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Degree Programs in Clinical Neuropsychology

Read what clinical neuropsychologists do and what you’ll learn during your studies.

composite illustration of a brain

Neuropsychology studies the connection between the brain and behavior.

Once you’ve completed your graduate degree in clinical neuropsychology, you’ll specialize in assessing and treating patients who either have a cognitive deficit or brain injury.

Your neuropsychology training enables you to work in hospitals or medical schools, private practice, or teach and conduct research at the university level.

Steps To a Clinical Neuropsychology Career

Choosing a degree program in clinical neuropsychology is just the start of your career as a practicing neuropsychologist. Here are the steps you can expect to take:

  • Doctorate in clinical/counseling psychology
  • Clinical psychology internship
  • Post-doctoral fellowship in neuropsychology
  • Board certification from American Board of Clinical Neuropsychology
  • State licensure

A Day in the Life of a Clinical Neuropsychologist

What does a day in the life of a clinical neuropsychologist look like? Take a look:

8:00 a.m. – Review testing results and questionnaire forms returned from parents and teachers of a child with behavioral problems and possible ADHD. Write treatment recommendation and summary.

8:30 a.m. – Complete written assessment report to serve as legal document in court case pertaining to a defendant’s claim of schizophrenia and inability to stand trial.

9:00 a.m. – Write a neurological assessment of a woman experiencing fatigue, sleep problems, headaches and inability to focus resulting from a minor car accident. Patient is successfully self-employed but currently unable to manage her business due to symptoms.

9:30 a.m. – Conduct group education session for family providing care for grandparent suffering from dementia.

10:00 a.m. – Conduct cognitive rehabilitation therapy for patient who sustained a brain injury due to a construction site accident.

10:30 a.m. – Continue cognitive training with autistic child to teach basic concepts and social skills.

11:00 a.m. – Perform neuropsychological evaluation for geriatric patient who recently suffered a stroke.

1:00 p.m. – Attend meeting with psychiatric and other medical departments. Act as liaison to develop an appropriate treatment program for patients with complex medical and psychological needs.

1:30 p.m. – Provide supervision in traumatic brain injury rehabilitation unit to pre-doctoral psychology interns, postdoctoral psychology fellows and other mental health trainees and residents.

2:30 p.m. – Conduct clinical interviews with new patients, prepare diagnoses and treatment recommendations.

3:00 p.m. – Review recent assessment tests of patients in brain injury rehabilitation unit. Compile report summaries and recommendations.

3:30 p.m. – Lead meeting with staff of community program for children with learning disabilities to develop support resources and a mental health education program.

4:00 p.m. – Complete evaluation paperwork, schedule and re-schedule patient appointments.

4:30 p.m. – Participate in informational seminar on neurotoxicity at local psychology conference.

As you can see from this eclectic schedule, a clinical neuropsychologist can help people in a wide range of direct ways—not to mention teaching, research or lab work as well. Carefully choose the degree program in clinical neuropsychology that matches your own interests and goals in this fast-growing field.