Psychology Degrees, Schools, and Careers in Wyoming
Wyoming's sparse population understandably means that its higher education options are also limited. In fact, the state has just one doctoral university -- the University of Wyoming -- and one baccalaureate university -- Wyoming Catholic College. The majority of the students in the state's higher education system are enrolled in one of the state's community colleges. With more than 20,000 students enrolled in Wyoming community colleges in the fall of 2014, very few students are getting bachelor's degrees and graduate degrees, especially in psychology. The last time the National Center of Education Statistics kept track of the subject-specific degree data was in 2010. In that year,Wyoming conferred just 98 bachelor’s degrees in psychology in the 2009-10 school year, and just two master’s degrees in the subject over the same time period. The limited options are obviously a sticking point for students looking for the freedom of choice, but limited options due to small population doesn't mean that dedicated students can’t earn a reputable psychology degree in Wyoming.
There are various levels of degrees in this field, but in Wyoming, only three types of degrees specifically in psychology are available. The easiest degree to earn and the most common one offered in Wyoming is an associate’s degree in psychology. The degree typically takes just two years to complete but doesn't open a lot of career doors for those interested in entering the field of psychology. The two aforementioned universities are the only place to get Bachelor's degrees but there is only one school that offers PhD programs in psychology and that is the University of Wyoming in Laramie.
A bachelor’s degree won’t make you qualified to obtain your psychology license however, because all states have rigid education requirements for licensure (see Wyoming's here) that force applicants to have earned at least a doctoral or professional degree and have completed extensive professional experience. This is why the American Psychological Association estimated that 25 percent of all recipients of a bachelor’s degree in psychology go on to study the subject at the graduate level and four to six percent of that 25 percent pursue a doctoral degree. These degrees can take anywhere from 4-7 years after you get your undergraduate degree to finish.
There are only a few other schools in Wyoming that offer psychology degree programs so it makes sense with such a small number to just highlight each one of them so students know the options that are available to them. The aforementioned University of Wyoming offers a variety of specialized Ph.D. degree programs and a bachelor’s degree in the subject. Then there are Casper College, Central Wyoming College, Eastern Wyoming College, and Northwest College, all of which offer associate of arts degrees in psychology to their students. The remaining schools are all community colleges and Western Wyoming Community College, Laramie County Community College, and Northern Wyoming Community College all offer associate of arts degrees in psychology to interested students as well. The good news is that these schools are relatively cheap compared to community colleges in other western states.
Online Psychology Schools & Degrees in Wyoming
There is only one state-specific school in Wyoming that offers online psychology degrees and that is Casper College, which offers an online associate of arts and associate of science degree in psychology. That said, Wyoming students looking for fully online psychology degrees do have other options that come in the form of national online psychology education providers that serve Wyoming students with a solid range of options to help meet their online needs.
There are schools that offer online bachelor’s degrees in psychology such as Post University, Liberty University, and Capella University. And then, for more dedicated students, schools like University of the Rockies, Northcentral University, and Keiser University Graduate School offer online doctoral degrees in a number of different psychology specialties. Remember, these are only a sampling of the national online psychology education providers that are available to students in Wyoming, so make sure to do your own research on which programs work for what you are looking for.
Career Opportunities for Psychologists in Wymoming
Psychology is one of the fastest growing occupations in the entire country and the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that employment of psychologists will grow 20 percent from 2010 to 2020 thanks to increased need for mental professionals in a variety of fields. Wyoming actually ranks in the top ten nationally when it comes to psychologist employment growth as the Wyoming Department of Employment Research and Planning predicts that employment of professional clinical, school, and counseling psychologists in the state will grow 14 percent from 2008 to 2018, which is equivalent to about 50 new professional psychologists.
The current psychology community in Wyoming is a small but active one. The BLS reported that as of May 2014, the state of Wyoming employed at least 250 professional clinical, school, and counseling psychologists and those professionals earned a lucrative annual average wage of $70,790, meaning that psychologists interested in finding a career in the field in Wyoming can expect a competitive and comfortable salary.
Psychologist Salary in Wyoming
Table data taken from 2014 BLS (http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes193039.htm)