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Careers for your degree

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In Your degree

In Your degree

Having got your degree there will be many industries and roles open to you to start your career. The most suitable areas for some of our degree subjects are explored below.

Forensic Investigation

With a degree in Forensic Investigation, the main area of work that is most relevant is policing and crime. Some can be in very specific areas and others in a broader range of tasks. 

  • Detective - If you thrive on challenges, enjoy problem solving and have a strong desire to keep people safe a career as a detective may suit you. A detective is an accredited police officer who works with more serious or complex crime. They work in specialist departments such as drugs, fraud, firearms, child protection, special branch (related to national security and international terrorism), or in the criminal investigations department (relates to suspicious deaths, robbery, domestic or racist abuse, and so on. Further professional training is required when starting to work in any of these specialist units; it is possible to transfer to different units over the course of your career. Not all specialisms are offered by every police force and there is strong competition for some. 

  • Forensic computer analyst - If you have good analytical skills you could forge a successful career as a forensic computer analyst, tracing the steps of cybercrime. Your role as a forensic computer analyst will be to investigate data breaches, security incidents and criminal activity. You could be working for the police or other law enforcement agencies, or for a specialist computer forensic company or investigative team. Using a range of specialised methods and techniques, you'll retrieve and analyse data linked to a range of criminal activity, such as network intrusions, hacking, online fraud, political, industrial and commercial espionage, terrorist communication, theft of confidential information and the use of illegal images. For this particular role it may possibly be necessary to also have a masters is Forensic computing, or other related areas such as cyber security. 

  • Scene of crime officers (SOCO’s), crime scene investigators (CSI’s), etc. - All these names refer to the same role. These are usually employed by the police force (despite not being police officers) or other Forensic companies that then work for the police. SOCO’s collect evidence from a crime scene which is then passed onto forensic laboratories and the Criminal Investigation Department, as generally SOCO’s do not investigate crimes or analyse the evidence themselves. Many employers ask for a degree and will expect you to have experience in police work or a related field, for example intelligence gathering and analysis. 

  • Fingerprint Analyst - A fingerprint analyst is someone who analyses fingerprints collected at crime scenes. The job of fingerprint analyst generally requires at least a bachelor’s degree. It is recommended that this degree come in the science fields – chemistry or biology, preferably with a focus on forensics. A fingerprint analyst has to not only be familiar with scientific procedure and crime scene procedure – since the analyst is one of the first people on the scene after the first responders – but also must be able to understand the computer systems that are involved with the job. It is a unique combination of the two disciplines.

These are the occupations that most Forensic investigation students wish to pursue, however there are so many roles that could be related to this degree in some way, if not directly. It is also a possibility to go into Teaching, especially if a student decides to specialise in a certain aspect of forensics.

International Security and Co-operation

Studying an International security and co-operation degree equips you with analytical and methodological tools to be able to interpret the nature of International Security opening the door to many careers.

  • Intelligence Analyst - This can involve working within the Military, Army or national security departments or any other governmental agency. An analyst collects and analyses operational intelligence data, conducts mission reports, and maintains intelligence databases. The average salary of an Intelligence analyst is: £34,355 (Indeed, 2019)
  • Communication Specialist - A job in the non-profit organisation that operates on a global scale can utilise the skills of an International Security masters. World Vision and the Red cross are key examples of organisations that require communication specialists to work on creating effective communication strategies, handling internal communications and writing content for social media networks. The average salary of a communications specialist is: £40,537 (Glass Door, 2019)

  • Diplomatic Service Office - As a diplomatic service office, the role would be based in the Foreign and Commonwealth office. The specialisation would be in diplomatic work and the delivery with foreign policy overseas. The responsibilities include proofreading reports, liaising with high commissions and embassies, handling and budgeting projects and analysing and interpreting material.  The average salary of a diplomatic service officer is: £45,000 (Prospects, 2019).

  • International Aid/Development Worker - As a humanitarian aid worker, the role involves responding to emergency situations, helping those effected by natural and man-made disasters. Helping developing countries set up sustainable solutions and working across departments of education, sanitation and health. There is a broad spectrum of responsibilities and field this job covers which is subjective to the circumstance. The average salary of an International Aid/Development worker is: £25,000 (Prospects, 2018).

Criminology

Another degree subject area that can lead to varying career paths is Criminology.  Areas that you may be interested in as a graduate include:

  • Research - After completing a Criminology degree you will have loads of great research skills and might decide to continue in this area. You could progress onto a Master’s course or a PhD which allows you to do more research based on your own personal interests for example in rehabilitation or support for substance users. Other alternatives could be working for a charity or organisation that commissions research in the field they work in. For example, local charity VOICES have recently commissioned a research project looking at hardship. Social research can impact policy and therefore there are also research positions available in the Police and Public Sector which are advertised as Civil Service Jobs. If you enjoy research there are also lots of research positions out there that don’t specifically relate to Criminology such as in marketing or healthcare, as a Criminology graduate, you will have the research skills to go into these areas as well.

  • Probation - A Probation Officer helps to support Offenders to reduce reoffending in custody, court and in the community. A Probation Officer will have to work closely as a team with other agencies and groups to ensure client and public safety. After doing a Criminology degree, you will have a good understanding of the reasons behind offending behaviours and the different systems that your clients will have interacted with. You will know about interventions and support that can help reduce reoffending from various modules on your course that can help the role of a probation officer. There are Probation Officer Graduate Schemes available as well as jobs advertised on the Civil Service website.

  • Prison Officer - A Prison Officer is responsible for helping provide a safe environment and care for prisoners. They can play a role in prisoner rehabilitation by getting involved in training and education programmes and providing support for the individuals that need it. There are graduate programmes available for prison officer roles such as Unlocked. As well as regular Prison Officers there are many other more specialised roles in prisons such as running arts projects, support groups, teachers and advisors (such as drug and alcohol and mental health).

  • Police - As a member of the Police Force there are many different opportunities and areas to work in. You could be a regular Police Officer or work in a specialised field such as counter-terrorism or organised crime- many of these fields you will have likely encountered throughout your degree. The benefit of coming from a criminological background is a good understanding of the impact of the Police on the public, victims and offenders. Again, you will have a good understanding of the reasons behind crime and this may help you to ensure you are protecting all members of the public and be a calm and helpful member of the Police. There are also other areas of the Police such as in research, victim support, call handler etc. If you are interested in the Police they now have a degree holder pathway to enter as well as Voluntary positions such as the Specials and Cadets that you may be interested in.

  • Charity - As mentioned previously, there may be research positions available within charity organisations but your Criminology degree will also have made you aware of a wide array of support services available for offenders, victims, substance users to name a few. Your degree will introduce you to different interventions and support systems and it will give you a good understanding of the importance of these charities. For example, for people interested in rehabilitation there are charities that help support people in prison who are concerned about their lives when they are released. There are charities that need mentors and support workers for young people at risk of exploitation or crime. Homeless charities may need people to work in shelters over night or help be advocates for them at housing or benefit meetings.

  • Advice worker - An advice worker provides advise in a number of different areas such as housing, benefits, employment, drugs and alcohol and more. These advisors could be based in the community or in prisons and courts. You will need to be able to be non-judgemental and a good listener who wants what is best for their client no matter their background or problem. You will need to have the knowledge and capacity to be able to liaise and refer to other organisations for support and advice. Your degree will be able to give you an insight into the issues and services that are out there and give you the knowledge to be able to support those in need of advice.

  • Social worker - A social worker’s role is to support, advocate and guide families and individuals through difficult times and experiences. Social workers can specialise in different fields such as, children, adults and mental health. This role may mean you have to work closely with police, courts, schools and vulnerable people and your criminology degree is a great start to getting used to these institutions and their role. There are graduate schemes available for Social workers such as the ThinkAhead programme.

  • Youth worker/youth offending team - As a youth worker you will work to support young people through issues they may face such as drugs, gangs and violence (to name a few). You will have to act as a mentor, educator and support worker for young people and work closely with their families and other institutions. You may run interventions, activities and arts projects to educate and keep them busy. As part of the Youth Offending Team, you will work with young offenders or people at risk to help prevent them reoffending. This might involve helping them at the police station at time of arrest to ensure they are looked after, work with them in courts or supervise them through a community sentence.

  • Community developer - A community developer helps communities bring about social change. After a degree in Criminology, you will be aware of how important community is and how it can impact crime and offending. As a community developer you will work closely with members of the public to understand what issues are affecting their lives and work to change them and improve them. This can be generally or in more specific areas such as mental health, homelessness, drug use etc.

  • Whatever you want to be! - Criminology is a degree which keeps lots of doors open to you. If you don’t fancy any jobs related to criminality you could choose to teach, do a graduate scheme in a huge number of different fields, or do whatever it is that you want to do. Criminology can give you a really good understanding of people and how and why they work. It can expose you to many different types of people and can help you to be open-minded, supportive and an advocate for people who really need it. The possibilities are endless because your degree gives you so many great skills, so do whatever makes you happy!

Biology

There are many different careers that are available to you if you have a degree in biology. Many of these do not require further study or qualifications. These can be specific to your study area or more general, as the skills learnt in biology aren’t always biology specific.  

  • Biotechnology - Biotechnologists typically study within their field of interest. As a biotechnologist you'll study the genetic, chemical and physical attributes of cells, tissues and organisms in order to develop new technologies, processes and products that will improve the quality of human life. The role involves manipulating living organisms or their components to design or enhance vaccines, medicines, energy efficiency or food productivity and safety. Large biotechnology companies tend to use the term biotechnologist as a job title. Others use titles such as laboratory technician, research assistant, genomic technologist, flow technologist or bioprocessing engineer. Salaries begin at £18K progressing to £60K with highly experienced roles.

  • Teaching - A career in teaching does require an additional year of training to receive a qualified teacher’s status (QTS) and a PGCE. As science teachers are in demand, biology, chemistry and physics receive a substantial bursary for the training. You can teach with all age groups, but be aware that teaching in primary, will require you teaching English and maths too. If you were interested in teaching further or higher education, you may consider studying to masters or PhD level before training as a teacher. Teaching science at secondary level can have a starting salary of £25K, whereas teaching in higher education can pay anything from £30K to £100K and over.

  • Biomedical Science - A biomedical scientist is responsible for human sample testing within NHS and private hospitals. You can specialise in specific sample types or stay unspecialised. You don’t always need to have achieved a degree in biomedical science to be a biomedical scientist, however you will need to be registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) to practice in UK hospitals. You will need to be very comfortable in laboratory situations and enjoy analytical work. Salaries within the NHS start at band 5, £22K. Private hospitals are likely to pay more.

  • Research - As a research biologist you will aim to develop knowledge of the world around us by studying living organisms. Careers in research provide the broadest scope of all careers with a biology degree, as research can be conducted across all specializations. Most common is research within the medical and life sciences, covering areas such as health and disease, neurology, genomics, microbiology and pharmacology. Researchers are usually hired by universities, so you may be required to teach some sessions within the department. Salaries average around £35K.

  • Pharmacology - A career in pharmacology is not restricted to manufacture and supply of medications, but also sales, clinical trials, research and development and marketing. Roles in research will require strong analytical and research skills, attention to detail and excellent presentation and communication skills, whereas sales and marketing are not specific to degree disciplines with some companies preferring business related degrees. Work experience is extremely valuable when applying for these roles. Salaries start around £20K progressing towards £100K with experience and qualifications. 

  • Environmental Biology - An environmental biologist’s aim is to conserve and sustain the full spectrum of the world’s organisms, for future generations. As an environmental biologist you will be interested in solving environmental problems and helping to protect natural resources and plant and animal wildlife. Biologists studying in this area carry out recovery programs for endangered species and provide education for the general public. Hiring industries include charities and not-for-profit organizations, government and the public sector and ecological consultancies. You could earn on average £28K a year, depending on the company. 

  • Forensic Science - A forensic scientist can be specialised in each aspect of science. Scientific techniques are used to test and examine evidence so that it can be used in a court of Law, as well as liaising with police forces, interpreting data and writing witness statements. Forensic scientists usually stay in the laboratory but may visit a crime scene when evidence cannot be removed. The forensic science sector has now been privatised so is made up of several different companies that work on behalf of the police. Salaries can start at £20K, progressing to £45K.  

  • Publication and Communication in Science - As a science writer you'll research, write and edit scientific news, articles and features, for business, trade and professional publications, specialist scientific and technical journals, and the general media. The primary role of an editor is to act as a liaison between the author and the audience. At a scientific journal, the scientists are primarily content editors. Their job is to decide what papers are appropriate to publish in the journal. You may also be known as a scientific journalist, if you report on scientific news for the media and take on a more investigatory, critical role. You can expect to earn £15K in your first year. With experience this can increase to £35K.

Digital Marketing Management

After completing a Digital Marketing Management degree, you will be equipped to take on a variety of marketing management and leadership positions including: 

  • Digital Marketing Manager - A digital marketing manager is responsible for developing, implementing and managing marketing campaigns that promote a company and its products and/or services. He or she plays a major role in enhancing brand awareness within the digital space as well as driving website traffic and acquiring leads/customers. Salaries average around £42,500. 

  • Senior Marketing Executive - The Senior Marketing Executive is involved in all aspects of marketing and is responsible for the management of the Marketing Coordinator. This is a key relationship building role and involves regular planning meetings with the senior marketing teams of our preferred retail partners, media, and developing new relationships with potential partners. This would involve external meetings and business development with identified prospective partners. The Senior Marketing Executive is responsible for creating, developing and implementing marketing plans in accordance with the Head of Marketing. Average salary of £32,500.  

  • Campaign Manager - The campaign manager oversees all aspects of the campaign including day-to-day operations, the hiring and management of staff, the coordination and implementation of the fundraising operations and ongoing coordination with the candidate. They are also responsible for creating and managing the campaign budget. Campaign managers must have excellent organizational skills, be level-headed, have good interpersonal skills and not be afraid of raising money. Salaries for Campaign Manager range between £36,798 to £51,917 on average.  

  • SEO Executive - A Search Engine Optimization Specialist is responsible for analysing, reviewing and implementing websites that are optimized to be picked up by search engines. An SEO specialist will develop content to include keywords or phrases in order to increase traffic to website. Average salary is £24,027 across the UK. 

  • PPC Executive - The pay per click executive manages the company’s pay per click campaigns ensuring they are effective at bringing in revenue. Duties such as managing the company's pay per click campaigns, analysis of keyword search volumes to identify strong keywords for campaigns and devising strategies to drive online traffic to the company websites fall under the PPC Executive. The average salary for a PPC Executive is £24,528 per year in the United Kingdom. 

  • Social Media Manager - Social media managers are in charge of representing a company across social channels as the sole voice of the brand. They respond to comments, compile campaigns and create content. These experts provide organizations with the guidance needed to enhance their online presence. The average salary for a Social Media Manager in United Kingdom is £25,831.  

  • Brand Manager - Brand managers use customer and trend research to create strategies that will change how people perceive the brand. This can involve overseeing advertising, design and events. Brand managers are responsible for making sure that branding is consistent across advertising and campaigns. The average salary for a Brand Manager in United Kingdom is £34,609. 

Psychology

A psychology degree can open doors to a range of careers across many industries and sectors.

  • Psychologist - By completing this degree, you will gain BPS (British Psychological Society) accreditation which will allow you to gain further training to become a professional psychologist. Psychologists work in numerous fields including health, sport, education, forensic, clinical and occupational. To become a professional psychologist in one of these areas further study such as a master's degree, taught Doctorate or PhD will be required however the specific course needed would depend on the chosen pathway.

  • Art Therapist - Art therapists help individuals cope with psychological distress by giving them creative outlets which helps develop emotional well-being. Professionals in this field are trained in both psychotherapy and art. Art therapy is often used in situations including helping adults suffering from chronic stress, children with disabilities, people who have suffered brain injuries and people who have witnessed or experienced a traumatic event.

  • Special Education Teacher - This job role offers individuals the opportunity of working with and helping children. A psychology degree will offer the background knowledge to understand and work with students with a variety of different disabilities. This job requires a bachelor's degree and completion of a teacher training program in special education.

  • Social Worker - Social workers help individuals with psychological, financial, health, relationship, and substance abuse problems. Duties of a social worker can include acting as advocates for clients, educating clients and teaching them new skills, highlight valuable resources in the community, protect vulnerable clients and ensure that their best interests are observed, support and assist people in need and research social problems to help find solutions. This job requires a Bachelor of Social Work degree however with a psychology degree it is possible to find entry-level jobs in social work. To provide therapy services a Master of Social Work is required.

  • Careers Advisor - Careers advisors provide information, advice and guidance to help service users make realistic choices about their education, training and work. Advice will include identifying career options, how to write a good CV and covering letter, assisting with application process and helping to find relevant training courses. A psychology degree will have helped you develop transferable skills that will help build relationships and communicate with individuals.

  • Human Resources Officer - Human resources (HR) officers develop, advise on and implement policies relating to effective use of staff in an organisation. Areas of interest in this role include conditions of employment, equality and diversity, pay, recruitment, working practices and negotiating with external work-related agencies. Early application to HR graduate training schemes is important as it is highly competitive.

  • Life Coach - Being a life coach involves empowering others to achieve their goals, maximise their potential and make changes in their lives. Life coaching focuses on identifying personal strengths, areas for development and helping clients plan positive and achievable goals. Duties may also include delivering workshops to different groups. Specific training accredited by Association for Coaching (AC), British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy BACP), European Mentoring and Coaching Council UK (EMCC UK) and International Coach Federation (ICF) should be considered.