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Health Care Careers

Why Major in Psychology?

Many of today’s health care issues involve behavioral components—people may become sick/injured as a result of behavioral choices and often have to make changes in behavior as part of their treatment.  Studying psychology provides students with an understanding of the many factors that influence behavior—from brain mechanisms, to family and friends, personality, and mental health issues.  This knowledge allows students to become more effective health care providers.   Coursework required for the psychology major also allows students to develop strong analytical skills which are necessary in evaluating health problems, determining potential causes and developing intervention/treatment plans. 

Sample job titles with a bachelor’s degree

Community Health Worker
Home Care Assistant

Sample job titles with a master’s degree

Behavior Specialist
Hospital Social Worker
Occupational Therapist
Health Administrator
Rehabilitation Counselor
Child Life Specialist
Genetic Counselor

Sample job titles with a doctoral degree

Medical Doctor (other than Psychiatry)
Physical Therapist

Special considerations

Students who plan to pursue professional school (medical school, dental school, PT program etc.) would complete the “pre-professional” course sequence as well as completing a major in psychology.  Often students focus more heavily on the science coursework in the early years in order to be prepared to take professional exams (MCAT, DAT) by the summer after the junior year.