If you want to be a clinical psychologist, earning lots of money is probably not one of your top priorities (If it is, I suggest another field, perhaps finance or law). However, you still want to make sure that you can have enough money. So with that in mind, I thought I would go through what you can expect to earn throughout your Psychology career.
The Graduate Student
The Graduate Student is making barely enough money to survive (see the stipend amounts at different programs here). The stipend amounts range between $10,000-$25,000/year (and that is for funded programs – there are some unfunded programs, although I do not recommend going to one of these). If you get external funding you could potentially max out at $32,000/year.
Internships salaries are just a little better than graduate student salaries, with an average of $24,000/year.
Post-Doctoral Fellows can expect to make $30,000 – $50,000. But there are some states that have no post-doctoral requirement, so you could technically skip this step if you plan well.
Your salary will greatly vary depending on what you do after you obtain your license (you can find lots of details at the 2009 APA Salary Survey website).
As an assistant professor, you can expect to earn ~$50,000 – $65,000 (for a 9-10 month salary, which means that if you work summers you can make ~$65,000-$90,000/ year). The range depends on whether you work at 2-year/4-year/R-1 and what department you work in (Psychology vs. Department of Medicine).
As an associate professor, your 9-month salary would be ~ $60,000 – $80,000 / 9 months (so $80,000 – $110,000 / year).
Once you are a full professor, you can expect to make ~ $75,000 – $130,000 / 9 months (so $100,000 – $140,000 / year).
Of course, all of this assumes that you can get an academic position and eventually get tenure, which is quite competitive. If you end up being an adjunct, you can expect ~ $40,000 / 9 month (so $50,000 / year)
See more details here.
At a University Counseling Center, you can expect to start at around ~$50,000/year and max out at ~$80,000/year.
At a VA, you can expect to start at around ~$80,000/year and max out at ~$105,00/year. But as an added bonus, VAs offer a great retirement.
At an Individual Private Practice, you can expect to start at around $57,000/year and max out at $100,000. If you do a group psychology, you can expect to start at around $77,000/year and max out at $100,000.