What Are the Branches of Psychology?

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The branches, or sub-fields, of psychology are clinical psychology; counseling; cognitive, perceptual developmental, educational, engineering, evolutionary, experimental, forensic and health psychology; industrial and organizational psychology; neuro- and behavioral psychology; quantitative, school, social, sports and rehabilitation psychology. Some include the categories of abnormal, comparative, cross-cultural, personality and bio-psychology as sub-fields.

The various branches of psychology cover the study of human thought, the brain and the environment, as well as how they affect behavior. The field of psychology ranges in subject from sociology to artificial intelligence. Some branches of psychology are closely related to other disciplines, such as medicine and biology. Psychology uses human behavior as its data.

Psychologists conduct research and diagnose and treat people. They help their clients in therapy to adjust to difficult life situations or cope with mental illness, working with primary care physicians, pediatricians and psychiatrists if medications necessary. In some states, psychologists who receive additional training may administer medication. Psychologists also administer tests and assessments.

Aspiring psychologists must complete an undergraduate degree plus an average of seven years of graduate study to become licensed to practice. Psychologists may work in private practice, schools, prisons, colleges and universities, community centers, nursing homes, mental health centers, hospitals or businesses.