Exploring Careers in Psychology


What makes a psychology degree so attractive to employers? Perhaps it’s because the degree instills in students the ability to engage in critical thinking, act independently, and facilitate communication with a diverse array of people. From healthcare to education, more employers are adding psychology majors to their ranks. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics lists psychologist among the country’s growing occupations, which means students who successfully embrace this discipline may look to a wide variety of fields to apply their degree.

Criminal Justice

Within the field of criminal justice, a psychology degree can provide the foundation upon which to build a career in the area of corrections, with parole and probation occupations among the many options available. Parole and probation officers must be able to communicate effectively in both speaking and writing as they work directly with criminals and their families to help in the rehabilitation and reintegration process. Officers monitor behavior patterns of offenders, but also help arrange mental health treatment, employment services, and housing referrals. Without parole and probation officers, offenders would be left to their own devices and would not receive the necessary assistance to help them get their lives back on track.

Human Resources

Another career option for a psychology graduate lies in counseling, where he/she may play a major role in a company’s recruiting, conflict resolution, and team-building strategies. Psychology majors need excellent speaking and writing skills and need to be able to work in a this type of environment.

Social Work

Social work is yet another career path well suited for a psychology major. Social workers can find employment in a variety of environments. Some work in hospice, some are employed as caseworkers or mental health assistants, and still others work with children and families in the legal system. Social workers play a vital role for many people as they provide assistance with navigating the system of child protective services, welfare, Medicaid, or patient advocates.

The job market for today's emerging psychology student is ripe with many, varied opportunities in numerous fields. Students are encouraged to visit the sites listed below for further information on job prospects.


Written by Dr. Wendy Hicks

Dr. Hicks is an Associate Professor and Chair of the Master of Science in Criminal Justice program in the College of Liberal Arts at Ashford University.


For more information about on-time completion rates, the median loan debt of students who completed each program, and other important information, please visit www.ashford.edu/online-degrees/program-disclosures#291.

Questions? Talk with an Advisor