When considering a future in psychology, it's prudent to start working in the field in some capacity as soon as possible to increase your knowledge and experience level. When looking for psychology jobs, there are many different routes you can take, as psychology is a huge discipline! Are you wanting to work with companies? Individuals? Groups? In a school? An office? A hospital? Private practice? What if you don't know yet?
It's perfectly natural to not know for certain what, specifically, you want to do for the rest of your life. Or even if you need to think about the rest of your life yet. What about right now? What opportunities are available?
Jobs in Psychology
There is a range of psychology jobs, psychology internships and psychology volunteering opportunities out there, but it's good to remember that many of these opportunities are dependant on your current experience level, so please be realistic with your expectations. It's also helpful to think about what kind of role you are best suited to and what you would enjoy. The most important thing is that you feel comfortable in your role so that you can be as confident and effective as possible. Here is a selection of jobs in psychology which may be right for you:
Clinical Psychology Jobs
Clinical psychology is one of the most popular areas for psychology graduate jobs in mental health. Clinical psychology jobs are highly desirable and competition for roles can be fierce. There are many stages on the road to becoming a fully-fledged clinical psychologist; the role requires a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology, a degree certification from the British Psychological Society (BPS) and at least one year of relevant clinical experience. There are options out there for gaining this experience, including Assistant Psychologist, Trainee Psychologist, and Psychology Research Assistant roles.
Assistant Psychology Jobs
Assistant psychology jobs, which exist to provide support to clinical psychologists, are highly competitive. They are primarily graduate psychology jobs for those looking to pursue a clinical doctorate themselves. Assistant psychology jobs are viewed by most as a step towards becoming a clinical psychologist, as the ability to work so closely with a clinical professional affords a huge amount of relevant experience. Typical responsibilities of an Assistant Psychologist include assessments, writing reports and analysing research, implementing treatment under supervision, administering psychological tests and evaluating the progress of patients.
Trainee Psychologist Jobs
While studying for a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology, most people work as a Trainee Clinical Psychologist. Trainee psychologist jobs are therefore frequently undertaken in combination with a post-graduate degree on the path to becoming a clinical psychologist. In the UK, Trainee Psychologists are most commonly employed by the NHS. There are also trainee psychology jobs available for related areas of psychology, such as counselling and education.
Other Psychology Jobs
Psychology jobs aren’t limited to the clinical area, though jobs within clinical psychology are highly sought after. There are plenty of opportunities for psychology and psychology-related roles elsewhere too, including undergraduate psychology jobs and placements. Consider the following types of role:
Psychology Research Assistant Jobs
A Psychology Research Assistant is responsible for the daily operational and administrative activities of psychology research. Key responsibilities include participant recruitment, data collection and analysis and preparing results for publication. Psychology Research Assistant jobs are often associated with universities, so are fantastic for those wanting to pursue academic research in psychology, but can also be found within governmental and health organisations. This type of job is often suitable for psychology graduates, though a post-graduate degree is also greatly beneficial.
Healthcare Assistant Jobs
These roles are primarily focused on personal interactions with clients residing in care. You may be based at a psychiatric facility, a rehabilitation centre, a specialised private care centre or even a client's home. These roles involve providing a social outlet for clients, delivering meals, administering medication and assisting the medical team in their duties. This role can be challenging but also rewarding. All Healthcare Assistants (HCAs) undergo a high level of mandatory training before they are permitted to work with clients. This training prepares them to deal with behavioural difficulties and teaches deescalation techniques and basic CPR.
The primary function of a Befriender is to work with individuals with long-term mental health conditions who suffer from isolation. This role also usually includes training, although sometimes this needs to be funded by the individual. Befrienders are matched with an individual and meet with them a few times during the week to offer regular, community-based support, companionship and encouragement. This can help clients become more independent and increase confidence. Befrienders often take clients out to the movies, to Bingo or other social events to improve overall well-being and self-esteem.
Mental Health Support Worker Roles
Mental Health Support Workers focus on people with long-term mental health problems. The support they provide is to assist people in the community who have mental health issues to adjust to life outside of a hospital. The main role is to support individuals who have spent some time as inpatients in a psychiatric facility to live as independently as possible. This work is predominantly support-based and involves providing advice and guidance as well as social support. Support workers usually have multiple clients at one time and work in a variety of settings.
Activity Support Worker Roles
Similarly to the Mental Health Support Worker, Activity Support Workers often work in hospitals, residential centres and care homes, and are responsible for running interactive, therapeutic activities for residents. This role can involve challenging stigma as well as promoting recovery. Often these roles are multi-faceted and challenging, as they involve working with diverse client groups of various ages and abilities in groups as well as one-on-one. All of our opportunities at SLV.Global involve activity support work and are a great way to beef up your CV if you're lacking in practical experience.
All of the above psychology job opportunities are a great way to expand your experience level if you're looking to move towards a future working in the mental health sector.
Psychology Jobs Abroad
There are frequently psychology jobs abroad available to people with a range of degree and experience levels. Working abroad can be incredibly rewarding and provide you with key insights into cultural attitudes toward mental health. If you’re interested in pursuing a psychology career overseas, consider psychology work experience with SLV.Global; we specialise in providing global mental health opportunities in Sri Lanka, Bali, and India.
Psychology work abroad is highly desirable and having prior global mental health experience can make you stand out amongst the crowd. If you're passionate about mental health and are looking to increase your practical experience, we'd love for you to join us on one of our placements abroad. You can find out more by requesting an Info Pack.