What are the Fastest Growing Fields in the Counseling Profession?

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Many psychology students often wonder what the fastest growing fields in the counseling profession are and what makes them so popular.

Psychology and counseling students are free to choose from the exciting counseling careers introduced below.

Industrial-Organizational Psychologist

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), industrial-organizational psychologists are experiencing the highest projected growth rate among all careers. In fact, the BLS reports that the demand for industrial-organizational psychologists is expected to grow by 53 percent from 2012 to 2022.

Most industrial-organizational psychologists spend their time researching theories related to work or solving major employee problems for companies. However, some of these psychologists also directly work in management or human resources. They are tasked with screening, training and helping employees.

In larger corporations, some industrial-organizational psychologists work with employee assistance programs to help employees deal with health and personal problems that interfere with productivity.

School Psychologists

School psychology is now one of the fastest growing psychology fields because of recent federal education legislation and increased concern for student well-being.

School psychologists work in public and private elementary, middle and high schools. Their job is to help students successfully overcome social, emotional and academic problems. They also use counseling techniques to interview and intervene with struggling students. For example, a school psychologist may collaborate with teachers, school administration and social workers who work with negligent parents and their affected children. Because they communicate with students about their personal life, they are mandatory reporters of child abuse and neglect.

School psychologists also collaborate with special education teachers to design and implement personalized curriculum for students with developmental issues.

Career Counselors

Career counseling is another one of the fastest growing fields in the counseling profession. One reason is because there is consistent demand across a wide range of educational organizations for vocational counselors. This means that career counselors work with all ages in different settings.

For example, many career counselors typically work in K-12 schools, universities or technical institutes. However, many also work for alternative schools, correctional facilities and non-profit organizations. Therefore, psychology students are empowered to choose a unique industry specialization. They may work for alternative school with students with behavioral problems or a state sponsored transition program for recently released inmates.

Career and vocational counselors assist people explore their job options through career, interest and personality assessments. They also review applicable skills and job history to help the individual find a suitable job.

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Family Counselors

Openly discussing serious and sensitive relationship problems is becoming more acceptable in society. In fact, family counselors are psychology professionals who help individuals with various relationship difficulties related to family, marriage, education, emotion and substance abuse.

For example, they may help clients struggling with low self-esteem and food addiction to overcome their psychological problems and improve their family relationships. They apply their clinical skills and knowledge to diagnose and treat mental health problems within the dynamics of interpersonal relationships. Family counselors are mental health professionals who assess and alleviate problems within the framework of couple and family relationships.

Most family counselors work for health care, education, non-profit or social welfare organizations. Family counselors must have a doctoral degree and state licensing.

In review, the psychology field of counseling offers distinct careers for students who want to help others overcome problems. Industrial-organizational, school, career and family psychology are the fastest growing fields in the counseling profession.

See also: Top 30 Most Accessible COAMFTE-Accredited Marriage and Family Therapy Master’s Degrees

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