12 Jobs for Neuroscience Majors | The University Network (2022)

A challenging yet rewarding major, neuroscience can be an excellent starting point to a career in medicine, psychology, or research science. Undergraduate neuroscience majors typically pursue advanced degrees in neuroscience or a related field like psychology, and many choose to go to medical school and pursue a career as a physician or surgeon.

Here is a list of 12 jobs for neuroscience majors:

Most Common Jobs for Neuroscience Majors

1. Physician

It is very common for neuroscience majors to end up attending medical school and pursuing a career as a physician. Physicians, or medical doctors, are professionals who examine and diagnose patients, and treat injury and illness. The term “physician” refers to a wide range of medical practitioners that may include family and general doctors who treat a range of everyday conditions and illnesses, pediatricians who treat children and young adults, general internists who provide nonsurgical treatment for problems that affect internal organs, or a wide variety of specialists who have expertise and treat specific organs or conditions. Becoming a physician requires a lot of time and hard work. After you get your bachelor’s degree, you’re going to need to take the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT), attend medical school for 4 years and earn a medical degree, and then complete a residency program, which typically takes 3-7 years depending on your specialty.

Median annual wage: Varies according to specialty; $198,740 for family physician

Common entry-level degree: Doctor of Medicine/Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine

Likelihood that robots will take your job: 0%

2. Psychiatrist

Psychiatrists are medical doctors who work in the area of mental health. Psychiatrists offer services like counseling and therapy and prescribe treatments for mental illnesses and disorders, which may include medication. Psychiatrists may work in hospitals or have a private practice. Because psychiatrists are medical doctors, in order to become one, you will need to complete medical school, residency, and for certain specialists, a one- or two-year fellowship.

Median annual wage: $208,000

Common entry-level degree: Doctor of Medicine/Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine

Likelihood that robots will take your job: N/A

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3. Psychologist

Many people don’t know what differentiates a psychiatrist and psychologist, but the distinction is quite significant. Whereas psychiatrists are medical doctors (M.D.s) who have attended medical school, psychologists are not. As a result, the two practices tend to be quite different. Psychologists are typically trained more rigorously in treating patients using non-drug therapies like psychotherapy, and in most states, psychologists are not allowed to prescribe drugs. Psychologists may work in a variety of different settings. Most psychologists are clinical psychologists who have a private practice or work in a health care institution. Others may be employed by a school, business, or other organization to provide mental health services to students or employees. Others may assist law enforcement as forensic psychologists. Most psychologists have a doctorate in psychology (Ph.D.) or a Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) degree, and a doctorate and licensure are necessary to practice clinical psychology, although a master’s degree can be sufficient for some positions in schools or businesses.

Median annual wage: $77,030

Common entry-level degree: Master’s/Doctorate degree or Doctor of Psychology

Likelihood that robots will take your job: 0.5%

Specialized/Unique Jobs for Neuroscience Majors

4. Neurosurgeon

Neurosurgeons fall under the broad category of physicians, but these doctors possess a rare level of expertise in treating conditions of the nervous system. Neurosurgeons treat injuries, illnesses or diseases of the brain, spinal cord and peripheral nerves through surgical methods. Neurosurgeons must be able to spend focus for long periods of time while in surgery, and must have excellent hand-eye coordination, so that they can perform incredibly precise microsurgery. This is a job for only the most ambitious neuroscientists. In order to become a neurosurgeon, you will have to complete medical school, complete a year-long internship in general surgery, complete a neurosurgery residency (which may take 5-7 years), and in some cases, complete a post-residency fellowship to specialize in a specific area. Because there are relatively few neurosurgeons, they tend to work long hours and are given an inordinate amount of responsibility and duties. They are also paid handsomely for their work; neurosurgeons are among the highest-paid doctors.

Median annual wage: $208,000

Common entry-level degree: Doctor of Medicine/Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine

Likelihood that robots will take your job: 0.4%

5. Speech-Language Pathologist

Speech-language pathologists, also called speech therapists, work with patients of all ages who struggle with communication or swallowing disorders. They are trained to evaluate speech, language and swallowing ability, provide diagnoses, and carry out treatment plans. Speech-language therapists must have at minimum a master’s degree from a program that is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA). Aspiring speech-language pathologists will also need to complete 400 hours of supervised clinical experience, complete a Clinical Fellowship Year (CFY), and pass the Praxis exam before they can become licensed.

Median annual wage: $77,610

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Common entry-level degree: Master’s degree

Likelihood that robots will take your job: 0.6%

12 Jobs for Neuroscience Majors | The University Network (1)

6. Psychometrist

Psychometrists are professionals who are trained to administer and score psychological tests. The majority of their job involves gathering data and calculating statistics based on that data. The majority are employed in research facilities, testing companies, and universities, although it is also common to find psychometrists working in health care facilities, law enforcement and criminal justice facilities, and even the military. It is common for psychometrists to have a doctorate in a related field. There are very few graduate-level psychometrics degree programs, so most psychometrists enter the discipline through a related field, such as statistics or psychology. Aspiring psychometrists will want to take coursework in mathematics and statistics as well as psychology and neuroscience.

Median annual wage: $84,060

Common entry-level degree: Doctorate degree

Likelihood that robots will take your job: 22%

Non-Traditional Jobs for Neuroscience Majors

7. Biotech or Pharmaceutical Sales Representative

If you are interested in neuroscience, but you aren’t interested in pursuing a job in an explicitly scientific field, you might consider becoming a sales representative for a pharmaceutical or biotech company. Sales representatives work on behalf of a pharmaceutical or biotechnology company to sell their products, whether it be medications or medical devices, to doctors, physicians and hospitals. Becoming a sales representative only requires a bachelor’s degree, though many pursue additional education as well.

Median annual wage: $78,830

Common entry-level degree: Bachelor’s degree

(Video) Career Possibilities for Neuroscience Majors

Likelihood that robots will take your job: 25%

8. Science Journalist

If you are interested in science but would like to write for a living, a neuroscience major can prepare you well for a career as a science journalist. Science journalists may write about all branches of science for newspapers, magazines or websites. While there is no degree requirement to become a writer, a degree in neuroscience or another field of science can give you the essential knowledge to cover your subjects accurately.

Median annual wage: $39,370

Common entry-level degree: Bachelor’s degree

Likelihood that robots will take your job: 11%

9. Substance Abuse and Behavioral Disorder Counselor

Substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors work with individuals who are struggling with substance addiction or other problem behaviors, such as eating disorders, conduct disorder, and attention deficit disorder, among others. These professionals are trained to evaluate patients’ mental health and provide diagnoses when appropriate. They also work with individuals and their families to devise treatment plans and help them cope with recovery and build relationships. The education requirements to become a substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselor vary by state, but most enter the field with at least a bachelor’s degree. If you have a bachelor’s degree in neuroscience, you will likely want to pursue further education, and probably a master’s degree in counseling and psychology.

Median annual wage: $43,300

Common entry-level degree: Bachelor’s/Master’s degree

Likelihood that robots will take your job: 3%

Other Jobs for Neuroscience Majors

10. Neuroimaging technician

Neuroimaging technicians specialize in producing medical images of the brain using a variety of tests, such as positron emission tomography (PET), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT) scans. These technicians are trained to handle and maintain a variety of brain scanning technologies, process imaging using neuroimaging software, collect and organize data, and sometimes assist in brain imaging analysis. Education requirements vary based on the opening, but typically employers look for applicants with at least a bachelor’s degree, though sometimes they will target applicants with master’s degrees.

(Video) PhD in University of Alberta| Fully Funded | Neuroscience | Biology | Canada|2021

Median annual wage: $69,930

Common entry-level degree: Bachelor’s/Master’s degree

Likelihood that robots will take your job: 90%

11. College Professor

As with many students in the sciences, many neuroscience majors go on to become professors of their discipline. Being a college professor is a great option for neuroscientists, as you can nurture and inspire the next generation of scientists while also conducting your own research. To earn a job teaching at the post-secondary level, you will need at least a master’s degree, but you will typically need a doctorate for a full-time tenure-track professorship.

Median annual wage: $77,190

Common entry-level degree: Master’s/Doctorate degree

Likelihood that robots will take your job: 3%

12. Medical Research Scientist

Medical research scientists conduct research and perform experiments with the goal of understanding and improving human health. Many work on teams with other medical researchers, technicians and students to design and conduct studies, or develop new technologies or methods to understand and treat human diseases. Generally, medical scientists have a doctorate in a life science or subfield of biology. Some may also have medical degrees.

Median annual wage: $96,070

Common entry-level degree: Master’s/Doctorate degree

(Video) Careers in neuroscience (and beyond!)

Likelihood that robots will take your job: 0.5%

10 Famous People Who Studied Neuroscience

  1. Richard W. Aldrich, neuroscientist
  2. Gregory Berns, neuroeconomist
  3. Mayim Bialik, actress
  4. David Eagleman, neuroscientist and science communicator
  5. Ze Frank, online personality
  6. Sam Harris, neuroscientist and public intellectual
  7. Susan Hockfield, neuroscientist and university administrator
  8. David Marr, neuroscientist
  9. Kiki Sanford, neurophysiologist and science communicator
  10. Gazi Yasargil, neurosurgeon

To explore options for other majors, click here.

FAQs

12 Jobs for Neuroscience Majors | The University Network? ›

  • 12 Jobs for Neuroscience Majors. A challenging yet rewarding major, neuroscience can be an excellent starting point to a career in medicine, psychology, or research science. ...
  • Physician. ...
  • Psychiatrist. ...
  • Psychologist. ...
  • Neurosurgeon. ...
  • Speech-Language Pathologist. ...
  • Psychometrist. ...
  • Biotech or Pharmaceutical Sales Representative.

What are 5 potential jobs that students of neurology can obtain? ›

Careers in Neuroscience
Pharmaceutical SalesResidential Counselor
Health EducatorOrthotic and Prosthetic Technician*
EEG Technologist*Lab Animal Care Technician
Medical and Healthcare ManagerSales Engineer
Forensic Science TechnicianLaw Enforcement
7 more rows

What majors go well with neuroscience? ›

Neuroscience pairs well with psychology, cognitive science, biology, medical sciences, vision science, and others. Your requirements can be coordinated for the two programs.

What are the highest paying neuroscience careers? ›

19 high-paying neuroscience careers
  1. Epidemiologist. National average salary: $78,052 per year. ...
  2. Occupational therapist. National average salary: $84,201 per year. ...
  3. Neurorehabilitation manager. National average salary: $87,853 per year. ...
  4. Psychologist. ...
  5. Clinical psychologist. ...
  6. Research scientist. ...
  7. Veterinarian. ...
  8. Nurse practitioner.
Aug 18, 2021

Is a degree in neuroscience worth it? ›

A challenging yet rewarding major, neuroscience can be an excellent starting point to a career in medicine, psychology or research science.

Is neuroscience a hard major? ›

Neuroscience is hard because the core courses such as biology, chemistry, and mathematics are challenging. Earning a Ph. D. or MD in Neuroscience also requires students to stay in school so much longer. A graduate degree in Neuroscience, since it is in the medical field, can be hard on the pocket, too.

Do neuroscientists make a lot of money? ›

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for neuroscientists is $91,510 per year .

Is neuroscience a high paying major? ›

As Salary.com reports, on average, cognitive neuroscientists earn around $84,000 per year. The lowest ten percent of earners can expect a salary closer to $63,600 per year. The highest ten percent of workers can expect to earn $111,683 per year or more.

Are neuroscientists in demand? ›

According to Learn, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projected a huge spike in demand for occupations related to neuroscience. There is a growth of 13% for behavioral neuroscience jobs like medical scientists and neuroscientists from 2012 to 2022.

What's the highest paid job in the world? ›

The highest-paying job in the world, in a traditional sense, holds the number one spot in this article: anesthesiologist. They are also the only job listed above $300,000 a year. The list, however, does not take into account mega-CEOs like Warren Buffett and Jeff Bezos, who make considerably more than that.

What does a neuroscientist do for a living? ›

A neuroscientist is a researcher who works with the nervous system, the brain, spinal cord, and nerve cells, to develop solutions and make discoveries related to the human brain and its functions. The neuroscientist will also develop pharmaceuticals for neurological and psychiatric disorders.

What can I do with masters in neuroscience? ›

Graduated master's students can also apply for a wide range of positions, including:
  • Science teacher.
  • Lecturer.
  • Research and teaching administrator.
  • Adviser in public and government institutions.
  • Laboratory technician.
  • Research assistant.
  • Academic journalist.
  • Medical writer for medical communication.

Do neuroscientists make a lot of money? ›

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for neuroscientists is $91,510 per year .

Are neuroscientists in demand? ›

According to Learn, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projected a huge spike in demand for occupations related to neuroscience. There is a growth of 13% for behavioral neuroscience jobs like medical scientists and neuroscientists from 2012 to 2022.

Is neuroscience a STEM major? ›

The Bachelor of Science in Neuroscience (BS in Neuroscience) is an interdisciplinary degree with a STEM+Health focus.

Is a neuroscientist a doctor? ›

Neuroscientists are basic scientists who may or may not have a degree in medicine. Most of them, however, are doctorates in neuroscience. Neurologists on the other hand have an undergraduate degree with four years at medical school and a year of internship.

Is a PhD in neuroscience worth it? ›

A PhD in neuroscience gives you more than just facts, though. When it's done right, you learn a whole array of cognitive and experimental process skills. You'll learn how to assess information, develop arguments, and think critically about work in your field.

How do I get a job in neuroscience? ›

The journey to become a neuroscientist will begin to pick up speed after high school. You'll need to earn a bachelor's degree and then a master's degree and/or a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD). If you intend on working with patients, you will need to earn a degree from medical school and a physician's license.

What can I do with a masters in neuroscience? ›

Graduated master's students can also apply for a wide range of positions, including:
  • Science teacher.
  • Lecturer.
  • Research and teaching administrator.
  • Adviser in public and government institutions.
  • Laboratory technician.
  • Research assistant.
  • Academic journalist.
  • Medical writer for medical communication.

Videos

1. Free online course for Neuroscience - Review
(Bookeshi - Science)
2. how I studied for 12 hours a day for over a year
(James Scholz)
3. Careers in Neuroscience
(NKU Institute for Health Innovation)
4. New Undergraduate Interdisciplinary Neuroscience Program Official Launch
(UniversityOfRI)
5. Waterloo Campus Open House - Psychology (BA and BSc), Psychology and Neuroscience (BSc)
(Wilfrid Laurier University)
6. College Experience - Computational Neuroscience at University of Chicago #ChetChat
(ChetChat)

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