The basic premise of APPLIED PSYCHOLOGY is the use of psychological principles and theories to overcome practical problems in other fields, such as business management, product design, ergonomics, nutrition, law and clinical medicine. Applied psychology includes the areas of industrial/organizational psychology, human factors, forensic psychology, engineering psychology, as well as many other areas such as educational psychology, sports psychology and community psychology. In addition, a number of specialized areas in the general field of psychology have applied branches(e.g., applied social psychology, applied cognitive psychology). Industrial and organizational psychology focuses to varying degrees on the psychology of the workforce, customer, and consumer, including issues such as the psychology of recruitment, selecting employees from an applicant pool which overall includes training, performance appraisal, job satisfaction, work behavior, stress at work and management.
Career counseling is another aspect of counseling closely related to Industrial/Organizational Psychology. Counselors in this field assist clients in a variety of settings ranging from schools to vocational to organization sites to name a few. One of the main goals of the profession is to help clients realize their talents and dreams in response to a career and help them create successful job skills to then apply to their career search. Many times career counselors act as consultants to companies, other times they work as a team in academic and career counseling capacities, and other times they work for a social service agency specifically working with people who need assistance in the job search process.
Generally a master’s degree is needed to get into the field. As there are not many career counseling master’s programs, many enter the field with a degree in mental health counseling or community counseling. If you are looking for a degree directly in career counseling, the western part of the country is more progressive than the east and offers more programs. Since many of the programs in another type of counseling only offer one class in career counseling or development, the Career Development Facilitator training is available for professionals. It’s generally a 100-120 hour class that can be taught the majority through e-learning or the traditional classroom setting. The great benefit of the CDF training is that you then hold the credential, which may help you stand out as a professional against your peers who do not hold the credential.
Since jobs are such defining experiences for people, having the ability to gain helpful insight, tips, and encouragement from career counselors is a definite benefit. The career counseling field can only increase in popularity as people on average change jobs every ten years, instead of 30 years ago where many people stayed with the same company the majority of their working career.
CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGY is the application of psychology in a clinical setting, including researching and treating psychological distress, dysfunction or disorder. In many countries it is a regulated mental health profession. Central to the practice of clinical psychology is assessment of the issues and needs of clients, and provision of psycho-education or psychotherapy to improve subjective well-being, mental health, and life functioning. Practitioners of clinical psychology can work with individuals, couples, children, adults, families and with small groups. They may work in psychiatric hospitals, general practice, psychological clinics, or academic centers. They may work individually in private practice or in multi-disciplinary teams involving other professions, commonly with licensed psychologists, social workers, psychiatric nurses and psychiatrists. They themselves may be a licensed psychologist, a social worker, a therapist, a counselor, a psychiatric nurse or a psychiatrist.
I can not recommend you one because that will depend on your interests. If you still have doubts do some research until you can find your path. Good luck!
Answered By: Dr. Karina Bibicheff - 6/26/2007