Humanistic Psychology Degree Programs

Woman meditating in the jungle.
Photo by Amila Tennakoon, Creative Commons License.

Humanistic psychology is a subspecialty of psychology officially recognized in 1961 by the American Psychological Association that houses the work of Abraham Maslow, Carl Rogers and a variety of other well known minds in the psychological community. Its approach is to look at mankind as inherently good and avoid the pathological principles behind the human experience.

Humanistic psychology set sail as a viable pathway for one’s educational career in the 1970’s. That’s when many degree specific programs arose at the university level. The humanistic psychological approach has much in common with existentialism and endorses the viewpoint that answers are found within oneself. It is very personality focused.

What Does a Humanistic Psychologist Do?

Methods of operation for this particular field of psychology are to focus on counseling and therapy. Applied behavior analysis, clinical psychology and societal contributions, such as religion, law, politics, and legal, all take a central role in the humanistic psychologist’s arsenal.

Nevertheless, these professionals are not limited in where they spend their time. While there is a high concentration in counseling-based professions, others make their home in industrial-organizational psychology, community psychology and even sports psychology. Working with subjects outside of the traditional medical model of psychology is an important part of the humanist approach.

Careers in Humanistic Psychology

Humanistic psychology professionals work one-on-one with patients at the clinical level. Their expertise is also sought after in the fields of healthcare and occupational health. The approach is inward-outward psychology, but it can make an impact at a cultural level and foster understanding for individuals with different backgrounds.

Many humanistic psychology degree earners work for themselves in private practice. The entrepreneurial-minded psychologist can expect to earn six figures. Those working for clinics and health care or counseling focused organizations typically earn in the $60,000-$75,000 window per year.

Obtaining a Humanistic Psychology Degree

Behavioral neuroscience degree training relies heavily on biology classes, particularly those focusing on the brain. However, they are not confined to this area. As a student of the field, you will also be expected to know much about clinical psychology and human behavior.

For licensing, you will need a doctorate degree at the very least. Your state may also require passage of a licensing exam and supervised field training experience.

Useful Humanistic Psychology Resources