Developmental Psychologist Salary Guide 2023

By Staff Writer
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A developmental psychologist is a professional who studies and applies principles of psychology to understanding human growth and development across the lifespan. Learn more about how to become a developmental psychologist.

The average salary for a developmental psychologist in the US is around $78,000 per year.

Here is how a developmental psychologist can expect their salary to grow over time:

  • 0-5 years of experience: $64,000 per year
  • 5-10 years of experience: $77,000 per year
  • 10-20 years of experience: $88,000 per year
  • 20+ years of experience: $97,000 per year

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Which states have the highest salaries for developmental psychologists?

  1. California – $117,830 per year
  2. Rhode Island – $104,900 per year
  3. Oregon – $100,050 per year
  4. Hawaii – $97,820 per year
  5. New York – $96,170 per year

Which cities have the highest salaries for developmental psychologists?

  1. San Francisco, CA – $141,720 per year
  2. Oakland, CA – $134,890 per year
  3. Vallejo, CA – $126,620 per year
  4. Santa Rosa, CA – $126,170 per year
  5. Trenton, NJ – $120,290 per year

How can developmental psychologists earn more?

Obtain advanced degrees

Developmental psychologists who hold advanced degrees, such as a Ph.D. or Psy.D., may be able to command higher salaries than those with only a bachelor’s or master’s degree. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for psychologists with a doctoral degree is $98,230, compared to $73,300 for psychologists with a master’s degree.

Specialize in a specific area

Developmental psychologists who specialize in a specific area, such as autism or early childhood development, may be in higher demand and able to command higher salaries. Developmental psychologists who specialize in autism earn an average salary of $82,000 per year.

Work in a high-paying industry

Developmental psychologists who work in high-paying industries, such as research and development or pharmaceuticals, may be able to earn higher salaries than those who work in other industries. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the top-paying industries for developmental psychologists were:

  • Scientific research and development services: $108,710
  • Management, scientific, and technical consulting services: $106,440
  • Pharmaceuticals and medicine manufacturing: $103,620
  • Federal executive branch: $99,000

How does a developmental psychologist salary compare to other psychologists?

In terms of educational and training requirements, the roles most similar to a developmental psychologist would be a school psychologisteducational psychologist, forensic psychologist and an industrial-organizational psychologist. Each of these roles requires a master’s degree with a doctoral degree being optional but certainly preferable.