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What is a Neuropsychologist?

A Neuropsychologist is a type of Clinical Psychologist who studies how the brain and nervous system impact someone’s behaviors, cognitions, and emotions. Their field represents the intersection between psychology and neurology.

One of the major focuses of Neuropsychology is brain injuries and illnesses. These researchers want to understand how something like a stroke changes their patient’s mental functionalities.

Being a Neuropsychologist means interacting with people of all ages and life stages. They get new patients from doctor referrals. If their regular physician suspects they have a traumatic brain injury or another disorder that will impact their brain, they will send them to a Neuropsychologist.

Within Neuropsychology, practitioners commonly treat people with learning disorders, brain tumors, epilepsy, and brain cancer. They can also work with dementia and Alzheimer’s patients or athletes who incurred a sports-related brain and nervous system injury.

Basically, if someone has a misfunctioning brain and/or nervous system, they could be treated by a Neuropsychologist.

What Is a Neuropsychologist Responsible For?

Neuropsychologists are responsible for helping patients with cognitive, mental, and behavioral brain-based issues. Their field is closely related to neurology, which also deals with treating people with diseases that impact their brain. The main difference is that a neurologist uses medicine, and a Neuropsychologist doesn’t.

A Neuropsychologist starts by giving their patient an evaluation to diagnose their brain condition and its severity. Then, they create a treatment plan. These plans often involve interventions like cognitive-behavioral therapy and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing.

Their patients may need assistance with rehabilitating their cognitive processes, so a Neuropsychology could add psychotherapy or neurofeedback into their treatment plan.

These psychologists can also help their patients learn to manage their changed mental state, especially if they’ve lost some of their previous mental capability. This entails organizational techniques, relaxation exercises, and other similar interventions.

Under the care of a Neuropsychologist, patients relearn how to live their regular life. They receive treatment that can reduce their pain — physical and emotional — and help them manage their symptoms.

On the job, a Neuropsychologist can expect to:

  • Evaluate patients’ brain illness or injury and assess the severity of their condition.
  • Research the brain and conduct experiments to answer questions about this extremely complex body part.
  • Create new treatments for brain conditions.
  • Work with patients to help them complete their treatment goals.
  • Give feedback regarding a person’s mental state during a trial.
  • Attend conferences to stay updated on the latest Neuropsychology research.
  • Collaborate with pharmaceutical companies to develop new medicines for brain disorders.

Where Does a Neuropsychologist Work?

Neuropsychologists have the option of working in a lab setting, focusing on researching brain conditions, or in a clinical environment treating patients. Depending on their preference, they can find employment in hospitals, universities, mental health facilities, research labs, and pharmaceutical companies.

What Other Career Options Are Available to a Neuropsychologist?

In this psychological specialty, practitioners need to choose whether they want to be researchers or clinicians. Going the lab route means conducting experiments on both human and animal participants to uncover information about the brain and its response to illness or injury. Being a clinician entails applying the latest in research and technology to create a treatment plan for their patients.

A Neuropsychologist can expect to find a career in the following areas:

  • Clinical Neuropsychologist: These practitioners work with all populations who have brain disorders. Their patients have neurological diseases like dementia or Parkinson’s. Clinical Neuropsychologists assess patients to determine the best treatment plan to alleviate their symptoms and discomfort.
  • Clinical Pediatric Neuropsychologist/Child Neuropsychologist: Like their Clinical Neuropsychologist counterparts, Clinical Pediatric Neuropsychologists also work directly with their patients to determine a treatment plan. The difference is Clinical Pediatric Neuropsychologists exclusively treat children.
  • Neuropsychology Researcher: These psychologists research the brain and nervous system and how they are impacted by neurological disease and disorder. Neuropsychology Researchers are also responsible for developing new treatments for neurological illnesses. They may not work directly with patients, but their research helps other medical professionals provide them with quality care.
  • Neuropsychology Professor: Like researchers, Neuropsychology Professors conduct their own studies and experiments. The major difference between the two is that the professors work exclusively in academic settings. Professors also publish their findings in scientific journals and teach college students about their field.
  • Rehabilitation Director: Being a Rehabilitation Director means managing patient care at a rehabilitation center — directly or indirectly. They create treatment plans for patients and are involved with the facility’s administrative tasks as well.
  • Forensic Neuropsychologist: These psychologists work in the legal field. Forensic Neuropsychologists assess people on trial to determine their levels of emotional and cognitive function. Their evaluations can do things like determine the veracity of an insanity plea or see how much trauma a survivor of a violent crime is carrying after the incident.

What Degree Is Required to Become a Neuropsychologist? What Do They Study?

Being a Neuropsychologist starts with getting a bachelor’s degree in subjects like psychology, neuroscience, or biology. Then, students will need to earn a master’s degree. These programs often have research and clinical work requirements as well.

Most Neuropsychology jobs require a doctorate, so prospective students should be prepared for upper-level work in subjects like neuropathy and psychopathology. After getting this degree a Neuropsychologist must also get licensed for their field.

What Skills are Required in Neuropsychology?

One of the most important skills for a Neuropsychologist is the ability to conduct research.  They must remain current in their field and keep up with the latest Neuropsychology innovations.

Neuropsychologists, whether they’re in a patient-facing role or not should be excellent communicators. It’s imperative for them to be able to successfully explain their findings to their peers or speak with a concerned patient about their treatment plan.

How Much Money Does a Neuropsychologist Earn?

Neuropsychology is one of the best-paying subsets of psychology. Established Neuropsychologists make $92,640 on average and many professionals report earnings in the six-figure range. Initially, Neuropsychologists earn $50,000-$60,000 but this number jumps when they have about five years of experience.

Latest Neuropsychologist Jobs Listings

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Position Company Location Posted
Pediatric Psychologist/Neuropsychologist: Special Infectious Disease Program Northwestern University Chicago, Illinois US 05/14/2022
The Departments of Psychiatry at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and the Pritzker Department of Psychiatry Behavioral Health and theSpecial Infectious Diseases (SID) division of Ann & Robert H. Lurie Childrens Hospital are seeking a full-time psychologist in a non-tenure-eligible Associate or Assistant Professor on the Clinician-Educator track, to join a multidisciplinary team toconduct cognitive and behavioral health evaluations with infants, children, adolescents, and ... More
PSYCHOLOGIST OPENINGS - Northeast Florida Baptist Health Jacksonville, Florida US 05/12/2022
PSYCHOLOGIST OPENINGS Northeast Florida Location: Baptist Health is North Florida's most comprehensive healthcare system, providing unparalleled access to quality care at every stage of life. It is the regions most preferred health system and one of Modern Healthcares top 100 places to work. Baptist Health is a not-for-profit health system comprised of five nationally accredited hospitals, with 1,154 beds, including Baptist Medical Center ... More
AHMG Neuropsychology - Clinical Neuropsychologist AdventHealth Medical Group Orlando, Florida US 05/10/2022
AdventHealth Medical Group formerly known as Florida Hospital Medical Group is associated with the largest Protestant not-for-profit healthcare system in the world, AdventHealth and a national leader in quality, safety and patient satisfaction. AHMGs advanced practice providers manage the treatment and care for our patients in the practice setting, as well as at AdventHealths ten campuses in Altamonte Springs, Apopka, Celebration, East Orlando, Heart of Florida, Lake Wales, Kissimmee, ... More
Clinical Neuropsychologist UC Davis Sacramento, California US 05/09/2022
The Department of Neurology at the University of California, Davis School of Medicine is recruiting for a full-time Clinical Neuropsychologist in the Professor of Clinical Neurology or Health Sciences Clinical Professor series at the Assistant/Associate/Full Professor rank. Faculty in the Clinical Neurology series are expected to engage in professional competence and activity, teaching, research and creative work, and University/public service. Faculty in the Health Sciences Clinical Professor ... More
New Positions! 150K Licensed Psychologist Including Telehealth and Postdoc Opportunities Highlands Professional Group Tennessee US 05/09/2022
Established client base Flexible scheduling based on your availability and preference from 1-5 days per week. Full time represents $150,000 per year conducting 6 evaluations per day (M-F) with 5 weeks off (including holidays). Mini Evaluations, with very little in the way of take-home report writing. In addition to the established client base, we provide peaceful and safe working environment with office space, testing equipment, scheduling, billing and collections. ... More
Clinical Neuropsychologist LifeStance Health Cambridge, Massachusetts US 05/07/2022
At LifeStance Health, we strive to help individuals, families, and communities with their mental health needs. Everywhere. Every day. It is a lofty goal; we know. But we make it happen with the best team in mental healthcare.Thank you for taking the time to explore a career with us. As the fastest growing mental health practice group in the country, now is the perfect time to join our clinical team!LifeStance is looking to hire a part-time or full-time neuropsychologist with ... More
Psychologist Multiple Practice Opportunities Montana Benefis Heath System Great Falls, Montana US 05/06/2022
Psychologist Multiple Practice Opportunities Montana Benefis Health System is expanding our behavioral health department, and we have multiple psychologist opportunities available. This department offers a spectrum of care including: outpatient, intensive outpatient programming, partial hospitalization and acute psychiatric inpatient care, provided by a team of psychiatrists, psychologists, nurse practitioners, social workers, and ... More
Clinical Neuropsychologist LifeStance Health Boston, Massachusetts US 05/06/2022
At LifeStance Health, we strive to help individuals, families, and communities with their mental health needs. Everywhere. Every day. It is a lofty goal; we know. But we make it happen with the best team in mental healthcare.Thank you for taking the time to explore a career with us. As the fastest growing mental health practice group in the country, now is the perfect time to join our clinical team!LifeStance is looking to hire a part-time or full-time neuropsychologist with ... More
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