Neuropsychologist Jobs & Career Guide 2024

What is a Neuropsychologist?

A neuropsychologist is a specialized psychologist who studies the relationship between the brain and behavior.

They use a variety of assessments and tests to evaluate individuals with brain injuries, neurological disorders, or other cognitive impairments. Neuropsychologists may also provide treatment and interventions to help individuals manage their symptoms and improve their cognitive and emotional functioning.

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.

What Is a Neuropsychologist Responsible For?

“Neuropsychology is a highly rewarding field that offers an opportunity to make a real difference in people’s lives. It requires a unique combination of knowledge, skills, and empathy to effectively assess and treat individuals with brain injuries and neurological conditions. It can be challenging, but the rewards of helping patients regain their cognitive and emotional functioning are immeasurable.”
Dr. Elkhonon Goldberg, clinical neuropsychologist and author

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.

Clinical positions involve counseling, assessments, and treatments for patients with neurological difficulties. Clinical positions can be in-patient or out-patient. In-patient positions include working with patients in hospitals or long-term care facilities.

Out-patient positions involve counseling and assessments at private practices, schools, and universities. Clinical neuropsychologists often work with children or adults to assess the effects of neurological diseases on cognitive functioning.

To become a neuropsychologist, you need to have a diverse skill set. Neuropsychologists must be able to identify and diagnose psychological problems, develop treatment plans, and assist patients in managing their symptoms. They must also have strong communication and interpersonal skills, as they must constantly interact with their patients throughout the assessment process.

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 to Become a Neuropsychologist

Education Requirements

The educational requirements to become a neuropsychologist are challenging and require you to follow a specific educational path. Generally, the educational requirements can take anywhere from five to seven years.

Your journey to becoming a neuropsychologist includes an undergraduate psychology degree or a closely related field like neuroscience. The course load for this type of undergraduate degree is typically heavy in biology, anatomy, neurology, and other related topics. These courses are similar to the pre-med track and are challenging and rigorous.

In addition to taking these courses, many aspiring neuropsychologists also complete internships or research positions to gain practical experience.

After completing an undergraduate program, the next step is to pursue a graduate degree in neuropsychology or a related field. During graduate school, students will learn how to use and interpret psychological tests and how the brain functions. Upon graduation, students will receive a master’s or doctoral degree in neuropsychology or a related field.

Some people decide to pursue a doctoral degree (Ph.D. or PsyD) to specialize in a particular area of the field, such as clinical neuropsychology, pediatric neuropsychology, or forensic neuropsychology. Learn more about a PhD in Neuropsychology

You can begin practicing as a neuropsychologist after receiving a master’s degree. Those who want to do research pursue a doctoral degree.

Certification and Licensing

Upon completing your educational requirements, you must receive licensing from your state to practice as a neuropsychologist. Most states require applicants to pass the Professional Practice in Psychology Examination (EPPP), administered by the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards (ASPPB).

These exams are challenging and test you on all of your previous knowledge and coursework. Studying for licensure is intense and requires a significant time commitment. Many neuropsychologists take classes or practice tests to prepare for the exams.

The ASPPB also offers specialized certification exams for those who want to specialize in clinical neuropsychology or pediatric neuropsychology.

Once you pass these exams, you can apply for licensure in your state and begin practicing as a licensed neuropsychologist.

Continuing Education

In addition to completing educational and licensing requirements, neuropsychologists must stay current with field advancements and pursue continuing education. Continuing education is vital in gaining knowledge in this field and can involve attending conferences, seminars, or online classes. Additionally, many states require neuropsychologists to complete a certain number of continuing education credits each year.

These requirements vary from state to state, so it is vital to research the continuing education requirements for your particular state.

Continuing education is essential to becoming a neuropsychologist, regardless of whether it is required or not. By staying up to date on the latest advancements in this field, you can provide your patients with the best care and be an effective neuropsychologist.

How Much Money Does a Neuropsychologist Earn?

Neuropsychology is one of the better-paying subsets of psychology. The US average salary is $79,820.

Initially, Neuropsychologists earn $60,000-$70,000 but this number jumps after around 5 years of experience.  Established Neuropsychologists make $100,000+ on average and many professionals report earning significantly higher than this.

See our Neuropsychologist salary guide for more insights.

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

Latest Neuropsychologist Jobs & Career Guide 2024 Listings

PositionCompanyLocationPosted
Clinical Psychologist/Health PsychologistUniversity of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics Iowa City, Iowa US02/19/2024
Clinical Psychologist/Health Psychologist Organ Transplant Center, Department of Surgery University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics The Department of Surgery and Organ Transplant Center atThe University of Iowa are seeking a Licensed … More
Clinical Psychologist/Health PsychologistUniversity of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics Iowa City, Iowa US02/19/2024
Clinical Psychologist/Health Psychologist Organ Transplant Center, Department of Surgery University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics The Department of Surgery and Organ Transplant Center at The University of Iowa are seeking a Licensed … More
Join UPMC in Central PA as a neuropsychologist in our growing Neuroscience Program!UPMC Pinnacle – PIN00 Harrisburg, Pennsylvania US02/17/2024
UPMC Neurological Institute in Central PA has an exciting opportunity in our growing neuroscience program for a neuropsychologist. The neuropsychologist applies theories and principles of neuropsychology to diagnose and treat disorders of higher cerebral functioning, designs and implements individualized rehabilitation strategies for patients with cognitive challenges, and conducts neuropsychological evaluations such as assessment of intelligence, academic ability, attention, concentration, … More
Neuropsychologist – Outpatient – PHSPC Bone Joint Center East ShoreBone Joint Center East Shore Annville, Pennsylvania US02/17/2024
UPMC Orthopedics in Central PA has an exciting opportunity in our growing Bone and Joint program for a neuropsychologist. The neuropsychologist applies theories and principles of neuropsychology to diagnose and treat disorders of higher cerebral functioning, designs and implements individualized rehabilitation strategies for patients with cognitive challenges, and conducts neuropsychological evaluations such as assessment of intelligence, academic ability, attention, concentration, sensory-motor … More
Join a growing practice in Central PAUPMC Pinnacle – PIN00 Harrisburg, Pennsylvania US02/17/2024
UPMC Neurological Institute in Central PA has an exciting opportunity in our growing neuroscience program for a neuropsychologist. The neuropsychologist applies theories and principles of neuropsychology to diagnose and treat disorders of higher cerebral functioning, designs and implements individualized rehabilitation strategies for patients with cognitive challenges, and conducts neuropsychological evaluations such as assessment of intelligence, academic ability, attention, concentration, … More
Neuropsychologist (M60316)Virginia Commonwealth University Richmond, Virginia US02/16/2024
Mission or Goal of Unit: The mission of the Department of Neurology is to provide state of the art comprehensive patient centered neurological care for adults and children, perform translational and clinical research to further understanding of disease mechanisms and develop new treatments, and train the next generation of neurologists and clinical neuroscientists. The Department of Neurology is committed to enhancing diversity among its faculty, staff, and students. Department … More
Pediatric Neuropsychologist – NeurosurgeryNorthwestern University Chicago, Illinois US02/15/2024
The Department of Psychiatry at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Childrens Hospital of Chicago are seeking a full-time non-tenure-eligible Clinician-Educator at the rank of Instructor or Assistant Professor. This position is intended for a pediatric neuropsychologist who will join a multidisciplinary child and adolescent psychiatry department in a nationally ranked, freestanding childrens hospital located on the medical school campus.Lurie … More
Neuropsychology OpportunityMount Carmel Health System Columbus, Ohio US02/15/2024
OPPORTUNITY HIGHLIGHTSMount Carmel Health System, one of the largest hospital systems in central Ohio, is seeking an additional Adult Neuropsychologist within the Department of Neurology located in Columbus, Ohio.This is an excellent opportunity to join an established neuropsychology practice as part of a growing Neuroscience Service Line. This position will … More
Position
Clinical Psychologist/Health Psychologist Organ Transplant Center, Department of Surgery University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics The Department of Surgery and Organ Transplant Center atThe University of Iowa are seeking a Licensed … More
Company
University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics
Location
Iowa City, Iowa US
Posted
02/19/2024
Position
Clinical Psychologist/Health Psychologist Organ Transplant Center, Department of Surgery University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics The Department of Surgery and Organ Transplant Center at The University of Iowa are seeking a Licensed … More
Company
University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics
Location
Iowa City, Iowa US
Posted
02/19/2024
Position
UPMC Neurological Institute in Central PA has an exciting opportunity in our growing neuroscience program for a neuropsychologist. The neuropsychologist applies theories and principles of neuropsychology to diagnose and treat disorders of higher cerebral functioning, designs and implements individualized rehabilitation strategies for patients with cognitive challenges, and conducts neuropsychological evaluations such as assessment of intelligence, academic ability, attention, concentration, … More
Company
UPMC Pinnacle – PIN00
Location
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania US
Posted
02/17/2024
Position
UPMC Orthopedics in Central PA has an exciting opportunity in our growing Bone and Joint program for a neuropsychologist. The neuropsychologist applies theories and principles of neuropsychology to diagnose and treat disorders of higher cerebral functioning, designs and implements individualized rehabilitation strategies for patients with cognitive challenges, and conducts neuropsychological evaluations such as assessment of intelligence, academic ability, attention, concentration, sensory-motor … More
Company
Bone Joint Center East Shore
Location
Annville, Pennsylvania US
Posted
02/17/2024
Position
UPMC Neurological Institute in Central PA has an exciting opportunity in our growing neuroscience program for a neuropsychologist. The neuropsychologist applies theories and principles of neuropsychology to diagnose and treat disorders of higher cerebral functioning, designs and implements individualized rehabilitation strategies for patients with cognitive challenges, and conducts neuropsychological evaluations such as assessment of intelligence, academic ability, attention, concentration, … More
Company
UPMC Pinnacle – PIN00
Location
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania US
Posted
02/17/2024
Position
Mission or Goal of Unit: The mission of the Department of Neurology is to provide state of the art comprehensive patient centered neurological care for adults and children, perform translational and clinical research to further understanding of disease mechanisms and develop new treatments, and train the next generation of neurologists and clinical neuroscientists. The Department of Neurology is committed to enhancing diversity among its faculty, staff, and students. Department … More
Company
Virginia Commonwealth University
Location
Richmond, Virginia US
Posted
02/16/2024
Position
The Department of Psychiatry at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Childrens Hospital of Chicago are seeking a full-time non-tenure-eligible Clinician-Educator at the rank of Instructor or Assistant Professor. This position is intended for a pediatric neuropsychologist who will join a multidisciplinary child and adolescent psychiatry department in a nationally ranked, freestanding childrens hospital located on the medical school campus.Lurie … More
Company
Northwestern University
Location
Chicago, Illinois US
Posted
02/15/2024
Position
OPPORTUNITY HIGHLIGHTSMount Carmel Health System, one of the largest hospital systems in central Ohio, is seeking an additional Adult Neuropsychologist within the Department of Neurology located in Columbus, Ohio.This is an excellent opportunity to join an established neuropsychology practice as part of a growing Neuroscience Service Line. This position will … More
Company
Mount Carmel Health System
Location
Columbus, Ohio US
Posted
02/15/2024