Psychology Master’s Degree Programs in Washington D.C.
Maybe the rest of the country can be forgiven for forgetting that Washington D.C. isn’t just the seat of federal government, but also a living, breathing home to nearly 700,000 people. They all get groceries, have kids, go to work, and have issues just like anyone else.
But there are definitely different things about life in the District. The fractious nature of politics in the country today can make the one city where representatives of both sides gather to make law and administer government a tumultuous place to live and work.
The District can be a scary place in more than purely political terms, however, with a murder rate, that as of early 2018, is already up 50 percent over the previous year. One thing is for sure, students of psychology in Washington D.C. don’t have any shortage of really fascinating conditions to study.
It’s a unique place with unique demands for psychological services, and with a master’s degree in the field, you can put your own stamp on it.
High Caliber Schools Characterize The Washington Psychology Scene
For a really tiny piece of land, Washington D.C. has a pretty impressive showing on the psychology school front: eight different universities offer advanced degrees in psychology in the District. And the range of specializations is equally interesting, from the MA in Psychological Sciences offered by the Catholic University of America to the specialty areas in clinical, developmental, personality, social, and neuro psychology offered at Howard.
A Master’s is Your Key to Licensure in Certain Roles in DC
Licensing is important, and a master’s degree is just one step along the path to a doctoral level degree, which is what you’ll need if you hope to become a full authority psychologist in the District.
It is, however, possible to become an LPC (licensed professional counselor) with a master’s degree and the appropriate fieldwork preparation. School psychologists also have a path to licensure with only a master’s level education.
Studying Social Psychology In The Center of Public Policy-Making
Psychologists can pick from a long list of hot-button social issues that are flying around in the sphere of public debate and find some agency or non-profit based in Washington that wants to know more. Investigative research and policy development are major drivers of social psychology practice in Washington.
Local universities feed the demand with well-developed, well-connected programs that prepare you with the communication and scientific skills to excel in this complex area of psychology.
American University has a personality/social psychology track in the MA program, while Howard also has an in-depth, research-focused social psych specialization.
Forensic Psychologists Operate at Multiple Levels in the District
With a murder rate on track to be the worst in a decade and an incarceration rate that is already the highest in the United States, forensic psychologists have a lot of important work cut out for them on the streets of the District.
But public policy is also an important beat for professionals who specialize in criminal psychology. Federal sentencing guidelines and important court decisions that govern the entire nation are made here, and input from the top experts in the field are constantly required.
You can both learn from the current experts in the field at places such as George Washington University and get the start you need to eventually become one of those experts yourself.
Political Psychology Will Always Be a Fascinating Topic in Washington D.C.
Negotiation, decision-making, the influence of messaging, the theory of group dynamics… these are all areas of psychology that are of enormous importance to people whose jobs rely on getting a majority of votes every few years. That means there’s a big demand for experts in political psychology.
Research and applied political psychology are both active fields in the District. One of the leaders in these areas is the Georgetown Department of Psychology, which has a concentration in Human Development and Public Policy. The psychology department here takes full advantage of interdisciplinary education thanks to relationships with the Georgetown School of Foreign Service and the McCourt School of Public Policy.