The Benefits of Studying Psychology
Aug 04, 2023
The Benefits of Studying Psychology
Are you looking for better insight into human behavior, emotions and mental health? Do you want to develop a deeper sense of people and how they interact with one another? Then studying psychology might be right for you.
“What is the study of psychology?” Psychology is a science that relies on observations, critical thinking and data-informed reasoning for a better understanding of ourselves and others.
If you’re comparing psychology with other degrees—for example, philosophy vs. psychology—then you will want to consider all that a psychology degree offers.
What are the benefits of studying psychology, though? For aspiring psychology students, this is a fitting question. While you probably won’t acquire the supernatural ability to “read minds,” studying psychology has several benefits. A psychology degree provides opportunities to build knowledge and analytical skills that are helpful in a variety of careers.
Keep reading to find out more about the benefits of a psychology degree.
Enhanced Critical Thinking and Interpersonal Skills
As a science, psychology is grounded in reasoning. Through their major, psychology students discover procedures for observations and the collection and analysis of qualitative and quantitative data. By studying and exploring research methods in psychology, students develop the critical thinking skills crucial to many career fields, including positions that require systems-based thinking.
Studying psychology also fosters growth in interpersonal skills, such as compassion, empathy and communication. Additionally, psychology majors gain a deeper understanding of how humans develop relationships and resolve complex issues through psychology course topics like development in different life stages.
Knowing how to present information in a way that is well-received is one of the fundamental traits of a successful communicator—another highly-beneficial interpersonal skill. According to Kendra Cherry writing for Verywell Mind, "By learning more about interpersonal communication, you can gain a greater understanding of other people and what they are trying to say.”
That understanding impacts the way we share information with one another. As part of the degree, a psychology student learns and practices writing, speaking and presentation techniques to prepare them to become effective collaborators and communicators.
Understanding Human Behavior
Another one of the benefits of a psychology degree is an increased understanding of human behavior. To gain knowledge on behavior, psychology majors learn about topics like:
- Human development
- Learning and memory
- Sensation and perception
- Psychological disorders
- Behavioral neuroscience
- Drugs and behavior
Through courses like cultural and social psychology, students also discover how different factors influence behavior.
Through the nature of the field, one of the benefits of studying psychology is the opportunity for personal growth. For instance, psychology majors take courses such as learning and cognitive psychology. By exploring these subjects, students will learn concepts they can apply to improve their own lives.
Per Verywell Mind, “Psychology is all around you and touches on every aspect of your life … Who you are now, how you will be in the future, how you interact with family, friends, and strangers; these are all things that psychology can help you better understand.”
Undeniably an accomplishment on its own, the completion of a bachelor’s degree signifies personal growth. Even more than that, though, the reflection and consideration of human thinking involved in a psychology degree encourages growth as a scholar, professional—and as a person.
Wide Range of Career Opportunities
Now that you’ve learned about some of the benefits of a psychology degree, you may be wondering how you could put those skills and knowledge to use in your career. Let’s look at the benefits of studying psychology in professional life.
All the skills and knowledge that come with studying psychology present opportunities for a wide range of careers. As an example, students may choose to apply what they have learned to specific disciplines like health psychology and clinical psychology. Others choose business psychology, using their expertise to work for companies in positions like industrial-organizational psychologist.
With the enhanced critical thinking, interpersonal skills, scientific thinking and understanding of human behavior, psychology students are poised to work with people. This means that studying psychology allows the flexibility to pursue a variety of jobs.
Though some positions may require additional education or professional credentials, here are some examples of career paths for psychology students:
- Mental health counselor or therapist
- Clinical psychologist
- Social worker
- Youth programs coordinator
- Occupational therapist
- Behavior technician
- Human Resources specialist
Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at North Central College Dr. Daniel VanHorn affirms that studying psychology provides students with a versatile skillset. Even beyond their field, psychology students are positioned to be “successful in [other] areas such as education, research, management, health care, law, public service and the non-profit sector,” stated VanHorn.
Plan Your Path
Regardless of the field you decide to work in, you’ll want to find a program that provides a solid foundation in psychology and its related skills.
You’ll also want to look for programs that support your growth as a professional, like the psychology degree offered at North Central College. According to VanHorn, North Central’s program “is designed to help students develop meaningful professional direction with their first or second year of college.”
Whatever career you choose, you’ll want to find a program that grants you the opportunity to gain the benefits of a psychology degree, preparing you for a successful career.
Hannah Brauer is a communications specialist in the North Central College Office of Communications. She has a bachelor’s degree from Eastern Kentucky University, and she has four years of experience working with college students and collegiate communications.
Cherry, Kendra. (2020, December 13). “Why We All can Learn from Studying Psychology.” Verywell Mind. Retrieved April 14, 2023, from https://www.verywellmind.com/why-study-psychology-2795149