Georgia's quietly been one of the experiencing a period of sustained growth now for well over a decade, thanks in part to the revitalization of it's capital of Atlanta, which is now one of the tenth largest cities in the country.
- The state had 2,080 psychologists practicing professional as of last count by the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Occupational Employment Statistics in 2015, which put it in the second tier of states for total number of psychologists employed.
- The average annual salary for psychologists in Georgia was $76,240, which is right on par with the national average of $76,040.
- Georgia was also right in the middle of the pack for students studying psychology when the National Center for Education Statistics ran the data for the 2011-2012 academic year. The state ranked 16th in bachelors degrees, with 2,672; and 25th in master's degrees, with 259.
There are five psychology schools and colleges in Georgia with programs accredited by the American Psychological Association, and five schools with programs approved by the National Register of Health Service Psychologists. The National Association of School Psychologists lists four programs that are officially approved.
Georgia psychology licensing requirements
Licensure for psychologists in Georgia is fairly similar to most other states. A doctoral degree is a must for those who wish to practice professionally as a psychologist, and Georgia is one of the few states that is explicit about not accepting online doctoral programs as meeting the requirements for licensure as a psychologists. The Georgia Board of Psychology requirements for licensure are as follows:
- Earn a doctoral degree in psychology from an accredited psychology program
- Complete at least 1,500 hours of postdoctoral supervised professional practice, above and beyond the internship requirements of a doctoral program; 500 of those hours must involve direct treatment of or contact with patients in a professional setting
- Take a receive a passing score on the Examination for the Professional Practice of Psychology
- Pass the Georgia Psychology Jurisprudence Exam
Licensure renewals for psychologists in Georgia must be complied with every two years. Relicensure requires 40 hours of continuing education, which must have taken place in the period following previous licensure. Six of those credit hours should address professional ethics, through classwork, conferences, and/or workshops.
Featured psychology schools in Georgia
The top five psychology schools and college in Georgia, according to the latest graduate school rankings by U.S. News & World Report, are the following:
Along with being one of the more prestigious private institutions of higher education and research in the South, Emory University is a major health care hub for Georgia and the country. Emory Healthcare, the largest care provider in Georgia, is based out of Emory University Hospital. And the Emory campus is adjacent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Cancer Institute. The Emory University Department of Psychology benefits from these associations, as well as from its Center of Neuropolicy, the Emory Child Study Center, and the Emory Psychology Center clinic. The graduate program encompasses formal programs in clinical psychology, cognition and development, and neuroscience and animal behavior.
- Department: Emory University Department of Psychology
- Location: Atlanta, Georgia
- Online options: Emory offers online courses and some distance learning degree programs, but not in the field of psychology.
University of Georgia
Located in the college town of Athens, the University of Georgia, or UGA, is the second largest institution of higher education in Georgia, and one of the oldest in the entire country. The UGA Department of Psychology offers a behavioral and brain science track for doctoral study, with research in cognitive, developmental, personality, and social psychology, as well as in neuroscience. There's also a clinical psychology PhD program, and master's and doctoral degrees in industrial/organizational psychology. UGA does have a Department of Educational Psychology housed within its College of Education, which offers graduate research and training in applied cognition, girted and creative education, quantitative methodology, and school psychology.
- Department: University of Georgia Department of Psychology and Department of Educational Psychology
- Location: Athens, Georgia
- Online options: UGA's online offerings include masters and specialist degrees in educational psychology and several related fields
Georgia Institute of Technology
Georgia Tech is the other big school in Atlanta, and it's a public research institution of higher education that's part of the University System of Georgia. The Department of Psychology at Georgia Tech is housed in the College of Sciences, and has affiliations with the Atlanta Zoo, Emory Medical School's Biomedical Engineering Project, and the Center for Research Education on Aging and Technology Enhancement. It has five main areas of research and training: cognition and brain science; cognitive aging, engineering psychology, industrial/organizational psychology, and quantitative psychology. In addition to its undergraduate psychology major, Georgia Tech has psychology certificate programs in biopsychology, cognitive psychology, engineering psychology, experimental psychology, industrial/organizational psychology, and social psychology.
- Department: Georgia Tech Department of Psychology
- Location: Atlanta, Georgia
- Online options: Georgia Tech offers a wide range of online degrees, but none in the area of psychology
Georgia State University
Georgia State University is the other other big school in Atlanta, a public research university that is also part of the University System of Georgia. It's actually larger in terms of student population than Georgia Tech, and it's home to a Department of Psychology that has five main areas of training and research: clinical psychology, cognitive science, community psychology, developmental psychology, and neuropsychology. The department offers both bachelor of science and bachelor of arts degrees in psychology, with a pre-med concentration and a concentration in community psychology, which is one of Georgia State's areas of specialization. The university's School of Educational Psychology, Special Education, and Communication Disorders also has a graduate degree program that includes master's and PhD degree options.
- Department: Georgia State University Department of Psychology and School of Educational Psychology
- Location: Atlanta, Georgia
- Online options: Georgia State has a full range of online courses and degrees available, including both a BS and an MS in neuroscience, and master's degrees in gerontology
Georgia School of Professional Psychology at Argosy University
Argosy is a private, for profit system of colleges owned by the Educational Management Corporation, which is based in Pittsburgh, but has a campus in Atlanta that is home the Georgia School of Professional Psychology (GSPP). It has a PsyD program in clinical psychology that is APA accredited, and has formal training in general adult clinical psychology, child and family psychology, neuropsychology/geropsychology, and health psychology. The school also offers a bachelor of arts degree in clinical psychology.
- Department: Georgia School of Professional Psychology at Argosy University
- Location: Atlanta, Georgia
- Online options: Argosy University and GSPP's parent company offer an array of online courses and degree programs, but not through the Georgia School of Professional Psychology
1. U.S. News & World Report, Education Rankings, Psychology Schools, visited on March 25, 2016; http://grad-schools.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-humanities-schools/psychology-rankings
2. National Center for Education Statistics, Digest of Education Statistics, "Master's degrees conferred by postsecondary institutions, by field of study and state or jurisdiction: 2011-12," visited March 25, 2016; https://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d13/tables/dt13_319.40.asp
3. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2015 edition, 'Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists," visited March 25, 2016; http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes193031.htm
4. American Psychological Association, Search for Accredited Programs, visited March 27, 2016; http://apps.apa.org/accredsearch/?_ga=1.120283918.72239646.1430315672
5. National Association of School Psychologists, NASP-Approved Programs, visited March 26, 2016; http://www.nasponline.org/standards-and-certification/graduate-program-approval/nasp-approved-programs
6. National Register of Health Service Psychologists, All Approved Doctoral Programs Listed by Jurisdiction, visited March 26, 2016; http://www.nationalregister.org/resources-links/doctoral-programs/approved-doctoral-programs-by-jurisdiction/
7. Georgia Board of Examiners of Psychologists, "Frequently Asked Questions," visited March 28, 2016; http://sos.ga.gov/index.php/licensing/plb/44/faq
8. School sites: Emory University, http://www.emory.edu/home/index.html; University of Georgia, http://www.uga.edu/; Georgia Institute of Technology, http://www.gatech.edu/; Georgia State University, http://www.gsu.edu/; Georgia School of Professional Psychology at Argosy University, http://clinical.argosy.edu/locations/atlanta/