Psychology and Business
Both the understanding of human behavior and the skill in the analysis of data provided by a major in psychology are very useful to students interested in careers in management and business. Market research, human resources, advertising, and sales make direct use of knowledge gained in psychology courses. Students interested in business typically enter the work force soon after completing the requirements for a BA. Many return to school a few years later to obtain an MBA (Master in Business Administration) or another advanced degree. At Northwestern's J. L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management, for example, approximately 99% of students have had full-time work experience. Northwestern undergraduates interested in business should consult the Pre-Business webpages prepared by the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences.
Certain psychology courses are especially relevant for students thinking of careers in business. Among these are 204-Social Psychology, 384-Interpersonal Relations, 228-Cognitive Psychology, and 335-Decision Making. Skills in data analysis acquired through 201-Statistical Methods, 205-Research Methods, and 351-Advanced Statistics and Experimental Design are likely to prove useful as well. Because some graduate business programs (as well as those in economics) require a background in calculus, pre-business students may choose to count Math 220, 224, and 230 as three of their Related Courses for the psychology major.
Students interested in business careers can find many relevant courses in other departments. Some students interested in management and business choose to complete a minor in economics or business institutions, a second major or minor in international studies, an Integrated Marketing Communcations certificate through Medill, or a Kellogg undergraduate certificate. Others choose elective courses that may not fulfill requirements for any particular program, but that best fit their own interests and strengthen their own skills.
Those interested in careers in business should also seek out summer jobs and internships in the business world. Such experiences will enhance both their resumes and their self-knowledge about what sorts of work environments and responsibilities they prefer. One excellent way to do this is through Northwestern’s Chicago Field Studies program; additional internship experiences are offered through other programs on campus. Career Services is also a valuable resource for students seeking business-related internship experiences.