Top 10 Reasons to Get a Bachelor's in Psychology

If you’re fascinated by the way the mind works and want to know more about what motivates people to do the things they do, a psychology bachelor’s degree may be the perfect next step for you. If so, check out what can you do with a psychology bachelor's degree?

Here are the top 10 reasons why you should earn that psychology degree: 

  1. Insight into human behavior: Many individuals study psychology because they want to better understand themselves or those around them. Through a bachelor’s degree in psychology, you’ll gain a deeper understanding of the many factors that affect human behavior. This will empower you to more effectively help others, and it can increase your capacity for compassion for them (even when they aren’t being their most lovable selves). Such insight is also valuable in careers related to education, persuasion, conflict resolution and negotiation.
  1. Many career pathways: There are many different types of jobs that you can get with a psychology degree. Some focus on research — that is, digging deeper into the workings of human behavior and the mind — while others are more focused on applying research in clinical, corporate and other settings.

    A bachelor’s in psychology can be the first step toward a career in counseling, research, social work, human resources, marketing, workforce development or education. With a bachelor’s degree, you’ll be eligible to go into jobs such as: advertising agent, career counselor, case manager, human resources specialist, lab assistant, market researcher, rehabilitation specialist or substance abuse counselor.   
  1. Graduate school: Many jobs in the field of psychology — such as clinical mental health counselor or school psychologist — require a master’s degree and certification or a professional license to practice. For some psychology-related jobs (such as psychiatrist or college professor), you’ll also need a doctorate.

    Earning a bachelor’s degree in psychology enables you to work in the psychology field as you’re going on to graduate school. It also lets you discover and explore areas that are of particular interest to you and that you want to learn more about in graduate school.

    Your bachelor’s degree will also establish a great foundation of knowledge that will be invaluable as you advance into more specialized programs at the master’s and doctorate levels. Psychology-related graduate programs may also require you to have taken certain classes as an undergraduate, and a bachelor’s degree in psychology can help ensure you already have those pre-requisites in place.  
  1. Making a difference in people’s lives: Individuals who study psychology are often motivated by the desire to help others. A degree in psychology opens up many opportunities to have a positive effect on someone’s life. For example, as a practitioner in the field, you may help people overcome the effects of trauma, deal with a mental illness, face a mental health crisis or achieve personal goals. As a researcher, you may help educators better understand how their students learn or make advances toward better treatments for diseases, disorders or illnesses that affect mental health or cognitive function.
  1. Job outlook: The job outlook is very bright for psychology-related professions. The criminal justice system is increasingly using treatment and counseling services in place of jail time for convicted drug offenders. As a result, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 25% growth in demand for substance abuse, behavioral disorder and mental health counselors between 2019 and 2029.

    Job openings for school and career counselors are also expected to increase — projected to grow 8% in the 2019–2029 time period. This will be driven by a rise in the number of students in K-12 schools as well as a trend toward expanding career service offerings on college campuses.

    While growth in demand for psychologists may seem modest in contrast — just 3% during the same time period — there are still strong career opportunities in this area as well. Aging populations and a better understanding of mental health needs will mean continued demand for psychologists.

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  1. There’s always something else to discover: We haven’t come close to completely figuring out the human mind. What’s more, our understanding of what we think we know is constantly evolving, thanks to ongoing research. That leaves a lot of room for you to make a significant contribution to the field. 

    Consider, for example, autism spectrum disorder (ASD), which was originally thought to be a form of childhood schizophrenia and was at first attributed to poor parenting. We’ve come a long way since then in our understanding of ASD, but there are still many questions left to answer. The field is wide open for you to help make the next major advance in this and other research. 
  1. A wide field of study: There are many different types of psychology, including cognitive psychology, clinical psychology, social psychology, developmental psychology, forensic psychology and occupational psychology. These various branches explore how the mind develops, learns and ultimately functions and how various factors affect human behavior, cognitive development and mental health. You can take your study of psychology in a lot of different directions — and a bachelor’s degree in psychology is a perfect starting point for all of them.  
  1. Always learning: As new research emerges and existing theories are refined, the field of psychology continues to evolve. A bachelor’s in psychology establishes a great base of knowledge that you’ll be able to build on throughout your career. You’ll continue to learn as you read peer-reviewed journals, attend conferences and otherwise engage with colleagues.
  1. Every day is different: A degree in psychology will set you on a path to a career in which you can help people find solutions to the challenges they face. You’ll put your problem-solving skills to use as you continually tackle unique situations. It’s likely that no two days will look alike — and that keeps things fresh and interesting, even after you’ve got years of experience under your belt.
  1. Becoming a better thinker: Psychology is the scientific examination of the way the mind works. As a result, when you study psychology, you learn how to think scientifically: testing hypotheses, questioning assumptions, looking closely at evidence and digging deeper when there’s not enough information. Such critical thinking skills are applicable in a variety of professional settings and everyday life.

In short, a bachelor’s degree in psychology can open up a lot of different rewarding career paths and other opportunities. Ready to get started? Apply to Cal U’s psychology program today.