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What jobs can I get with an AA in Psychology?

I'm currently almost finished with my Bachelor's. I also currently work as a Behavioral Therapist. But are there alternative options? Psychology is a pretty vast field and you can do so much with it. I was wondering on what everyone's thoughts were. psychology school college associatesdegree

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Tanaz’s Answer

Hi Clifford!

I currently work as an administrator of an undergraduate program in psychology at a school in Los Angeles, CA. You are asking a great question! And many of my prospective and current students ask this important question too!

I usually answer by saying that psychology is a broad field that applies to many career clusters. Students who study psychology for undergraduate programs like an AA or BA are studying human behavior in a variety of settings and roles. Which prepares them well for lots of work positions where that relates.

Some areas include:
advertising, promotion and marketing
human resource
organizational training and development
health services management
public relations
social and community services management
retail sales management
education
and more!

There are some additional career clusters that are more directly related to psychology that you can enter with licenses earned on the job or with a few extra requirements, such as behavioral therapists (like the RBT you mentioned) or addictions counselors. Many license programs have tiers that include the years of college you have completed. Of course, more college and training usually means higher licensing (and potentially higher earnings!).

If you want to become a therapist, counselor, or psychologist, an undergraduate Psychology degree is the foundation. However, most states require at least a masters-level degree to work in these roles, while some require a doctoral degree. Many of these graduate programs include hands-on learning and practice that is important in working with people in this way, and that just takes a bit more schooling.

The Psychology field continues to grow, according to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (2016), there are currently 166,600 psychologists. The anticipated growth of psychologists is expected to grow by 14%, which is faster than the average for all other occupations.

Interestingly, I've met a lot of people who have undergraduate degrees in psychology that aren't exactly working in fields you might predict. For example, lawyers or law enforcement. When you stop to think about it, it does make sense. There are a lot of related helping fields, such as social work and healthcare, that connect well too. I've seen many students use an undergrad degree in Psychology as a jumping off point into a more specific career path too.

Hope this gives you some ideas!
:-) Tanaz

Tanaz recommends the following next steps:

Think about this: What would be your "dream job" that connects to psychology?
Consider what you enjoy doing and what type of work you see yourself doing in the future
Think about your state's guidelines for certain jobs- how can you meet them? what do they require?
Visit https://careersinpsychology.org/50-best-jobs-psychologists/ for more ideas (just scroll past the ads)
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Elena’s Answer

Hi Clifford!

I actually graduated with my Bachelors of Arts in Psychology. When I first got my AA, it was technically a general Associate's degree, with a focus on Psychology. At that time I noticed it was hard to get a job I liked that was Psych related without a higher degree or work experience so I decided to go for my Bachelors. I think it depends what type of work you are trying to do as well. Depending on the job it might require a specific certification or Doctorate degree. Most psychology jobs where you interact with patients will require a higher level of degree. I would suggest pinpointing what type of psychology you want to get into (Behavioral study, Therapy, etc) and research it, look at current job openings and what those companies are requiring for that role.


Hope this helps and good luck!

Elena recommends the following next steps:

Determine type of Psychology practice you want to get into
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