Featured Advice
What are your interests?



Administrative people are interested in work that offers security and a sense of being part of a larger process. They may be at their most productive under supervisors who give clear guidelines and while performing routine tasks in a methodical and reliable way.

They tend to enjoy clerical and most forms of office work, where they perform essential administrative duties. They often form the backbone of large and small organisations alike. They may enjoy being in charge of office filing systems, and using computers and other office equipment to keep things running smoothly. They usually like routine work hours and prefer comfortable indoor workplaces.

Salary Range
€32k - €86k
Career Zone

In Brief...

Studies the way people think and act and uses their understanding to help people with difficulties to change their lives for the better.


  • Psychology Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Therapy and Counseling Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.
  • English Language Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Customer and Personal Service Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Law and Government Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.


  • Active Listening Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Social Perceptiveness Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Speaking Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Complex Problem Solving Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Critical Thinking Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

In Summary - Psychologist

Career Sectors

Psychologists typically work in the following Career Sectors:

Psychology and Counseling
Psychology & Social Care

Videos & Interviews

Elaine MacDonald, Psychologist - Clinical

Elaine MacDonald works as a Clinical Psychologist in St Michael's House. She did a BA degree in English literature and Philosophy in Trinity College Dublin. After a period of time teaching in Japan she decided to return home and train as a Clinical Psychologist. She completed the Higher Diploma in Psychology (DipPsych) in UCD which then allowed her to undertake training to be a Clinical Psychologist which she completed at the University of North Wales (Bangor).

Aoife Lyons, Occupational Psychologist

Aoife works as an Occupational Psychologist for the Public Appointments Service and is based in Dublin. After completing her primary degree, she completed her Masters in Occupational Psychology in the University of Manchester. She is directly involved in the selecting and designing of aptitude tests for various roles in the Civil Service, and in interpreting the results of these.

Videos on the Web

Further Information

The Work - Psychologist

There are various different types of psychologist, although they all use their understanding of the way we think and act to help people to change their lives for the better by analysing our thoughts, emotions and behaviour.

Clinical psychologists help people who have physical and mental health problems. They aim to reduce stress and to enhance and promote psychological wellbeing. For example, they may train people in relaxation techniques to help them cope with anxiety. They also work with people who have eating disorders, phobias, HIV/AIDS, head injuries and problems linked to age. Clinical psychologists work in different hospitals and community settings.

Health psychologists apply psychological knowledge and methods to the study of behaviour relevant to health care. For example, they may investigate why and when people seek professional advice, what might prevent them from complying with medication, and how they cope with illness. Health psychologists usually work in universities, medical schools and health services.

Educational psychologists study and treat the learning, behavioural and emotional problems of children and young people, from birth up to the age of 19 years. They assess young people's progress, and academic and emotional needs. Increasingly, educational psychologists help teachers to improve the school environment, recognising that this can influence young people's behaviour and ability to learn. Educational psychologists usually work in schools, colleges, nurseries and special units.

Occupational psychologists look at the performance of people at work and in training and apply psychological knowledge. They are involved in issues like the selection and training of staff, effective management and the working environment. They work for large companies, the government and public services, management training centres and as private consultants.

Counselling psychologists help people improve their sense of well-being, resolve crises and increase their problem solving abilities. Counselling psychologists may work with individuals, groups or families. Some work privately, others in GPs' surgeries, counselling organisations and academic settings.

Forensic psychologists give evidence in courts of law and tribunals, and to prisoners' review panels. They help offenders to understand their behaviour and to avoid re-offending on release. Some forensic psychologists are involved in prison management, others work with the victims of crime. Forensic psychologists work in prisons, youth custody centres, special units and regional secure hospitals.

Most commonly reported Work Tasks

  • Interact with clients to assist them in gaining insight, defining goals, and planning action to achieve effective personal, social, educational, and vocational development and adjustment.
  • Identify psychological, emotional, or behavioral issues and diagnose disorders, using information obtained from interviews, tests, records, and reference materials.
  • Use a variety of treatment methods, such as psychotherapy, hypnosis, behavior modification, stress reduction therapy, psychodrama, and play therapy.
  • Counsel individuals and groups regarding problems, such as stress, substance abuse, and family situations, to modify behavior or to improve personal, social, and vocational adjustment.
  • Discuss the treatment of problems with clients.
  • Write reports on clients and maintain required paperwork.
  • Consult with or provide consultation to other doctors, therapists, or clinicians regarding patient care.
  • Obtain and study medical, psychological, social, and family histories by interviewing individuals, couples, or families and by reviewing records.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of counseling or treatments and the accuracy and completeness of diagnoses, modifying plans and diagnoses as necessary.
  • Select, administer, score, and interpret psychological tests to obtain information on individuals' intelligence, achievements, interests, and personalities.

Most commonly reported Work Activities

  • Assisting and Caring for Others Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.
  • Getting Information Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
  • Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
  • Documenting/Recording Information Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
  • Coaching and Developing Others Identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills.

Interests - Psychologist

This occupation is typically suited for people with the following Career Interests:


The Investigative person will usually find a particular area of science to be of interest. They are inclined toward intellectual and analytical activities and enjoy observation and theory. They may prefer thought to action, and enjoy the challenge of solving problems with sophiscticated technology. These types prefer mentally stimulating environments and often pay close attention to developments in their chosen field.


Creative people are drawn to careers and activities that enable them to take responsibility for the design, layout or sensory impact of something (visual, auditory etc). They may be atrracted to the traditional artistic pursuits such as painting, sculpture, singing, or music. Or they may show more interest in design activities, such as architecture, animation, or craft areas, such as pottery and ceramics.

Creative people use their personal understanding of people and the world they live in to guide their work. Creative people like to work in unstructured workplaces, enjoy taking risks and prefer a minimum of routine.


The Social person's interests focus on interacting with the people in their environment. In all cases, the Social person enjoys the personal contact with other people in preference to the impersonal dealings with things, data and ideas found in other groups.

Many will seek out positions where there is direct contact with the public in some advisory role, whether a receptionist or a counsellor. Social people are motivated by an interest in different types of people and like diversity in their work environments. Many are drawn towards careers in the caring professions and social welfare area, whilst others prefer teaching and other 'informing' roles.


To work in any of the psychology careers, you must have a strong interest in the way people think and act. You must also be committed to helping people transform their lives in a positive way.

Psychologists need investigative minds and a logical, methodical approach to solving problems. You must have the intellectual ability and psychological knowledge to understand behaviour in a scientific way. A keen interest in human behaviour and a scientific approach to problem solving are important skills for a psychologist.

You will also need excellent communication and interpersonal skills. You must be able to build a trusting, constructive relationship with clients. Many psychologists also need strong team skills; for example, clinical psychologists may work alongside consultants, nurses, occupational therapists and social workers. The ability to express your findings, including in reports, is an important part of many psychologists' careers.

This work can be very demanding, so you must be generally enthusiastic and able to bounce back from setbacks. You are likely to be involved with some clients who have severe problems, who display vulnerability and extremes of emotion. You must therefore be resilient and able to avoid becoming burdened by the difficulties you encounter. This means having a calm, professional approach at all times. You must also have a strict respect for your clients' confidentiality.

Entry Requirements - Psychologist

In order to become a Psychologist, an accredited honours undergraduate degree where psychology is the major subject is required.

Completion of a recognised postgraduate training programme in a specialist area  i.e Clinical Psychology, Counselling psychology, Educational psychology, Forensic Psychology, Health psychology, Neuropsychology, Organisational psychology, Sports psychology, Research /Academic psychology, Cyberpsychology is then possible.

Entrants can enhance their chances of achieving a place on such a programme by achieving a high grade at undergraduate level (minimum 2.1 grade) and obtaining further research or academic experience relevant to the field of clinical psychology. This can be by way of voluntary or paid work.

Courses are currently offered by:

  • National University of Ireland, Galway
  • University College Dublin
  • University of Dublin
  • Trinity College Dublin
  • University of Limerick
  • Queen’s University Belfast

Last Updated: May, 2015

Pay & Salary - Psychologist

Salary Range (thousands per year)* €32k - €86k

Data Source(s):

Last Updated: March, 2017

* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.

Labour Market Updates - Psychologist

This group includes pharmacists, psychologists, dentists, radiographers, vets, and health services managers. While demand is strong for many healthcare professionals, shortages have only been identified for radiographers.

National Skills Bulletin 2018

Useful Contacts - Psychologist

Career News

Career Articles

Andrew Allen - Psychologist
Andrew Allen - Psychologist
Posted by CareersPortal
A Day in the Life of a Clinical Psychologist
A Day in the Life of a Clinical Psychologist
Posted by CareersPortal