Psychology

Careers

Most careers directly related to psychology will expect you to have higher education and post  graduate qualifications. They include:

  • Clinical psychologist
  • Cognitive behavioural therapist
  • Counselling psychologist
  • Educational psychologist
  • Forensic psychologist
  • Health psychologist
  • Lecturer
  • Neuropsychologist
  • Occupational psychologist
  • Psychotherapist
  • Sport and exercise psychologist

Skills

Studying psychology can also help you develop wider skills such as:

  • Analysis / reasoning
  • Communication
  • Critical thinking
  • Debating / discussion
  • Evaluation
  • Handling numbers / data
  • IT
  • Logic
  • Organising
  • Problem solving
  • Research
  • Teamwork
  • Time management
  • Understanding complex theories
  • Understanding human behaviour

These skills are needed for a range of jobs with varied requirements and entry routes.  Bear in mind that you may need other subjects too, particularly English, maths and, in some cases, sciences.

  • Accountant
  • Accounting technician
  • Actuarial analyst
  • Administrative assistant
  • Advertising account manager
  • Advice worker
  • Art therapist
  • Barrister / solicitor
  • Care assistant
  • Care home manager
  • Careers adviser
  • Charity fundraiser
  • Counsellor
  • Customer services assistant
  • Data analyst
  • Digital marketing officer
  • Drug / alcohol adviser
  • Education welfare officer
  • Family support worker
  • Financial adviser
  • Fitness instructor
  • Forensic accountant
  • Foster carer
  • Health promotion officer
  • Health visitor
  • Healthcare assistant
  • Hotel manager
  • Human resources officer
  • Journalist
  • Learning mentor
  • Legal executive
  • Logistics manager
  • Market researcher
  • Marketing assistant
  • Marketing manager
  • Mental health nurse
  • Nurse
  • Nursery nurse
  • Occupational therapist
  • Office manager
  • Palliative care assistant
  • Physician associate
  • Play therapist
  • Play worker
  • Police officer
  • Probation officer
  • Public relations officer
  • Receptionist
  • Research assistant
  • Residential care worker
  • Retail manager / assistant
  • Sales representative
  • Social media manager
  • Social worker
  • Speech and language therapist
  • Teacher
  • Telephone sales worker
  • Training officer / manager
  • UX (user experience) analyst
  • Victim care officer
  • Volunteer organizer
  • Youth and community worker

Routes

To become a professional psychologist you need to study for either a degree approved by  the British Psychological Society (BPS) or a degree in another subject plus an approved conversion course. As a rule, it isn’t necessary to have GCSE or A Level psychology but you must be able to handle statistics and scientific concepts and have good writing and analytical skills. Most psychology degrees expect at least GCSE Grade 4 / C (sometimes higher) in English and maths. Some courses also ask for an A Level in a science subject or maths. After your degree you undertake post graduate training and study before you can register and practise the profession. 

Many psychology graduates enter other work sectors such as health, social care,  education, sales, marketing, advertising or finance. 

Routes into other careers listed here include apprenticeships (including newly developed  higher and degree apprenticeships) full time further education and higher education. 

Did You Know?

The actress Natalie Portman studied for a psychology degree at Harvard University while  working on the Star Wars movies. She told the media, ‘I'd rather be smart than a movie star.’

Find Out More

For more ideas and information, visit: nationalcareersservice.direct.gov.uk.

If you’re thinking about higher education, visit www.prospects.ac.uk to see what  psychology graduates have done after their degree. 

Other websites