Completing a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology is an impressive feat, and there are endless opportunities to pursue for those with this degree in hand. Our list spans six fields:
- Public administration
- Criminal justice
- Social services
- Human resources
Here we offer details about 29 different job options, including case manager, human resources specialist, marketing manager, event planner, social worker, police officer, sales associate, training and development specialist, financial analyst, and rehabilitation counselor. Each requires different skills and knowledge but all are important in helping people. Whichever path you choose, a BA in psychology provides you with a strong foundation for a successful career.
Take a deeper look into some of the great options available to you with a psychology degree, according to O*NET Online, a helpful tool for occupational information and job analysis.
Best Psychology Jobs with a Bachelor’s Degree
Once you’ve seen the world of options that are available to you with a bachelor’s in psychology, it can be tough to narrow down the right fit. Some of the most popular fields to enter with an undergraduate degree include public administration, sales, criminal justice, social services, human resources, and business. By understanding what these fields entail and what jobs are available, you can gain a sense of what you might enjoy doing on a daily basis.
1. Public Administration
What Public Administration Jobs Can You Pursue with a BA in Psychology?
There are a number of public administration jobs that you can get with a BA in Psychology, according to O*NET Online, that will apply the principles you learn in psychology, including administrative services manager and community health worker, among others. Both jobs involve helping people in different ways and require excellent communication and people skills. If you want to help others and make a difference in your community, a career in public administration may be the perfect fit for you. Lets’ take a closer look at administrative services managers and community health workers.
What Does an Administrative Services Manager Do?
O*NET Online explains an administrative services manager (also known as an administrative services and facilities manager, according to the BLS) is responsible for a wide variety of tasks, including supervising staff, coordinating and planning office space, ordering supplies, and overseeing building maintenance, and in some cases, budgeting and financial management. Many administrative services managers work in corporate office settings, but this career path is also available in other industries such as health care, education, and government.
The duties of an administrative services manager can vary depending on the size of the organization and the industry, although there are some common ones typically associated with this position:
- Supervising staff, including tasks such as hiring and training employees, setting work schedules, and resolving conflicts
- Coordinating and planning office space, which may include coordinating with architects and work crews to renovate or expand an office space
- Ordering supplies, which may include furniture, stationery, and cleaning supplies
- Overseeing building maintenance, including tasks such as scheduling repairs, monitoring pest control, and ensuring compliance with fire codes
- Budgeting and financial management, in some cases, which may involve tasks such as preparing financial reports, tracking expenses, and authorizing purchase orders
To enter this career, an administrative services manager typically requires at least a bachelor’s degree. Some employers may prefer candidates with a master’s degree and/or work experience in business administration or management. Additionally, most administrative services managers must have strong organizational skills and the ability to multitask.
What Does a Community Health Worker Do?
A community health worker helps connect people in need with resources and services in their community. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the agency that measures and reports employment data, describes the role as working with a variety of different groups — including the elderly, immigrants, and people with disabilities — to adopt healthy behaviors. Community health workers help their clients navigate the social service system and connect them with programs and services that can help improve their health and lives.
Community health workers must be able to effectively communicate with people from various backgrounds, calling upon a foundation of understanding human behavior, and be familiar with the resources and services available in their community. Finally, it’s important to be able to work independently and manage time efficiently to fulfill responsibilities such as the following, according to the BLS:
- Conducting assessments to determine what resources and services are needed in the community
- Developing and implementing programs and services to meet the identified needs of the community and evaluating their effectiveness to make necessary adjustments
- Establishing and maintaining relationships with key stakeholders in the community — including government agencies, social service providers, and community members — and mobilizing them to participate in programs and services
- Writing grant proposals to secure funding for programs and services
Now that you have an idea of what these two public administration careers might entail, take a look at another career path that might be right for you with a BA in Psychology: sales.
What Sales Jobs Can You Pursue with a BA in Psychology?
A bachelor’s in psychology can open the door to many different types of sales jobs. With this degree, you have a deep understanding of human behavior, which can be extremely helpful in a sales career. You might use your knowledge of psychology to sell products or services or to help people make better purchasing decisions. Following are descriptions of five sales jobs you can pursue with a BA in Psychology, including advertising sales agent, insurance sales agent, sales manager, real estate sales agent, and retail sales associate.
What Does an Advertising Sales Agent Do?
As an advertising sales agent, O*NET Online explains you will work with businesses to create and place advertising that targets their specific customer base. You’ll research the needs and wants of your clients’ customers, and then manage ad campaigns that appeal to them. Your knowledge of psychology will be essential in understanding your clients’ customers and creating effective ads.
What Does an Insurance Sales Agent Do?
Insurance sales agents help people choose the ideal insurance coverage for their needs. You will need to understand the different types of coverage available and be able to explain them to potential customers. Your knowledge of psychology, according to O*NET Online, will be helpful in understanding customer needs and providing them with the information they need to make informed decisions about their insurance coverage.
What Does a Sales Manager Do?
O*NET Online describes how sales managers work with clients to sell products and services. You will need to have a thorough understanding of the products you’re selling, and be able to explain potential risks and rewards to potential customers. Your psychology knowledge and skills will be helpful in understanding buyer behavior — providing them with the information they need to make sound decisions. You may also work with a team of sales representatives.
What Does a Real Estate Sales Agent Do?
Real estate sales agents help people buy, sell, and rent properties. You will need to have a deep understanding of the real estate market and be able to advise potential buyers and sellers on the best way to achieve their goals. Your knowledge of psychology will be helpful in understanding customer needs and helping them navigate the often-stressful process of buying or selling a home. It is important to note that real estate agents require licensure to practice.
What Does a Retail Sales Associate Do?
Retail sales associates work in stores, helping customers find the products and services they’re looking for and providing them with information about those products. Retail salespersons may be able to work remotely depending on the brand they represent. You need to have a thorough knowledge of the products you’re selling, and be able to effectively communicate with customers. Your knowledge of psychology will be helpful in understanding customer behavior and needs, and providing information they need to make a purchase.
The reality is there are many sales jobs you could pursue with a BA in psychology. With your deep understanding of human behavior, you’ll be well-prepared to succeed in any sales career you choose.
3. Criminal Justice
What Criminal Justice Jobs Can You Pursue With a BA in Psychology?
A bachelor’s degree in psychology can open up a lot of different opportunities in the criminal justice field, including probation officer; social and human services assistant; child, family, and school social worker; and even police officer.
What Does a Probation Officer Do?
Probation officers assist in the rehabilitation of law offenders who are in custody, on probation, or on parole by helping them follow the law and successfully reintegrate into society. A background in psychology can be helpful in this role, as it can give you a better understanding of why people commit crimes and how to best motivate them to change their behavior.
What Does a Social and Human Services Assistant Do?
Social and human services assistants work with victims of crime to help them through the legal process and connect them with resources they need to heal and move on with their lives. If you are drawn to psychology with the goal of helping people, this role will give you both hands-on experience, and the tangible outcome of lives changed. Victim Support Services shares just how critical this role is. A degree in psychology can give you the skills you need to provide emotional support to victims and help them navigate the often-complex criminal justice system.
What Does a Child, Family, and School Social Worker Do?
Child, family, and school social workers work with children, families, and students to help them understand the consequences of their actions to make better choices in the future. A degree in psychology, based on recommendations from the BLS, can give you the ability to effectively communicate with and counsel young people, as well as an understanding of the factors that impact their lives. In many states, a master’s degree and/or licensure is required.
What Does a Police Officer Do?
The BLS takes great care in outlining the role and responsibilities of a police officer and detective. Despite popular belief, you don’t need a criminal justice degree to become a police officer. Police officers help maintain law and order in their communities and often deal with difficult and emotionally charged situations. A background in psychology can give you the ability to better understand and communicate with the people you encounter on the job and provide valuable insight into why crimes are committed.
A BA in psychology opens up the field of criminal justice, and the above examples are just a few to consider as you begin your search. Don’t limit yourself to one job title when it comes to the field of criminal justice. On a related note, social services will be a great avenue to explore if you like aspects of criminal justice but want options to help people within the system.
4. Social Services
What Social Services Jobs Can You Pursue with a BA in Psychology?
There are myriad social services roles that you can pursue with a BA in psychology that will help make an impact in your community and in people’s lives. Take a look at the following examples for a glimpse into the world of social services, then explore on your own to find the right fit. Some examples of social services jobs for those with a BA in psychology include social worker, counselor, patient representative, psychiatric technician, and substance abuse counselor, to name a few.
What Does a Social Worker Do?
Based on findings from the BLS, social workers help people deal with personal and social problems by understanding their needs. They may work in schools, hospitals, clinics, or private practices. Social workers typically have a bachelor’s degree or a master’s degree in social work, although some do have a BA in psychology. Social workers often require licensure.
What Does a Counselor Do?
Counselors help people deal with personal, social, and emotional problems. They may work in schools, hospitals, clinics, or private practices. If you plan to pursue a counselor job, you may need further education. Counselors typically have a master’s degree in counseling (an M.Ed., MA, or MS), although some do have a BA in psychology or a related field.
What Does a Patient Representative Do?
O*NET Online explains patient representatives help people access the resources they need to meet their goals. They may work in social service agencies, health care organizations, or government agencies. Patient representatives typically have a bachelor’s degree or associate degree.
What Does a Psychiatric Technician Do?
Psychiatric technicians provide care for psychiatric patients in collaboration with medical professionals. Some duties may include monitoring patients’ physical and emotional well-being and reporting unusual behavior or physical ailments to medical staff. Technicians also provide nursing, psychiatric, or personal care to patients who are mentally ill or emotionally disturbed.
What Does a Rehabilitation Counselor Do?
Rehabilitation counselors help patients with substance abuse problems. They may work in rehabilitation centers, hospitals, clinics, or private practices. Substance abuse counselors typically have a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work (BSW) or a related field such as psychology, sociology, or human services. This type of position often requires a master’s degree and/or licensure.
5. Human Resources
What Human Resources Jobs Can You Pursue with a BA in Psychology?
At the crux of psychology and the business world, you will find Human Resources (HR) — a field that is arguably custom-made for individuals with a BA in psychology. While you get to help people work through their problems, you can work in a variety of industries, as every field needs human resources assistance. What are human resources and what functions would you expect to do? Take a look below at descriptions of these human resources roles: training and development manager, general and operations manager, training and development specialist, compensation and benefits manager, labor relations specialist, and HR manager.
What Does a Training and Development Manager Do?
A training and development manager is responsible for attracting, screening, and selecting qualified candidates for open positions within an organization. Responsibilities include conducting interviews, administering assessments and training, and coordinating with managers to ensure the best possible candidate is hired.
What Does a General and Operations Manager Do?
A general and operations manager is responsible for overseeing multiple departments or locations. They plan, direct, or coordinate the operations of public or private sector organizations. Although duties are diverse for a general and operations manager, they include formulating policies, managing daily operations, and planning the use of materials and human resources.
What Does a Training and Development Specialist Do?
A training and development specialist is responsible for designing and delivering training programs that help employees improve their skills and knowledge. Training and development specialists have a hand in creating instructional materials, leading workshops or seminars, designing e-learning courses, and more. They are responsible for helping to keep employees engaged in their jobs through learning.
What Does a Compensation and Benefits Manager Do?
A compensation and benefits manager performs research and data analysis to help determine fair and competitive wages and benefits packages. Conducting surveys, reviewing industry data, evaluating job descriptions, and more are part of the daily expectations on the job.
What Does a Labor Relations Specialist Do?
A labor relations specialist is responsible for managing all aspects of the employer-employee relationship, says Better Team. Labor relations specialists investigate employee complaints, mediate disputes, develop policies and procedures, and oversee performance management programs.
What Does a Human Resources Manager Do?
A human resources manager liaises between departments or other groups to improve function, communication, and the overall working environment of an organization. They may advise on regulatory and compliance issues, administer programs such as benefits and training and analyze data to optimize teams and HR functions.
What Business Jobs Can You Pursue With a BA in Psychology?
Business is everywhere, which means business jobs — including remote ones — are everywhere. If you’re looking for the best business jobs, you can pursue with a psychology degree, consider this short list: market research analyst, public relations specialist, event planner, fundraiser, management analyst, financial analyst, and marketing manager.
What Does a Market Research Analyst Do?
According to the BLS, market research analysts use psychological principles to help companies understand their customers and the marketplace. Market research analysts design surveys and questionnaires, analyze data, and make recommendations to businesses about marketing strategies and product development. A bachelor’s degree in psychology is often helpful for this career.
What Does a Public Relations Specialist Do?
Public relations specialists develop and maintain relationships between an organization and the public. They write press releases, plan publicity campaigns, and respond to media inquiries, advises Career Explorer.
What Does an Event Planner Do?
Event planners coordinate all aspects of events like conventions, conferences, group meetings, and trade shows. They negotiate contracts, select vendors, manage budgets, and execute plans on event days.
What Does a Fundraiser Do?
Fundraisers are responsible for organizing events to raise money for charities, schools, and other non-profit organizations. They plan and implement fundraising campaigns, solicit donations, and write grant proposals. If you have a specific mission in mind, a role as a charity fundraiser can help you make tangible (read: financial) inroads in that mission.
What Does a Management Analyst Do?
Management analysts help businesses improve their operations and run more efficiently by conducting research, analyzing data, and making recommendations to executives.
What Does a Financial Analyst Do?
Financial analysts provide advice to businesses and individuals about investing and financial planning. Based on the financial and investment analyst description from O*NET Online, you can expect to analyze financial data, prepare reports, and make recommendations about investment opportunities.
What Does a Marketing Manager Do?
Marketing managers develop and implement marketing plans for their organizations. They oversee advertising, market research, public relations, and product development. Marketing managers rely on people skills and business savvy and work on a wide range of projects, such as developing new marketing campaigns, planning promotional events, and writing press releases.
Overview: Careers You Can Pursue After a BA in Psychology
These are a small glimpse into the world of business and human services and an abbreviated list of examples of the many careers that a bachelor’s degree in psychology can lead to. With such a versatile degree, the possibilities are nearly endless.