At first glance, there may appear to be no similarities between lawyers and clinical psychologists. However, closer inspection reveals that they both research and analyze information to find solutions that will help people. In addition, both career options require an extensive educational commitment culminating in a juris doctorate or a Ph.D, respectively. However, the job prospects are vastly different for these two professions.
Job Outlook for Lawyers
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that demand for lawyers will increase by 10 percent from 2010 to 2020, which is about as fast as the 14 percent average growth rate projected for other U.S. occupations. The general term “lawyer” includes prosecutors, defense attorneys, government counsels, corporate counsels and lawyers who specialize in such areas as legal aid, the environment, tax, intellectual property and litigation.
Job Outlook for Clinical Psychologists
BLS reports that demand for clinical, counseling and school psychologists is projected to grow by 22 percent from 2010 to 2020, which is faster than the 14 percent average. The bureau attributes the high demand for clinical and counseling psychologists to the increasing number of people with mental, emotional and behavioral problems who will seek professional help.
Best Prospects for Lawyers
Lawyers find the most job prospects in the legal services industry. The next highest employers of lawyers include local and state governments and the federal executive branch, followed by firms that manage companies and enterprises. New York hires the largest number of lawyers, followed by California, Florida, Texas and the District of Columbia.
Best Prospects for Clinical Psychologists
Clinical psychologists work in private practice, as well as working for mental health service facilities, managed healthcare organizations, schools, universities, hospitals and the government. BLS reports that elementary and secondary schools employ the most clinical, counseling and school psychologists. Health practitioner offices, individual and family services and state governments have the next-highest employment levels, followed by outpatient care centers. In terms of states, California is the largest employer, followed by New York, Pennsylvania, Texas and Illinois.
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Lawyers
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Psychologists
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2012: Lawyers
- Society of Clinical Psychologists: About Clinical Psychologists
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2012: Clinical, Counseling and School Psychologists
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