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Discover employment and further study opportunities that you could consider once you graduate with a psychology degree, and learn how you can stand out to graduate employers.
We encourage you to:
  • undertake career planning and research
  • build your networks, meet employers and graduates
  • gain essential work experience during your course
  • attend career fairs and events
  • continually develop your skills and knowledge
  • get involved with relevant clubs and societies
  • visit the Careers Service for advice.

Knowledge and skills

Your study of psychology will provide you with knowledge and skills that are valuable to employers:
  • written and verbal communication through report writing and presenting
  • analytical research and data handling through conducting psychological experiments
  • problem solving and scientific reasoning through real-world research investigations
  • team work and leadership skills through group projects
  • planning and project management through independent research tasks
  • awareness of and sensitivity to interpersonal factors.

Career options

Undergraduate psychology programmes at the University of Plymouth are approved by the British Psychological Society and provide students with the Graduate Basis for Chartered membership (GBC). This is a requirement for postgraduate training leading to Chartered Psychologist status in occupations such as clinical, educational, forensic, counselling, health and occupational psychology.
Entry to Chartered Psychologist training is fiercely competitive and successful applicants typically have a range of relevant employment experience in addition to a first class honours degree. In healthcare settings the Chartered workforce is Increasingly supported by a range of new psychology professions. These include various Psychological Practitioner roles as part of the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) programme and related roles such as the Clinical Associate Psychologist.
Nationally, most psychology graduates do not train as professional psychologists, however their broad skillset opens up opportunities across a variety of employment sectors including public services, industry and commerce and not-for-profit organisations. Health and social care, education and criminal justice are popular choices, but psychology graduates are also found in the business services sector, for example in marketing, public relations, human resources and data analytics roles. A small number of graduates pursue research-based career pathways.
Researching your career options
Given the diversity of career options open to psychology graduates, it is important to research and explore these fully so that you can make informed decisions about your future.
The following websites provide helpful information for career research:
Employment opportunities
Below is a snapshot of what some University of Plymouth psychology graduates told us they were doing 15 months after graduation. For some graduates, these jobs serve as stepping stones to professional posts by providing relevant workplace experience.
  • Accommodation Support Enabler
  • Assistant Clinical Psychologist
  • Assistant Psychologist
  • Assistant Research Psychologist
  • Background Screening Analyst
  • Disability Advisor
  • Education Mental Health Practitioner
  • Family Support Worker
  • Gang and Sexual Violence Group Worker
  • Graduate Development Programme
  • Graduate Human Factors Engineer
  • Graduate Intern Researcher
  • Housing Support Worker
  • IAPT Support Worker
  • Laboratory Analyst
  • Lecturer In Psychology
  • Mental Health Practitioner
  • Police Officer
  • Probation Officer
  • Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner
  • Recovery Coordinator
  • Social Prescriber
  • Substance Misuse Specialist
  • Teacher
  • Telecoach Psychological Practitioner
  • Trainee Children Wellbeing Practitioner
  • Trainee Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner
  • Trainee Social Worker
  • Work Coach in Employment and Wellbeing Services
  • Youth Engagement Advisor
Employers to consider
  • Avon and Somerset Constabulary
  • Babcock International
  • Change Grow Live
  • Child Assault Prevention (CAP UK)
  • Cornwall Mind
  • Deloitte
  • Devon and Cornwall Police
  • EDP Drug & Alcohol Services
  • Enfield Youth Offending Services
  • Hampshire County Council
  • Harbour
  • Isle of Wight Youth Trust
  • Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Trust
  • Livewell Southwest
  • NHS – Essex University Foundation Trust
  • Plymouth City Council
  • Prison and Probation Service
  • Re-Cognition Health
  • SERIO, University of Plymouth
  • Somerset Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
  • South Wales Fire and Rescue Service
  • The Priory Group
  • University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust
  • University of Cambridge, Centre for Neuroscience in Education
  • University of Plymouth
  • West Yorkshire Police, Identification Bureau
*Data is from the Graduate Outcomes Surveys covering the three years of 2018/19 – 2020/21. Graduates were surveyed 15 months after graduating. Data displayed is for UK-domiciled, first degree, full-time graduates who are working, studying or looking for work.

Further study

Some of the careers chosen by psychology graduates will require or benefit from further study, so this should be considered carefully. The University of Plymouth offers the following postgraduate study options in psychology: 
Many of the emerging psychology professions like Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner, Childrens Wellbeing Practitioner, Education Mental Health Practitioner and Clinical Associate Psychologist have postgraduate qualifications integrated into their training pathways. Typically you would need to apply for a trainee role advertised on the NHS Jobs website
For most other postgraduate courses you will need to apply directly to the relevant university. You should consider the financial implications of further study as well as selecting a programme that suits your interests, learning style and future career direction. The following websites are a good starting point for exploring postgraduate options, but you may also benefit from talking to a Careers Consultant about your particular situation.
Some useful websites to help you find a suitable postgraduate programme:
It is also worth investigating what further study options the University has to offer as you may find the perfect course for yourself in an institution you already know. There are also sometimes financial benefits of staying on such as a fee discount to Alumni – find out your funding options. 

Careers Service support

Accessing support from the Careers Service couldn’t be easier, come along to the Careers Service Helpdesk in the Student Hub or access our 24/7 online resources.
There is a wide range of support available from skills workshops to events, placements and internships advice, 1-2-1 appointments and help getting started with LinkedIn.
Our bite-sized Skills Workshops can give your career the boost it needs. Choose from a range of topics:
  • effective career planning
  • job hunting techniques
  • finding part-time work
  • CVs and interviews
  • mastering LinkedIn
  • and more.
Workshops are delivered by the Careers Service, however they are also an opportunity to learn from your peers, share experiences and ask questions. Visit myCareer to see the full range of activities and to book your place.

Connect with graduates

Build your network and job sector knowledge using LinkedIn’s alumni tool. This will allow you to see the career journeys of graduates from your programme, the qualifications they completed, the skills they developed and employers they worked for. You can then ‘connect’ with people of interest.
  • search LinkedIn for ‘University of Plymouth’
  • select ‘Alumni’
  • filter the results by subject, sector, company or location.
For more information about the alumni tool select the LinkedIn alumni tool guide. If you are looking for help to set up or learn how to make the most out of your LinkedIn profile, select the LinkedIn guide for students or come to one of our workshops.

Other advice and guidance

Gain work experience
Undertaking work experience in your first and second years will help you stand out from the crowd when the time comes for you to complete applications for graduate employment and further study. Work experience develops valuable skills and qualities that employers are looking for and is essential for many roles. It can also help you to confirm or rule out particular career choices. Furthermore, experience in the workplace can bring you into contact with people who may be able to assist you at the beginning of your career.
You have plenty of options open to you. You could apply for a placement year, work part-time around your studies, undertake volunteering or approach organisations directly to negotiate short periods of work experience. Some organisations offer paid internships over the summer or of one year’s duration.
The University of Plymouth Students’ Union also offers a wide range of volunteering opportunities.
For those interested in training as a Chartered Psychologist or research-based careers, the School of Psychology runs the Research Apprentice Scheme which provides an opportunity for students to support academics with cutting edge research. Find out more information about the scheme.
Student Hub

Where could your degree subject take you?

Architecture and built environment
Biological sciences
Business, economics, management, marketing, accounting and finance, and maritime and logistics
Creative arts: art, illustration and photography
Design: interior/product and furniture design, graphic design and game arts/digital design
Earth, geography and environment
Education and teaching
Hospitality, tourism and events management
Humanities: anthropology, art history, English and history
Law, criminology and policing
Mathematical sciences
Media and filmmaking
Medicine, dentistry and biomedical sciences
Nursing, midwifery and allied health professions
Performing arts: acting, drama and musical theatre
Sociology, international relations and politics