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What Can I Do With a Psychology Degree? Careers for Psychology Majors

Written by: East Carolina University®   •  Dec 8, 2023
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What Can I Do With a Psychology Degree? Careers for Psychology Majors

Studying human emotion, cognition, and decision-making is a big draw for students across the country; in fact, psychology routinely ranks among the most popular undergraduate majors. Beyond being an interesting subject, psychology provides numerous career paths outside of therapy and counseling.

Even so, many students wonder what they can do with a psychology degree beyond these traditional paths. The short answer is quite a lot. Completing a psychology degree program can provide students with a portfolio of skills that can be applied to many different industries, including business, education, and marketing.

What Do Students Learn in a Psychology Degree? 

In a psychology degree program, students learn about the complexities of the human mind and how they inform human behavior. The field of psychology encompasses biological, social, and environmental factors that affect how people think, process information, and make decisions.

The typical psychology degree program centers on skills that can be used to assess and evaluate human cognition, providing the competencies needed to offer assistance through therapy and counseling. However, these same skills can also be used in a range of other professions.

What Are the Essential Psychology Skills?

Obtaining a psychology degree can provide several transferable skills that can lead to success in a range of disciplines and fields. Important psychology skills include the following:

  • Active listening skills

  • Critical and analytical thinking

  • Written and oral communication

  • Empathy

  • Self-regulation

What Are Common Careers for Psychology Majors?

This robust set of skills can be applied to a wide range of careers for psychology majors beyond the paths of counseling and clinical therapy. Consider a few examples of what you can do with a psychology degree.

Business

Psychology skills are highly valuable in the business world, as they can provide insight into effective people management. In particular, students who understand organizational psychology can help organizations maximize performance and productivity and identify employees best suited for particular roles or tasks.

Education

A background in psychology can also pave the way to success in the field of education. School systems often seek counselors who can provide assessments for students with cognitive or developmental disabilities or who can provide guidance to students who are dealing with social or academic pressures.

Marketing

Naturally, those who work in marketing can benefit from a thorough understanding of human decision-making. Psychological know-how can provide insight into consumer decision-making and the best ways to communicate brand value to potential customers in a way that’s persuasive and impactful.

Human Resources

Psychology skills can also be invaluable in the field of human resources (HR). HR professionals are often tasked with motivating and engaging employees, handling conflicts within the workplace, and communicating the value of employee benefits packages. An understanding of human behavior in the workplace can help inform these tasks. 

Healthcare

A profound link between mind and body exists; this means that many medical organizations value psychological insight even as they focus their services on more physiological issues. In other words, a background in psychology can yield career options throughout the healthcare sector, including high-level roles such as healthcare administrator.

Environmental Advocacy

Climate scientists commonly believe that human behavior is directly linked to global warming and other ecological issues. As such, the ability to persuade consumers and organizations to alter their practices can be essential to effective advocacy. The field of environmentalism has numerous careers for psychology majors.

Research

Those who are interested in the academic side of psychology but less drawn to direct clinical care may benefit from roles in research. A working knowledge of human cognition can be useful in virtually all types of research.

Design

While fields such as web design are both technical and creative, there can also be a strong component of psychology. For example, the use of different colors can affect human emotion on many different levels. User experience (UX) design, which is all about ensuring a positive user experience within a website or app, can also leverage principles related to human cognition and perception. As such, psychology can be very useful in design work.

What Can I Do With a Psychology Degree? Exploring Career Options

Psychology is a rich field, providing skills for a foundation for success in any number of industries, disciplines, and vocations. By enrolling in an online psychology degree program, students can hone the competencies needed for true career versatility.

The online Bachelor of Arts in Psychology program at East Carolina University® is designed to promote practical, broadly applicable skills that can lead to success across different career paths. Discover more of the opportunities available through this well-regarded program.

Sources:

American Psychological Association, Your Career

Indeed, A Guide to Career Paths for Psychology Majors (With Jobs)

Indeed, “15 Top Psychology Degree Jobs”

Indeed, What Are Psychology Skills? Definition and Examples

Verywell Mind, “What Is Psychology?”

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