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Clinical psychology is a branch of psychology that deals with identifying, understanding, treating and preventing psychological disorders and abnormalities, as well as promoting the positive mental health of patients. It is one of the most intriguing fields of psychology and has some of the most interesting and unique career opportunities.Clinical psychologists often operate in a practitioner setting where they administer batteries of tests to patients to determine mental function and psychological well-being. They then use this information, combined with input from the patient, to provide advice and individualized treatment. Other clinical psychologists may perform research, sometimes working in coordination with other psychologists and medical practitioners, in order to learn about anything from depression remedies to genetic and environmental components of substance abuse disorders.
Depending on a person's interests, an aspiring clinical psychologist will almost certainly be able to find a unique subset of clinical psychology in which to work. Some clinical psychologists may prefer to deal with one patient at a time, whereas others may enjoy helping to create successful interpersonal dynamics in otherwise healthy people by providing group, family or couple therapy. Geropsychologists provide the elderly with therapy they may need while facing the unique problems posed by aging, including anxiety and depression. Youth and adolescent psychologists attempt to understand and treat problems caused by the biological changes and stressors faced by young adults. Other clinical psychologists may opt to assist in the treatment of problems not normally thought of as primarily mental disorders. For example, health psychologists are actively involved in programs that encourage good health, such as reducing overeating, smoking or alcohol consumption. They may work in conjunction with a general practitioner to assist the patient in working his or her way towards a healthy lifestyle. Neuropsychologists study the relationship between the structure of the brain and functional behavior and are often an important component in assisting in recovery from strokes or head trauma injuries.Due to clinical psychologists often having a very specialized base of knowledge their training may be combined with other subsets of psychology to create truly novel career opportunities. For example, clinical training in certain personality disorders or anger management may be useful in forensic psychology, or specialization in workplace-related stressors could be useful in I-O psychology. Regardless of one's research interests there is almost certainly a unique career in clinical psychology.
Drawing upon our more than 30-year history of granting degrees in professional psychology, Argosy University has developed a curriculum that focuses on interpersonal skills and practical experience alongside academic learning. Because getting a degree is one thing. Succeeding, quite another.
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