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CAREER OPPORTUNITIES FOR PSYCHOLOGY MAJORS If there is one question that career counselors and faculty advisors are asked more often than all others by students seeking assistance with career planning, it is this: "What can I do with this major?" An undergraduate student in the liberal arts and sciences is actually developing a broad array of skills that might be applied to any number of careers, rather than developing an in-depth expertise in just one area. Therefore, a better question to pose might be: "What skills am I developing in my major, and how might I explore careers that would require these skills?" Psychology majors seek to understand and explain both normal and abnormal behavior, mental ability, perception, development and individual differences. In addition, psychological study explores human emotions, thought, and motives. The major sub-branches within psychology are educational psychology, social psychology, psychometrics, developmental psychology, experimental psychology, and industrial organizational psychology. With an understanding of human development, the psychology majors promote human welfare in a variety of environments, such as public and private institutions, business and industry, and the community.

˜Human Relation Skills:


<Interpersonal skills <Behavior modification <Analyzing behavior <Motivating <Perceiving <Understanding individual differences <Group dynamics <Attitude assessment <Empathy

˜Creativity/Problem Solving Skills: <Trouble shooting <Defining problem areas <Setting up systems to analyze data <Offering new perspectives <Motivating <Developing alternate solutions

˜Research Skills:

<Framing the central question <Organizing and analyzing data <Reading and synthesizing <Gathering information <Comparing and summarizing <Isolating <Clarifying <Developing ideas and theories <Evaluating <Critical thinking <Writing scientific/research papers

˜Communication Skills: <Verbal/written skills <Observing people/data/things <Influencing/persuading <Informing/explaining <Mediating/negotiating

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Career Services

i UW-River Falls i 24 East Hathorn i 715-425-3572

OCCUPATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES The occupations in this list are only a sampling of job possibilities for Psychology Majors.

Human Services:

Public Administration:

Youth Counselor Rehabilitation Worker Social Work Specialist Inmate Worker Case Worker Day Care Center Director Probation Officer Behavioral Technician Social Service Aide Chemical Dependency Counselor Volunteer Services Director School Counselor Employment Counselor Psychiatric Social Worker Psychotherapist Psychometrist Extension Service Specialist Child Development Specialist Mental Health Counselor Career Counselor College Counselor Group Home Counselor

Research Psychology:

Affirmative Action Officer Community Organization Worker Community Planning Worker Relocation Worker Policy Analyst Friend of the Court Citizen Probation Officer Intelligence Specialist Field Health Officer Environmental Psychologist Child Advocate


Curriculum Designer Corrections Administrator Museum Worker Animal Ecologist Part Recreationist Recreation Resource Specialist Manager/Supervisor Professor Admissions Counselor Animal Behaviorist

Experimental Research Psychologist Clinical Research Psychologist Social Research Psychologist Statistical Research Psychologist Psychometric Research Psychologist Engineering Research Psychologist Educational Research Psychologist

Industrial Relations Coordinator Organizational Psychologist Personnel Administrator Business Manager Interviewer Job Analyst Management Specialist Corporation Counselor Marketing Specialist Personnel Trainer Employee Counselor Human Resources Recruiter Advertising Agent Market Research Analyst Systems Analyst Consumer Psychologist Import Specialist Labor Relations Coordinator Consultant


Consumer Researcher Statistical Report Writer Technical Writer Media Director Public Opinion Survey Worker Seminar Speaker

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i UW-River Falls i 24 East Hathorn i 715-425-3572

Suggestions to Enhance Your Skills ˜ Obtain at least one internship in the field ˜ Do research with a faculty member and/or other students ˜ Learn about assessments by actually taking some career assessments at Career Services ˜ Get experience through part-time, full-time & volunteer work ˜ Become a member of professional organization, such as, the official American

Psychological Association site and become a student member, it'll be a lot cheaper now while you are a student.

˜ Check to see if the career you want requires graduate work ˜ Enhance your listening skills/helping skills ˜ Be involved in relevant student organizations (i.e. Social Work Student Association, Psychology Society, Psi Chi)

˜ Obtain experience with diversity (i.e. Gender Equality Council, Gay Straight Alliance, Diversiy Awareness LDPB Committee, etc.)

˜ Get leadership experience ˜ Do an informational interview with individuals in the field, and job shadow someone in the position or field you are interested in

˜ View journal articles, current news articles, and the web's most informative site on psychology at

˜ Start reading books and other information on different psychological disorders ˜ Visit for quick reference guides. There are single page study aids that have all the facts and terms at your finger tips. Also visit

˜ Through research and experience, find out what age group you would like to work with,

and what psychological issues you find interesting (i.e. working with teens with drug abuse issues).

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Career Services

i UW-River Falls i 24 East Hathorn i 715-425-3572

RESEARCHING YOUR CAREER IDEAS How do you find out what’s out there?

Researching careers is a time-consuming, but necessary process. Waiting until graduation to start thinking about your career plans is as foolish as studying after you’ve taken your final exams.


Written and On-line Resources:

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People Resources:

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Visit Career & Counseling Services’ Career Resource Center (located on the Ground Floor of East Hathorn Hall) Visit the Chalmer Davee Library Browse the Internet, such as Career & Counseling Services’ Web Page (

Talk with Faculty and Alumni Join Professional Organizations Conduct Occupational Interviews Use Career & Counseling Services’ “Career Information Network” Consult Employer Directories and the Yellow Pages

Obtain Direct Experience:

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Job Shadowing Volunteer or part-time work Internships are essential! Talk with your departmental faculty coordinator for internship information.

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Career Services

i UW-River Falls i 24 East Hathorn i 715-425-3572

CAREER RESOURCES FOR PSYCHOLOGY MAJORS Career & Counseling Services’ Career Resource Center (Ground Floor, East Hathorn Hall) Career & Counseling Services’ Career Resource Center is open every day from 8:00 am -4:30 pm; we are also open until 7:00 pm Thursday evenings. The following books may be of interest to students majoring in Psychology:

˜ Career Paths in Psychology ˜ Great Jobs for Psychology Majors ˜ Careers for Good Samaritans and Other Humanitarian Types ˜ Opportunities in Mental Health Careers ˜ Opportunities in Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Careers ˜ Opportunities in Social Work Careers ˜ Opportunities in Social Services Careers ˜ Opportunities in Counseling and Development Careers ˜ Careers for Caring People and Other Sensitive Types ˜ Career Choices for the 90's for Students of Psychology ˜ 100 Jobs in Social Change ˜ Majoring in Psych? ˜ Opportunities in Religious Service Centers ˜ A Guide to Careers in Community Development ˜ Great Jobs for Sociology Majors ˜ Minnesota Non-Profit Directory ˜ Good Works ˜ Directory of Community Service ˜ Great Careers

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Career Services

i UW-River Falls i 24 East Hathorn i 715-425-3572


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