What are the advantages and disadvantages of studying educational psychology? 

Expert Answers
cvonwal1 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Studying educational psychology will provide a broad and intricate understanding of human development (particularly early childhood development), assessment and diagnostics, and test validity among many other subjects. While, in its rudimentary definition, this branch focuses on learning methods, teaching modalities, and human cognition, educational psychology fosters a helping professional's ability to grow and expand a working knowledge of many fields that may benefit children and adults alike.

As adults, we rely on our earliest experiences as children to inform us on problem solving, work management, and incorporating new information into existing mental capacities. Moreover, our early childhood background helps us assess the belief in our adult abilities, our self-worth, and our capability to meet challenges.  Working in the field of educational psychology means possessing the power to shape minds as they are growing and cultivating their pathways to learning and success for the rest of their lives. 

On a more practical side, choosing a career in educational psychology offers many avenues for professional development including research and evaluation, teaching, school administration, and guidance counseling. Perhaps the less attractive components to studying the field come in the form of learning again and again about failed systems of teaching and invalid testing methods. Challenging the status quo in any environment can prove daunting and requires dogged determination. Also, many states have very strict policies regarding what types of work you can practice according to your profession's licensure; hence, it may behoove a person interested in the field of psychology at all to investigate which educational tracks provide the most inclusive career options.