Can I work in comms fields (marketing, pr, etc.) with a Bachelor's in neuroscience?
I'm really intrigued with this subject and riveted to learn more to satisfy my curiosity. However, I can't see myself doing either research based or medical based jobs. I'd like to delve into the creative industry such as Marketing, Advertising and Design. Since there are bootcamps and workshops for these subjects, is it wise for me to major in Neuroscience? #marketing #business #research #neuroscience #communications
I am neither in the field of neuroscience nor marketing. However, from my experience in communication internally as well as externally concepts of neuroscience if understood throughly are going to be of utmost importance for communication.
Neuroscience will help everyone get a good grip on cognitive and behavioural aspects of humans. Deep understanding of such fundamentals are truly needed to carry out a message, leadership and building positive environment.
This also helps you build better advertising models, have right & effective communication/PR message and marketing strategies. However, neuroscience has many other areas that it can create impact.
As we move towards a new age, diversity of thoughts and background should start helping in the core area. Eg: understanding of humanities help build better products. In the same way neuroscience should be an asset to Comms field.
There are many aspects of your question that you would need to breakdown, take a look into, and study to reach to a decision. When it comes to communications in general, yes, you can definitely use your knowledge. There are many companies dedicated to the science field that may take great advantage of your knowledge and experience. Keep in mind: communications involve people, and people involve diversity.
Now, depending on the level/role/section at which you would like to work within the communications field, you may need to fulfill some requirements such field may demand from you. This also vary depending on the local regulations and role/position you may pursue.
My main advices to you would be researching and reaching out to the local associations dedicated to the communications field in which you would interested, as well as the institutions and associations that manage the communications for science/neuroscience entities. Think about it: every company/entity, being from science or not, has to have communication practices in place, such as PR, marketing and so on. That will most definitely give you a broad vision of how communications and science come together.
I hope this helps and please feel free to reach out.
Thaynan recommends the following next steps:
I found this Princeton article that shares a list of careers in Neuroscience: https://pni.princeton.edu/undergraduate-concentration/careers-neuroscience. Here are some of their suggestions for a career in the creative sector:
-Graphic designer for any company/ organization on this list
-Design web-based scientific education material (NIH, Scitable, University Science Centers, Startup companies)
-Science consultant for the media (TV, movies, books, etc)
-Artist specializing in how the brain perceives things
-Architect who specializes in how the brain perceives spaces, color, texture, emotion, etc
-Toy designer- use knowledge to make brain developing toys
-Musician/instructor (understanding hearing and the brain and its role in composition, performance)
-Write neurosci-fi screenplays
-Web design, art, and/or writing for any neuroscience organization
Lastly, the best piece of advice I received in high school: your college degree does not always dictate the job/career you do. Many employers just want to see you have four-year college degree.
There is a lot of opportunity for marketing in the healthcare field, and generally scientists and engineers are hired into these roles. People with a scientific background understand how to explain the information. If you have artistic talent there's a need for illustrating these things as well.
There are also a lot of neuroscience and neuropsychology theories that involve how people process information and respond to it. This is applied to marketing approaches all the time. For example, there are entire courses dedicated to things like Iconography - understanding how people process icons and images.
If you are certain this is the direction you want to go in, fill up your electives with as many relevant courses as you can think of. The wide experience will help you in the long run.
I have studied Marketing and never worked in the area, but what I have learned is that Marketing is such a wide embracing area that can be combined with pretty much anything you do.
Marketing uses the studies of the human way of learning, perception, how memory is stored, psychological behavior and many other neuro-knowledge to plan campaigns, designs, fashion, user experience, clients' journey, client success, statistic predictions and so many other areas. This is a sector that is growing and becoming part of many different other areas.
There are great suggestions given by other people here and it's great that you are doing your research.
You can be sure that any knowledge you bring is always a plus.
I don't think its impossible at all. I personally don't have any exposure to what neuroscience involves but I can tell you that I currently work in Marketing, has a degree in Finance and I never actually thought marketing would be something I do (and for awhile people thought the combination of the two is unusual - its actually not!).
As I got further in the career and got more exposure (directly and indirectly) into the area I actually enjoy it. The combination of the two 'world' (analytical and non-analytical) actually work well together as you can apply a lot of science behind marketing which can make it more powerful.
Its great to hear that you have already done your research on workshops - they're definitely great options for you to try. Work experience, internships etc can also be a useful if they are available over there as they tend to be more hands-on and generally gives you a better picture to what the job might actually look like. Sometimes the only way for you to know is to try it out yourself and keep it open mind!
I work at Medtronic, a company that makes medical devices. One of our products is surgical navigation for cranial surgeries. Basically, it is like a GPS system for surgery so that surgeons know where they are in the brain when they do things like tumor resection (cutting out a tumor). Since our target market is neurosurgeons, all of our marketing people need to have a good understanding of neuroscience, anatomy, or biomedical engineering in order to speak intelligently to our customers.
We also develop and produce DBS therapies - Deep Brain Stimulation - which helps treat conditions such as Parkinson's and Epilepsy. We also have laser ablation therapy, which basically uses a laser to burn and kill (ablation) a tumor instead of cutting it out. Again, our target customers are neurosurgeons and our marketers need to be able to speak intelligently to them.
Neuroscience is such a broad area and there are so many things about the brain that we don't yet know. It is a fascinating subject and as scientists and engineers develop more innovative products, they need marketers with understanding of the products to get the word out.
It might be worth considering a degree in neuroscience followed by an MBA focusing on Marketing to give you that skill set as well.
Keri recommends the following next steps:
The field of neuromarketing, also referred to as consumer neuroscience, may be of particular interest.
Best of luck!
Also, consider the field of user experience design - a lucrative and in-demand job category that is fundamentally about optimizing the way software (websites, apps, etc.) appeal to the human brain. Right in your sweet-spot, perhaps.
I have a bachelor of fine arts degree and am working as a financial services marketing writer, and have also worked as a food writer. I think you'll find that many people study something, and their life takes them in another direction. As you move into your career, your course of study will probably be less important to potential employers than your experience. For instance, I studied art and worked as a designer, but also started blogging when blogging was a new thing (I'm a dinosaur.) During that time, I built my writing portfolio. I got a contract job doing design work for a financial services company, and when my time as a contractor was up, they had a writing position available. I interviewed and got the job based on my time already spent at the company and the writing I had done for local publications. Don't get too hung up on whether your course of study will limit your options—but I would say study something you're really interested in. That may make a difference in deciding to stick to it and complete your degree. :)
Therefore, an academic background in neurosciences will be a huge advantage if you wish to be in marketing/advertising/comms.