5 Careers for a Master’s in Forensic Psychology Graduate

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Updated January 3, 2023 · 4 Min Read

If you’re thinking of pursuing a master’s degree in forensic psychology, here are some careers you should consider.

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If you have a passion for justice combined with a fascination with human behavior, then a job in forensic psychology could equal your dream job. Obtaining your master’s degree in forensic psychology may lead to many career options. 

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), jobs in psychology are predicted to grow by 3% from now until 2029. This guide will provide more insight on what a forensic psychologist does, and what careers are a good fit. 

What Does a Forensic Psychologist Do?

While there are different types of psychology degrees, forensic psychology can be broad, yet exciting. 

There are many paths to choose based on your specialization and interests. You can choose a career that is hands-on in crime solving, where you may be needed to provide expertise in a courtroom. Or you can choose a path that focuses more on individuals and families and offer professional counseling. 

Forensic psychology jobs can be rewarding as you can help individual people, as well as society as a whole. To become specialized in forensic psychology, you must earn a master's degree, and certain paths may even require a doctoral degree

5 Careers for a Master’s in Forensic Psychology Graduate

If you are pursuing a master's degree in forensic psychology, here are 5 top careers for you to consider pursuing, based on BLS, Payscale, and Glassdoor data:

Job Title Avg. Annual Salary Projected Job Growth 
Jury Consultant$81,88815%
Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor$49,79425% 
Forensic Social Worker$52,40213%
Victim Advocate$40,16413%
Correctional Consultant$55,6904%

1. Jury Consultant

A jury consultant’s duty is to assist lawyers both before and during trials for high-profile cases. Beforehand, they use behavior analysis to select jury members, conduct pretrial research, and even hold mock trials.

During the trial, they help lawyers by examining jurors’ body language, coaching witnesses, and helping with strategizing key arguments. Their main purpose is to use human behavior to help build a strong case in court. 

Salaries for new jury consultants can start at $59,000 a year, but for more experienced professionals, they can make upwards of $130,000. Those with a Ph.D. are more likely to collect a higher salary.

2. Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor

Also known as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in many states, a licensed professional clinical counselor (LPCC) assists individuals with behavior disorders. They also provide counseling for people struggling with addiction. They can facilitate counseling in either a group setting, or a private session. 

Day to day tasks can include conducting psychological assessments, creating treatment plans, and making recommendations. Each outcome is a result of an individual patient’s needs. 

An LPCC’s skill set can determine what roles they perform, as well as their salary. On average, counseling services can start at $49,737 for the year, according to Payscale, while those with a specialization in cognitive behavioral therapy can expect to start off at $51,537 annually.

3. Forensic Social Worker 

After obtaining your master's degree in forensic psychology, you can go into the social work field to help in all aspects of the justice system. Forensic social workers can work with police officers, lawyers, or incarcerated individuals. They can also handle cases of child neglect or abuse, or be tasked with evaluating criminal behavior. 

Ranging from the justice system or social services, this field is broad and presents a lot of different avenues for you to take. The average salary is based upon experience level. Those early into their career typically make $39,000 a year. The average salary for this career is $52,402, according to Glassdoor.

4. Victim Advocate 

As a victim advocate, you would provide support for those who have been victimized or have witnessed a crime. This can be done through crisis intervention, providing resources, and even preparing and attending trials or interviews with a client. 

Victim advocates can work with police officials, hospital staff, and clinic workers. Often, these professionals call in victim advocates to provide victims with support as soon as possible after a crime. On average, victim advocates make $40,164 a year. Those in the top 10% of salaries make around $57,000 a year.

5. Correctional Consultant

Correctional consultants assist with the acclamation process for people entering correctional facilities and rehabilitation for those on parole or probation. Before someone goes to prison, a consultant helps prepare them for their stay. 

Once they are incarcerated, the consultant may evaluate the inmate through psychological testing, and work with others that are part of the prison on a plan after the inmate’s release. They work closely with prisoners, prison staff, and probation officers. Most consultants work full-time through an agency. 

The average annual pay is $55,690 a year. Entry-level positions require a bachelor’s degree. To advance in this role, a master’s degree may be required.

Steps to Becoming a Forensic Psychologist 

To become a forensic psychologist, you must take the necessary steps in the right direction. Certain forensic psychology jobs may only expect you to have a bachelor’s degree. 

However, the career you choose to pursue may require a master’s degree. Having a master’s degree can also mean more options and a greater salary. Step number one is finding the right program to get you started.

Choose a Master’s Degree in Forensic Psychology
Find the right program to work on your master’s degree. Lots of colleges and universities offer flexible schedules, as well as online courses.
Seek Professional Practice or Internships

The best teacher is experience. Find a practice or internship where you can learn about your future career and get hands-on learning.

Consider a Licensure
Certain jobs in forensic psychology might need a professional license. If you select a specialization, the likelihood of licensure is even greater.

What Degrees Do You Need to Become a Forensic Psychologist? 

Again, just a bachelor’s degree may be required for certain jobs. However, furthering your education and obtaining a masters or even a Ph.D. can mean better job prospects. 

Many colleges and universities offer programs for a master’s or Ph.D., and some are accelerated or even joint programs that allow you to earn both degrees simultaneously. To become a forensic psychologist, you may need one or more of the following:

  • Bachelor's degree
  • Master’s degree
  • Ph.D.
  • Psychology or counseling state licensure

How much money do forensic psychologists earn?

The salary for a forensic psychologist can range greatly based on their specific job, as well as their level of expertise. The field is incredibly broad, but forensic psychologists across the spectrum make an average of $72,057 a year.

Is there a high demand for forensic psychologists?

While the demand for general psychology jobs are steady, certain types of jobs for forensic psychologists are in high demand.

Licensed professional clinical counselors and jury consultants have job outlooks that are well above average. Victim advocates and forensic social workers are in demand as well. Choosing a career in this field can lead to great options for finding a job.

How long will it take me to graduate from a master’s in forensic psychology program?

The program you choose determines how long it will take to graduate with your master's degree. Different institutions offer unique programs with varying required hours of completion.

If you find a college or university with an accelerated program, you can likely finish faster, but consider these programs wisely. Accelerated programs take less time to complete, but they are typically more demanding.

Is forensic psychology a good career?

Yes. There are lots of avenues for a career in psychology, but earning your master's degree in forensic psychology can mean lots of career options, and the potential to earn a great salary. In addition, you will have a career that helps people and serves our justice system. This is a field in which you can grow and advance your career. For many, it can be fulfilling, and it is a necessary career to help our system continue to function.

If you think a career as a forensic psychologist may be right for you, then take a look at our recommended programs to help you get started.

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