A politics degree can open doors to a range of careers, including political work, social and political research, journalism, PR and marketing
Jobs directly related to your degree include:
- Civil Service Fast Streamer
- Government social research officer
- Policy officer
- Political risk analyst
- Politician's assistant
- Public affairs consultant
- Social researcher
- Trade union research officer
Jobs where your degree would be useful include:
- Academic researcher
- Advice worker
- Business development manager
- Charity officer
- Diplomatic service officer
- Forensic accountant
- Local government officer
- Market researcher
- Marketing executive
- Newspaper journalist
- Public relations officer
Remember that many employers accept applications from graduates with any degree subject, so don't restrict your thinking to the jobs listed here.
You can get valuable work experience by volunteering with charities and not-for-profit organisations. These include:
- local, national and international charities
- Citizens Advice
- global development bodies, such as WaterAid and Oxfam
- human and civil rights organisations such as Amnesty International
- environmental and conservation organisations
- political campaigns and political parties.
Check their websites for details of what they offer and how to apply.
Campaigning organisations or pressure groups and UK-based charities with an international presence are particularly suitable if you wish to pursue an international career.
If you're a student, consider running for office in your university students' union or getting volunteering experience through the university community and student societies. This demonstrates initiative and can provide leadership experience and opportunities to further develop your written and oral communication skills.
Many degrees offer the opportunity to undertake professional work experience on a placement or sandwich year.
Search for placements and find out more about work experience and internships.
Politics graduates are typically employed by:
- accountancy and banking organisations
- commercial businesses - particularly within marketing or PR departments
- law firms
- local and national government
- lobbying and campaigning organisations
- public affairs consultancies
- schools, colleges and universities
- retail companies
- media organisations.
Other employers include the United Nations (UN), the Civil Service, think tanks, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and voluntary organisations, and the public sector in general.
Skills for your CV
Studying politics enables you to develop specific subject knowledge, such as how different political systems work, how organisations such as the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the United Nations (UN) operate, and to interpret global political issues and events.
A degree in politics also gives you many useful transferable skills including:
- the ability to research, source and examine information thoroughly
- the ability to critically analyse evidence and construct coherent arguments
- excellent written, presentation and oral communication skills
- intellectual independence and autonomy
- teamworking skills
- IT skills
- a flexible and open-minded approach to work
- self-motivation and self-reliance
- a creative approach to problem solving
- organisational and time management skills.
You may choose to undertake postgraduate study in order to further develop your knowledge, or to specialise in a particular area.
Subjects at Masters level include:
- environmental politics
- human rights
- international relations and European politics
- international security
- political communication, advocacy and campaigning
Alternatively, you could choose a more vocational course or training to help you move into careers such as accountancy, journalism, law, management and teaching.
What do politics graduates do?
The top four professions for politics graduates include business, research and administrative professionals (10%), sales, marketing and related associate professionals (7%), media professionals (6%) and finance professionals (5%).
|Working and studying||13.4|
|Type of work||Percentage|
|Business, HR and finance||27.3|
|Clerical, secretarial and adminstrative||14.4|
|Marketing, PR and sales||13|
|Retail, catering and customer service||11.3|
For a detailed breakdown of what politics graduates are doing after graduation, see What do graduates do?
Graduate destinations data from the Higher Education Statistics Agency.