Skip to content

Toggle service links

Psychology and Counselling skills and careers

Opportunities for psychology graduates are so wide ranging that there is potential to find employment across all sectors, including health-related professions.

Skills you can develop

As well as the specific subject knowledge gained from studying for an OU degree, you'll develop many transferable and work-related skills that are highly valued by employers and which will increase your employability.

Your psychology studies will develop your ability to:

  • learn about the fundamental conceptual issues in psychology
  • understand the different ways in which psychological knowledge can be constructed
  • develop a range of research skills
  • interpret, use, evaluate and present evidence and data
  • appreciate how psychologists use evidence derived from research to contribute to debates on matters such as ageing, crime, education, employment, forensic science, mental health and relationships
  • combine your study of psychology with other disciplines, such as philosophy, law, computer science, biology, business, education and health science.

Studying the OU Foundation Degree in Counselling will enable you to develop skills that appeal to employers such as communication and literacy, problem solving and self-management. You’ll also gain professional skills from the Foundation degree that will be transferable to many other roles including the ability to:

  • practice safely and effectively in a recognised model of counselling
  • act in accordance with the relevant legal, ethical and procedural boundaries
  • make professional judgements and interventions
  • reflect on, review and audit your professional practice.

To see specific learning outcomes of qualifications in this area go to OU Psychology and Counselling Courses and follow the link to the learning outcomes under course details.

The OU Careers and Employability Services define employability as 'A set of capabilities and achievements that support students in developing their careers, raising their aspirations and enhancing their contribution to society'. You can view the full Student Employability Policy Statement on our website.

The Student Employability Profiles on the Advance HE website details many skills that employers value. You will also find information about employability skills developed through study of specific degree subjects at What can I do with my degree? on the Prospects website.

Whatever your motivations for study, your goals and career aspirations, you are entitled to supported personal development planning either as part of your study or through optional activities such as FutureYOU which you can find on your Study home site.

Having a psychology degree can open up varied exciting possibilities and lead to graduate opportunities in a range of fields or to further clinical training. Find out more of what you can do with a Psychology degree on the Prospects website. As a registered OU student, you can also find careers information tailored to your qualification on your Study home site under the Succeed tab.

Destination statistics

All UK graduates are invited to complete the Graduate Outcomes survey 12-15 months after graduation. Of the OU Psychology graduates and Foundation Degree in Counselling holders who responded in 2022, 62% were employed, a further 6% were running their own business, 17.7% were undertaking further study and 17% were engaged in other activities or caring responsibilities.

Graduates had found work most commonly in the NHS, mental health organisations, social work and social care fields, education sector and in the civil service and local councils, among others.

OU qualifications

Find out more about undergraduate study and postgraduate study in Psychology.

Find out about all undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications at OU Courses.

Last updated 2 months ago