When the concept of psychology is applied in criminal and legal investigations, this science is called as forensic psychology. Forensic psychologists evaluate mental competency, assess criminals and provide psychotherapy to crime victims. Typically, they work around 40 hours a week with some overtime during important cases. So, what is the average forensic psychology salary?
The salary of a forensic psychologist is largely dependent on level of education. It’s different for people with paralegal jobs or have other types of career in law. Those with a master’s degree earn around $59,000 yearly, while a doctorate degree can raise the salary to about $100,000 every year. Other factors affecting the salary include:
A forensic psychology salary starts at around $53,000 – $59,500 annually. This will increase with experience as you become more familiar with your field and able to command more respect and higher fees. Some senior professionals with over 20 years of experience can even get around $117,000 annually.
Salary can vary with employer. There are three rough areas that a forensic psychologist can work in, government (Federal, state and local), private practice and non-profit organizations. Generally speaking private practice is the most lucrative to work in, followed by government and non-profit organizations.
The geographical location you’re practicing also affects this salary. For example, in cities such as Washington DC, the salary is high, while those in Midwest areas earn less. However, there is still a lot of variation within these geographical areas, and it is important to bear in mind that areas that pay more are often more expensive to live in.
The reputation and authenticity of your school can also play a crucial role in determining the salary.
In general, career employment for forensic psychologists is expected to increase by about 15% in the next few years. Opportunities will be best for those with degrees from leading universities in specialties required by law enforcement. Being trained in computer science may also lead to a better forensic psychology salary.