What is the job outlook for Criminal Psychologists?
Who hires criminal psychologists? The largest employer of criminal psychologists in the United States is the Department of Corrections. Others work with private clients, different branches or agencies such as the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) or the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI). Experts estimate that less than 100 psychologists are currently employed by the Department of Corrections.
Next, consider the places where criminal psychologists are in short supply. New Zealand is one area where these workers are desperately needed. Organizations within the country are even willing to hire students prior to graduation, providing they agree to work there for a specified period of time. Studies have found students find full-time employment overseas in the field much quicker than in the United States.
The United States lists the job outlook for criminal psychologists as high, based on supply and demand. They estimate as demand for these workers grows, the supply of trained workers will decrease. Supply and demand is traditionally based on the number of students studying in this field. There are many students seeking educational training in the field and only a certain number of spots; only a small number receive the proper training each year.
To work as a criminal psychologist, the student must go through several years of schooling. They receive a Bachelor's degree, a Master's, and then work on their Doctorate degree. At the doctorate level, most schools offer only ten seats each year, and there are only a small number of schools offering the program. Those students who finish school and receive their degree have a better chance of finding employment later.
This has led some schools to increase the number of seats they offer. Colleges and universities want to admit more students because that increases their profits, and turning away interested students is just bad business. As they increase their seats, they also need to increase the number of professors. Meaning better job prospects for criminal psychologists interested in the teaching profession.
The job outlook for criminal psychologists is also on the rise as governments around the world begin focusing on treatment and intervention programs. These programs help at risk juveniles and adults to reduce their chances of falling into certain traps such as drug abuse or criminal activity. These programs also work with convicts to reduce their chances of committing more serious acts in the future.
The court system is another reason why the job prospects for criminal psychologists are on the rise. The system desperately needs psychologists for private and independent cases. There's also a need for these psychologists to work with lawyers as independent consultants when needed. They determine the mental stability of arrested individuals and work with the courts to determine what should be done. Experts believe that the need for these workers will only continue to rise in the future.
Schools Offering Criminology Courses:
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- Bachelor of Arts in Applied Psychology/Forensic Psychology
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