If you are considering a degree in forensic psychology, you might be wondering what sort of jobs you would be an ideal applicant for after you graduate. Thankfully, the field of forensic psychology is overflowing with opportunities — from social sciences to criminal justice and mental health. No matter what your interests are, you are sure to find something that resonates with you. Below is just a brief list of possible career paths that are open to you if you earn a forensic psychology degree.
Law Enforcement Officer
If you are interested in the criminal justice system, then you might want to consider an occupation as a law enforcement officer. Police officers typically patrol neighborhoods, write up citations, conduct arrests, and respond to 911 calls. You don’t need a bachelor’s degree to become a police officer (a high school diploma will suffice), but having an educational background in forensic psychology could prove beneficial to your career in law enforcement and open you up to even more opportunities in the field. With a bachelor’s degree in forensic psychology, you can even pursue work as a detective where you will be involved in criminal investigations and the handling criminal cases.
Forensic Social Worker
This type of social work involves helping individuals deal with the lasting impacts of crime — whether they’re victims or perpetrators. A forensic social worker will often be the liaison between law enforcement, the legal system, and their clients. Duties can include identifying criminal behavior, evaluating individuals’ mental health, serving as an expert witness, and recommending resources and other social services to their clients. Criminal behavior can have a lasting impact on a person’s well-being and livelihood. Victims of crime may need counseling services to overcome what they’ve experienced and convicts may need assistance with finding employment and mending relationships after completing their sentences. Public records are often available online detailing a person’s past criminal behavior, felonies, or misdemeanors. Background checks and mugshots are also available through arrest records online, so a person on parole may have difficulty moving forward with their lives if these records are not reviewed. Forensic social workers can assist in helping convicts reintegrate into society.
You can become a forensic psychologist by completing a doctoral program in forensic psychology. Forensic psychologists often work with law enforcement agencies in conducting criminal profiling or evaluating criminal offenders. A forensic psychologist can also work in jails to provide counseling to inmates.
You can also pursue work as a psychological researcher if you have a doctoral degree in forensic psychology. In this occupation, you will use various forensic science research methods and publish papers. If you are interested in studying behavioral science and analyzing human behavior, then this might be the perfect job for you. Psychology research typically goes along with a teaching career in forensic science, forensic psychology, or a related field of psychology.
Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor
If you earn a master’s degree in a forensic psychology program, you can become a licensed professional clinical counselor. In this role, you will provide counseling and mental health services to inmates in jail, at substance abuse treatment centers, or other environments. It’s important to note, though, that you cannot work as a licensed psychologist with just a master’s degree.
Whether you decide to pursue a bachelor’s, master’s degree, or a Ph.D. in forensic psychology, you will be prepared for a variety of careers in the field. You can easily finish your education with an online forensic psychology degree, which allows you to complete coursework at your own pace and meet your career goals amid a busy lifestyle. Classes can include criminology, social psychology, psychology of criminal behavior, and research methods applicable to criminal justice.
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