Some of the most interesting job options available to graduates of psychology programs go beyond clinical practice. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that employment of psychologists will increase 19 percent by 2024. Psychologists can work in many different industries and focus on many different topics. Though clinical practice and education are the typical career paths that many psychology graduates take, there are other opportunities in psychology.
1. Industrial and Organizational Psychologists
They use their knowledge of the human mind to improve the quality of life of the labor force and productivity in the workplace. Industrial and organizational (I/O) psychologists research and study issues like management, working styles, recruitment, training and productivity in order to make recommendations and help with organizational development and policy. I/O psychologists make an average salary of $76,950, according to the BLS. The BLS also reports that this occupation will grow 19 percent by 2024. However, it should be noted that because it is a small occupation, the growth will account for around 400 jobs.
2. Consumer Psychologists
Similar to I/O psychologists, consumer psychologists focus their research skills and knowledge on helping businesses. Instead of focusing on the workers and productivity, consumer psychologists use their knowledge of the human mind and behavior to understand why consumers make certain decisions and how to influence consumer behavior. This may include analyzing what outside influences affect consumer behavior and particular audiences. Businesses use this information to create better marketing campaigns and branding that is more attractive to their intended audiences.
3. Forensic Psychologists
Forensic psychologists use their skills and knowledge to study and evaluate criminals, prisoners or terrorists. Specifically, forensic psychologists apply the fundamental principles of psychology to the criminal justice system. Forensic psychologists can either work as consultants or direct employees for attorneys, law enforcement agencies, parole departments, prisons, hospitals and courts.
4. Media Psychologists
Because of the incredible influence that movies, television, music, books and the Internet have on social and human behavior, media psychologists aim to gain a better understanding of exactly how much and at what point these different kinds of media affect our daily lives and choices. Media psychologists work with small focus groups or on larger-scale studies. Often they are employed as consultants for media companies that are making the effort to understand what their audiences want and how to best meet their needs.