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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

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.

  • Accomodation Support Enabler
  • Accounts Executive
  • Applied Psychologist
  • Assistant Clinical Psychologist
  • Assistant Commercial Officer
  • Assistant Ecologist
  • Assistant Manager
  • Assistant Psychologist
  • Camp Tutor
  • Case Manager
  • Clinical Research Assistant
  • Clinical Researcher
  • Development Officer
  • Discharge Facilitator
  • Eating Disorders Clinician
  • Employment Advisor
  • Gang And Sexual Violence Group Worker
  • Graduate Development Programme
  • Graduate Intern Researcher
  • Higher Level Teaching Assistant
  • Human Factors Engineer
  • Human Resources Graduate Intern
  • Illustrator
  • Insight Analyst
  • Laboratory Analyst
  • Learning Experience Designer
  • Management Trainee
  • Marketing Assistant
  • Marketing Executive
  • Mental Health Act Co-Ordinator
  • Mental Health Therapist
  • Offending Behaviour Programme Facilitator
  • Outreach Officer
  • Personal Advisor For Looked After Children
  • Police Identification Officer
  • Police Officer
  • Probation Officer
  • Project Coordinator
  • Psychology Assistant
  • Recovery Coordinator
  • Research Assistant And Assistant Psychologist
  • Sales And Social Media Content Creator
  • Senior Business Development Executive
  • Senior Support Therapist
  • Senior Technologist
  • Service Coordinator
  • Special Constable
  • Special Educational Needs Teacher
  • Support Manager
  • Teacher
  • Teaching And Research Associate
  • Telecoach Psychological Practitioner
  • Tenancy Sustainment Officer
  • Trainee Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner
  • Trampoline And Gymnastics Coach
  • Voice Over Artist
  • Wellbeing Practitioner

Employers to consider

  • Acco Brands
  • Administrative Service Bureau Ltd
  • AGE UK
  • Astute Limited
  • Avon And Somerset Constabulary
  • Babcock International
  • Barton Primary School
  • Berkshire Psychology
  • British American Tobacco
  • Chisel Robotics
  • City of Plymouth Gymnastics
  • Clevertouch Marketing
  • Defence Science Technology Laboratory (Dstl)
  • Devon and Cornwall Police
  • Devon Partnership NHS Trust
  • Dorset Council
  • Enfield Youth Offending Services
  • Enterprise Rent-A-Car
  • First Databank UK Ltd
  • Genius Within
  • Hampshire County Council
  • HM Prison and Probation Service
  • Hywel Dda University Health Board
  • Kent Surrey and Sussex Community Rehabilitation Company
  • Livewell Southwest
  • Learning Support Fund
  • Ministry of Defence
  • Next Step South-West
  • NHS
  • Nuffield Health
  • Oat Academy
  • Oreston Community Academy
  • Outlook South West
  • Plymouth Marjon University
  • Plymouth Options
  • Re:Cognition Health
  • Runway Training
  • Samaritans
  • SERIO, University Of Plymouth
  • Shekinah
  • Sponge UK Limited
  • Thames Valley Police
  • Think Project
  • University Of Cambridge, Centre For Neuroscience In Education
  • University of Plymouth
  • UXC Group Ltd
  • West Yorkshire Police, Identification Bureau
  • Westwood Laboratories
  • Wiltshire Council-Children in Care Team
  • Women's Centre
  • YMCA Dulverton Group

*Data is from the Graduate Outcomes Surveys of 2017/18 and 2018/19. Graduates were surveyed 15 months after graduating. Data displayed is for 139 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:
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’
  • click on ‘Alumni’
  • filter the results by subject, sector, company or location.

For more information about the alumni tool click on 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, click on 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

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