Psychology Careers

Psychologists study the human mind and behavior and apply their knowledge, through both counseling and research, to help people cope with such things as mental disorders, marital and personal issues, and addictions, to help guide them to a better state of emotional well-being. Psychologists may be involved in a variety of fields that one would not traditionally associate with psychology, including health and human services, management, education, law, and sports. Psychologists may also be employed in business, industry, government, or nonprofit organizations, where they provide training, conduct research, and design organizational systems.

Employment Opportunities

Psychology professionals may work in a variety of environments, including:

  • Hospitals
  • Clinics
  • Schools and universities
  • Private practice
  • Teaching

Skills

Psychology professionals need a wide range of capabilities, including:

  • Ability to deal with people and their problems
  • Empathy
  • Intuition
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Leadership
  • Research skills
  • Ability to work with a team

Industry Spotlight

Job prospects should be the best for people who have a doctoral degree from a leading university in an applied specialty, such as counseling or health, and those with a specialist or doctoral degree in school psychology.

Master’s degree holders in fields other than industrial-organizational psychology will face keen competition for jobs because of the limited number of positions that require only a master’s degree. Master’s degree holders may find jobs as psychological assistants or counselors, providing mental health services under the direct supervision of a licensed psychologist.

- Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2008