Careers for Psychology Majors

General Information

Career Counseling

Information on externships, internships, and summer jobs

General career resources for undergraduate students

LUCIE (Lehigh University Career Information Exchange): a web-based system that provides access to job information, on-campus interviewing, and additional career services

Books

Wegenek, A. R. & Buskist, W. (2010).  The Insider's Guide to the Psychology Major: Everything You Need to Know About the Degree and Profession.  Washington, DC: American Psychological Association

Landrum, E. R. (2009). Finding jobs with a psychology bachelor's degree: Expert advice for launching your career.  Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. [Twenty-eight professionals describe the scope of their work, level of career satisfaction, and how their bachelor's degree in psychology helped get them there.]

Sternberg, R. J. (2006). Career paths in psychology: Where your degree can take you (2nd edition). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. [Each chapter chronicles a psychologist who has achieved success in his or her field; the psychologists discuss their work, how they got started, and how students can get started in their field.]

DeGalan, J., & Lambert, S. (1995). Great jobs for psychology majors. Chicago: VGM Career Horizons.

Kuther, T. L. (2003). The psychology major's handbook. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

Kuther, T. L., & Morgan, R. D. (2004). Careers in psychology: Opportunities in a changing world. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.  [This book has 9 chapters on different areas of psychology. Each chapter has a section describing "Opportunities with a Bachelor's Degree" and a section for "Opportunities with a Graduate Degree."]

Landrum, E., Davis, S., & Landrum, T. (2000). The psychology major: Career options and strategies for success. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Morgan, B.L., & Korschgen, A.J. (2001). Majoring in psych? Career options for psychology undergraduates (2nd ed.). Boston: Allyn and Bacon.
 

Websites

American Psychological Association: Careers in Psychology [be sure to look at the links on the right]: http://www.apa.org/careers/resources/guides/careers.aspx

Psychology Degree Guide careers information [an independent organization providing comprehensive information for psychology students]:  http://psychologydegreeguide.org/category/career-guides/

American Psychological Association Student Resources http://www.apa.org/about/students.aspx

Pursuing Psychology Career Page
Dr. Linda Walsh provides a list of links to materials on career development and resources for psychology majors.

Top 25 Careers in Psychology

What can you do with a Masters in Psychology?

Non-academic Careers in Psychology
APA links to profiles of psychologists working in interesting jobs outside of academia, ranging from animal protection to forensics to the military to politics, and more

Alternative Careers in Psychology, Career Paths Less Traveled
Article from the APA Monitor profiles the unusual careers of 21 recent graduates of doctoral programs in psychology.

APA Research Office (for detailed employment data) http://www.apa.org

APA – Salaries in Psychology

Learn Psychology - http://www.learnpsychology.org/

Careers in Behavioral Health Care - https://www.drugrehab.com/guides/addiction-professional-degrees-careers/

Some Applied Fields of Psychology

The following websites contain information on selected areas of Psychology.  As the above websites and books indicate, there are many other options for psychology majors.  Using the above information as a starting point, you should be able to find further information about other directions of interest through web searches.

School Psychology and School Counseling

Psychologists and counselors serve a variety of roles and professional functions within the educational system, including in elementary, middle, and high school settings.

School Psychology: "What is a School Psychologist?”

School Counseling: “What does a School Counselor do?”

Organizational / Industrial Psychology

Psychologists often function within corporate environments, as consultants, trainers, researchers, managers/administrators, and in a variety of other roles. An excellent source of information on Industrial Organization Psychology is: http://www.siop.org/

Clinical Psychology

What is Clinical Psychology?
“The field of Clinical Psychology integrates science, theory, and practice to understand, predict, and alleviate maladjustment, disability, and discomfort as well as to promote human adaptation, adjustment, and personal development. Clinical Psychology focuses on the intellectual, emotional, biological, psychological, social, and behavioral aspects of human functioning across the life span, in varying cultures, and at all socioeconomic levels.”

American Psychological Association (APA) Division 12, Society of Clinical Psychology (2010)

Major Professional Activities of Clinical Psychologists

  • Assessment and Diagnosis
    • Psychological Testing
    • Neuropsychological Evaluation
  • Counseling/Psychotherapy
  • Individual, Marital/Couple’s, Family, and Group
  • Treatment Teams, Programs, Organizations/industry, Educational Systems,
    Legal System
  • Education of Students, Interns, and Residents in Clinical Settings
  • Program Development and Management; Administration of Healthcare and other Organizations
  • Undergraduate and Graduate; Continuing Professional Education
  • Consultation 
  • Clinical Training and Supervision 
  • Administration 
  • Teaching 
  • Research and Writing

Detailed information about the field of Clinical Psychology may be found on the APA’s Society of Clinical Psychology site: http://www.apa.org/about/division/div12.aspx

Specialized Areas of Clinical Psychology Practice

(Major Subspecialties and Links to Related Professional Organizations)

Pediatric Clinical Psychology - http://www.clinicalchildpsychology.org/

Geropsychology - http://apadiv20.phhp.ufl.edu/

Clinical Health Psychology - https://societyforhealthpsychology.org/

Forensic Psychology - http://www.apadivisions.org/division-41/index.aspx

Neuropsychology - http://www.div40.org/

Sports and Performance Psychology - http://www.apadivisions.org/division-47/index.aspx

Fields related to Clinical Psychology

Counseling Psychology: Very similar to Clinical Psychology in graduate education, training, professional functioning, and work settings. Both Clinical and Counseling Psychology training programs prepare practitioners for licensure for independent practice as a Psychologist. The major differences between these fields of Psychology may be in the typical theoretical orientations and research interests of graduate programs in Clinical versus Counseling Psychology programs.

Top Careers in Counseling

 Additional Information on Clinical vs. Counseling Psychology:

“What is the difference between a clinical psychologist and a counseling psychologist?”
http://www.div17.org/about-cp/counseling-vs-clinical-psychology/

“Clinical Versus Counseling Psychology: What's the Diff?"
http://www.csun.edu/~hcpsy002/Clinical%20Versus%20Counseling%20Psychology.pdf

Professional Counseling:  A Master’s level mental health profession – training programs lead to credentialing as a Licensed Professional Counselor or Licensed Mental Health Counselor. Professional Counselors provide clinical assessment and intervention, and work in a variety of mental health treatment programs, hospitals, and in individual and group private practices.

The American Counseling Association (ACA) is the main professional association for Licensed Professional Counselors. The ACA’s website provides detailed information for students at: https://www.counseling.org/

Additional Issues in Training

The Psy.D. – A different training model than the Ph.D., focusing on training in clinical practice, in contrast to the Ph.D. training model, which focuses on both clinical practice and extensive training in research methods.  The Ph.D. model of training in Clinical Psychology has been known as the Scientist-Practitioner Model. This designation emphases the central role of research in this training model. The Psy.D. or Doctor of Psychology training model has been known as Practitioner-Scholar Model, emphasizing the clinical practice focus of Psy.D. training. Both Psy.D. and Ph.D. Clinical Psychology training prepares students for licensure for independent practice as a Psychologist.

A discussion of Psy.D. vs. Ph.D. training: “What's the difference between a PsyD and a clinically oriented PhD?” --  http://www.apa.org/education/grad/faqs.aspx?item=6

Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) http://www.cacrep.org/

U.S. Dept. of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook: Counselors https://www.bls.gov/ooh/