Endel Tulving


World authority on human memory function

"Don’t listen to authorities. Find out what the problem is, get the facts, and make up your own mind. Use the scientific method to work things out. The scientific method can solve many problems. Experiment. Trust your feelings and try out various things."

So You Want to Be a Psychologist

Most psychologists are employed in practical settings — hospitals, schools, businesses, governments and the military. Many are not engaged in scientific research, which is carried out in universities and research institutions. Behavioural psychologists are interested in how people, and animals, behave in different situations, and why they do what they do. Behavioural psychologists do not pay much attention to the “mind” of their subjects, the inner thoughts or feelings related to behaviour. Many behaviours can be understood without knowing exactly what is going on in the brain. Counselling psychologists pay more attention to the minds of their clients, helping people cope with difficult feelings arising from life’s hard events such as lost love, death, insecurity and depression.

Psychologists can expect to earn an average of from $35,000 to $100,000 per year. Endel Tulving says, “When it comes to jobs, people naturally try to make rational decisions. They ask: ‘Why should I do this or that? How much will a job pay?’ But life usually doesn’t work like that.” And he is glad it does not, because it’s not the best approach to choosing a career. A better method is to experiment (in your mind, if necessary) to find a job that seems interesting to begin with and keeps your interest over time. “And if you are doing a job, and find something more interesting, change the job. In your life you will find people who inspire you. Emulate them, says Tulving.” As a final piece of advice he adds, “The more you learn and know in the area of your work, the more interesting your jobs and projects become.”

There are many jobs in psychology, including career, emotional, marital and youth counsellors; clinical, experimental, behavioural-modification, child, cognitive, developmental, educational, engineering or industrial psychologist; neuropsychologist; and organizational, military, social, sport and vocational psychologist.

Career ideas:

  • Counseling (such as career, emotional, marital, teen, etc.)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Experimental Psychology
  • Behavioral modification psychologist
  • Child psychologist
  • Clinical psychologist
  • Cognitive psychologist
  • Developmental psychologist
  • Educational psychologist
  • Engineering psychologist
  • Industrial psychologist
  • Neuropsychologist
  • Organizational psychologist
  • Military psychologist
  • Psychotherapist
  • Research psychologist
  • School psychologist
  • Social psychologist
  • Sport psychologist
  • Vocational psychologist

Other scientists who may be of interest:

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