Skip to content

Careers in Abnormal Psychology

Careers in Abnormal Psychology

As humans, we all have a unique psychological makeup that makes us who we are. For some individuals, this makeup brings with it challenges that can affect their lives significantly. These issues can range from mild anxiety or depression, to more severe mental disorders such as bipolar disorder or schizophrenia.

Abnormal psychology is a field that focuses on studying the psychological disorders that affect people, as well as the treatments available for these disorders. If you have a passion for helping others and want to make a difference in people’s lives, a career in abnormal psychology may be right for you.

What is Abnormal Psychology?

Abnormal psychology is a branch of psychology that studies abnormal thought patterns, behaviors, and emotions. This field seeks to understand the origins and manifestations of abnormal behavior so that effective treatments can be developed for affected individuals.

Abnormal psychology is concerned not only with identifying the symptoms of various mental disorders but also with understanding the underlying causes of these conditions. Often, individuals with mental disorders struggle with feelings of isolation and hopelessness, and they may require specialized support and interventions from trained mental health professionals.

Careers in Abnormal Psychology

There are many career paths that individuals with a background in abnormal psychology can pursue. Some popular career options include the following:

Clinical Psychologist

Clinical psychologists work with patients to resolve emotional, behavioral, and mental health problems. They may use various psychotherapy techniques to help individuals identify, understand, and overcome the root causes of their problems.

Clinical psychologists work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, private practice, community mental health centers, and schools. The role of a clinical psychologist is to diagnose mental illnesses, create treatment plans, and provide therapy.


Psychiatrists are medical doctors who specialize in diagnosing and treating mental illnesses. They can prescribe medications and provide therapy to help individuals manage their symptoms.

Psychiatrists work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, private practice, and community mental health centers. They typically work in collaboration with other mental health professionals, such as psychologists and social workers, to ensure that their patients receive the care they need.

Social Worker

Social workers help individuals and families cope with social and emotional problems. They work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, schools, and social service agencies.

Social workers can specialize in many different areas, including mental health, child and family services, and substance abuse. They provide counseling, advocacy, and referrals to resources that can help individuals and families cope with difficult situations.


Researchers in abnormal psychology study various mental illnesses and disorders, seeking to understand their origins, risk factors, and effective treatments. They may conduct experiments, analyze data, and write research papers on their findings.

Researchers can work in academia, government agencies, or private research firms. Some researchers may also be involved in developing new treatments for mental illnesses.


If you have a passion for helping others and a strong interest in abnormal psychology, there are many career paths open to you. Whether you choose to work as a clinical psychologist, psychiatrist, social worker, or researcher, you can make a real difference in the lives of individuals struggling with mental health issues.

Remember, the field of abnormal psychology is constantly evolving, and new treatments and therapies are being developed all the time. By staying up-to-date on the latest research and techniques, you can provide the best possible care to your patients and make a meaningful impact in your community.