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Career and Education Opportunities for Industrial Psychologists in Birmingham, Alabama

Birmingham, Alabama provides a wide variety of opportunities, both career and educational, for industrial psychologists. The national trend for industrial psychologists sees this job pool growing by about 26.3% over the next eight years. Industrial psychologists generally apply principles of psychology to personnel, administration, and marketing problems.

The average wage in the general category of Social Sciences jobs is $30 per hour or $62,555 per year in Alabama, and an average of $33 per hour or $68,239 per year nationwide. Industrial psychologists work in a variety of jobs, including: consulting services director, staffing consultant, and engineering psychologist.

The Birmingham area is home to fifteen schools of higher education, including four within twenty-five miles of Birmingham where you can get a degree as an industrial psychologist. The most common level of education for industrial psychologists is a Master's degree. You can expect to spend about six years studying to be an industrial psychologist if you already have a high school diploma, or just 2 years if you have a Bachelor's degree.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Industrial Psychologist

In general, industrial psychologists apply principles of psychology to personnel, administration, and marketing problems. They also activities may include policy planning; employee screening, training and development; and organizational development and analysis.

Industrial psychologists write reports on research findings and implications to contribute to general knowledge and to suggest potential changes in organizational functioning. They also analyze data, using statistical methods and applications, to review the outcomes and effectiveness of workplace programs. Equally important, industrial psychologists have to identify training and development needs. They are often called upon to observe and interview staff to obtain data related to the physical and educational requirements of jobs as well as data related to aspects such as job satisfaction. They are expected to facilitate organizational development and change. Finally, industrial psychologists formulate and implement training programs, applying principles of learning and individual differences.

Every day, industrial psychologists are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they write clearly and communicate well.

It is important for industrial psychologists to assess employee performance. They are often called upon to conduct research studies of physical work environments, organizational structures, communication systems and motivation to gauge organizational functioning. They also advise management concerning personnel and marketing policies and practices and their potential effects on organizational effectiveness and efficiency. They are sometimes expected to design interview techniques and psychological tests used to gauge skills and interests for the purpose of employee selection and promotion. Somewhat less frequently, industrial psychologists are also expected to participate in mediation and dispute resolution.

They also have to be able to design and implement employee selection and placement programs and formulate and implement training programs, applying principles of learning and individual differences. And finally, they sometimes have to facilitate organizational development and change.

Like many other jobs, industrial psychologists must be able to absorb the factors involved and a problem and provide a well thought out solution and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Birmingham include:

  • Economist. Conduct research, prepare reports, or formulate plans to aid in solution of economic problems arising from production and distribution of goods and services. May collect and process economic and statistical data using econometric and sampling techniques.
  • Geographic Information Systems Analyst. Study nature and use of areas of earth's surface, relating and interpreting interactions of physical and cultural phenomena. Conduct research on physical aspects of a region, including land forms, climates, soils, plants and animals, and conduct research on the spatial implications of human activities within a given area, including social characteristics, economic activities, and political organization, as well as researching interdependence between regions at scales ranging from local to global.
  • Historian. Research, analyze, and interpret the past as recorded in sources, such as government and institutional records, newspapers and other periodicals, photographs, and unpublished manuscripts, such as personal diaries and letters.
  • Market Research Analyst. Research market conditions in local, regional, or national areas to determine potential sales of a product or service. May gather information on competitors, prices, and methods of marketing and distribution. May use survey results to create a marketing campaign based on regional preferences and buying habits.
  • Market Survey Representative. Design or conduct surveys. May supervise interviewers who conduct the survey in person or over the telephone. May present survey results to client.
  • School Psychologist. Investigate processes of learning and teaching and develop psychological principles and techniques applicable to educational problems.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Industrial Psychologist Training

Birmingham Southern College - Birmingham, AL

Birmingham Southern College, 900 Arkadelphia Road, Birmingham, AL 35254. Birmingham Southern College is a small college located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,458 students and an admission rate of 69%. Birmingham Southern College has a bachelor's degree program in Psychology which graduated twenty-nine students in 2008.

University of Montevallo - Montevallo, AL

University of Montevallo, Station 6001, Montevallo, AL 35115-6000. University of Montevallo is a small university located in Montevallo, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,030 students and an admission rate of 78%. University of Montevallo has a bachelor's degree program in Psychology which graduated four students in 2008.

Samford University - Birmingham, AL

Samford University, 800 Lakeshore Drive, Birmingham, AL 35229-2240. Samford University is a small university located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 4,469 students and an admission rate of 89%. Samford University has a bachelor's degree program in Psychology which graduated one student in 2008.

University of Alabama at Birmingham - Birmingham, AL

University of Alabama at Birmingham, Administration Bldg Suite 1070, Birmingham, AL 35294-0110. University of Alabama at Birmingham is a large university located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 16,149 students and an admission rate of 85%. University of Alabama at Birmingham has bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree programs in Psychology which graduated one, eight, and eight students respectively in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Professional Ergonomist: The BCPE was established to provide a formal process for recognizing practitioners of human factors/ergonomics.

For more information, see the Board of Certification in Professional Ergonomics website.

LICENSES

Psychologist

Licensing agency: AL Board of Examiners in Psychology
Address: 660 Adams Avenue, Suite 360, Montgomery, AL 36104-4373

Phone: (334) 242-4127
Website: AL Board of Examiners in Psychology

LOCATION INFORMATION: Birmingham, Alabama

Birmingham, Alabama
Birmingham, Alabama photo by Eric_in_SF

Birmingham is located in Jefferson County, Alabama. It has a population of over 228,798, which has shrunk by 5.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Birmingham, 81, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Birmingham cost $187,300 on average, which is well above the state average. In 2008, one hundred thirty-two new homes were built in Birmingham, down from two hundred thirty-two the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Birmingham are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, accommodation and food services, and health care. The average travel time to work is about 24 minutes. More than 18.5% of Birmingham residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.6%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Birmingham is 12.5%, which is greater than Alabama's average of 10.7%.

The percentage of Birmingham residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 60.1%, is more than both the national and state average. Williams Chapel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, Westminister Presbyterian Church and West End Methodist Church are all churches located in Birmingham. The most common religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.

Birmingham is home to the Mineral Park Municipal Golf Course and the Cooper Green Golf Course as well as Avondale Mills Park and Smithfield Historic District. Shopping malls in the area include Acipco Shopping Center, Altadena Square Shopping Center and Parkway East Huffman Shopping Center. Visitors to Birmingham can choose from Marriott Hotel Birmingham, Rime Garden Extended Stay Suites and Studioplus for temporary stays in the area.