The 23 branches and specialties of Psychology

The diversity of fields within Psychology is growing and dynamic, as are the needs of a modern population that requires more and more understanding of human behavior.

The human mind, ironically, has been (and still is) one of the greatest mysteries in science . And it is that despite the innumerable progress made over the years, the secrets of human behavior and behavior continue to be fascinating.

And this is where Psychology comes in, a social science that studies mental processes and everything related to the response that humans have to the physical and social environment that surrounds us. And this, in a changing society that subjects us to stress for which, at the biological level, we are not prepared, is tremendously important.

Therefore, Psychology encompasses absolutely everything, so we should not think only of the figure of the psychologist as the professional who performs therapies to overcome phobias, overcome the death of a loved one, overcome addictions, etc. Psychology is much more .

And this is what we will see in today’s article, as we will present the branches and specialty of Psychology to see not only that the world of human study is tremendously broad, but that there are many academic options and professional opportunities for future psychologists.

What are the main specialties of Psychology?

The psychotherapy traditionally linked to psychologists is just one of the many branches that make up this academic discipline. Next we will see how a psychologist can specialize in many more areas , all of which are just as important to society as behavioral therapies.

  1. Cognitive psychology

Cognitive psychology is the branch that studies how the features of our behavior depend on the mental processes that occur in our brain . It analyzes the functioning of memory, attention, perception, learning, reasoning, etc.

  1. Clinical psychology

Clinical psychology is the branch focused on detecting and treating mental disorders and pathologies that affect people’s daily lives. Psychologists offer psychotherapies where the triggers of the problem are analyzed and how to change some lifestyle patterns to solve it is studied. Anyway, there are times when it has to be supplemented with the role of psychiatrists.

  • We recommend you read: “The 5 differences between Psychology and Psychiatry”
  1. Neuropsychology

Neuropsychology is the branch that studies the nervous system, focusing on analyzing how chemical or anatomical alterations (such as trauma) of the brain can lead to problems in mental processes. Research in neuropsychology is essential to progress in the diagnosis and treatment of many diseases related to mental health. Similarly, neuropsychologists work in hospitals alongside other health professionals.

  1. Biological psychology

Biological psychology is very similar to neuropsychology in the sense that it focuses on studying the relationship between what happens in the body and how it translates into our mental functions, although in this case, this specialty is not intended for work in hospitals, but to the purest investigation.

  1. Comparative psychology or ethology

Comparative psychology is the branch that studies the behavior in animal species. Within this, the psychologist can specialize in a specific species.

  1. Educational psychology

Educational psychology is the branch that studies the educational environment in the sense of analyzing how academic life influences the behavior of children and young people, from preschool to university. This discipline is very important when developing the teaching methods that are applied at the state level, trying to get students to perform and be prepared for adult life but without jeopardizing their mental health.

Evolutionary psychology

Evolutionary psychology studies how humans have evolved in terms of mental functions and processes and analyzes the inheritance of behaviors and behavior patterns that have spread throughout the centuries. That is, it tries to explain why we are in a way based on how the past of our species is.

  1. Sports psychology

Sports psychology, whose importance is increasing exponentially in the world of elite sports, is the branch specialized in “treating” athletes so that they learn to manage the stress generated by sports competitions, especially in the professional world.

  1. Legal psychology

Legal psychology, also known as forensic, is the branch of psychology applied to the world of justice. Analyzing the evidence in legal cases, evaluating the behavior of the testimonies before the court, analyzing the reasoning of the accused, etc., in order to contribute to the cases being resolved in the most fair way is the function of legal psychologists. .

  1. Psychology of personality

Personality psychology studies just that: human personality. Analyze how the influence of the environment determines our way of responding to specific situations. Knowing that each personality is unique, this branch of psychology aims to establish decision-making patterns.

  1. Health psychology

Health psychology is the discipline that seeks to help people with physical illnesses, generally chronic, to be able to handle the situation in the best possible way, offering them guidance and managing the psychological aspects that are involved in some physical pathologies.

  1. Couple psychology

Relationship psychology is the discipline that focuses on attending and trying to solve the problems that couples normally face, either to reconcile or even before facing a legal separation process.

  1. Family psychology

Family psychology is the branch specialized in caring for several members of a family when they go through difficulties in their coexistence and want to solve them.

  1. Business and organizational psychology

Business and organizational psychology is the discipline in which psychologists work in private companies to find strategies that enhance productivity but at the same time favor a good work environment. Similarly, it is important when selecting and hiring personnel.

  1. Military psychology

Military psychology is the discipline that offers guidance to overcome mental and emotional disorders related to the military world, especially for soldiers who have returned from a war or are about to move to one.

  1. School psychology

School psychology, closely related to education, is the one that focuses on education but at a preschool, primary and secondary level. Therefore, it focuses on addressing the problems related to the relationship of children with school.

  1. Gerontological psychology

Gerontological psychology is the discipline focused on studying and treating mental and emotional disorders related to the elderly, usually linked to the feeling of loneliness and fear of death.

  1. Experimental psychology

Experimental psychology is the discipline that, in conjunction with many other psychological branches, focuses on conducting experiments, that is, studies in which, based on a hypothesis, different variables are manipulated to confirm or deny this hypothesis. This branch is essential to advance in the knowledge we have of the mind and its operation.

  1. Developmental psychology

Developmental psychology is the discipline that studies how our way of thinking, our behavior, our behavior, our emotions, our way of responding to stimuli and, ultimately, what biological transformations occur in our minds throughout life changes .

  1. Engineering psychology

Engineering psychology is the discipline that mixes industrial production with psychology. Experts in this discipline offer indications so that, after analyzing what are the consumer trends and the most common tastes among the population, engineers can design products that are more accepted and attractive to the consumer. And this applies to any type of product: cosmetics, video games, food, toys … Experts in engineering psychology take into account all the components of the product to ensure that it succeeds in the market.

  1. Marketing psychology

Marketing psychology is related to engineering psychology, but it is different. And it is that the psychology of marketing is in charge of, once the company already has the product that, according to the studies, the consumer will like the most, getting these potential consumers to know that the product exists and that they want to buy it.

The psychology of marketing plays with psychological factors to design communication campaigns in the form of advertisements or advertising that are attractive to the public to whom the product in question is focused.

  1. Sexology

Sexology is the psychological discipline focused on solving all problems related to sexuality and improving the sexual life of people who need it through guidance and behavior analysis by a professional. It is especially useful in solving problems of sexual dysfunctions that arise due to mental blocks or other circumstances related to psychology.

  1. Community psychology

Community or social psychology is the discipline that studies how people behave depending on what social environment we find ourselves in and with which people we are. It is also important in government organizations to develop social policies that preserve the mental health of citizens.


by Abdullah Sam
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