Is an Undergraduate Degree in Psychology Right for Your Child?
After the A-levels or equivalent courses are over, one of the most pressurising periods in a young adult’s life begins. Crucial career decisions must be taken at this point in time, which will shape the rest of their future. Most students would be late teens or young adults after their A-Levels, but they may still require knowledgeable parental guidance to make the right career choices for themselves. If they are considering studying psychology at university, here is a quick guide that should help them make their mind up.
Why Should Students Consider a Degree in Psychology?
Being a psychologist and becoming a psychiatrist are not synonymous, since a psychiatrist needs to attend med school, while a psychologist or a counselor does not require similar medical qualifications. Psychology undergraduate courses from reputed institutions open up a student’s career to both opportunities, along with others related to psychology. As an introductory degree, psychology is designed to impart foundational knowledge onto students, enabling them to be naturally more receptive towards advanced future education and training.
This holds true, be it for becoming a certified mental health physician (psychiatrist) later on, or to pursue higher qualifications in academic psychology for research related work. Pay a visit to Uni Compare and look for the highest-rated psychology undergraduate courses available in the UK. They put all the information students and parents need in order to compare the curriculums, accreditations, success rates, faculty members, fees, placements, overall quality and all the other necessary details between the various courses listed there by the respective universities.
Psychology Degrees Help Students in Choosing the Right Track for Future Specialisations
If we consider the average yearly income received by a few common and popular career paths in psychology, we would find that:
- Clinical psychologists earn about £35,493/year on an average
- Counsellors earn nearly £33,348/year on an average
- Diagnosis and treatment planners report an average income of £76,743/year
- Forensic Psychologists average a figure of roughly £50,916/year
- Psychiatrists across the various fields of behavioural science and psychiatric treatment can earn anything between £63,142 – £80,000+ on an average
- On an average, £66,878/year is what a highly qualified professor in psychology earns in the UK
The above mentioned salary chart cannot, or rather should not, be the only factor while determining one’s specialisation in psychology. They must also have the right attitude and aptitude necessary to undertake the duties and do the work which comes with the respective jobs. All psychology undergraduate courses worth completing will introduce their students to the basics of what each of these specialisations will entail, making it easy for them to realise which career paths are better suited for their innate and acquired skills. Skill matching is a very important aspect of making successful career decisions by default, and psychology undergraduate courses are likely the best way to be able to do that successfully.
In any field of work, one needs to be aware of their possible options for specialisation in order to be able to choose the right profession. They also need to know what each of those tracks mean for their career in terms of employment rate, job stability, average income, scope for growth, duties, responsibilities, etc. Being an introductory course, an undergrad degree in psychology will introduce the student to all of those important aspects, so that they can choose the best course by themselves.
A Few Innate Qualities to Consider as a Potential Counselor/Psychiatrist
It is a common mistake that you need to be good with people in order to pursue careers in psychology, because not all paths lead to active therapy, treatment procedures, or even direct communication. For example, academic researchers do not counsel anybody, and they need not ever do so either. That being said, almost every other profession in psychology, be it that of a college professor or a counselor, does indeed involve proper, methodical communication skills.
On that note, see if your son/daughter possesses any of the innate skills which are considered to be quite helpful for pursuing a career in psychology that involves staying in direct and continuous communication with patients/clients/students. They are as follows:
- Tendency to listen and learn quietly
- Ability to impart knowledge convincingly
- Tendency to help, but not please others
- Stable and strong psyche
- Above-average intelligence
Approaching a Young Adult About Career Decisions
Once their children have reached a certain age, it is important for parents to assume an advisory role, rather than staying instructive in their opinions like before. The decision to choose their own career is always with your child, especially after their initial school days are over. Nevertheless, as most parents would know, this is both a critical, as well as a confusing time in their son’s/daughter’s life.
They do need guidance at that juncture from the people closest to them, especially if the parents are accomplished individuals themselves. Psychology has huge potentials both in terms of earning money and prestige, so going through one’s options for psychology undergraduate courses is highly advised, provided that the student has the right aptitude for becoming a psychologist, psychiatrist, counselor or researcher down the line.