PsyD vs. MA: What Is The Difference Between These Clinical Degrees?) 11/8/2018 <p><span style="font-family: arial;">If you&rsquo;re interested in pursuing a career in Clinical Psy

PsyD vs. MA: What Is The Difference Between These Clinical Degrees?

If you’re interested in pursuing a career in Clinical Psychology, you may wonder which degree is right for you. To make an informed decision, it’s important to know the type of job you aim for and the amount of time that you want to spend in school.

Level of Education and Time Commitment

According to the American Psychological Association (APA), master’s degree programs are shorter in duration than doctoral programs. Master’s degree programs are designed to either prepare a student to move into a PsyD program or to teach them the skills needed to advance in their careers.

What is a PsyD? A Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology (PsyD) is a terminal degree. It can take up to six years to complete, including an internship and dissertation—and that’s if you’re studying full-time. These students have a higher level of education,  learning how to apply psychological science to assist patients.


Jobs You Can Pursue

You may wonder if you can be a Clinical Psychologist with a master’s degree. The APA states that master’s degree graduates may work in the areas of:

  • Industrial/organizational (I/O) psychology, including consulting, HR, and work in corporations
  • Academia
  • Licensed practitioner in some states. A few states allow master’s degree graduates to work as licensed practitioners as long as they hold a degree in subfield such  as clinical, counseling, or school psychology


According to, career opportunities for PsyD Clinical Psychology graduates include:

  • Private Practice Psychologist
  • Engineering Psychologist
  • Industrial Psychologist
  • Administrative Hospital Psychologist
  • Neuropsychologist
  • Forensic Psychologist
  • Correctional Facility Psychologist
  • Military Psychologist
  • Clinical Psychologist
  • Counseling Psychologist
  • School Psychologist


Earning power

When it comes to earning power, doctoral candidates have the edge. The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that psychologists earn an average wage of $97,740. Jobs in clinical, counseling, and school psychology are expected to grow 14 percent through 2026.

Recent Clinical Psychology master’s degree graduates enter the workforce at an average salary $60,000. Because they are part of the psychology job field, their job opportunities are also expected to see growth.


Ready to start or advance your career in Clinical Psychology?

Argosy University prepares students for careers in psychology through hands-on training and real-world experience. We’ll give you the foundation for a career, teaching clinical techniques and allowing students to gain valuable assessment and intervention skills.

Contact The College of Clinical Psychology at Argosy University to learn more about our Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology and Clinical Psychology Master of Arts programs. We’ll answer your questions, help you to begin the application process, and get you on the path to earning your degree and making a difference by helping others.

Argosy University  does not guarantee third-party certification/licensure. Outside agencies control the requirements for taking and passing certification/licensing exams and are subject to change without notice to Argosy University. 

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