Becoming a clinical psychologist: a step-by-step walkthrough

Becoming a clinical psychologist: a step-by-step walkthrough
There has been a sudden rise in mental illnesses. People are starting to give importance to such issues and therefore, psychologists and therapists are in

There has been a sudden rise in mental illnesses. People are starting to give importance to such issues and therefore, psychologists and therapists are in demand. Both these careers need a strong passion to understand human functions and behaviors. Furthermore, your compassion and empathy make you more suitable for this field. There are many job opportunities after a psychology degree. This guide will cover how to become a clinical psychologist.

Becoming a Clinical Psychologist: a Step-by-Step Walkthrough
Becoming a Clinical Psychologist: a Step-by-Step Walkthrough

What is psychology?

Psychology is the branch of science which deals with the human mind and behavior. The human brain is a very complex organ. The thoughts and demeanor of human beings have always left everyone in awe. Therefore, psychologists aim to study the human mind in greater depths.

Why should you study clinical psychology?

Clinical psychology deals with diagnosing and treating mental illnesses. Whether it’s mental, emotional, or behavioral illnesses, a clinical psychologist can treat all that. A clinical psychologist focuses on treatments instead of medications. People often mix therapists and psychologists; however, they have their differences. You can start your career as a clinical psychologist by starting your practice or working under a hospital.

Why Should You Study Clinical Psychology
Why Should You Study Clinical Psychology

Steps to become a clinical psychologist

Becoming a clinical psychologist needs to be done in an orderly fashion. This blog will walk you through all the steps of clinical psychology. These steps are,

  1. Research this field
  2. Earn your bachelor’s degree
  3. Enroll in a master’s program
  4. Get your doctorate or PhD
  5. Earn your licensure

Research this field

You are probably in this stage right now. Researching a field is a wise move. You must know and understand what you are stepping into. The field of clinical psychology requires hard work and dedication. Sometimes, the working hours can get tough, and you may even get tired. Therefore, you should consider all of these before opting for this field. In addition to this, you must also consider things like working hours, flexibility, and pay.

If you are a curious one dedicated to helping people, you should become a clinical psychologist.

Earn your bachelor’s degree

The very first step is a bachelor’s. You should enroll yourself in a bachelor’s degree. This is the foundation for every psychology sub-field. This degree prepares you for your future studies. One more benefit of a bachelor’s is that you can explore other fields of psychology like criminal justice or school psychology. You can switch your field on this level.

If you are looking for a self-paced degree, there are many online platforms for that. Online degrees allow flexibility for the students. It is a great option.

Earn Your Bachelor's Degree
Earn Your Bachelor’s Degree

Get enrolled in a master’s program

The next step after your bachelor’s is the master’s program. A master’s is a prerequisite before a Ph.D. In this step, you will study clinical psychology in detail. This will take 2 years to complete. You have two options. Either to get an on-campus education or online. You can choose according to your feasibility and affordability. 

Get your doctorate/ PhD

You don’t always need a doctorate, but a doctorate can unlock many possibilities and opportunities. How do better pay and a promotion sound to you? Great obviously. This is what a doctorate can do for you. Many doctorate programs are 5 years long. Brace yourself for this one but I can assure you that it’s worth it. Very few people can complete this program that makes it even more in demand. You also must do an internship and the exam can be a bit hard.

Get Your Doctorate/ PhD
Get Your Doctorate/ PhD

Earn your licensure

Your license is the key to your practice. You must earn your license by giving a licensure exam. You need to fulfill some requirements to get a license. These are,

  • Doctorate in psychology
  • Complete your internship
  • Get experience by working under a professional
  • Pass your licensure exam.

Once you fulfill all these demands, you will qualify as a licensed clinical psychologist.


You must be wondering, is it worth becoming a clinical psychologist? Why not? People suffer every day and fall victim to self-harm and suicide. Just imagine how much misery and pain one may feel to take his own life. And you can save these lives. Now think how noble is the profession which works for the benefit of mankind.