BA in Psych, now looking into programming and.. UX/UI?

I graduated 4 years ago with a 4 year degree in Psychology. I absolutely love psychology and helping people work through stuff, but I’ve realized I hate doing it for money. I spend a lot of time supporting people through the random people I encounter and thus putting my degree to use, but not for profit. So I’ve decided to look for profit, especially as I hope to have a family some day, but also something I don’t hate, haha. Several programmer and engineer friends have encouraged me that I have a programmers way of thinking, and I also don’t want to go back to school or spend much more money, so coding seemed like a good choice. I made it a bit into Javascript here on FCC, and I’m also teaching myself Python… but I’m not sure I like web design, and I don’t know if I’m actually going to want to do programming. I’m dealing with some second guessing, but I’m 27 and I don’t want to keep changing careers because I’m “not into it.”

However, I’ve found that the best of both worlds (psychology and programming) has been amongst Usability areas. I was a math tutor and told I was the best my college had had (and I was only slightly good at math) because I was so good at simplifying complex ideas. I’ve been told I do this well with philosophy, psychology, world religions, and even technical stuff. I’m good at understanding not just how people feel but also how they think in situations. And I helped once beta test an app where a bunch of my feedback was used, which I’m realizing now was mostly changes to the wording and interfaces to make it more obvious to users what options they had. So one of my requests is general advice for if I should maybe keep pushing at Python, JavaScript, and/or other codes that might fit me better, even alongside UI/UX stuff.

I’m also wondering what I actually should study as a person trying to get into UI/UX with a BA in Psychology, haha. I’m reading Design of Everyday Things and Don’t Make Me Think, along with watching some videos on YouTube, and I’ve also been on the site. I also have some friends marketing a device (with Disney) who might at the very least give me an internship in the area of User Experience so I can have some resume experience and portfolio material. I’m seeing some articles on getting UI/UX jobs with little to no experience, but I still need to know some of the actual content of a typical degree so I have more than just my intuition to go on, haha.

Thank you everyone, especially Quincy, for all the great lessons and help you provide! People’s stories alone are so inspiring! :slight_smile:


The UX expert that I used to work with recommends The Inmates Are Running the Asylum: Why High Tech Products Drive Us Crazy and How to Restore the Sanity as one of the best places to start in understanding problems with UI design.