How do I get Started in a Child Psychologist Career?

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  • Written By: Erin J. Hill
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 09 March 2018
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Getting started in a child psychologist career will require that you obtain a doctorate in child psychology. You will probably also have to become licensed in your area as a counselor specializing in children's issues. This will allow you to work in schools as a guidance counselor or in a formal therapy setting in your own practice. If you intend to start your own business as a professional child psychologist, then you will need additional licensing to become self-employed.

In a child psychologist career, you will be helping children deal with sensitive or painful issues that parents are not equipped to handle successfully without help. You may help kids who have dealt with abuse, the divorce of their parents, or bullying at school. These are serious issues that could potentially affect a child well into adulthood without proper care. Parents may also need counsel on how to handle difficult issues their children may be facing.

You can attend school at most any accredited university, although not all schools will offer a PhD program. If you have a school in mind, find out how far you can take your studies there before you will need to transfer to a different institution. Many schools will allow you to obtain all necessary training in one place, but it's always a good idea to find out ahead of time, in order to to make plans regarding transfers and tuition.


Before entering a child psychologist career, even with the proper schooling, it may be a good idea to work with experienced counselors or psychologists as an assistant in order to get a proper feel for how to interact with patients. Although you will learn many techniques in your classes, there is nothing like firsthand experience to prepare you for such a challenging career. You will see the way therapists and children interact and build a relationship, as well as how experienced therapists handle discussing difficult issues with parents. Remember, that having an education is important, but the relationship with your patients is equally as vital to their long-term growth and healing.

Anyone who enters a child psychologist career should love children and take joy in working with them. Since youths can be more of a challenge to work with due to lack of maturity, troubling circumstances, and learning disabilities; enjoying being around them will help to make the therapy process easier. If you feel that you may not be able to deal with the extra challenges associated with working with children, training to counsel adults may be a better fit for you.



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Post 2

I'm 15 years old so i'm still in high school but i hope to become a child psychologist.

Post 1

I`m a medical student in the fourth year and I hope to be a child psychologist to help children to overcome their problems because most people have problems developed in their childhood. my country is egypt and it's a developing country and I want to help children of my country. Can you help me?

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