Department of Psychology
Department of Psychology

Career Possibilities for Psychology Majors

This is a list of job titles and descriptions for entry level positions for which Liberal Arts graduates with a B.A. in Psychology might be hired.


Direct Job Fields

Academic Advisor/College Counselor

Advises students at all levels on selection of courses and majors. Sometimes involves career counseling. Sometimes requires certification.

Career Planning and Placement Counselor

Assists individuals in setting and implementing career and job-search goals, teaches decision-making and job-search skills, networks among employers for interviewing oppor tunities and internships, develops related library resources. Employers include private firms and universities and colleges.

Eligibility Worker

Screens prospective beneficiaries of a government program to determine their eligibility for the program's services. Works for federal, state, and local government agencies.

Housing and Student Life Coordinator

Administers housing services and produces special programs to promote positive interaction on campus. Works for universities and colleges.

School Counselor

Helps students to gain self-understanding, solve school-related problems, make personal and career decisions, and select appropriate educational programs. Administers and interprets standardized tests; works with school staff, students, and parents to identify and evaluate learning problems. Employees include elementary and secondary schools, technical institutes, and colleges. Typically requires coursework in counseling and a credential.

Secondary School Teacher

Instructs high school and junior high school students in specialized subject areas. Most secondary school teachers teach several courses in a single subject area. Public schools generally require certification; private schools typically do not.

Social Work Assistant

Helps social workers to furnish counseling and referral services to individuals and families. Handles intake, maintains files, interacts with referral agencies, and documents cases. Works for government agencies, hospitals, and social workers in private practice.

Special Program Teacher

Instructs students enrolled in special education programs. Settings (e.g., churches, social service agencies) and topics (e.g., vocational training, preschool Head Start, drug-abuse prevention) vary widely.

Student Activities Advisor

Administers various activities for college students, usually extracurricular. Positions include fraternity/sorority advisor, disciplinary advisor, foreign student advisor, student publications advisor, and so forth.

Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor

Assists physically, emotionally, or mentally disabled individuals to develop and carry out vocational and educational plans. Cooperates with other professionals such as physicians, placement counselors, and educators. Works for state and local rehabilitation agencies, hospitals, schools for the handicapped, and the Veterans Administration. Typically requires coursework in vocational rehabilitation and a credential.


Less Direct Job Fields

Affirmative Action Representative

Researches, analyzes, and monitors staffing policies in order to achieve affirmative action goals. Conducts outreach activities in order to identify and attract qualified women and minority applicants for company openings. Employers in all fields.

College Admissions Officer

Recruits and selects prospective students, creates promotional materials, makes presentations on and off campus, sets admissions criteria, reviews applications, and communicates with applicants.

Customer Service Representative

Handles customer relations, usually through direct contact with customers or clients. Researches and responds to complaints and informational inquiries, seeking both to meet the customer's needs and promote the image and reputation of the employer. Works for manufacturers, retailers, service industries, and social service organizations.

Employee Relations Assistant

Plans employee social activities, organizes new employee orientation sessions, assists in publishing employee newsletters. Reports to Employee Relations Specialist or Manager. Works for employers in all fields.

Human Resources Recruiter

Interviews applicants on college campuses, at employment fairs, at trade and professional meetings, and in the office. Promotes effective relations with colleges, universities, and other institutions that supply prospective employees. Positions exist in many settings, including search firms.

Human Resources Training Specialist

Trains employees or coordinates training programs designed to teach general information or specific task-oriented skills pertinent to the work for which employees are hired. Works for employers of all kinds.

Labor Relations Researcher

Assists labor relations specialists with detailed research required for contract negotiations. Prepares advisory reports on union-management agreements. Works for unions, unionized employers, and government arbitrators.

Legislative Aide

Performs research, writing, and liaison functions for a state or U.S. senator or congressional representative or for a municipal officeholder. Positions typically secured through direct contact with office holder.

Personnel Assistant

Assists in all aspects of Human Resources management, including recordkeeping, interviewing and hiring, resolving wage and salary issues, and administering career development, job training, and employee benefit programs. Works for employers of all kinds.

Survey Assistant

Assists in the design of survey interviews and questionnaires, the interviewing of subjects, the management of interviewers, collection and analysis of data, and documentation and presentation of findings. Works for government agencies and private surveying and market research organizations.


Indirect Job Fields

Advertising Media Planner

Determines the most cost-effective means of reaching a target market via print and broadcast media. Researches demographics of different media outlets, and analyzes demographic and budgetary aspects of advertising proposals.

Airlines Customer Service Representative

Executes reservations, ticketing, telephone and direct ticket sales, passenger ticketing and boarding. Also responds to complaints and requests for information.

Airlines Flight Attendant

Provides in-flight service to passengers and implements emergency procedures as neces sary.

Alumni Affairs Coordinator

Produces educational programs, social events, and special tours for alumni; writes alumni publications; coordinates fundraising and reunion activities. Works for college and university alumni affairs offices.

Biomedical/Medical Research Assistant

Follows detailed instructions and prescribed procedures to assist in laboratory research. Keeps records, writes reports, often conducts library research. Works in hospitals, clinics, colleges and universities, research institutes, and private industry.

College Development Specialist

Creates and implements programs to raise funds for a college or university through corporate and alumni contributions.

Consulting Operations Administrator

Furnishes support services for consultants. Coordinates travel arrangements, proofreads and edits reports, develops charts and graphs to illustrate findings, maintains and operates audiovisial equipment for presentations, organizes resource libraries, etc. Works for consulting firms.

Coordinator of Volunteers

Recruits, trains, assigns, and directs volunteers to provide services to an employer's constituency or clientele. Acts as a liaison with professional staff to coordinate volunteer assignments, organizes programs for training and recognition of volunteers, carries out related administrative duties. Works primarily for service organizations such as hospitals, social service agencies, and cultural institutions.

Corrections Officer

Maintains order in a penal facility, enforces rules and regulations, and supplements counseling provided by psychology professionals.


Writes freelance reports for one or more publications. Usually has specific knowledge of the subject or geographic area covered. Works as an independent contractor.

Educational Researcher

Creates new educational methods and materials; assesses the effectiveness of existing methods and materials. Employers include school districts, private schools, manufacturers of educational equipment, educational publishers, and national testing organizations.

Emergency Medical Technician/Paramedic

Provides emergency medical treatment and transportation. Works for hospitals, ambulance services, police or fire departments. Requires three to five months of specialized training.

Energy Communications Specialist

Handles community relations and liaison re: work with six major types of energy: oil and gas, coal, hydroelectric, nuclear, solar, and "alternatives" such as wind, tide, and geothermal. Works for producers, government agencies, consulting firms, and lobbying groups.

Energy Researcher

Researches a variety of issues involved in working with six major types of energy: oil and gas, coal, hydroelectric, nuclear, solar, and "alternatives" such as wind, tide, and geothermal. Works for producers, government agencies, consulting firms, and lobbying groups.

Environmental Communications Specialist

Conducts community relations and liaison regarding environmental issues in fields such as: earth, marine, and atmospheric sciences; mining; forestry; public works; and parks, wildlife, and water management. Works for government agencies, consulting firms, citizen's groups, research laboratories, scientific associations, and industry.

Environmental Researcher

Researches, develops, and presents information regarding environmental issues in fields such as: earth, marine, and atmospheric sciences; mining; forestry; public works; and parks, wildlife, and water management. Works for government agencies, consulting firms, citizens' groups, research laboratories, scientific associations, and industry.

Film Researcher/Copywriter

Reviews scripts, checks for factual and technical accuracy, rewrites copy, assists in creating storyboard representations of scenes. Relevant coursework or prior experience preferred. Works for entertainment, documentary, educational, and industrial film producers.

Freelance Writer

Writes for publications on an assignment basis for a negotiated fee, usually after submittal of a query letter proposing ideas for articles or stories. Typically works as an independent contractor.

Financial Researcher

Compiles statistical reviews and forecasts. Maintains and reviews financial literature and records regarding departments, industries, and possible transactions. Works for corporations, financial institutions. Usually requires relevant coursework.

Historical Research Assistant

Does historical analysis; studies policy issues; prepares analytical reports; coordinates interdisciplinary studies. Works for think tanks, universities, public research agencies.

Hotel Hospitality Representative

Solicits business and programs on behalf of a hotel or conference center, coordinates the catering and support services necessary to accommodate the particular needs of a client or program.

Institutional Researcher/Historian

Writes institutional and policy histories; researches and reports on current issues, long-range trends; edits public records, manages archives. Works for executive, legislative, and judicial agencies, international institutions, military services, cultural agencies, planning agencies, public archives and libraries, private industries and corporations.

Intelligence Officer

Researches and analyzes a diversity of geopolitical issues on behalf of the government. Employed by intelligence services such as the F.B.I., the C.I.A., the National Security Agency, and military intelligence agencies. Work requires testing and security clearance.

Investment Banking Analyst Trainee

Completes basic research required for investment banking transactions between institutions with long-term capital needs and major investors. Researches both broad industries and the specific financial status of particular institutions, and prepares documents and reports for staff and clients.

Law Enforcement Officer

Performs a variety of enforcement and investigative activities. May involve computer analyses. Works for federal, state, and local police departments and for special enforcement agencies such as the FBI, tobacco and firearms, drug enforcement, border patrol, etc.

Loan Officer

Acts as a liaison between a bank and its loan customers. Analyzes potential loan markets, evaluates credit-worthiness of prospective customers, recommends approval or denial of loans, administers active loan accounts.

Lobbying Organizer

Distributes materials and disseminates information about a particular issue or organization, recruits volunteers, solicits funds, and organizes such efforts as rallies, letter-writing campaigns, and voter registration drives. Employers include special and public interest groups as well as professional lobbyists.

Lobbying Researcher

Identifies information that can be used to support the positions and the efforts of lobbyists. Involves library research, attendance at conferences and committee meetings, and writing of reports. Employers include a diversity of special and public interest groups as well as professional lobbyists.

Market Research Assistant

Undertakes the preliminary research for a market study, gathering data concerning competitors' products, organizing existing sales records, etc. Also assists in writing final project reports. Works for market research firms, advertising agencies, manufacturers, and retailers.

Market Research Assistant Account Executive

Assists Account Executives in liaison with clients and helps to coordinate studies. Studies include analysis of sales records, surveying attitudes and opinions, and test marketing. Positions exist in market research firms, advertising agencies, manufacturing, and retailing.

Market Research Interviewer

Conducts interviews to acquire statistical data pertaining to potential buying behavior, consumer attitudes, and other marketing issues. Works for market research firms, advertising agencies, manufacturers, and retailers.

Market Research Project Supervisor

Under direction of an Account Executive, coordinates the efforts of interviewers, tabulators, and coders in conducting a market research study. Employers include market research firms, advertising agencies, manufacturers, and retailers.

Market Research Statistician

Provides guidance in a market study, ensuring that the results obtained are valid and worthy of interpretation. Positions exist in market research firms, advertising agencies, manufac turers, and retailers.

Occupational Therapy Assistant

Assists occupational therapists in teaching patients who, because of injury or illness, require training to accomplish day-to-day tasks. Works in hospitals, social service agencies, nursing homes, and rehabilitation clinics.


Performs preparatory work required to research a case, develops documentation required to write a brief. May interview prospective witnesses. Works for private law offices, law firms, prosecutors, and public defenders.

Park Ranger

Manages facilities and programs at federal, state and local parks and historic sites. Typically works for a government parks department. Summer jobs are readily available to students interested in the field of parks management.

Physician's Assistant

Assists physicians with a variety of tasks, including interviewing patients, taking histories, and performing minor treatment and diagnostic techniques. Most work in the office of a private practitioner; some work in a clinic, small hospital, or school medical office.

Physical Therapy Assistant

Works with physical therapists to treat patients who need to regain use of their limbs or to learn new ways of interacting with their environment because of illness or injury. Formal training available, but not necessarily required prior to employment.

Political Campaign Worker

Assists in planning, fundraising, research, writing issue statements, canvassing, and assessing voter attitudes. Works for candidates or interest groups during political election campaigns. Frequently leads to permanent positions with political organizations or office holders.

Preschool and Elementary School Teacher

Teaches basic academic and social skills to young children. Often teaches a variety of subjects to a single class or grade level. Public schools generally require certification; private shcools typically do not.

Public Affairs Coordinator

Creates, implements, and coordinates a service to a community. May involve fundraising for a charity, overseeing a scholarship fund, operating a service-oriented program or facility. Employers include nonprofit organizations, social service agencies, and the public affairs sections of commercial businesses.

Public Relations/Public Information Specialist

Assesses the public relations needs of an organization, and plans and implements programs to meet them. Distinct from advertising. Makes public appearances, produces special events, and prepares press releases and packets to generate favorable free publicity. Works for professional agencies, for businesses of all kinds, and for nonprofit and social service organizations.

Publications Researcher

Researches story and script ideas; maintains research files on topics and people; checks stories for accuracy. Works for newspaper, magazine, or book publishers.

Radio/Television Researcher

Researches story and script ideas for broadcast media. Maintains research files on topics and people; checks stories for accuracy. Works for radio and television producers.

Research Assistant

Assists researchers in collecting and analyzing data, observing and interviewing people, surveying appropriate literature, and writing reports in order to advise or inform a client. Works for research and consulting firms.

Reporter/Staff Writer

Works and writes for a publication on a regular basis. Usually works under pressure of deadlines on general assignments before specializing in a particular area. In addition to newspapers and magazines, employers include corporations and agencies with in-house newsletters.

Sociological Research Assistant

Does sociological analysis; studies policy issues; prepares analytical reports; coordinates interdisciplinary studies. Works for think tanks, universities, public research agencies.

Special Education Administrator

Develops and administers special education programs. Settings (eg., churches, social service agencies, youth organizations) and topics (e.g., therapeutic arts-and-crafts, drug-abuse education, athletic programs) vary widely.

Travel Agent

Counsels clients regarding travel plans and activities. Makes hotel, airline, train, car, and other arrangements for those traveling for business or pleasure. Typically works for an agency. Paid under commission agreements with airlines, hotels, etc.

Travel Consultant

Provides travel advice and information to people planning trips. Helps travelers to resolve questions and problems that come up on a trip. Works for travel clubs, state and local tourist bureaus, resorts, travel associations, credit card companies, and tour groups.

Urban Planning Research Assistant

Under the supervision of a city or regional planner, conducts research into the economic, environmental, and social consequences of development in order to support strategies for appropriate growth and renovation of rural, suburban, or urban areas. Typically works for a government agency. May work for a consulting or architectural firm.


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  • Department of Psychology

    The University of Texas at Austin
    SEA 4.208
    108 E. Dean Keeton Stop A8000
    Austin, TX 78712-1043