If you change your thoughts, "cognitions," and your actions or behaviors, you will change your life. That is the philosophy behind cognitive behavioral therapy and cognitive psychology programs in New Mexico. Cognitive psychologists help people focus on identifying errors in thinking and explore how those thoughts affect behavior. Counselors help clients restructure their thoughts and beliefs for a happier, more functional life (NM Psychological Association).
Earning your Cognitive Psychology Degree in New Mexico
Study programs in cognitive psychology in New Mexico include courses in visual and auditory perception, memory, neuroscience, organizational psychology, and the computational modeling of cognitive processes. Language, learning, attention, problem solving, decision-making, intelligence and judgment are other topics covered in cognitive psychology school programs (American Psychological Association). Most studies in cognitive psychology are at a graduate level, so students design and run research studies about these topics.
According to the National Research Council, the University of New Mexico and New Mexico State University psychology schools rank highly for their doctorate psychology programs. In New Mexico, most career opportunities for psychologists require advanced degrees. Those with master's degrees might find work in the applied sciences, such as industrial and organizational psychology. These areas are expected to grow in the future.
License Requirements in New Mexico
The New Mexico Board of Psychologist Examiners requires a doctoral degree and licensure for any work counseling, treating or leading research with humans. The Board also requires continuing professional education (CPE) to ensure licensees update and advance their skills. Licensure requires graduation from an approved psychology doctoral program, three letters of recommendation, fingerprinting and a criminal background check. Applicants must pass the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP) and an exam covering the laws for psychological practice in New Mexico.
The Washington Post reported that New Mexico is one of the few states that allow medication prescription by psychologists. This separate license requires 450 classroom hours of psychopharmacology education, and a 400-hour practicum treating at least 100 patients under the supervision of a physician. Applicants for the prescribing license must also pass the Psychopharmacology Examination for Psychologists (PEP).
Career Outlook for Cognitive Psychology Graduates in New Mexico
Some areas where New Mexico cognitive psychologists are found include individual counseling, marital/couples counseling, family counseling, life coaching, and addictions counseling. Others work with children and teens diagnosed with ADD, ADHD, Asperger's and Autism Spectrum Disorders. Any area of psychological private practice is open to doctors of psychology.
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), PhD level cognitive psychologists in New Mexico earn an annual average salary between $43,210 and $98,350 per year, with the mean salary being $67,760 per year. New Mexico is an excellent place for cognitive psychologists to work. The BLS reports the state has the highest concentration of jobs and job sites for psychologists in the nation. There are 1.5 psychologists for every 1000 residents of the state.
Albuquerque has the 10th highest concentration of jobs among all American cities. The Eastern and Southeastern region of New Mexico has the fifth highest concentration of psychologist jobs of all non-metropolitan areas of the country. Salaries in that region average $75,020 per year. Salaries in Albuquerque and Santa Fe average $67,470 per year, and the annual average in Las Cruces is $72,090 according to the BLS.
Job prospects for psychologists in New Mexico are expected to grow by 22 percent by 2020, faster than the average for all occupations. Greater demand for services, including treating veterans with war trauma as well as health care services should drive these increases. Many cognitive psychologists will be employed in areas such as human-computer interactions and artificial intelligence development at universities and government agencies (BLS).
To get started on your cognitive psychology degree, request more information from the psychology schools in New Mexico today.
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