November 11, 2014, by James Jupe

A psychology degree: what next?

By Maggie Woolf

Most psychology graduates when asked say they wish they had started their career preparation earlier by getting involved in activities while at university. Anything along the lines of volunteering, extracurricular interests, campus activities or part-time jobs and internships can really benefit your development. There are plenty of doors open to you after you’ve earned your degree, but because there’s so much choice, it wouldn’t hurt to get planning early.

What you’ve gained from your degree

Studying psychology provides you with a firm foundation for your future career. Psychology is a subject valued by many employers and your subject knowledge equips you with key employability skills such as:

  • communication skills
  • the ability to give and receive constructive criticism
  • information technology
  • handling of data/statistics
  • problem-solving
  • the ability to work in teams

More than 92% of our 2012/2013 psychology graduates who were available for work or study, gained employment or further study within six months of graduation.

The labour market for psychology graduates

You’re not short of choices with a psychology degree. Many go onto a diverse range of careers. It’s common for psychologists to stay in education to enter the psychology professions but may first take up paid or voluntary work in caring or education jobs to gain relevant experience. Around 20% of UK psychology graduates go into professional psychology careers.

Others enter occupations such as:

  • community work
  • mental health work
  • peer support
  • research
  • marketing
  • advertising
  • broadcasting
  • retail management
  • finance and accountancy
  • teaching
  • event management
  • HR and recruitment

The University of Nottingham psychology graduates secure positions across a diverse range of employment sectors but the most popular sectors are: health, education, charity, retail, finance, recruitment.

Taking the further study route

Not everyone chooses to dive into employment right away. You can stay on and develop your existing skills. There are various branches that include forensic psychology, organisational psychology, brain imaging, criminological psychology, rehabilitation psychology, health psychology, and neuropsychology.

Or you may take another direction entirely – we’ve had students progress onto teaching, law, nursing, human resource management and speech and language therapy. Some work towards PhDs if they wish to carry out more research.

Whatever you choose, it’s never too early to start thinking ahead.

If you’re studying psychology, you can find out more about what to do after your degree or you can book an appointment with a careers adviser to explore your options.

Posted in Applying For JobsWork experience