can break into counseling at this educational level, some states may require a number of college credits or completion of a two-year certification program. Some organizations may offer specialized on-the-job training and require certification or additional education while employed. As an assistant, you would most likely be assisting with administrative duties, scheduling appointments or setting up group meetings and completing reports.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary range at this education level is from $28,000 to $38,000.

Master’s Degree

A master’s degree is the minimum requirement for licensing in some states. Requirements will vary state-to-state, but some employers in the following disciplines will hire individuals who have completed a master’s degree in psychology.

* Rehabilitation Counselors
* Mental Health Counselors
* Marriage and Family Counselors
* School and Career Counselors
* School Psychologists
* Community Health Counselors

Higher-level counseling disciplines and clinical psychologists must be licensed in the state where they work. Completion of a number of hours or years of supervised practical experience is a requirement for licensure in some states. An individual with a Master’s degree may be able to gain the required experience to get a license working as a counselor at this level.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary range at this education level is from $33,000 to $54,000.

Combination Master’s/Law Degree

Depending on the organization and work environment, conflict resolution counselors, (arbitrators or mediators) may find work with a Master’s degree. However, most require a combination of a law degree and master’s degree in psychology. Arbitrators often deal with legal issues and many employers prefer to hire an individual with both degrees. The median annual salary at $57,000.

Ph.D. or Psy.D. Degree

The following disciplines require a Ph.D. or Psy.D. degree in order to practice and for state licensure. Requirements will vary by state, but additional training and experience may also be required to obtain a license.

* Clinical Psychologist
* Pastoral Counselor
* Sports Psychologist
* Health Psychologist
* Child and Developmental Psychologist

These disciplines deal with the psychological and medical needs of clients. These individuals often work in conjunction with a client’s medical doctor or as part of the client’s total healthcare team.

The median annual salary range at this education level is from $69,000 to $90,000.

Before starting any career in counseling, research the requirements for your chosen discipline, entrance and course requirements for the required level of education from your chosen educational institution, licensing requirements in your state, and any other experience or training required by a prospective employer. Research will help determine the time and financial investment needed for a career in your chosen counseling field.

October 27, 2011

Halloween and Food Allergies

Halloween is a scary time of year for parents of kids with food allergies. I remember my first couple of Halloweens after my daughter was diagnosed food allergies; I was a mess! It seemed easier just to leave the country than to subject my child to so much stuff that she couldn't have.

Here's a real life situation... a regular size milk chocolate bar that we buy for making s'mores (think summer camp outs) is fine, but the miniature versions you find during the holidays contain nuts.

It's not just that a big part of the Halloween celebration includes candy, it's that the candy given out at Halloween often times has different ingredients than what we buy throughout the rest of the year.

I used to assemble a bag filled with "safe" treats, fun stickers, books, crayons and other fun little things. As my daughter got a bit older, after she was done "goin' beggin," we simply swapped out the unsafe candy with the treats I bought. The other kids still enjoy this today because they get to trade in some of the less liked candy that we just don't buy during the rest of the year.

Now, when my children are tired of trick or treating and are satisfied with their trades, we put the remaining candy out to those kids still trick or treating (basically the teens running around the neighborhood). They hit the jackpot when they see a big bucket of treats like Snickers bars!

So, instead of smashing your pumpkins after everyone went in, the teens think you are the coolest house on the block!

July 23, 2011

Get Him Back

In addition to parenting issues, I've had my fair share of relationship issues as well. And, while we were apart for a period of time I was able to get him back.

If you find yourself in a situation where you are apart from your man, I have some great news you can learn how to get him back.

And you will be amazed at how simple the process is.

No doubt, it is a very devastating time for you and it is hard to think clearly. You think that you can reason with your ex – I am here to tell you that is doing nothing but pushing him further away.

In order to win him back you must have a plan and know how to react and when to contact him.

Learning how to seduce your ex may seem like you are going against the so-called norm but let me tell you this stuff really works.

It is all about understanding male psychology (yes, I know, a bit of a crazy subject).

I invite you to check out my website on how to get him back.

There are also ways to calm yourself and relax during this difficult period in your relationship. Just keep in mind that he will be back in your arms shortly.

At this point you will know so much about male psychology, how relationships ultimately work and what men REALLY want – that not only will you get him back …

You will have a stronger and healthier relationship than ever before.

- Lisa

August 14, 2010

Remember to check out FAAN for your back-to-school needs

Just a reminder,FAAN has great resources available free of charge to help with getting your child back to school safely.

Definitely check out this site, whether your new to food allergies or have been dealing with them for years!

August 13, 2010

Having difficulty contacting your child's teacher?

Parents who have dealt with their child's food allergies during the back-to-school frenzy may know all too well the feeling of being lost in the shuffle. During the weeks before school starts, teachers are incredibly busy readying their classrooms, attending meetings, and getting everything in order. The office staff is busy fielding questions about everything from what time school starts to parents wanting to change their child's teacher. It is little surprise that trying to contact the appropriate staff to discuss your child's food allergies can prove to be a daunting task.

With food allergies being so prevalent among children and with its awareness at an all time high, hopefully most schools have at least a generic food allergy management plan in place. Even so, most parents will want to speak with their child's teacher before the first day of school, just to review their child's specific needs.

It's definitely easier when your child is a returning student. It can still be difficult though to contact your child's teacher and arrange a meeting before the first day of school. One way to effectively contact the teacher without spending hours at the school waiting to see her in person, is to leave a note with the office staff. Ask to make sure your child's teacher receives your note as soon as possible (this is where your reputation comes into play, hopefully from previous encounters the school knows you as a friendly, reasonable parent who is easy to work with).

I keep the note short and simple, and I hand write it on a colorful piece of paper (more likely to catch their attention).

I write something like:

Hi. My child, Mary Smith, is in your 3rd grade class this year. Mary is allergic to tree nuts and eggs for which she has an Epi-Pen available. I would like to meet with you briefly before the first day of school to go over Mary's allergies.

Please call me on my cell phone so we can set up a meeting time.

Ann Marie
(cell phone #)

I find that if you are respectful of their time, most teachers will call you back promptly. And if you know your child's teacher, it never hurts to add that you'd be happy to bring them a Starbuck's. : )