Overview of Cognitive Psychology Programs in Illinois
Folk wisdom would tell you that “mind over matter” is the key to success. The field of cognitive psychology agrees. This area of study looks at the mind, brain functions, and the collaboration between brain structures and behavioral outcomes. With a background in psychology, neurology, or anatomy, you may have what it takes to study cognitive psychology at the graduate or doctoral degree level.
Illinois is home to many prestigious psychology programs, giving you a wide variety of schools to consider. Keep reading to learn more about what it takes to earn a Master’s degree or PhD, then use the list of schools below to search cognitive psychology schools in Illinois.
Cognitive Psychology Education in Illinois
One of the first decisions you have to make as a new student is which type of degree you want to earn. You need a Bachelor's degree to pursue a Master’s degree or PhD. Some schools require a Bachelor’s degree in psychology, but the majority of schools willingly accept students from other disciplines.
However, you should have some undergraduate psychology coursework behind you and high scores on the GRE. Relevant work or volunteer experience is also helpful, as that reflects your level of interest in this field and helps you narrow your research interests.
If you decide a Master's degree is the right choice for you, plan on earning between 30 and 36 credits over a period of four semesters.
During your time as a cognitive psychology student, you may take courses like:
- Cognitive Psychophysiology
- Cognitive Science
- Categories and Concepts
- Experimental Psychology of Human Learning
- Problem Solving & Cognitive Skill Acquisition
PhD programs are fairly similar. They rely heavily on research and experimentation. However, earning a PhD also gives you access to teaching experiences and additional research work. Most PhD programs are designed to be completed in approximately five years, with several Illinois schools limiting students to a maximum of seven years.
While earning a PhD, you should take many of the same courses required in a graduate program. However, you may also take classes like:
- Connectionist Models of Cognition
- Learning and Cognition
- Brain and Behavior Relationships
- Data Analysis and Methodology
By this time, it should be clear that research is one of the primary goals in cognitive psychology programs. If you earn a graduate degree, you display your knowledge of research skills with a Master's thesis. PhD students must write and defend a dissertation prior to graduation.
Cognitive Psychology Careers in Illinois
After earning one of the best cognitive psychology degrees in IL, you may be ready to start your career in this field. First, consider taking advantage of learning opportunities through professional organizations like the <a href=“https://www.illinoispsychology.org" target=“_blank”>Illinois Psychological Association</A>. They have committees in various areas of study, including neuroimaging, neuropsychology, ADHD, and healthcare reform.
You may look for job opportunities at colleges, universities, and research centers. Social science research assistants in Illinois earn, on average, $46,970 per year (<a href=“http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes194061.htm” target=“_blank”>Bureau of Labor Statistics</A>, 2016). This may be a good entry-level option for Master's degree graduates. Between 2012 and 2022, job openings are expected to increase 5% (<a href=“http://www.careerinfonet.org/occ_rep.asp?optstatus=001000000&soccode=194061&id=1&nodeid=2&stfips=17&search=Go#SectionOp3” target=“_blank”>O*Net</A>, 2016).
Clinical research coordinators take on a managerial role in various research settings. The average salary for this field in Illinois is $124,550 annually (<a href=“http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes251066.htm” target=“_blank”>BLS</A>, 2016). Demand for research coordinators may increase 5% through 2022 (<a href=“http://www.careerinfonet.org/occ_rep.asp?optstatus=001000000&soccode=119121&id=1&nodeid=2&stfips=17&search=Go#SectionOp3” target=“_blank”>O*Net</A>, 2016).
With a PhD, you may work toward a career as a psychology professor. Illinois psychology professors earn an average of $87,330 annually (<a href=“http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes119121.htm” target=“_blank”>BLS</A>, 2016). Job openings may increase 13% by 2022 (<a href=“http://www.careerinfonet.org/occ_rep.asp?optstatus=001000000&soccode=251066&id=1&nodeid=2&stfips=17&search=Go#SectionOp3” target=“_blank”>O*Net</A>, 2016).
With experience in research and statistics, you may be able to positively change the field of psychology. Take the first step now by contacting cognitive psychology schools in IL.
Cognitive Psychology Degree Programs
Welcome to the most complete directory on the Web of Cognitive Psychology programs. It contains all the nationally accredited programs, from 217 schools across the country.