College is such an exciting time. It offers the promise of new learning opportunities, interesting friendships, and fruitful career ambitions. If you have an interest in human behavior and want to help others succeed, a Psychology BA may be right for you.
The average annual salary for someone holding a BA in Psychology is $58,000. That's a nice figure for meaningful work that gives back to others. Best of all, you're not likely to get pigeon-holed into a single profession. This is the kind of degree program that opens the door to a world of options.
Ready to dive in? Here's everything you need to know about a lifelong, fruitful career in Psychology.
What Is a BA in Psychology?
A BA in Psychology is a great way to satiate your interest in human behavior while helping others live their best lives. Many of the classes you take will help you evaluate others and create treatment plans to help them cope.
You may work with people facing family problems, those with a history of abuse, individuals with substance abuse problems, someone struggling with depression, and so much more. Most students also continue on to a Master's Degree or Ph.D. With your BA, you'll be well-poised to enjoy a lifetime of learning.
What Will I Need to Prepare?
In order to enroll in a degree program, the first thing you'll need is your high school diploma or GED. While you are securing that you'll also want to request your high school transcripts. Most universities also require a passing grade on the ACTs or SATs.
Once these more technical components sorted out, it'll be time to start thinking about the writing sample that may be required. This will likely be a personal statement of intent. Most universities will also want to see two to five letters of recommendations from former teachers or coaches.
Of course, all these requirements will vary, based on where you're looking to apply. You can start with an online program to get a couple of credits under your belt. Or, you might want to consider a junior or community college. Of course, you also have four-year institutions that may allow you to continue right into a Master's Degree program.
What Type of Courses Will I Take?
Now, for the fun part. What type of courses will you be taking while you pursue your degree? Of course, every program differs slightly, but here's a sampling:
- Introduction to Psychology
- Child Psychology
- Developmental Psychology
- Drugs & Human Behavior
- Cognitive Psychology
- Psychology of Education
- Abnormal Psychology
- Psychology of Aging
- Clinical Psychology
Many four-year institutions also have a core curriculum. This typically includes communications classes, public speaking classes, math, and science classes. Once that core curriculum is out of the way, you can start diving into an array of interesting classes covering the field of psychology.
Do I Need an Area of Interest?
Yes; you'll want to specialize in an area of interest. Some are more versatile than others but, truthfully, you should choose the area that interests you the most. It will make the learning more enjoyable and, ultimately, help you succeed in a field you appreciate. Here are some potential areas of interest:
- Counseling Psychology
- Child Psychology
- Clinical Psychology
- Sports Psychology
- Forensic Psychology
- School Psychology
You don't need to designate an area of interest right away. At first, you'll be working on your credits for the core curriculum and a few intro psychology classes. But, it's nice to get a feel for where your more specialized areas of interest may lie.
Where Will I Work?
The beauty of a psychology degree is that the career options are endless. You can pursue so many avenues once you're fully equipped with all your coursework. Here are some of the interesting job opportunities you might be able to pursue post-graduation:
- Career Counselor - You can advise college students looking to figure out their career paths.
- Case Manager - Case Managers work in clinics and non-profit organizations to help families struggling through difficult and emotional times.
- Drug and Addiction Counselor - Substance abuse problems continue to plague the world. You might be able to work with people on an individual basis, as well as the entire family.
- Human Resources Coordinator - Here, you might help with recruiting and hiring, as well as act as a link between employees and management. Many large companies have HR departments and, perhaps, someday you can move on to become a Human Resources Manager.
- Rehabilitation Specialist - Anyone suffering from the psychological effects of developmental disabilities can benefit from working with a psychologist.
- Occupational Therapy Assistant - Someone seeking occupational therapy would do well to meet with a psychologist as part of their treatment plan.
This is just a sampling. The more you dive into your psychology courses, the more the world will open up for you. You'll also want to intern throughout the course of your undergraduate studies. It's one thing to learn about a concept in the classroom. It's another thing to see it in action. Soak up as many of these opportunities as you can. They'll help you define your path.
Start Your Psychology Degree Today
If you're worried about the skyrocketing costs of college in America, why not start your Psychology BA degree with an online program that will allow you to earn a couple of transferrable credits that will ease the burden of tuition at a four-year institution?
Here at Ed4Credit, we offer low-cost, self-paced online courses that allow you to earn college credits that will transfer over as soon as you're ready to enroll in a four-year institution. Best of all, you can easily transfer within our network of accredited colleges and universities!