What Do Psychologists Do?
For as long as humans have had conscious thoughts there have been attempts to understand them and no profession delves deeper into those deep, dark corners of our minds than Psychology. Let’s take a closer look at what this fascinating field is all about.
What is Psychology?
Psychology is essentially the study of human behaviour, with the role of psychologist being to use a wide range of scientific methods to understand better why we think, say and do the things we do. Psychologists utilise their understanding of the human mind to help people deal with a wide range of issues, from relationship problems and substance abuse to behavioural and learning difficulties.
Daily tasks of a psychologist can include collecting data, analysing cognitive and behavioural disorders, formulating treatment plans and consulting with other professionals. Psychologists can work with individuals, couples, groups and even organisations, often in specialised roles that include the following;
- Clinical psychologist
- Forensic psychologist
- Counselling psychologist
- Sports psychologist
- Developmental psychologist
A career in Psychology can be mentally and emotionally challenging; however, it can also be extremely rewarding as your daily efforts can have a profound impact on people’s lives. To do well in this industry, the following skills are considered an advantage;
- Active listening
- Clear communication
- Critical thinking
- Social perceptiveness
- Calm under pressure
As of November 2015, there were 23,400 psychologists working in Australia, the vast majority employed in the east of the country (33.3% in Victoria, 21% in Queensland and 19.6% in New South Wales).
“If you are a critical thinker, enjoy problem-solving and are fascinated by what makes people tick, you could be the next Carl Jung, Mary Ainsworth or Sigmund Freud just waiting to be discovered.”
What Qualifications do I Need?
To work in the field of Psychology, the right qualifications are essential, particularly if you plan on working in specialised positions; in fact, 74.7% of Psychology professionals have attained at least a Graduate Certificate or Graduate/Post Graduate Diploma. The following programs provide a great way to get your career in Psychology started.
Bachelor of Social Science (Psychology)
This in-depth course covers everything from Developmental Psychology, Cognition, and Social Psychology though to the study of personality types and psychological measurement. It is recognised by the Australian Psychological Accreditation Council and will have you ready to work as a Psychologist, Child Protection Officer, Sports Psychologist or even a Counselling Psychologist.
Diploma of Social and Psychological Science
Ideal for psychology students interested in working as a Social Worker, Psychologist, Welfare Officer, Counsellor or Youth Worker, this program provides a solid foundation in the critical thinking skills necessary for understanding human cognition, behaviour, and relationships. Graduates will also gain a deep understanding of social systems in modern society and the many ways in which they shape individual perceptions.
Bachelor of Behavioural Studies
This program provides a broad spectrum of knowledge spanning multiple study areas, leaving graduates primed for roles in human services, policy development, health care and youth work. This versatile course lets you study online and even touches upon disciplines such as Statistics, Public Relations, and Indigenous Studies, helping students to broaden their perspective and deepen their understanding of human behaviour.
Where Will my Career Take Me?
Graduates of Psychology studies can find well-paid positions throughout Australia and beyond. According to joboutlook.gov.au, the Psychology Industry has seen moderate growth over the past five years, and an above average rate of employment is expected for at least the next decade.
The vast majority of Psychologists in Australia are employed in sectors such as Social Assistance and Health Care, Education and Training, as well as Public Safety and Administration. Opportunities also exist in fields ranging from Market Research to Professional Sports.
If you are a critical thinker, enjoy problem-solving and are fascinated by what makes people tick, you could be the next Carl Jung, Mary Ainsworth or Sigmund Freud just waiting to be discovered. Get your career started today by signing up to study what is one of the world’s oldest and most interesting professions.