Sometimes standard diagnostic tests can't determine whether someone is dealing with a suspected brain dysfunction or psychological condition. This is when neuropsychology steps in. A neuropsychologist uses a different series of tests to evaluate cognitive and psychological factors that could be contributing to anything from depression or anxiety to memory loss or attention difficulties. While not a prerequisite, many neuropsychologists hold doctorates in neuropsychology or clinical neuropsychology. Because of the three to seven years of additional training, salaries are typically higher than those of a "standard" psychologist, and even higher with years of experience.
As of 2011, the average psychologist earned just over $73,000 a year, reports the Bureau of Labor Statistics. But high salaries can sometimes skew the average, and median wage is often a better indication of a psychologist’s earnings. Half of all people working in this profession made $67,880 a year. Neither figure, however, accounts for specialty.
While clinical neuropsychologists earn anywhere from $62,000 to $500,000 a year, the average was closer to $109,800 as of 2005, according to the most recent survey by the American Academy of Clinical Neuropsychology. The median wage, on the other hand, was almost $20,000 less, showing that half of all neuropsychologists earned less than $90,000 a year.
Salaries by Experience:
As you might expect, salaries tend to increase with experience. For example, a neuropsychologist at the very start of his career averaged just $64,500 a year in 2005. Those with two years of experience enjoyed a bump in pay, earning almost $75,000 a year. It isn’t until you have six to 10 years under your belt that salaries reach six figures, with neuropsychologists earning $103,400 a year, on average. Those with 11 to 15 years of experience averaged $104,500, while those with 16 to 20 years of experience earned $130,500.
Salaries in Residency:
As with almost any medical professional, neuropsychologists go through residency programs prior to practicing. Many earn a stipend during this time. In the first year of residency, the stipend averaged at $30,500 a year. For the second year, residents enjoyed a bump in pay, making an average of $31,800 a year, according to the American Academy of Clinical Neuropsychology.
Salaries by Location:
As with any job, location affects salaries, and that of neuropsychologist is no exception. Those working in Connecticut tend to earn the most, averaging $142,800 a year. Those in California were a close second, making an average of $139,300 a year. In third were neuropsychologists in New York, where salaries averaged $136,300 a year. Those in Colorado, however, earned an average of $80,500 a year.