Developmental Psychology Careers

An important question to ask, for those who are considering a Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology at USC is: What comes next? What kind of career opportunities will be available to me when I finish my graduate education? Our training goals are flexible and we will prepare you for a range of career options for your future. Some students choose an academic career path while others make contributions in varied types of applied settings.

We encourage students who are admitted to the Developmental Psychology Graduate Program to work with different faculty and to develop more than one line of research during their training at USC. Accordingly, we offer broad-based research training to support the emergence of scientists who are oriented toward academic or applied careers. Our graduates have obtained faculty positions throughout North America and we are well represented in Pacific Rim universities as a function primarily of USC’s strong international presence. Other former students, who are in the early stages of their professional development, have post-doctoral research placements. Many of our Developmental students who were not oriented toward university-based careers now work in applied settings. For example, one recent graduate is employed in a community based non-profit organization that provides educational programs for at-risk children. Another graduate of our program is applying his statistics and methodological skills working for a company that conducts evaluation studies.

The theme that ties our program together is the goal of applying developmental science to the public interest. Our primary objective is to train you to be a high-level scientist. We expect that you will use the skills you have gained in our program in a challenging career that addresses issues related to development across childhood and adolescence.



  • Department of Psychology
  • University of Southern California
  • SGM 501
  • 3620 South McClintock Ave.
  • Los Angeles, CA 90089-1061