What You Can Do with a Psychology Degree

3 Flares Twitter 0 Facebook 3 Filament.io 3 Flares ×
AU-FW-Blog-Feb-2014--Two-Paths

Finding your career path takes hard work and a lot of imagination. The process is neither intuitive nor clear. In fact, the degree you complete does not always lead directly to a career. Because I teach psychology courses, I will use a psychology degree as an example. But the ideas I share here can apply to you, no matter which degree program you choose.

I invite you to consider several career options, including some that you might have overlooked. For example, when thinking about a degree in psychology, you might have assumed you will become a therapist. It may not be as obvious that you could also work as a police or military officer, in business and industry, management, or even sales and marketing.

A degree in psychology gives you a general understanding of the basics of human behavior, motivation, and personality. That understanding is so broad that you can apply it in many different areas. Becoming a therapist is only one option among many.

For example, when I share with people that I am a psychologist, they often ask, “Are you going to analyze me?” I usually answer with something like, “No, I’m not that kind of psychologist. I work with people in business and education.” Many people are pleasantly surprised to learn that psychology encompasses many different areas.

A student recently told me that she wanted a career as an FBI field agent. She was concerned that her major in psychology would not help her along that career path, and she did not see the point in taking more psychology courses. I informed her that many FBI agents have degrees in psychology. Because a degree in psychology provides a solid foundation in understanding people, that could empower your career in law enforcement, public service, counseling, education, and even sales.

Most importantly, you must also consider what kinds of work you are interested in and comfortable with, as well as your preferred environment. Ask yourself these questions:

  • Do I feel like this job is a good fit for me?
  • Is this job something I can see myself doing for a long period of time?
  • What opportunities are currently open and available to me?
  • Where would I like to work?
  • With whom would I like to work?

Once you’ve answered these questions, then where do you start? You can go to the career services center at your school. Or take advantage of resources like eCareerfit.com, where you can take tests to see what careers may be suitable for your personality and skills. You can talk to people who have careers you aspire to and ask them how they got to where they currently are.

So many opportunities are available – more than you might think. And you can follow many different avenues to reach them. There are many great careers waiting for a motivated person with a quality education.

Written by: Jeral Kirwan, PhD
Dr. Kirwan is Assistant Professor of Psychology and a Faculty Research Fellow in Ashford University’s College of Health, Human Services, and Science.

Popular Posts

  • Top 7 Reasons Why You Should Pursue Your MBA If you’re a college graduate, returning to school for your Master of Business Administration (MBA) might not appeal to you. After all, you’ve already spent four years on your Bachelor’s degree. W. . . November 24, 2014
  • Best Courses to Become More Marketable Most universities are composed of typical colleges such as the College of Health Care Studies, Business, Education, and Liberal Arts. Within these colleges are various majors a student can choose, b. . . September 17, 2013
  • 5 Tips for Transferring Credits One of the best ways to accelerate your graduation day is to transfer credits. But many students find the transfer process very long and complicated. It doesn’t have to be so scary. Here are five ea. . . November 14, 2013
  • Explore Exciting Jobs in Healthcare You love to help people. You are interested in the science of the human body. And you believe in the value of a healthy lifestyle. If these traits describe you, then you ought to consider a career i. . . March 12, 2014
  • Business School Accreditation — What’s the Difference? When searching for a business school, you may notice that some business programs are accredited by different organizations with acronyms like AACSB, IACBE, and ACBSP. It’s easy to get lost in an alpha. . . May 23, 2014
  • Words of Advice for Graduates One of my favorite times of the year is commencement. I always enjoy seeing students walk across the stage to celebrate their achievement. When students get close to graduation, you can sense their en. . . March 10, 2014
  • 5 Great Education Documentaries The documentary is an underrated genre in the film industry, often described as one for those who are so “crazy” about a topic, they have to make a film about it. However, some of these “crazy” peop. . . July 12, 2013
  • Choose a Relevant Degree Business, English, Law – these are perennial subjects for degree programs, and they’ve stood the test of time. When students enroll in these programs, they already have some idea of what they’ll stu. . . February 5, 2014
  • The Five Toughest Interview Questions Job interviews are nerve wracking for just about anyone, whether you are a seasoned professional or a recent college graduate. The key to calming those nerves is preparation and practice. Prepare for . . . August 30, 2013
  • Advanced Degrees: Which Fields Provide the Highest Paying Jobs? Every spring it’s in the news: colleges are raising tuition. Higher tuition means students will be carrying a larger debt into the workforce, which cuts into their income. Choosing the right field o. . . September 9, 2013
  • Emotional Intelligence Research and Real World Application The definition of emotional intelligence is, “The ability to perceive, integrate, understand and reflectively manage one’s own feelings and other people’s feelings” (Salovey, […]August 26, 2015
  • Diversity Is More Than a Buzzword Having emerged as a central theme for society, business, and higher education, the word ‘diversity’ might invoke a picture of men and women […]July 1, 2015
  • LGBT Pride Month June is National LGBT Pride Month, a time to celebrate the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community. This month, we spoke with Richard […]June 12, 2015
  • National Mental Health Awareness Month May is National Mental Health Awareness Month, a time when we recognize how mental health impacts our families, our communities, and ourselves. While […]May 12, 2015
  • Celebrate Earth Day Ashford University is proud to call San Diego home, and one of the ways that we give back to our community is by […]April 3, 2015
  • Discussing Intimate Partner Violence This month the Promoting Access and Wellness in Students (PAWS) feature is on an issue that has recently garnered national attention, intimate partner […]March 5, 2015
  • Ebola: An epidemiologist’s experience in Sierra Leone Most of us have seen the news and understand the devastation that has come from the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. But, one […]February 25, 2015
  • Unique Business Leaders When you think of a successful business owner, you might imagine a serious person who dresses professionally every day, but that doesn’t have […]February 12, 2015
  • Black History Month – Promoting Access and Wellness in Students February is Black History Month, and the monthly feature of Promoting Access and Wellness in Students (PAWS) is the video below that features […]February 10, 2015
  • New Year = New You The New Year marks a time of change, a time when we can make a fresh start, a time when we might step […]January 5, 2015
Tags: , ,

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 4.00 out of 5)
Loading ... Loading ...