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Top 20 Psychology Certifications in 2023

If you desire to build a career n Psychology, then obtaining one or two certifications in Psychology can give you an edge. You just need to explore the different Psychology certifications available to you and take advantage of them.

Psychology is the study of the human mind. Students who major in psychology can obtain an additional qualification which gives them an edge to become a specialist in the field.

Graduates from other backgrounds may decide to apply the principles of psychology in their respective fields by obtaining a certification in psychology. General or specific training may be offered in this respect too.

What is a Certification in Psychology? 

Psychology certifications are shorter programs than a traditional degree in psychology. It could be taken alongside a bachelor’s degree or after its completion. The length of the certification and credit requirements varies based on the school and the program in question.

Nevertheless, it does not take more than two years to complete. Lectures and research may be included in the coursework with topics such as abnormal psychology, adult and child assessment, clinical therapy, human development, morals and ethics in psychology, personality theories, etc.

Why is Psychology Certifications important?

The advantages of completing a certification in psychology cannot be overemphasized. Earning a certification will place you on a pedestal for more career and networking opportunities. Notwithstanding, the following are some of the benefits of earning a certification in psychology:

During a job search, the additional qualification of an applicant can set him apart from others. Thus, the certification can be an advantage in business, marketing, sales, and any other career fields that require human behavior.

When applying for a master’s degree, having a certification can be proof of commitment to the field.

Having a certification in psychology can be an added advantage to a professional for career improvement and better remuneration.

What certifications can I get in psychology?

Obtaining a certification in psychology can be done during or after a degree program. With the advancement in degree level comes more specialized certificates in the field of psychology. Three of such certifications exist and they could be explained below:

Undergraduate certificate: an individual who wishes to transfer from another field to psychology after the completion of a bachelor’s degree in psychology may go for an undergraduate certificate.

The program covers the general principles of psychology or a concentration such as clinical or social psychology. The certificate can be a standpoint to go for a master’s degree or the individual can apply the principles of psychology in their chosen field other than psychology.

Graduate certificate: a degree holder in psychology may obtain a graduate certificate during or after completing a master’s program. This certification program is usually more concentrated and may focus on behavioral or industrial psychology.

It may also prepare the student for a state licensure exam. Internship and dissertation may be part of the obligations involved in the program.

Post-Doctoral Certificate: this certificate program may take up to four years to complete. Professionals seeking ways to expand their scope and practice may opt for the program.

It is for only those who have completed their doctoral degree and may be vying for board certification or professional exams. Clinical labs and practical experience may be additional requirements for applying for the program.

What field of Psychology makes the most money?

 Psychology has diverse fields and they all tend to be very relevant in their capacity. Their salaries also vary depending on the state, industry of employment, educational background, years of service, and job position.

The average salary for the highest paying psychology career is around $167,000 per annum. Having that in mind, some of the highest paying jobs in psychology include:

Psychiatry: this field is considered more as a medical career and takes roughly 8 years of graduate study. After completing a bachelor’s degree, the aspiring psychiatrist must graduate from a medical school and complete a four-year residency before he/she can fully practice. The average salary is $216,090 per year.

Industrial-organizational psychology: the minimum requirement for this field is a master’s degree in psychology, although earning a higher degree level will be an added advantage.

Additionally, the professionals use their knowledge to handle issues related to the workplace. They help in increasing worker productivity, selecting the best employees for a job position, etc. are some of their roles. The average salary for professionals in this field is $149,780 per year.

Neuropsychology: a doctorate in neuropsychology is needed for this position. Neuropsychologists are brain specialists and cognitive scientists.

They perform cognitive tests, run brain scans, assess the level of injury suffered in the brain, and study the impact of drugs on the nervous system. The average salary is $90,460 per year.

Clinical psychology: a clinical psychologist must possess a doctorate in psychology, complete one or two years of residency and pass a state licensing exam before they can be allowed to practice.

They are trained to assess, diagnose, treat and prevent mental illness. It is the largest field of employment in psychology. Their average salary is $81,30 per annum.

There are other fields of psychology with high remuneration like engineering psychology, counseling psychology, forensic psychology, and so on.

What certifications can I pursue with Bachelors in Psychology?

Undergraduate psychology students can explore the following courses and certifications that are related to mental health:

Mental health first aid training: just as there are first aid training for physical health emergencies, where professionals administer CPR and dress wounds, there is also mental health first aid which furnishes individuals with the required tools for handling mental health crisis in emergencies.

Mental health first aid courses cover depression, anxiety, disorders, trauma, substance abuse disorders, etc. Students are trained with the first aid actions to carry out in this regard.

Psychological first aid: psychological first aid almost deals with the same issues as above. But they differ in that psychological first aid focuses more on responses to trauma. It is a six-hour interactive online course that offers the opportunity to participate in a virtual disaster relief scene.

Certified Alzheimer caregiver: Alzheimer’s diseases are brain diseases that lead to degeneration and loss of memory. Caregivers are trained to assist people suffering from this disease.

The training is followed by an exam that evaluates them on their knowledge of dementia and other behaviors associated with Alzheimer’s disease.

Others include interpersonal and social rhythm therapy training, certification in thanatology, certified co-occurring disorders specialist, etc.

What certifications can I get with a masters in psychology? 

There are quite many helpful psychology certifications you could add to your resume as a graduate student. Some of them can be found below:

State licensure in psychology: a state-issued license is a very crucial qualification. When an employer hires such a person, s(he) is assured that the professional will meet the basic criteria for knowledge, experience, and professionalism.

The least educational requirement for this is a master’s degree from an APA accredited institution.

Specialty psychology certifications: these certifications are different from state-issued licensure. They help professional psychologists to be more advanced in their area of experience.

Some of them include Certified cognitive-behavioral therapists (CCBT), clinical psychology, couple and family psychology, counseling psychology, forensic psychology, geropsychology, etc.

What are Psychologist Certification requirements? 

Though each state has its own requirements for licensing, here are the general requirements:

You must meet educational requirements. A minimum of a doctoral degree in psychology from a regionally accredited institution is required by state licensing boards. Some states require that the professional must possess a doctoral degree in psychology from an APA-accredited program.

Meet administrative requirements: students are obligated to document the number of clients, types of problems they treated, and supervised experience they had during their postdoctoral and internship.

Prepare for tests: all states whose boards are members of ASPPB necessitate that applicants must pass the EPPP which is set by each state.

Accrue supervised clinical hours: 2000 hours are required by candidates during internship and 2000 hours during postdoctoral to meet state requirements.

Record your credentials: record information about your postdoctoral internship and doctoral degree.

Anticipate the cost: licensure fees range between $500 and $1000, including application, initial licensing, and exam fees.

Receive approval by a state licensing board that your requirements have been met.

What certifications help with finding a psychology job? 

All certifications can afford you a job, depending on what kind of job you want. However, the following will help you to get the job more easily and increase your general value:

  • A board-certified specialist in school psychology
  • Nationally certified school psychology
  • Board-certified behavior analyst, etc.

Top 20 Psychology Certifications 2022 

Certified in Hospital Psychology (CHP)

Hospital psychology is rewarding for individuals who want to expand their skillsets and influence outside the typical clinical setting. Professionals in this field need to understand the effects of the challenging situations found inside of a medical facility.

Board Certified Specialist in School Psychology

School psychology is an overall practice. School psychologists apply the science and practice of psychology to youths, families, and learners of all ages as well as the school process. It promotes the protection, educational and personal development of a learner.

Board of Certified Specialist in Clinical Psychology 

This certification is an indication that the candidate has completed the educational, training, and experience requirements of the specialty, structured to evaluate the required skills for providing quality services in the specialty of Clinical Psychology.

Board Certified Behaviour Analyst (BCBA)

This certification is offered to an independent practitioner who could also be an employee or independent contractor for a firm. The professional conducts descriptive and systematic behavioral assessments, such as functional analyses.

They also provide behavior analytic elucidation of the result. The BCBA is effective in developing and implementing the right assessment and intervention methods for use in unaccustomed conditions for different cases.

PgCert in Positive Behaviour Support (Blended Learning)

The program helps in developing your knowledge of positive behavior support. It is used in supporting people with intellectual disabilities and additional complex needs.

Graduate Certificate in Autism and Behavioural Science

This is especially for caregivers to equip them with the relevant knowledge on how to provide compassionate and ultramodern care to those with autism. You will be able to influence people positively and make the world a better place.

There is a decline in the number of autism caregivers with quality service, meaning that you are likely never going to run out of a job as a specialist.

PgCert in the Psychology of Dementia Care

This certification is concentrated on the hands-on application of psychological theory in dementia care and is meant for professional care staff and management who provide services to people with dementia.

Positive Behaviour Intervention and Support: Response to Intervention (RTI) for Behaviour

RTI is a theory with a focus on research-based methods of prevention and intervention, combined with data-based decision-making for the improvement of student behavioral and academic outcomes.

School personnel is provided with series of programs to lead the development, implementation, assessment, and sustainability of a three-tiered continuum of behavioral support and intervention in a school setting.

Mental and Behavioural Health Worker Certificate

Candidates are equipped to enter the workplace as Mental and Behavioural Health Worker. They work with individuals diagnosed with mental health issues by conducting interviews with them to elicit vital information, assist them and monitor their behavior.

They may work in hospitals, residential facilities, and patient’s homes.

Online Certificate of Proficiency in Child Advocacy Studies (CHAS)

CHAS offers candidates the skills and competencies required to handle child maltreatment cases. Professionals ensure that child maltreatment cases are appropriately identified with the right intervention response.

They will be able to identify signs of abuse and neglect, practice interviewing techniques, learn to effectively testify on a witness ground, conduct home visits, etc. Students are taught using case studies.

CertHe Criminal Psychology

Students are taught to understand the core of psychological and criminological theories. You will learn the ranges of mental processes that occur in the brain and their application to criminal psychology, especially in offenders reporting and eyewitness testimony.

CertHE Psychology 

This certification program teaches students how people think and what makes them tick. They will learn the science behind the mind, brain, and behavior.

Various fields of psychology and their application to real-world scenarios will be taught, offering the students the thoughts and actions of people and groups.

Child Welfare Practice Certificate

Undergraduate and graduate social work students who aim at advancing their knowledge and competencies in child welfare practice and children’s mental health.

Social Psychology

This professional course focuses on the way people think, feel and behave in social circumstances. It provides background knowledge on central social psychology and the basic understanding of the methods used by social psychologists in the study of human behavior.

Business Psychology

This certification offers an opportunity to the fields of business psychology. You will be imparted with the knowledge of psychological theory and its application to the business world. Influence People with Persuasion Psychology.

This professional course is structured to help candidates with the requisite knowledge of psychological methodologies that can influence people. You will understand human behavior and their decision-making process. 

Forensic Psychology – Accredited Certificate 

Professionals who want to acquire more knowledge on criminal investigations and forensic profiling are encouraged to take this course. It is structured to furnish you with the facts and theories behind criminal thinking and behavior.

Diploma in Modern Applied Psychology

Candidates who wish to obtain a diploma in applied psychology are encouraged to take this course. It offers insights into the psychology behind human behavior which will influence personal growth, leadership, emotional intelligence, and decision-making skills.

Stress and Anxiety Management: Psychology-Accredited Certificate

If you want to learn more about how to manage stress and anxiety from a professional perspective, then, this course is designed for you. You will understand anxiety disorder and therapy and the right counseling for it.

The modules of the program can provide the basic concepts that can be applied in real-life scenarios. Topics like social anxiety disorder, burnout, panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, etc. are to be offered by the program.

The Science of Well-being

The program aims to engage you in a series of challenges structured to improve your happiness and develop more productive habits.

You will learn more about some misconceptions about happiness, annoying features of the mind that influence personal thoughts, and the right research that can bring about the solution.

Step by step guide on how to get a Psychology Certifications online 

  1. Decide on the area of focus you want.
  2. Find out the best school that offers the program, the duration of the program, and the learning outcome.
  3. Discover how the program is being run, and if it can accommodate your schedule.
  4. Check out if the program is a paid or free one. If paid, will you be able to afford the cost?
  5. Find out the payment plan and procedure.
  6. Follow the instructions given for the payment and join the class.
  7. Take the exam and request your certificate.

Note that some free programs do not offer free certificates. You will need to decide if you need the certificate or not and find out how to go about it.

FAQs about Psychology certification

There are frequently asked questions about psychology which helps you to navigate through the process without having to ask anyone. Below are some of them:

Courses for online certification programs in psychology vary. Each certificate program covers a specialized focus area and schools determine what the outcome of the classes would look like.

Coursework often covers topics such as theory, research methods, literature review, and professional ethics. 

The working condition depends on the area of focus of the professional. Many psychologists practice privately and so, could rent their own office space and decide how best to work.

About 35% of psychologists are self-employed, run private practices, offering counseling and psychotherapy services to clients in an office setting.

About 20% work in health care settings such as hospitals and mental health clinics. A considerate number work in education as professors, researchers, or teachers. Others work as counselors and in government agencies.

Yet, some are employed by private businesses or corporations, conducting market research and increasing business efficiency.

Yes, psychologists must hold a degree from a recognized institution and a professional license before they can practice.

The most popular accreditation body is the American Psychological Association (APA). 

Earnings vary greatly depending on a psychologist’s area of concentration, the industry of employment, employer, years of experience, and level of education. The average annual salary can be as high as $64,140 and as low as $37,000.


Certification in psychology offers a great opportunity for one to step up the game. It is advisable that you find out the best certification program and apply.



Ajah Excel is a team growth and performance expert with over nine years of experience in blogging and personal development.
He leads a team of 36 crazy, restless innovators with an enviable work culture at Silicon Africa Technologies Limited – a fast-rising tech firm from the SouthEast.
Excel is the founder of and WriterGig.
He is also the co-organizer of TEDx Ikenegbu and convener of Social Media Fest.
He is a vibrant learner who yearns to share his knowledge to educate and inspire young Africans.
He has a B.Tech in Information Management Technology with certifications in growth hacking, effective communication, leadership, team, and personal development, to mention a few.
Ajah Anayochukwu Excel is a passionate public speaker, creative writer, and brand storyteller.

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