How to Become A Criminal Psychologist South Africa

Criminal Psychologist is a person that study of the thoughts and behavior of criminals.

Below is How to Become A Criminal Psychologist South Africa

Earn a Bachelor’s Degree

Aspiring criminal psychologists begin their education by earning a bachelor’s degree. No specific area of study is required, though concentrating studies in psychology or criminal justice may be beneficial.

Students might choose to take courses in human behavior, psychoanalysis, crime detection, forensic science, and criminology to prepare for graduate school.

Earn a Graduate Degree

Criminal psychologists are generally required to obtain a master’s degree, Doctor of Philosophy, or Doctor of Psychology.

Master’s degree programs generally take two years of graduate-level study to complete, while doctorates usually entail five years of graduate-level study and may include a year of postdoctoral clinical training.

Gain Experience

In order to obtain mandatory state licensure, criminal psychologists must typically have at least a year of experience in the field.

Experience can be gained through clinical practicums, internships, or residencies. Universities typically assist students in finding institutions to gain the necessary work experience.

Obtain Licensure

All criminal psychologists who work in counseling or clinical settings must meet their state’s licensure requirements. In most cases, state licensing boards require psychologists to hold doctoral degrees, complete an internship, and have at least a year of professional experience.

Applicants must then pass an exam to obtain licensure and may have to take additional classes to renew licensure regularly.

Complete Continuing Education

Continuing education can help a criminal psychologist stay current with industry trends and changes in laws while ensuring the value of his or her expertise to the criminal justice system. Additionally, continuing education is often required to renew licensure and certification.

Career Requirements

Degree LevelMaster’s degree, Ph.D., or Psy.D.
Degree FieldCriminal psychology, forensic psychology, clinical psychology
Licensure and CertificationA state-issued license is required; voluntary certifications available
Experience1-2 years of professional experience; can be started during college
Key SkillsStrong intuition, analytical, observational, problem-solving, and verbal and written communication skills; patience; ability to empathize with and console relatives of victims; ability to identify and interpret patterns

What qualifications do I need to be a criminal psychologist?

The field of criminal psychology is very competitive, so you will usually need at least a 2:1 degree to move onto postgraduate study in this role. You will also need to be able to demonstrate research skills and relevant experience in a hospital or a community service setting before you can progress.

How long does it take to become a psychologist in South Africa?

You will be looking at a minimum of five years’ full-time formal education in psychology. Before you can enter a directed Master’s degree programme, you will need a three-year Bachelor’s degree majoring in psychology (or the equivalent thereof), as well as an Honours degree in psychology.

How long does a criminal psychologist go to school?

How long will it take to complete a criminal psychology degree? Bachelor’s programs in criminal psychology usually require 120-130 credits and take four years of full-time attendance to complete. Master’s programs traditionally take two years and doctoral programs take about five years.

Is there a demand for psychologists in South Africa?

In a violent country like South Africa, the dire shortage of psychologists in the public sector is a cause for major concern. Indeed, according to Health Systems Trust, the number of clinical psychologists in the South African public sector is just 2.75 per 100,000 people.

Are criminal psychologists in demand?

The field also continues to grow due to a demand for criminal psychologists in mental health centers and law enforcement agencies. According to the BLS, the field of criminal psychology is expected to grow faster than the average of other occupations.

Do criminal psychologists carry guns?

Forensic psychologists work within the criminal justice system and consequently, work with criminals, victims and their families, judges and lawyers, jurors and law enforcement agents to name a few. Some forensic psychologists even operate their own private practices. Forensic psychologists carry guns.