What Can I Do with a Psychology Degree?

The MSU psychology major is designed to give you a strong foundation in both science and the liberal arts. The coursework and experiential learning that are part of the curriculum develop a broad range of skills that are applicable to a variety of careers and employers.

Some of our psychology graduates go on to pursue additional postgraduate education to become professional psychologists, therapists, lawyers, or physicians. Many others enter the workforce directly after graduation and pursue careers where they apply the skills and knowledge they’ve gained from their study of psychology.

Transferrable skills that you’ll develop include written and oral communication (including writing reports and giving presentations), managing and analyzing data, designing and conducting research, problem solving, and working in teams.

The scientific elements of the Murray State psychology curriculum, including applying a logical approach to problem solving, evaluating data, and effectively communicating results provide you with useful tools for careers in areas like healthcare, law enforcement and corrections, finance, research, and information technology.

The knowledge you gain about human learning, behavior, and motivation as well as skills in critically evaluating a problem, formulating a reasoned response, and generating new ideas and solutions all lend themselves to careers in areas like social and community services, administration, marketing and advertising, and the legal sector.

Employment

The bachelor's degree is psychology is a versatile degree that can be applied to a variety of disciplines and lead to challenging and successful employment in numerous professions.  Murray State psychology graduates have have gone on to jobs that include:

  • Adult Protective Services Investigator;  KY Department of Family Based Services
  • Assistant English Language Teacher; JET (Japan)
  • Child and Youth Care Manager; Mental Health Cooperative
  • Case Manager; Four Rivers Behavioral Health
  • Correctional Officer; Kentucky Department of Corrections
  • Family Coach; Southwest Behavioral and Health Services
  • Global Supply Chain Analyst; Brown-Foreman
  • Senior Research Analyst; comScore, Inc.
  • Social Media Team Lead; National Sourcing, Inc.
  • Sports Writer; SBNation

Click the arrows below for more examples of positions in which graduates can find challenging and successful employment across a range of areas.

Business/Marketing/Finance 

  • Advertising Copywriter
  • Account Representative
  • Development Specialist/Fundraiser
  • Financial Advisor
  • Insurance Claims Adjustor
  • Management Consultant
  • Marketing Analyst
  • Operations Research Analyst
  • Public Relations Specialist
  • Scientific Equipment Sales Specialist
  • Small Business Owner

Community, Social, and Human Services

  • Adult/Child Protective Services Investigator
  • Child Development Associate
  • Child Welfare Caseworker
  • Community Relations Officer
  • Daycare Center Director
  • Family Support Specialist
  • Urban Affairs Manager
  • Urban Planning Officer
  • Youth Minister

Human Resources and Personnel

  • Admissions Evaluator
  • Career/Employment Counselor
  • Disability Case Manager
  • Employee Relations Manager
  • Equal Opportunity Employment Coordinator
  • Foreign Service Officer
  • Human Resources Administrator
  • Personnel Manager
  • Recruiter
  • Volunteer Services Director

Law Enforcement/Corrections/Legal System

  • Correctional Officer
  • Customs Inspector
  • FBI (field officer, administrative)
  • Police Officer
  • Private Investigator
  • Probation/Parole Officer
  • Victim Advocate

Mental Health/Healthcare Services

  • Child Life Specialist
  • Equine Assisted Therapy Facilitator
  • Patient Advocate/Coordinator
  • Psychiatric Technician
  • Research/Laboratory Assistant
  • Substance Abuse Counselor

Sport/Recreation/Leisure

  • Activities Director (nursing homes, treatment facilities)
  • Animal Trainer (incl. service animals)
  • Event Planner
  • Parks and Recreation Officer
  • Recreation Specialist

Technology/Media

  • Editor
  • Human Factors Engineer
  • Media Buyer
  • Opinion Research Coordinator
  • Publicist
  • Social Media Manager
  • Statistician
  • Technical Writer

Graduate and Professional School

 If you want to become a professional psychologist (including a clinical or counseling psychologist or a school psychologist) or teach at a college or university, a master's or doctoral degree is necessary. The psychology program at Murray State provides the educational, research, and experiential learning experiences  you need to be an attractive candidate to graduate school admission committees. The bachelor's degree in psychology is also an excellent springboard for pursuing postgraduate education in other areas including law school and medical school (national statistics show psychology majors have the same medical school admission rates as biology and chemistry majors).  Some of the degree programs to which Murray State psychology graduates have been admitted are:

  • George Mason University; MS in Industrial/Organizational Psychology
  • Iowa State University; PhD in Cognitive Psychology/Human-Computer Interaction
  • Northern Arizona University; MPA in Public Administration
  • Southern Illinois University; MS in Behavior Analysis and Therapy
  • Spalding University; PsyD in Clinical Psychology
  • Temple University; PhD in School Psychology
  • University of Edinburgh (Scotland); MSc in Human Cognitive Neuropsychology
  • University of Louisville: JD (Law)
  • University of Mississippi; PhD in Clinical Psychology
  • University of Southern Indiana; MSW in Clinical Social Work

For additional information or to talk with someone about how the psychology major at Murray State can help you pursue your career goals, contact us at:

Department of Psychology
212 Wells Hall
Murray State University
Murray, KY 42071
Phone: 270.809.2851
Fax: 270.809.2991
Email: msu.psychology@murraystate.edu
Department chair: Dr. Paula Waddill