I am finishing a Ph.D. in psychology, but my goal is to find an industry job in biomedical engineering. Would an academic postdoc in biomedical engineering improve my prospects for an industry job in that field?

  • This question is problematic to me. If you specify the fields, the answer depends on the specific field. If you don't specify the fields, the question is too broad, in my opinion. – scaaahu Jan 24 '20 at 6:36
  • Edited with specific fields – RNG Jan 24 '20 at 6:49
  • My solution strategy for answering this question would be to check which tasks a biomedical engineer performs in industry, and check if the particular post-doc will help you gain any experience with these tasks. – lighthouse keeper Jan 24 '20 at 7:21
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    Psych to biomed engineer is quite a change. I would suggest to make sure that you have the required knowledge, and maybe spend a few quarters getting the needed courses first. After that, though, it is in theory of course possible to change fields in your postdoc; you just need to convince people why they should hire you, so why you have the skills and knowledge needed for this postdoc. – Dirk Jan 24 '20 at 7:22
  • Thanks for the advice @Dirk In my situation, I already have the postdoc offer in hand. – RNG Jan 24 '20 at 7:31

A PhD is a very high level qualification but going from psychology to biomedical engineering is quite a big change. So anybody who wants to hire somebody to do biomedical engineering would need some pretty strong arguments why they should hire you as a psychology phd. This applies to the professor looking for a postdoc the same way as in industry.

In comments you said you already have a postdoc offer. This seems to change things a lot because after the postdoc you can apply to biomedical engineering jobs and show you are qualified for them with the postdoc. Currently it seems very hard to judge your qualifications in that field.

  • This advice makes sense. Besides publishing and auditing courses to round out my skill set, is there any activity I should work on during the postdoc to improve my resume? – RNG Jan 24 '20 at 13:51

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