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How to Become a Psychiatrist

Charlie S Jun 30, 2019
Becoming a psychiatrist can be easy, if you follow the right career path and take efforts, right from your high school days until you start practicing as a psychiatrist.
It has been observed that thousands of students attempt to become psychiatrists, but only a few of them succeed. This is because it takes a lot of talent, hard work, and perseverance. Due to increasing demand for psychiatrists, their salary has seen a growing trend. According to industry experts, this demand is expected to grow steadily over coming years.
They can work in government, privately run hospitals or practice independently. They play an important role in solving the psychiatric problems: both simple such as helping a patient get rid of some phobia, and the complex ones such as treating a patient for multiple personality disorder. Their services help people of all ages live a normal and happy life.

Becoming a Psychiatrist

Remember that you should study the science subjects such as Physics, Chemistry, and Biology in your high school. You should get all your concepts about these subjects cleared, and get high scores in the exam to get admission to a medical school.
Ensure that your Grade Point Average (GPA) is high, so that you will be able to study in a reputed medical school, which has always been in your wish list. Getting a very good score in the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) is very important for getting admission in a reputed medical school. You will require to prepare extensively for this examination.
Once you get admission for the four-year medical course, the next challenge is to keep pace with the fast-paced learning, and score well in the exams every year. Completing your graduation degree requires a lot of hard work and physical stamina too.
In the medical school, you will have to spend the first few years learning the general medicine courses and subjects like physiology, anatomy, etc.
The students can pursue their specialization in psychiatry. You can become a child psychiatrist, a criminal psychiatrist, a forensic psychiatrist, or a clinical psychiatrist as per your interests.
You will also have to undergo a rotating internship and complete the four-year residency. The residency program is very important because, it can give you practical or on the job experience, which will prove to be very useful when you actually start practicing.
In order to start your private practice, you need to pass the licensing examination conducted by your state. After completing the graduation and the residency and the internship program, you can look out for jobs in hospitals and clinics through the various advertisements and also with the help of Internet.
Getting the certifications can prove useful for your career. The certifications offered by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology can give you a leverage to rise above the competition, secure a good job, and a good salary. In addition, it beefs up your credentials when you decide to be on your own and operate independently.

Salary Details

The salary depends on educational qualifications and experience. According to Bureau of Labor Statistics, annual median salary for these professionals was USD 29,330 in 2017.
Experienced and talented psychiatrists which make up top ten percent of the professionals in this field, earned more than USD 216,090 per year. As an aspiring professional with not much experience under your belt, you may start with a salary of around USD 71,560 per year as per 2017 figures.