How do you get into engineering with a psychology degree?





The booming tech industry has room for employees of all backgrounds. Wondering how to get into engineering with a psychology degree? Read more.

According to CompTIA, the tech industry contributes more than $2 trillion to the national economy, more than 10% of the total. Witnessing the incredible growth in this industry, you may be considering a career or industry change.

Psychology degrees help you develop in-demand skills so you can move between fields and positions. We highlight the technical and non-technical careers that may be available to you and provide some tips on how to differentiate yourself in the process.

Transferable skills from psychology to tech

Psychology training equips students with skills that they can apply in many fields, including the technology industry. Graduates gain social skills useful for careers in computer science, including:

  • Communication
  • Critical thinking
  • General Analytical Skills
  • Leadership
  • Organization

Psychology students also graduate with appropriate hard skills, including:

  • static analysis
  • research skills
  • Familiarity with customer management systems
  • Knowledge of human behavior
  • R computer programming language

Technical roles available for psychology graduates in tech

The following list of computer science jobs shows positions that may be suitable for psychology graduates. Depending on the employer and the position, candidates may require specific training, skills or experience.

Information Security Analyst

Minimum required diploma: Bachelors
Alternative job titles: Information Security Officer, Network Security Analyst, Information Security Specialist
Important features:

  • Good communicators with analytical and problem-solving skills
  • Creative people who are detail oriented and understand how people think
  • Technically skilled professionals with knowledge of business and security principles

Information security analysts handle the cybersecurity responsibilities for organizations. They assess systems to look for vulnerabilities and upgrade options. They also monitor suspicious activity, study cybersecurity developments and trends, and develop and execute recovery plans.

Advanced positions may require a cybersecurity degree, such as a master’s degree in network security.

data scientist

Minimum required diploma: Bachelors
Alternative job titles: Information researcher, business intelligence analyst, clinical data manager
Important features:

  • Interpersonal people with problem solving skills
  • Good communicators who are detail-oriented and logical
  • Critical thinkers with math and analytical skills

Data scientists analyze information to understand complex issues and solve problems. They use database applications to collect, mine and extract information. Models, computer applications and visualization software help them present their findings. To get into technology with a psychology degree, graduates may also want to complete a data science boot camp.

Non-technical positions available for psychology graduates in tech

Below, we highlight non-technical roles in the technology industry that psychology graduates may have access to. These roles require little to no programming, although mastering one or more of the easiest programming languages ​​can give you a head start.

Candidates may require additional training, experience and skills to be considered.

Product manager

Minimum required diploma: Bachelors
Alternative job titles: Product Management Director, Product Officer, Product Leader
Important features:

  • Good communicators with problem solving skills
  • Analytical and creative professionals
  • Interpersonal leaders with critical thinking and organizational skills

Product managers oversee the product lifecycle, including planning, marketing, and rollout. They conduct product and market research to determine consumer appetite and demand, design and marketing to meet consumer needs, and manage development and production.

HR Manager

Minimum required diploma: Bachelors
Alternative job titles: Director of Labor Relations, Director of Personnel Relations, Personnel Manager
Important features:

  • Leaders with strong communication and problem-solving skills
  • Decision-makers with interpersonal and organizational skills
  • Critical thinkers with knowledge of labor law and human behaviour

Hiring managers oversee employee relationships, including staffing, benefits and labor disputes. They can ensure that the organization complies with labor laws and health and safety regulations. Candidates typically possess leadership experience or a master’s degree in human resources.



Market analyst

Minimum required diploma: Bachelors
Alternative job titles: Market Research Analyst, Demographic Analyst, Business Development Specialist
Important features:

  • Good communicators with research and analytical skills
  • Critical thinkers who are detail-oriented
  • Problem solvers who understand consumer behavior and economics

Market research analysts help organizations understand their markets and consumers. They examine market conditions, competition and consumer behavior to determine prices, marketing campaigns and strategies for launching products and services. They collect and analyze data, make forecasts and prepare reports based on their findings.

UX designer

Minimum required diploma: Bachelors
Alternative job titles: Web design specialist, web developer, front-end web developers
Important features:

  • Good communicators with design and problem solving skills
  • Creative professionals with an eye for detail
  • Professionals with strong customer service skills

UX designers focus on developing and maintaining user-oriented applications and interfaces. They create high-quality user experiences, improve accessibility, and ensure smooth human-computer interaction. Psychology graduates may need to complete UX boot camps to access this field.

Tips for stepping into technology from psychology

Entering the tech industry after earning a psychology degree is possible with the right preparation and approach. Follow these tips to increase your chances of success.

1. Make clear what type of technical role you want.

Start your technology journey by envisioning your dream career, including what kind of position you want, what size or type of company you prefer, and what industry you aspire to. If you want to work at one of the big tech companies, it may require more preparation and a longer lead time.

Determine your desired work-life balance. Think about your ideal salary range and how challenging you want your days to be. Your ambition and priorities can help you identify a career destination, such as one of the least stressful jobs in engineering or one with major responsibilities.

2. Refresher training.

A psychology degree can prepare you for careers in information technology, but certain employers and positions may require additional training, experience, or credentials. While an advanced or specialized technology degree may be required, targeted training can also build on your psychology degree.

Consider free online classes with certificates, a coding boot camp, or one of the many information technology certifications to quickly improve your technical skills.

3. Maximize the quality of your application and portfolio.

The best applications highlight the applicant’s most unique qualities and skills. Psychology graduates trying to break into the tech industry should focus on their specialty traits, such as their interpersonal, analytical, and problem-solving skills.

Use your resume to highlight these attributes and skills and your cover letter to provide examples.

Your portfolio should then contain illustrations of your various technical skills. Include school, work, and hobby projects that showcase different talents and skills. If you want to emphasize coding skills, learn how to build a coding portfolio. Otherwise, you can build your portfolio projects on a web page or online portfolio platform.

4. Show your expertise, self-awareness and passion throughout the interview process.

The tech interview process usually begins with a phone or online screener, as in most other industries. Technical interviews usually include a technical proficiency component during the second phase, such as a coding exercise.

In the final stage, candidates may be asked to complete a similar technical exercise, often under supervision or within a time-limited environment. Interviews for high profile positions, such as Amazon software engineer positions, can be intense!

Read these phone interview tips to increase your chances of a second interview. And don’t forget to prepare your own questions to ask in an interview.

Finally

The skills and foundations developed in a psychology degree can help you achieve success in many industries and careers.

Use this guide to learn how to get into engineering with a psychology degree or how to change careers after working in psychology.

This article was reviewed by Sarah Holliday, MS

Sarah Holliday has years of experience working with non-traditional and traditional students in a variety of areas related to career coaching and training and development. Holliday holds a BA in English from The University of Maryland, Baltimore County, and an MS in Educational Design and Technology (Training and Performance Improvement) from Walden University. Holliday is currently working on her PhD and looks forward to finishing her dissertation soon.

Sarah Holliday is a paid member of the Red Ventures Education freelance review network.

Last reviewed on March 31, 2022.




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