What Is Consumer Psychology?

Consumer psychology involves how and why shoppers decide to buy certain products while ignoring others. Consumer psychologists study the motivation and decision-making processes of shoppers in both individual and social contexts. You could find work in this field by holding a degree in psychology, consumer behavior or consumer studies, among others. Schools offering Service Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

The Field of Consumer Psychology

Consumer psychology is concerned with how consumers relate to the goods or services offered by various businesses and organizations. As a consumer psychologist, you might help a corporation understand how consumers react to an advertising campaign or find ways to help consumers make informed buying choices. Consumer psychologists complete these tasks by gathering information through experiments, focus groups and surveys, then examining their data and drawing conclusions about consumer behavior.

Career Paths

Some consumer psychologists work in the academic realm as professors and researchers, while others hold positions as advertisers, marketing researchers or consultants for private businesses and government agencies. The amount of education you'd need varies, depending on your career goals. Research and teaching positions at universities usually require that the candidate hold a Ph.D., although you could find work as a research assistant if you held a master's degree. You also might find entry-level positions in advertising, marketing, sales or management if you held either a bachelor's or master's degree. If you're looking for a position or want to see the types of positions consumer psychologists apply for, you might visit the Society for Consumer Psychology's website.

Education Options

Schools offer bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees in several areas related to consumer psychology, including general psychology, organizational psychology, consumer and community studies, consumer behavior and marketing. Many of these programs offer specializations or concentrations in consumer psychology. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), those seeking entrance into psychology graduate programs usually face intense competition.

Typical Courses

Potential consumer psychologists take courses relating to consumer behavior and the factors that influence it, including culture, diversity, peers, individual psychology and more. Many programs also feature courses on marketing and advertising topics. If you entered one of these programs, you'd probably take courses on scientific research methods and their applications as well. These courses ensure you'll use the information you'd learned about consumer psychology in a practical manner, whether you're creating solutions to consumer problems or meeting a company's marketing goals.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:

Popular Schools

  • Kaplan University

    Kaplan University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Kaplan University:

    Online Programs Available

  • DeVry University

    DeVry University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at DeVry University:

    • Bachelor Degrees
    • Associate Programs

    Online and Campus-Based Programs Available:

    View All Locations
    • Anywhere: Online Campus
    • Arizona: Glendale, Mesa, Phoenix
    • California: Alhambra, Anaheim, Bakersfield, Colton, Daly City, Elk Grove, Fremont, Fresno, Long Beach, Oakland, Oxnard, Palmdale, Pomona, San Diego, San Jose, Sherman Oaks
    • Colorado: Colorado Springs, Greenwood Village, Westminster
    • Florida: Fort Lauderdale, Jacksonville, Miami, Miramar, Orlando, Tampa
    • Georgia: Alpharetta, Atlanta, Decatur, Duluth, Stockbridge
    • Illinois: Addison, Chicago, Downers Grove, Elgin, Gurnee, Naperville, Tinley Park
    • Indiana: Indianapolis, Merrillville
    • Maryland: Bethesda
    • Michigan: Southfield
    • Minnesota: Edina
    • Missouri: Kansas City, Saint Louis
    • North Carolina: Charlotte, Morrisville
    • New Jersey: Cherry Hill, North Brunswick, Paramus
    • Nevada: Henderson
    • New York: New York, Rego Park
    • Ohio: Cincinnati, Columbus, Dayton, Seven Hills
    • Oklahoma: Oklahoma City
    • Oregon: Portland
    • Pennsylvania: Fort Washington, King of Prussia, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh
    • Tennessee: Memphis, Nashville
    • Texas: Austin, Fort Worth, Houston, Irving, Richardson, San Antonio, Sugar Land
    • Utah: Sandy
    • Virginia: Arlington, Chesapeake, Manassas
    • Washington: Bellevue, Federal Way, Lynnwood
    • Wisconsin: Milwaukee
  • Ashford University

    Ashford University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Ashford University:

    Online Programs Available

  • Capella University

    Capella University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Capella University:

    • Doctoral
    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Southern New Hampshire University

    Southern New Hampshire University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Southern New Hampshire University:

    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • Baker College Online

    Baker College Online responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Baker College Online:

    Online Programs Available

  • Sanford-Brown

    Sanford-Brown responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Sanford-Brown:

    • Bachelor Degrees
    • Associate Programs

    Online and Campus-Based Programs Available:

    View All Locations
    • Anywhere: Online Campus
    • Florida: Orlando, Tampa
    • Illinois: Chicago
    • Texas: San Antonio
    • Washington: Tukwila
  • University of Phoenix

    University of Phoenix responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at University of Phoenix:

    Online and Campus-Based Programs Available:

    View All Locations
    • Anywhere: Online Campus
    • Alabama: Birmingham
    • Arkansas: Little Rock, Rogers
    • Arizona: Mesa, Phoenix, Tempe, Tucson, Yuma
    • California: Bakersfield, Beale AFB, Costa Mesa, Diamond Bar, El Centro, Fairfield, Fresno, Gardena, La Palma, Lancaster, Lathrop, Livermore, Murrieta, Oakland, Ontario, Pasadena, Sacramento, Salida, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Jose, Visalia, Woodland Hills
    • Colorado: Colorado Springs, Lone Tree, Westminster
    • Columbia (D.C.): Washington
    • Florida: Ft Lauderdale, Jacksonville, Miami, Miramar, Orlando, Temple Terrace
    • Georgia: Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Sandy Springs, Savannah
    • Hawaii: Honolulu, Kapolei
    • Iowa: Des Moines
    • Idaho: Meridian
    • Illinois: Chicago, Schaumburg
    • Indiana: Indianapolis
    • Kansas: Lenexa
    • Kentucky: Louisville
    • Louisiana: Baton Rouge, Metairie
    • Massachusetts: Braintree
    • Maryland: Columbia
    • Michigan: Detroit, Southfield
    • Minnesota: St Louis Park
    • Missouri: Kansas City, Maryland Heights, Saint Louis
    • Mississippi: Flowood
    • North Carolina: Charlotte
    • New Mexico: Albuquerque, Santa Teresa
    • Nevada: Henderson, Las Vegas
    • Ohio: Beachwood
    • Oklahoma: Oklahoma City, Tulsa
    • Oregon: Tigard
    • Pennsylvania: Philadelphia
    • Puerto Rico: Guaynabo
    • South Carolina: Columbia
    • Tennessee: Chattanooga, Cordova, Nashville
    • Texas: Arlington, Austin, Dallas, El Paso, Houston, Killeen, Mission, San Antonio, Spring
    • Utah: Clearfield, Salt Lake City, South Jordan
    • Virginia: Arlington, Glen Allen, Virginia Beach
    • Washington: Tukwila
    • Wisconsin: Milwaukee
  • Saint Joseph's University

    Saint Joseph's University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Saint Joseph's University:

    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • Penn Foster Career School

    Penn Foster Career School responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Penn Foster Career School:

    Online Programs Available

 More Schools