The Instigator
Pro (for)
The Contender
Con (against)

Psychiatry(pro) versus your career field of choice(con)

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Debate Round Forfeited
imheretodebate321 has forfeited round #3.
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Time Remaining
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/2/2017 Category: Society
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 614 times Debate No: 100475
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (8)
Votes (0)




My position: I will be arguing that psychiatry should be preferred to your career field of choice.
Opponent's position: My opponent will argue that some other career field is preferrable to psychiatry.

1) No ad hominem, personal attacks, or insults
2) The total number of rounds minus one should be used for argument. This is because I am not using round 1 for argument, so my opponent should waive at least one round.
3) The first round used for argument should not have rebuttals to your opponent's main arguments. In other words, if you're second to post your main argument, don't rebut what your opponent has said.
4) The last round for debate should only be used as rebuttal and/or conclusion.

Common definitions for terms will be used.


i will argue that psychology, or clinical psychology, is a superior field of profession over psychiatry.
Debate Round No. 1


Note: My arguments will be using statistics from the United States. Hopefully my opponent is also from the United States or is otherwise okay with these statistics. If not, I can probably offer in the next round statistics for other countries.

My opponent chose an interesting choice for a career, one that is closely related to psychiatry. I will, however, still argue that psychiatry is better than clinical psychology.

Now, it should be noted that psychiatrists and psychiatric nurses are the ones who prescribe medication to people as treatment for mental health, psychologists are the ones who usually offer therapy for people as treatment of mental health. In other words, those going into psychiatry are the prescribers and those in clinical psychology are the nonprescribers.

There is a greater need for prescribers than non-prescribers
Now, while there is a shortage of both psychologists and those in the psychiatric field, there is a greater shortage of those in the psychiatric field. In a study conducted by Kathleen C Thomas M.P.H. Ph.D et al, it was found that only 8% of US counties had a severe shortage of nonprescriber mental health professionals, and 18% had at least some unmet needs[1, pg 1325]. On the flip side, 77% of US counties have a severe shortage of prescribers and 96% had at least some sort of shortage[1, pg 1325] In other words, 72% of all counties in the US have their psychological needs met, while only 4% have their psychiatric needs met. There is a much greater need for psychiatrists and psychiatric nurses than psychologists, therapists, etc.

I contend, then, that because there is a greater need for psychiatry currently than clinical psychology a career in psychiatry would be superior than for clinical psychology. Not only does this mean you are helping the severe shortage of psychiatric-related fields when you go into psychiatry, and thus helping society more than if you went into clinical psychology, but you will have better job stability because there is a higher demand for psychiatric careers. It not only helps the community, but yourself as well.

Psychiatrists and psychiatric nurses earn more income than Psychologists
The average psychiatrist yearly income in the United States ranges from $171,660 to $195,510, depending on who you work for[2] in comparison, the average salary a psychologist makes is $72,580[3]. That's a difference of about $100,000 or more, and both fields require traditionally 8 years of education beyond high school. The average yearly earnings of a person who takes on an advanced degree beyond a master's degree, is $124,584. [4] This means that a psychologist is very underpaid in comparison to other advanced degrees, while a psychiatrist is paid much more than other advanced degrees. Overall, it is more profitable to become a psychiatrist in the long-run than a psychologist.

What is insane, a psychiatric nurse, which only needs a master's degree, even earns more than a psychologist, which requires a Ph.D. The average psychiatric nurse yearly income is $91,963[5]

Clearly, in terms of what you can earn in these jobs, psychiatry is superior.

Psychiatrists can do what psychologists do, but rarely the other way around.
In every state, a psychiatrist is authorized to perform psychotherapy if they so choose, but only in 3 states, Illinois, Louisiana, and New Mexico, can psychologists prescribe medication[6]. So basically, if you decide to become a psychologist, you're pretty much limited to performing therapy unless you decide to live in one of those three states. However, psychiatry offers more flexibility. Although it's not too common, as a psychiatrist, you can give a patient psychotherapy if you so chose. So, as a psychiatrist, you can both prescribe medication and provide psychotherapy to a patient, whereas for a psychologist, you're more than likely going to only be able to provide therapy.

Patients seeking mental treatment, when seeking for therapy most want medication as well.
In a study discussed in this article, patients with PTSD who sought therapy treatment, only 30% of them chose to also not get medication[6], based on what I've learned in my psychology classes(I am on the track to becoming a psychiatrist myself, hence this debate) it tends to be the case that majority of people with any mental health problem also want medication if they are seeking therapy. If my opponent challenges that statement, I can later add some sources, I just chose not to in order to save time and I just stated what I learned in my psychology courses, since anyone who has taken psychology courses may have also been told this.

Thus, what this means is that society needs psychiatrists and/or psychiatric nurses in addition to psychologists. However, psychologists may not even be necessary since, if they wanted to, psychiatrists could also do what psychologists do.

Conclusion of this round:
Due to that there is a growing need for psychiatrists, moreso than psychologists, psychiatrists earn more income, psychiatrists can do what psychologists do, and most people don't seek to have therapy alone, these are reasons which mean that psychiatry is either very much more needed than therapists/psychologists, but also that it is better for a person themselves to seek to become a psychiatrist. Additionally, the amount of education between the two fields is the same, and actually, if you wanted to become just a psychiatric nurse, the amount of education is 2 years less than that of a psychologist. Psychiatry is thus better for these reasons and now I turn this over to my opponent

[4] (This has the monthly earnings of an advanced degree, but just multiply that number by 12 to get the number I got for yearly)


First off i want you to define your terms of what you mean by 'better' and 'superior'.

your initial argument stated: "I will be arguing that psychiatry should be preferred to your career field of choice. "
then you restated your argument to say: " I will, however, still argue that psychiatry is better than clinical psychology.

these are two different statements implying two different claims.

you have also claimed that there is a need for prescriber (psychiatrists) over non-prescribers (psychologists). that is also another claim that is different from your original claim.

i want to point out that the 6th reference you presented to me, the one from psychology today, if you read the whole article, throws a lot of hast at psychiatry as a helpful treatment option. the article stated in many cases that the majority of those seeking treatment are over medicated and are not actually obtaining any real relief. unless and individual has an actual biological chemical imbalance there is no need for a medication that will start to alter those chemicals and potentially create more of a problem that was not there in the first place.

re-read the psychology today article.
Debate Round No. 2


I used those wordings interchangeably because I'm using them to basically mean the same thing. I don't know how else I can be more clear. Perhaps you should comment on the debate to try to clarify what I mean. I don't know how else I can be more clear as of right now. Just ask a specific question then.

I am using the common definitions of better and superior. However way you can argue that one is better than the other, that is valid.

The claim I made that there is a greater need for prescribers indicates that psychiatry is the better career to go into because it solves a problem. Again, I'm just using generic definitions of better and superior. If there is any way to prove one is better than the other, then it is a valid argument.

As for the psychology today article, I know that is what it said, I was focusing on what I stated in my previous round though. Yes, there is a need for both therapy and medication, where some people only need therapy, and others may only need medication because some may not have a chemical imballance. But remember, psychiatrists can do therapy as well if need be.

Again, if you need more clarification, please state it in the comments. We should try to use the debate rounds for debate and not clarification.
This round has not been posted yet.
Debate Round No. 3
This round has not been posted yet.
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Debate Round No. 4
8 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Posted by Capitalistslave 3 years ago
If you want, you could just post something in this next round to keep this debate alive.

I realized I probably should have put the rules into the new debate we had as well as other things from this debate. The reason I haven't asked airmax to delete this debate yet is because this is a reference debate. Voters may need to use it as reference for the rules and such.

Though, maybe it's not as important. What do you think? Do you want this debate deleted? If you think we can do without this debate and we don't need it for any explanation of the new one, I can just ask them to delete it.
Posted by imheretodebate321 3 years ago
yes I will still be arguing in favor of clinical psychology.

I would want to keep the information I worked hard for as well. that is reasonable.
Posted by Capitalistslave 3 years ago
Will you still be arguing in favor of clinical psychology?
Posted by Capitalistslave 3 years ago
Nah, it wouldn't be a burden. I'll just ask airmax to delete this debate. Airmax, by the way, is the person you'd go to if you ever wanted a debate deleted after that someone has accepted it. To have it deleted, both debators just have to agree to have it deleted.

However, I'd want to delete it after we start the next one. I'd like to copy and paste my arguments from this one first.
Posted by imheretodebate321 3 years ago
would that be a burden. this Is the first time I have used this website before so I suppose I am still getting used to it. my apologies.
Posted by Capitalistslave 3 years ago
Also, maybe if you want, we can delete this debate and start over again since it seems I wasn't clear enough with you. You're kind of at a disadvantage since you didn't use round 2 for much argument
Posted by Capitalistslave 3 years ago
Well, if you have statistics about the same things I brought up, but they show something different, that would be something. For example, maybe you can find stats on psychologist's pay, and perhaps they are higher than I said. Or you could also find out whether people prefer therapy to medication. Maybe the reason why there is not as big of a shortage for psychologists or nonprescribers is because people prefer them and thus there is a higher demand for them, and therefore more people choose to go into that field. Or else, you can just look up reasons why more people choose to become a psychologist rather than a psychiatrist. It's true that there are more people going into psychology than psychiatry. And one of the states I found in my research is that psychology is growing at a faster rate than psychiatry.

Really, you just need to look up anything that looks good about psychology in comparison to psychiatry. I gave you some ideas here, but there are probably others too.
Posted by imheretodebate321 3 years ago
so just so I can make use of the final argument spot efficiently. what would it take for me to disprove your claim?
what information, stats, or reasoning's necessary for you to accept my claim that a clinical psychologist is a superior field choice?
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