Psychology Continuing Education: What You Should Know

When it comes to psychology, continuing education is the name of the game. For many professions, you learn everything you need to know in school. After graduation, you may be surprised at how little you need even that. In other fields, what you learn on the job is far more important than the theory you picked up in college. For the soft sciences, however, it is a combination of both. Not only must your theory and fundamental background be firm, you must be able to seek out and assimilate any new knowledge that advances your understanding. For psychologists, this is not just good advice; it is a requirement to remain licensed.

As you might expect, psychology continuing education requirements vary from state to state. Some states have very few requirements in place and more or less allow the doctor to choose their place of accreditation. Other states have stringent requirements and insist that individuals choose from their acceptable learning materials. If you're planning to practice and be licensed in a state, you need to keep up with those requirements. They may be very different than the ones where you came from.

In addition to placing varying demands on the amount of credits you must obtain in a period, state licensing boards have different requirements when it comes to the type of courses you may take. It's not uncommon for a state to have its pet issues that it feels are important. For instance, in Florida you'll find the state requires more domestic violence training for its psychologists. Other states may require more drug abuse training.

One good thing about going into the field now is that you'll have more choices and flexibility than ever before when it comes to deciding where to complete your psychology continuing education. Online classes, workshops, and multimedia presentations open up another world of possibilities. There are still plenty of real life opportunities as well, for those who learn better in a classroom environment.

One final note: keep your records straight. It's not uncommon for a person to take credits, lose the paperwork, and find out that those credits won't be counted towards their psychology continuing education requirements. Don't let this happen to you. Keep your paperwork in a secure place and make sure everything is well organized. Don't ever depend on the learning institution to take care of it for you. If they do live up to their promises, so much the better. If they don't, you have the backup.