Best Psychology Careers
People skills are incredibly valuable, both personally and professionally. Completing a psychology degree is an amazing way to build those skills, while deepening your understanding of those around you. Armed with extensive knowledge about others' motivations, feelings, and behaviors, psychology graduates are ideally positioned for a wealth of employment options.
With so many choices, it can be difficult to decide what to do with your psychology training after graduation. Should you pursue academia? Enter the medical industry? Or change your career path altogether?
To help you narrow your search, we're highlighting some of the top jobs for psychology degree majors.
This article will be covering the following careers:
|Career||Avg Salary||Satisfaction||Your Match|
|Human Resources Manager||$137k||3.1/5|
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1. Teacher Assistant
Especially for those with an interest in developmental or social psychology, a career as a teacher assistant can be a rewarding pursuit. Teacher assistants work in both public and private elementary, middle, and high schools around the world. They support teachers by reinforcing class lessons, providing one-on-one instruction to students who are struggling, assisting in lesson planning, and more. Thriving in this career requires a love of learning and a strong understanding of how young people think and feel. What it doesn't require? A degree in education.
Do you love working with children?
2. Social Worker
Surprisingly, psychology is the most common degree held by professionals in this field; it's even more popular than a social work degree! What's not surprising is how well psychology graduates do in this career. Social workers provide invaluable support to a wide array of people, helping them through the most challenging moments in their lives. To help their clients, they may act as an advisor, an advocate, an educator, a liaison, or a coordinator. Armed with a strong understanding of how people think and feel, as well as of the mental health challenges that can occur during times of stress, psychology students are ideally suited to this job.
Are you a caring and empathetic person?
3. Restaurant Manager
Restaurant managers are more than just foodies. They are people-people at heart, capable of engaging with a wide range of customers, food producers, and staff to keep everything in their establishment running smoothly. Psychology graduates, with their awareness of others' needs, desires, and personalities, can truly thrive in this social career. Although a degree in hospitality can be an asset in this job, it isn't required. Those without formal training can increase their chances of getting hired by gaining experience in the restaurant industry.
Would you like to work in the hospitality industry?
4. Human Resources Manager
Seventeen percent of human resources managers have a degree in psychology. Professionals in this industry are found in all kinds of companies and organizations, overseeing the hiring, management, and firing of their employees. Excelling in this line of work requires a great deal of social awareness, as human resources managers often interact with people in tense situations. Nobody feels their best during a job interview or salary negotiation, but the best human resource managers have the compassion and psychology know-how to make staff feel as comfortable as possible.
Human Resources Manager
A human resources manager oversees and manages a company's human resources department.
5. Psychiatric Technician
Psychiatric care doesn't end with the psychiatrist. Instead, often the best possible outcomes for a patient are only possible through the work of a dedicated team of medical professionals. Psychiatric technicians are just one part of the equation, playing an essential role in many patients' lives. These empathetic professionals support people with psychiatric conditions as they navigate the treatment or rehabilitation process. They might provide therapeutic care, guide them towards different treatment options, or help them with daily living activities such as dressing and eating. A degree in psychology is one of the best ways to prepare for this challenging but rewarding career.
A psychiatric technician is someone who cares for people that have a mental illness or a developmental disability, and provides them with therapeutic care.
Psychology is the most common degree held by practicing counselors. More than 30% of counselors had a degree in psychology before entering this career—more than 5 times the average across all careers. Indeed, a career in counseling can be an incredibly rewarding option for many psychology graduates. This line of work applies some of the best insights from psychology to the betterment of others' lives. Counselors provide support, advice, and rehabilitation to people across many different community settings. Depending on their specialty, they might help clients dealing with mental health issues, employment struggles, trauma, or something else entirely.
Are you interested in becoming a counselor?
7. Childcare Worker
Childcare workers play an important role in many young people's lives. These patient individuals typically work with babies, toddlers, or preschoolers, providing supervision and support when parents and family are unavailable. Some of their duties—such as feeding or playing with the children in their care—require little more than a love of kids and a bit of creativity. But others, such as watching for signs of emotional or developmental problems, can only be completed by a trained professional. Psychology students, especially those who have taken several courses in childhood development, are perfectly suited to the task.
Do you love children and taking care of them?
Does educational psychology fascinate you? Are you interested in how people learn, grow, and thrive? While a career in teaching does require some additional training, it's an excellent option for many psychology majors. Whether they're working with kindergarteners or third graders, teachers provide the support, supervision, and instruction needed to help their students succeed academically and socially. Psychology graduates—with their deep knowledge of human memory, social norms, individual motivations, and more—make thoughtful, highly engaging teachers.
Patient and reasonable, arbitrators offer a much more peaceful way to resolve legal disputes. Whether they're attempting to settle a disagreement between two different organizations, an employee and a CEO, or a customer and a phone company, arbitrators help their clients find a middle ground in an unbiased fashion. They consider and analyze evidence from both parties, draw on their legal knowledge to weigh the pros and cons of each perspective, and finally determine liability. This career can be extremely challenging, requiring both strong critical thinking skills and a high degree of emotional and social intelligence. Psychology majors fit the bill almost perfectly.
Anyone who has ever signed a mobile-phone or other consumer contract, a lease, or an employment agreement, has probably seen in the contract's fine print a provision known as an "arbitration clause." This popular legal clause asks that in the case of a dispute between the parties, the arbitration process be used to resolve the differences.
10. Education Administrator
School administrators work at all levels of education. This varied role can include everything from hiring and supervising staff to selecting educational programming and managing the school's budget. Psychology graduates, with their awareness of different learning styles and personal motivations, can be extremely successful in this profession. Many aspects of the job are well-suited to a psychology background, but social tasks—such as handling parent and community relations or hiring and training school staff—are a natural fit.
Do you have a passion for education and want to improve it in your local community?
11. Sales Manager
At its core, a career in sales is about two things: people and profits. Not only do sales managers need to possess a keen awareness of how their customers make spending decisions, they also need to understand the thoughts, emotions, and motivations of the staff on their team. Because so much social knowledge is required, this is an ideal career for a psychology major. In this line of work, psychology graduates can draw from research on human behavior to implement innovative sales strategies, motivate other sales staff, and develop ongoing relationships with their customers.
A sales manager is someone who is responsible for leading and guiding a team of sales people in an organization.
12. Project Manager
Another highly social position, project managers are at the helm of any major undertaking. For example, a project manager may work in a technology company, supervising and guiding a team of software engineers, designers, and marketers to bring a new app into being. But they could also be be employed at a music festival, coordinating the many volunteers, staff, and performers needed to pull off the event. People with a psychology degree can be extremely effective in this career—skilled at navigating the many different personalities, communication styles, and work ethics that they come into contact with.