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What Can You Do with a Master's Degree in Psychology? 

Psychology is the science of exploring how the mind works: how people interpret the world around them, make decisions, learn, interact and behave. Psychologists work in countless fields, from mental health settings to businesses, schools, government, hospitals and more. If you're interested in launching a career in psychology, advancing in your current role or pursuing a doctorate degree, a master's in psychology degree program can help you gain the knowledge, skills and qualifications you need to achieve your goals.

Psychology Teaching Careers

Teaching offers a broad range of career options in the field of psychology. For those who wish to teach psychology at the college level, National Louis University's Master of Arts in Psychology: Teaching of Psychology program can help in preparing for this in-demand career.

Employment of postsecondary teachers is expected to grow 13 percent through 2024, faster than the average for all occupations.1 The top employers for postsecondary psychology teachers are colleges, universities and professional schools (with an annual mean wage of $82,370), junior colleges (annual mean wage: $70,050), and technical and trade schools (annual mean wage: $50, 760).2

Graduates of NLU's M.A. in Psychology: Teaching of Psychology can gain the knowledge and skills to:

  • Design engaging, effective learning experiences
  • Write measurable instructional outcomes
  • Plan effective assessment instruments
  • Map assessments and activities to outcomes
  • Create course syllabi, classroom activities and content

Beyond that, graduates will be able to define a personal teaching philosophy, write a curriculum vitae and build a teaching portfolio  all vital for marketing oneself as a college instructor.

Psychology Subfields

Teaching is just one of many subfields of psychology. Psychologists can work anywhere and everywhere, and their work contributes to nearly every aspect of our lives. Below is a sampling of psychology settings and their related subfields.

Psychology & Business 

Psychology plays a major role in any business. From improving how managers choose, motivate, support and train employees to helping businesses design better products, psychologists help shape what makes a successful organization.

Psychology subfields in the business arena include:3

Psychology & Health 

Psychologists who are passionate about health use scientific research to better understand perception, learning, problem-solving, judgement, memory and more. With this research — plus in-depth knowledge of mental, emotional and physical disorders — psychologists can explore the relationship between mental processes, behaviors and health. Ultimately, this equips psychologists to improve healthcare systems and help people adopt health behaviors.

Subfields for psychologists interested in health include:4

  • Brain Science & Cognitive Psychology
  • Developmental Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Counseling Psychology
  • Health Psychology
  • Rehabilitation Psychology
  • Social Psychology

Psychology & Government or Social Organizations 

For psychologists who want to serve their community, a career in government or social organizations can be especially fulfilling. In this capacity, psychologists provide the expertise needed by social service organizations, government agencies, public safety teams, the military and the court system to help build stronger communities.

Psychology subfields in this area include:5

  • Forensic & Public Service Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Counseling Psychology
  • Social Psychology

Psychology & Schools 

Teaching isn't the only career available for psychologists who want to work in a school setting. Psychology plays a vital role in helping us understand how people acquire and apply new information. This information can help educators optimize the learning experience based on student needs, refine testing processes and improve instructional methods.

Subfields for psychologists who are passionate about education include:6

  • Psychology of Teaching and Learning
  • Quantitative Psychology
Source References [+]

1. "Postsecondary Teachers." 17 December 2015.

2. "Psychology Teachers, Postsecondary." 30 March 2016.

3. "Helping Businesses and Organizations."

4. "Promoting Health."

5. "Serving Communities."

6. "Working in Schools."


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