No matter what aspect of psychology you choose to study, psychology is a hard major. Don’t get too scared about that because, in reality, no university degree is easy.
There are many students who dread their decision to major in psychology because it is hard. They believe psychology is more difficult than other major fields because it is full of confusing terms that many people have no idea what they mean.
As a result of the common misconceptions about psychology, people often shy away from this major due to fear and frustration.
However, what you will read in this article is why many believe psychology is a hard major even though it is not as difficult as some people make it seem to be.
What is Psychology?
Psychology is the word used for studying the behavior and mental processes of humans. It’s a branch of science that studies how people behave, think, and feel.
With the knowledge gotten from the study, psychologists can then help people with problems such as mood disorders, learning disabilities, and substance abuse. They also use it for research and to work with groups of people in hospitals, schools, and businesses.
What is Psychology As a Major?
Psychology as a career is a diverse field involving many different approaches that incorporate a scientific research methodology to better understand human behavior.
Some approaches are influenced by psychoanalysis, others by social or biological perspectives, including neuropsychology, developmental psychology, evolutionary psychology, and cognitive science.
Furthermore, they may involve clinical practice; applied psychology, or focus on the relationship between mind and body in health and disease (biopsychology).
Actually, psychology is a fascinating field of study, and it can be a great major for those who are interested in understanding human behavior.
What are the Different Types of Psychologists Available
- Clinical Psychologists
- Health Psychologists
- Military Psychologists
- Forensic Psychologists
- Counseling Psychologists
- Educational Psychologists
- Cognitive Neuropsychologists
- Industrial-Organizational Psychologists
7 Reasons Why People Think Psychology is a Hard Major
1. Psychology can be boring
Truly, psychology can be boring. If you don’t like sitting in class listening to lectures about statistics, then you probably won’t like statistics classes either.
Also, many psychology classes involve reading and writing a lot of papers. Therefore there are plenty of topics within psychology that may not come with any fun while learning them.
2. Statistic class gives you the willies
Psychology majors have to take statistics, which many people find to be confusing and difficult.
Statistics is a key component of most psychology classes, so students need to understand it well enough to pass their tests.
While some students find statistics interesting and challenging, others see it as a chore that needs to be done in order to pass their exams and move on with their studies.
3. Psychology is a broad major
Psychology is not just one thing. There are many different types of psychologists and many different specialties within psychology.
There are a ton of different classes you can take as a psychology major since it’s a field covering everything from mental illness to how people act in everyday life.
4. It involves a slow and gradual learning process
Many people believe that if they do well in school from an early age then they will automatically make it through college without much effort or stress.
However, this is not true at all. Studying the concept and theories in psychology takes time and patience.
Therefore, it’s not going to happen overnight or even within a year or two of taking classes. You have to put in your time and effort before anything significant happens which might make it seem like you’re wasting your time.
5. Many people believe they are not smart enough
Psychology is a hard major, but not because it’s difficult to understand the material or learn it.
The reason why people think that psychology is a hard major is that they assume that they don’t have the right kind of brain to be able to understand it.
6. Most students are confused about a career path in psychology
There are so many different options within psychology that it can be confusing to know which one you should pursue.
Perhaps you’re interested in working with children or families, then you should look into becoming a clinical psychologist and earning your Ph.D.
If you want to work as an educator or researcher, then earn your Master’s degree in Psychology and become a licensed clinical psychologist.
7. They have heard the exams and tests are difficult
Many people have probably heard that exams and tests in psychology are difficult. This is true.
Like every other degree, you have to study hard in order to pass these exams, but they aren’t impossible if you put in the time and effort needed to succeed in them.
You will also take quizzes and tests throughout your coursework so don’t let yourself get overwhelmed by these exams alone; just focus on each one as it comes up so that when exam day arrives, you have a better understanding of answering them.
What is the Work of Psychologists?
Depending on where they are working, psychologists typically do the following:
- Psychologists ask questions in order to find answers, and then they give people the information they need to lead better lives.
- Psychologists help talk through why someone may be struggling with their mental health, difficulties at work, or a difficult period in their relationship.
- Psychologists study human behavior. They try to understand the roots of different behaviors.
- Identify behavioral, emotional, psychological, or organizational issues and diagnose disorders.
- Psychologists also aid in understanding how well the patient understands their condition and how it affects them.
- They help people who are feeling depressed, anxious, and stressed out.
- They help school children be more confident in dealing with stressful situations and they are helpful in teaching people how to deal with other people.
The above is not all a Psychologist does, you can check some other duties U.S. Bureau of Labour Statistics.
Where Can You Work As a Psychologist?
Psychology is a fascinating field of study that allows you to explore many different areas, including health, education, and business. Psychology majors have numerous career options available to them after graduation, including clinical psychology, counseling psychology, and research psychology.
The most common settings psychology majors can find careers are:
Teaching preschool through high school or teaching at the college level; working in special education or gifted programs; leading workshops for parents and teachers on topics such as parenting skills or classroom management strategies; developing curriculum for students with disabilities.
You can also work as a college counselor to help students make the right career choices.
Working in hospitals, clinics, or private practice offices helping patients overcome mental health issues like anxiety disorders and depression; providing psychological services to patients who are dealing with chronic pain or other medical conditions; conducting research on how psychotherapy impacts physical health outcomes (such as diabetes).
You can take the role of human resources as an employee assistance specialist who provides confidential counseling services to employees who are dealing with personal problems that may affect their job performance.
You can also be providing counseling services for executives who are having trouble managing stress-related issues such as anger management problems or substance abuse problems.
Another role is working as a marketing consultant for companies that sell products designed to help people improve their mental health.
How long does it take to become a Psychologist?
While the exact time depends on your learning pace and career goals, usually, it takes 8 to 12 years to become a psychologist.
How much do Psychologists make?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the national average annual wage of a Psychologist is $81,040.
Can anyone become a Psychologist?
Yes, anyone can become a psychologist provided they’re able to complete a master’s degree or a doctorate in psychology and pass the necessary state and/or national exams. In addition, you meet licensing requirements.
Psychology is an incredibly diverse major that can lead to many career opportunities.
However, depending on what you want to do with your degree, you might need to be prepared for a difficult path.
If you love science, research, and problem-solving, then a psychology degree could work really well for you.
Regardless of whether it’s a hard major or not, the most important thing is that psychology gives you the tools to pursue whatever career interests you.
However, you should know that there will be ups and downs (which is synonymous with other degrees as well) along the way as you try to grasp what drives human behavior.
But if you’re indeed passionate about understanding how human behavior works and developing ways to change it for the better, then you’re in for an incredibly fulfilling journey.
I hope you found this article helpful. If so and you’re planning to take the path of becoming a psychologist, you should about what you can do with a psychology degree.
Thanks for reading.