What Can You Do With a Behavioral Psychology Degree?

Last Updated: June 28, 2024

Careers With a Behavioral Psychology Degree

With a behavioral psychology degree, you will be able to help people understand the root of their behaviors. You will also be able to develop treatment plans that change negative behaviors to more positive ones.

You may work with children, individuals, families, groups, students, employees and couples and you may work at schools, research laboratories, social work agencies or companies. Your main function, as a behavioral therapist, will be to improve the way people think and behave.


With a degree in behavioral psychology, you may be able to enter the field of research. Many colleges, universities, businesses, government agencies and treatment facilities need researchers to provide insight into the learning processes, cognitive abilities, genetic influences, thought processes and behaviors of clients, customers, students and employees.

An advanced degree (master’s degree and doctorate) in this area will allow you to become a  behavioral consultant, research coordinator or research director.


With a bachelor’s degree, you may teach elementary, middle and/or high school and with a master’s degree and/or doctorate you may teach at the college level. In addition, if you have a doctorate in behavioral psychology, may can also conduct research studies for the college or university.

Although a teaching career may not pay as much as counseling, it offers a variety of advantages like the ability to pursue other career interests (writing, research, etc.).


Another career path you can pursue with an advanced degree (master’s and/or doctorate) in behavioral psychology is counseling. Counselors use a variety of psychological techniques, methods and strategies to help people work through their issues and improve their lives.

A behavioral psychology degree program teaches you how to alter behaviors and provide assistance to people who are experiencing emotional distress, severe stress, adjustment issues and/or mental illness. Your degree in behavioral psychology may also help you provide services to students at the primary/secondary (elementary, middle and high school) and post-secondary (college) levels.

Your primary task will be to improve your client’s ability to learn, comprehend and retain information. You will also be responsible for reducing or eliminating unhealthy behavioral patterns and treating behavior-related psychological disorders like obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).

With this degree you may work at school, clinic, inpatient or outpatient mental health facility, hospital, social services agency, skilled nursing facility and/or research facility.

Marketing Executive

With a bachelor’s degree in behavioral psychology, you may be able to seek employment as a marketing executive. The main goal of a marketing executive is to gain insight into the mind and behaviors of customers and clients. In other words, with this degree you may be able to help companies determine the “wants” and “needs” of customers and clients.

You may also study consumer purchasing preferences and then report your results to your employer in an effort to improve products or create new products.

To be successful in this career, you will need to have a strong background in computer science, analysis, marketing trends and statistics. Your background in behavioral psychology will help you collect and analyze important consumer-related data and make recommendations on how to improve products and/or services.

If you decide to pursue this career path, you may work at an advertising agency, computer technology company, graphic design agency, research laboratory, market research firm, retail store, etc.

Human Resources Executive

A bachelor’s degree in behavioral psychology may allow you to become a human resources executive. With this degree, you may acquire skills needed to train new employees, mediate between employees and upper management, resolve co-worker conflicts, assemble employee handbooks, interview potential candidates, distribute benefits and post available jobs.

Most companies have a human resources department so these jobs are readily available. Employers will hire you to help them understand employee thought processes and behaviors, improve quality and increase employee productivity.

Child & Family Social Worker

Child and family social workers provide services (food stamps, housing assistance, counseling, etc.) to children and families. Your background in behavioral psychology will help you accurately evaluate the needs of your client(s) and develop treatment plans that help them resolve their issues and improve their lives.

Your main responsibilities will be to develop a safety plan for children, arrange foster care placements or adoptions, take foster care children to school or doctor’s appointments, help families find housing arrangements, make sure the educational needs of children (healthy, disable and delayed) are being met, etc. You may work at a social services agency, clinic, hospital, mental health facility, private practice and/or school.

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