8 Highest-Paying Jobs for Neuroscience Majors

Neuroscience Majors

The field of neuroscience brings biology, psychology, physiology, and computer science to research and explain the human nervous system.

Many careers use individuals with a neuroscience degree, but not the ones you might think.

Of course, research neuroscientists need a degree in neuroscience, but so do the journalists who cover the topic for academic journals, magazines, and newspapers.

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1. Nurse Practitioner

Nurse Practitioner

Why Become a Nurse Practitioner?

As a nurse practitioner, you offer direct health care to patients in primary care or specialty care environments, diagnosing medical problems.

You would work closely with patients and other medical staff to coordinate the best health care.

Some nurse practitioners specialize in anesthesiology or childbirth.

You’ll need to continue your education to earn a master’s degree since the position of a nurse practitioner is the highest rank within nursing – above a registered nurse.

You also must qualify for a license.

Nurse practitioners earn a median annual wage of $96,460 or $53.77 within a range of $88,070 to $101,990.

The number of careers in this field is expected to grow by 26 percent.

Nurse Practitioner Key Stats
Avg. Salary / year$118,040
Avg. Pay / hour$56.75
Education1-2 Years

2. Psychologist


Why Become a Psychologist?

As a neuropsychologist, you offer patients direct treatment, diagnosing and treating diseases in collaboration with doctors, neurologists, and other health care staff.

Those working in this career would treat patients with a diverse number of illnesses, including stroke, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s disease.

Neuropsychologists earn a median salary of $98,000 and the job field is expected to grow by 10.3 percent in the coming years.

Psychologist Key Stats
Avg. Salary / year$118,040
Avg. Pay / hour$56.75
Education4+ Years

3. Genetic Counselor

Genetic Counselor

Why Become a Genetic Counselor?

The newer career of genetic counselor assists individuals and families in making more informed decisions about genetic health concerns, such as the potential for the inheritance of certain diseases or traits.

The genetic counselor also explains how their family medical history and genetic predispositions relate to their chance of developing a genetic illness.

In situations of a new pregnancy, the counselor assists the patient in choosing genetic tests and, if a disease is detected, treatment options.

Genetic counselors earn a median salary of $84,000 and the job field is expected to grow by 29 percent in the coming years.

Genetic Counselor Key Stats
Avg. Salary / year$86,640
Avg. Pay / hour$41.65
Education4+ Years

4. Clinical Laboratory Technician

Clinical Laboratory Technician

Why Become a Clinical Laboratory Technician?

Medical and clinical laboratory technicians work in hospitals and independent labs to test bodily fluids and tissue samples.

They provide raw results for medical doctors to aid in the diagnosis of a disease.

The methodical nature of this job isn’t for everyone.

You also need superb research skills and knowledge of human biology and physiology.

Medical and clinical laboratory technicians earn a median salary of $54,780 and the job field is expected to grow by 11 percent in the coming years.

Clinical Laboratory Technician Key Stats
Avg. Salary / year$56,910
Avg. Pay / hour$27.36
Education1-2 Years

5. Neurosurgeon


Why Become a Neurosurgeon?

Perhaps the first job most individuals think of as they pursue a degree in neuroscience, neurosurgeons experience some of the highest job satisfaction of any career, with 95 percent reporting job satisfaction and 73 percent reporting they feel “very satisfied” with their career, according to a study published in the journal World Neurosurgery.

They obtain that fulfillment by diagnosing and treating the central nervous system, spinal cord, and brain injuries and illnesses.

The median salary for the position is $252,040, or $121.10 per hour as a wage.

It requires far more than a bachelor’s degree, including medical school, residency, and licensing.

The career field has a projected job growth of one percent in the coming years.

Neurosurgeon Key Stats
Avg. Salary / year$56,910
Avg. Pay / hour$27.36
Education4+ Years

6. Neurologist


Why Become a Neurologist?

The position of a neurologist, a closely related field to a neurosurgeon, also provides low projected job growth (seven percent), but high job satisfaction for those who enter the field.

Typically, a patient comes to a neurologist by referral from another doctor for the diagnosis and treatment of central, peripheral, and automatic nervous system diseases or injuries.

They commonly work with psychiatrists since nervous system disorders often also affect the psychology of a person, such as Alzheimer’s, dementia, epilepsy, movement disorders, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson’s disease.

You’ll need to continue school after your bachelors’ degree to also complete medical school, internship, residency, and obtain licensing as a certified neurologist.

The position earns a median salary of $201,440, which averages out to $96.85 per hour.

Neurologist Key Stats
Avg. Salary / year$242,190
Avg. Pay / hour$116.44
Education4+ Years

7. Occupational Therapist

Occupational Therapists

Why Become an Occupational Therapist?

As an occupational therapist, you help patients re-learn or learn skills that help them lead a better life.

This can range from teaching a person how to feed him or herself again after an accident to helping a person re-learn how to drive.

The patients could have developed their problems due to emotional, mental, or physical disturbance.

The job requires patience and empathy on top of both a bachelor’s and master’s degree, plus 24 weeks of supervised professional practice and state licensing.

Occupational therapists earn a median salary of $86,210 and the job field is expected to grow by 18 percent in the coming years.

Occupational Therapist Key Stats
Avg. Salary / year$89,470
Avg. Pay / hour$43.02
Education3-4 Years

8. Journalist


Why Become a Journalist?

You can enter the field of neuroscience with a career in journalism.

A degree in neuroscience makes you an ideal candidate for a science writer covering this field.

You’ll explain the medical and science concepts used in articles that educate those working in the field and the general public.

You must have a strong command of the language, an interest in research, an understanding of scientific theory and methods, plus work well with researchers or other writers.

Neuroscience journalists earn a median salary of $41,000, but the job field is expected to experience negative growth of -10.1 percent in the coming years.

Journalist Key Stats
Avg. Salary / year$63,230
Avg. Pay / hour$30.40
Education4+ Years

Jamie Willis