The best psychology masters programs provide graduates with a host of opportunities to advance their careers and earn a higher salary. Chances are good, if you’re doing an Internet search for the best psychology master’s programs, you’ve determined your future career or are wanting to advance your career path. Having a Master of Arts or Master of Science in Psychology can position you for a variety of excellent careers according to the American Psychological Association’s Career Guide. It’s also an excellent foundation for a PhD.
Best Health Degrees has searched school websites and selected some of the best psychology degree programs to help in your graduate program search. This ranking is condensed to give you a general idea of program courses, admission requirements, cost, etc. for MA or MS programs and along with additional school links. Transfer and international students are accepted by most schools, however the descriptions here only review the admission requirements for U.S. citizens. Be aware that, with rare exceptions, not all programs lead to licensure.
These online programs from top psychology schools are all accredited and are eligible for federal student assistance. Be certain to apply for aid by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®. Graduate students may qualify for loans and some schools might require the FAFSA on file for departmental scholarships or stipends.
Note: Some of the Master’s programs listed aren’t terminal degrees. However, they are part of doctoral programs. You may also find that some of the programs are 4+1 degrees, allowing you to earn both an undergraduate and graduate degree in five years, rather than the typical six for a baccalaureate and master’s.
Our Method: Ranking the 25 Best Psychology Master’s Programs
To rank the 25 Best Psychology Master’s Programs, Best Degrees editors researched accredited, trusted programs of all kinds. From our initial pool, we ranked the psychology master’s degree programs according to price, accreditation, reputation, and salary potential, using data from IPEDS and Niche, U.S. News and World Report, and other higher education rating publications.
1. Stanford University
If you’re currently enrolled in a PhD, JD, or MD at Stanford University, you can additionally earn a MA in Psychology.
You’ll need to have completed a minimum of 45-credit hours of graduate-level psychology courses as well as research or other coursework as determined by the faculty. The degree program is 27 credits. Additionally, students take classes in Developmental Psychology, Affective Science, Cognitive Neuroscience, Foundations of Cognition, Classic and Contemporary Social Psychology Research, and Affective Science. Students must also take two statistics courses, lab courses, practica, and a First-Year Project or Master’s thesis.
- An application is required for currently enrolled psychology PhD students, approval from the Department Chair, and other documents. To initiate admission to the MA Psychology program (and you’re presently enrolled in a Stanford University) JD, MD, or PhD program, you’ll need to secure a psychology faculty member to serve as your Master’s advisor. Additional documents and core coursework will also be required.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $54,315/per academic year
Fast Fact: U.S. News and World Report ranks this psychology program #1 in its 2021 ratings
2. Georgia Tech
This Atlanta-based university is known for its technical degrees. But, Georgia Tech is also recognized as having one of the top 50 graduate schools in psychology in the nation. Georgia Tech doesn’t offer a terminal masters in psychology degree. But students can earn an MS in Psychology. Graduates continue their education in a doctoral program or find employment in business, industry, government, or education.
As part of the 30-credit hours required toward this best psychology master’s degree, students will take classes in Principles of Research Design, Statistical Analysis of Psychological Data, Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR), and a Master’s thesis. You’ll need to maintain a minimum grade of a “B” or higher while enrolled. Georgia Tech offers psychology doctoral programs in Cognition and Brain Science, Engineering Psychology, Quantitive Psychology, Cognitive Aging, and Industrial/Organizational Psychology.
You’ll need to have completed an undergraduate degree from an accredited school as the initial requirement for graduate admission to Georgia Tech graduate studies as well as providing GRE test scores. Additionally, Georgia Tech requires you provide proof of Lawful Presence for living in the U.S. (documents such as passports, a REAL ID, original birth certificate, etc.).
Estimated Tuition Cost: $14,064-$29,014/per academic year
Fast Fact: Ranks #61 in Niche’s Best Colleges for Psychology in America
3. University of Washington
Here’s a Master of Arts in Applied Child and Adolescent Psychology: Prevention and Treatment degree which you can complete in 15 months, attending full-time (24 months for part-time attendance) from the University of Washington in Seattle.
This best psychology master’s program offers a mix of didactic study and clinical experience with 48-credit hours for completion. (Note: UW Graduate School is considering raising the hours needed to 52 in the 2022-23 academic year). The curriculum includes studies in assessment, counseling skills, psychopathology, evidence-based practices, critical thinking, as well as practicum experiences. The practicum goals are to strengthen your diagnostic, assessment, and interventional competencies. You’ll also complete a Capstone Project.
Admission requires you to hold a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited school, a minimum of 3.0 GPA, submit an application, resume, three letters of recommendation, and the GRE is not required.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $16,278-$29,178/per academic year
Fast Fact: The Princeton Review ranks Washington University as one of its Best Value Colleges and one of its 386 Best Colleges
4. University of Virginia
If your end goal is a PhD in psychology, you may want to look at this accelerated MA in Psychology Research Methods (RMC). The program is intended to prepare you for doctoral studies in Psychology, Cognitive Science, Neuroscience, or Data Sciences and is not a terminal degree.
The school offers either a 4+1 or 3+1 in this best psychology master’s program. The +1 is available for currently enrolled UVA students who can earn their MA in one year. The overall 30-hour coursework requires studies in quantitive methods and elective courses from a wide variety of options. You’re expected to maintain a minimum GPA of a B- average or higher.
Admission to the accelerated program requires the completion of an application to the MA Admission Advisor along with a copy of you academic transcript, and you need to have completed prerequisite courses.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $17,076-$28,604/per academic year
Fast Fact: Money ranks UVA #6 in its Best College 2020 ratings
5. University of Illinois-Urbana-Champaign
You’ll want to explore the Master of Science: Psychological Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign if you’re looking for a program to prepare you for a doctoral psychology degree or seeking a professional career in an industry that would value a psychology degree.
The curriculum is a combination of core and elective courses. Among the core, classes are Psychology Research Practices, Statistic Methods, Professional Development for Psychology, and Individual Research. You’ll take courses in-focus areas in Data Analysis and Research as well as General/Applied studies. Course titles in these areas include Psych Measurement in Industry, Theories of Measurement, Applied Regression Analysis, Psychopharmacology, Personality and Social Development, Educational Psychology, Foundations of Organizational Behavior, etc.
You need an undergraduate degree (with a minimum 3.0 GPA) from an accredited school to make an application to this program, academic transcript information, as well as letters of recommendation. You may be asked for a resume/CV as well as a statement of purpose.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $15,016-$27,187/per academic year
Fast Fact: UI-Urbana Champaign ranks #15 in Top Public Schools by U.S. News and World Report
6. University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
Here’s an accelerated, 4+1 MA in Psychology that uses an apprentice model where UM-Ann Arbor students are recommended by faculty members with whom students are involved in research.
The graduate study year in this Accelerated Master’s Degree Program (AMDP) offers six areas of emphasis in: cognition and cognitive neuroscience; clinical science; developmental psychology; social psychology; personality and social contexts; and biopsychology. In addition to electives, you’ll take Advanced Statistical Methods and Supervised Research (repeated each semester). The program offers a wide range of core courses (9 credit hours required) and you’ll be required to complete a Master’s Thesis. The Rackham Graduate School at UM-Ann Arbor has a substantial list of psychology courses available for graduate credit.
As mentioned, to be eligible for this Master’s degree, you need to be recommended by a faculty mentor, complete a Rackham Graduate School application, and provide a personal statement as well as an academic statement of purpose.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $15,948-$52,266 (UG); $24,344-$49,120 (G)/per academic year
Fast Fact: U.S. News and World Report ranks UM-AA #50 in Best Value Schools and #3 in its Top Public Schools rankings
7. University of Wisconsin-Madison
Psychology is one of the largest undergraduate programs at UW-M’s College of Letters and Science and the college offers a MS in Psychology, as well. For over 100 years, the Department of Psychology has been at the forefront of research in the field.
This best psychology master’s degree requires 30-credit hours of study which requires two courses in statistics and six additional classes. You’ll be required to complete a first-year research project and present to the department. Among the graduate courses offered are studies in Current Topics in Psychology in areas such as Cognition, Development & Instruction, Language Learning and Development, Independent Readings, and Field Work.
The minimum requirements for admission include a bachelor’s degree from an accredited program with a minimum of 3.0 GPA or higher. You won’t need to submit GRE scores and academic transcripts will be requested after you’ve been recommended for admission.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $10,728-$24,054/per academic year
Fast Fact: UW-M opened in 1848 and ranks 13th in Public Universities by the Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education
8. University of California-San Diego
If you’ve been considering earning your PhD in psychology, you may want to look at this program which also offers a MA in Psychology which can be part of the doctoral program, but is not a requirement.
First-year requirements are in Quantitive Methods, four Proseminars, Introduction to Laboratory Experimentation and oral presentation, Colloquium, and others. Some of the topics of the Proseminars are Biological Psychology, Developmental Psychology, Sensation & Perception, Social Psychology, Cognitive Psychology, etc.
Graduate admission to this psychology program requires an application (with a $120 application fee). Additionally, you’ll need to be a psychology major or minor (or related field), a research and statistics background, CV/resume, GRE test scores, and more.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $11,442-$26,544/per academic year
Fast Fact: UC-San Diego is ranked #8 in U.S. News and World Report’s Top Public Schools category
9. Vanderbilt University
The Tier 1 Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN, has a BA/MA in Psychology that may fit your ultimate goal of a PhD or MD-PhD.
This is a research-centric program, and while not clinical in nature, it can prepare you for research-based careers in marketing, law, Human Resources, business, and more. The program requires four years of undergraduate study with graduate work in the fifth year dependent on your graduate classes in your fourth year. You’ll be able to study neuroscience, cognitive, abnormal, developmental, and industrial and organizational psychology among other topics during your four years of undergraduate work.
Admission is selective and is only open to currently enrolled students at Vanderbilt University. You’ll need to secure a faculty mentor, provide letters of recommendation, have a minimum 3.0 GPA, as well as submit a petition to the 4+1 program.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $54,158 (UG)-$50,082 (Grad)/per academic year
Fast Fact: Ranking #26 in U.S. News and World Report’s national ranking of Psychology programs
10. University of Maryland
Should your career goal be in clinical psychology, you’ll want to explore this Master of Professional Studies (MPS) in Clinical Psychology Science at the College Park, Maryland campus. Classes meet in the evenings and students can complete the program in 15 months.
You’ll receive training in clinical psychology, evidence-based assessment, research methods, as well as critical thinking skills. Some of the course topics include Clinical Assessment: Psychometric Principles, Testing, and Behavior, Child Psychopathology, Basic Foundations in Clinical Interventions, Adult Psychopathology, Ethical and Professional Issues in Clinical Psychology, Writing and Critical Thinking, etc. The program does not offer direct therapy training.
The department only accepts students for Fall enrollment with application information due by March 1st. Among the application requirements are a statement of purpose, academic transcripts, CV/resume, letters of recommendation, a supplemental application, as well as a virtual admission interview.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $13,158-$29,250/per academic year
Fast Fact: Forbes ranking UM at College Park #11 in its Top Public Colleges rating
11. Northwestern University
Here’s another Tier 1 university offering a MA in Clinical Psychology. Located in Evansville, IL, Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine offers an MA in Clinical Psychology. This degree is for students who wish to have a career in academic clinical psychology. The MA is part of the school’s Clinical Psychology PhD program. However, you don’t need to pursue the PhD to earn your MA.
The sample program curriculum offers classes in Cognitive Psychology, Behavioral Neuroscience, Assessment, Advanced Social Psychology, Statistics, Psychopharmacology, Forensic Psychology, and more. You’ll need to take the Research Core which includes studies in Scientific and Professional Ethics in Psychology, Research Methods and Statistics, and Advanced Research Methodology. Each quarter students must participate in a Research Lab Experience.
Northwestern University offers a rolling admission process and presently doesn’t require the GRE test scores (due to the Covid pandemic). You’ll submit an application (with a $50 fee), transcripts, letters of recommendation, and a statement of purpose. Students must have a 3.2 GPA but an on-campus interview is not part of the application process.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $56,067/per academic year
Fast Fact: The graduate Clinical Psychology program ranks #37 as determined by U.S. News and World Report
12. University of Iowa
Founded in 1847 in Iowa River, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences awards a MA in Psychology as an option for students enrolled in the PhD in a Psychology program or for other University of Iowa students who may want to earn a MA in psychology to augment other graduate or professional study. Typically, the MA is offered only to students in the PhD program.
This best psychology master’s consists of 30-credit hours with a thesis and 37-credit hours without a thesis. This program is broken into training areas in Clinical Science, Behavioral and Cognitive Neuroscience, and Cognition. The school offers an Individualized Graduate Training Option which can provide flexibility if you’re wanting to specialize in areas the other training areas don’t cover. Depending on your training option, you can study computer-controlled experimentation, analytic and laboratory methods, cognitive control, etc.
The application deadline to this program is December 1. Evaluation of applicants includes a statement of purpose, letters of reference, as well as academic and research achievements.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $10,079-$26,026/per academic year
Fast Fact: Of the schools surveyed, Niche rates this #150 in its Best Colleges for Psychology in America
13. Stony Brook University
This is a one-year MA in General Psychology program at this university located in Stony Brook, NY. This best masters in psychology prepare you for a career in psychology in business, social work, medicine, and more.
You’ll need to attend full-time in order to meet the 30-credit hours required to earn your MA in one year. A sampling of courses in this program is Abnormal Psychology, Integrative Neuroscience, Cognitive Science, Social Psychology, Graduate Statistics, etc. The degree also requires you to conduct research and experience internships. A weekly seminar during your first semester is presented by visiting speakers and department faculty to discuss current research and practices. A 3.0 GPA is necessary as well as earning grades of “C” or better in all program courses.
The Graduate School application for this program is open only between January 15 through February 28 for admission to the next summer enrollment. You won’t be able to make an application until then. There’s a $100 application fee and no GRE scores are required. Letters of recommendation are requested and a CV/resume is recommended. You may be asked to submit a statement of purpose as well.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $11,310-$23,100/per academic year
Fast Fact: U.S. News and World Report rates Stony Brook University #34 in its Best Public Schools rankings
14. University of Missouri-Columbia
Looking for a graduate degree in counseling psychology? You’ll want to explore the MA in Counseling Psychology offered through UM’s Department of Educational, School & Counseling Psychology.
Housed in the College of Education and Human Development, the curriculum calls for 48-credit hours (38 hours of which must be completed at UM). Core studies in Counseling Methods and Practice, Theories and Tech of Counseling, Ethical and Legal Issues in Psychology Practice, Multicultural Issues in Counseling, and others. You’ll also have courses in counseling methods, interviewing, diagnosis, and assessment, and statistics.
The GRE score requirement has been temporarily suspended for Fall 2021 semester, but other admission requirements include an application, statement of purpose, CV/resume, three letters of recommendation, and unofficial academic transcripts. The department has a February 1st application deadline for the next fall cohort.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $9,478-$25,946/per academic year
Fast Fact: According to Niche the University of Missouri has the #129 in its Best Colleges for Psychology in America
15. University of Chicago
The school’s website describes this MA Program in Social Sciences (MAPSS) as “…an intense, intellectually transformative one-year program…” This best psychology master’s provides a solid foundation for students eventually seeking a PhD or a career in a variety of fields. This is not your parents’ master’s program.
This is a unique program, allowing you to design your curriculum to match your goals from any UC department or professional schools. You’ll take nine graduate courses and concentrate on psychology. Some psychology courses you could take Cultural Psychology, Multidisciplinary Perspectives on Morality, Biopsychology of Sex Differences, Data Analysis & Statistics, Data Science, Communication in Humans and Non-Humans.
Admission to the MAPSS program is highly competitive. Students should apply prior to the January 4 or April 30 deadlines. Your GRE score, statement of purpose, letters of recommendation, academic transcripts, and a writing sample will be required for admission consideration.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $60,300/per academic year
Fast Fact: U.S. News and World Report ranks UC graduate programs in psychology in the top 20 in its Best Graduate Schools category
16. Appalachian State University
Located in Boone, NC, Appalachian State University offers a MA in Psychology with a choice of concentrations in either Experimental Psychology or Clinical Psychology, depending on your goals.
If you’re interested in the 34-credit hour Experimental Psychology track, you’ll take classes in Research Methods, Quantitive Methods, Biological Bases of Behavior, Special Topics, Developmental Seminar, as well as Research Seminar, and a thesis. The Clinical Psychology concentration is only for students who are going to pursue a doctoral, PsyD at Appalachian State. Among the courses for this speciality are Diagnosis and Psychopathology, Ethical and Legal Standards and Foundational Skills of Health Service Psychology, evidence-based research, etc., and a practicum. You’ll complete the program with a thesis.
For admission, you’ll need to submit your GRE score, application, resume/CV, statement of purpose, and letters of reference. Note: this graduate program can lead to licensure, but you’ll need to contact your state board to determine if the curriculum meets your state’s requirements.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $4,839-$18,271/per academic year
Fast Fact: ASU ranks in the top 40 in U.S. News and World Report’s Most Innovative Schools, Top Public Schools, and Best Value Schools categories
17. Boston University
Is research a passion of yours? Does working alongside Psychological and Brain Sciences research faculty appeal to you? Then, you’ll want to consider this MA in Psychology at Boston University.
BU psychology degrees offer a variety of concentrations in psychology, such as neuroscience, cognition, clinical psychology, and developmental science. The 32-credit hour curriculum offers core courses in Contemporary Trends in Psychology, Statistics in Psychology, as well as Directed Studies in Psychology. According to the Graduate Student Handbook published by the department, you’ll take courses in programmatic areas in Brain, Behavior, and Cognition, Developmental Science, and Clinical which will provide you a flexible course of study. Finally, you’ll complete the comprehensive exam requirement in order to demonstrate your psychology proficiency in a wide range of topics.
Applications for the degree program are expected to be completed by May 15th (applicant review begins March 1). Among the documents required are academic transcripts, letters of recommendation, a personal statement, and GRE scores.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $56,854/per academic year
Fast Fact: The graduate psychology program at Boston University sits at #39 in U.S. News and World Report’s Best Graduate Schools rankings
18. University of Oregon
Founded in 1876 in Eugene, the University of Oregon awards a MA or MS in Psychology through its College of Arts and Sciences. The MA degree has a foreign language requirement, where the MS does not.
This psychology master’s degree requires 45-credit hours and takes most students 1 to 2 years to complete. Additionally, students take Statistics and a seminar in Research Ethics. There are four research areas from which you can choose in: Cognitive Neuroscience, Social and Personality, Developmental, and Systems Neuroscience. To finish the program, students complete a research project or thesis based on empirical research or a literature analysis.
Admission deadlines are twice an academic year. The application process requests you’ll select up three Psychology Professors whose research field appeals to you. Among documents you’ll submit three recommendation letters, academic transcripts, a curriculum vita/resume, a personal and diversity statement.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $15,417-$27,621/per academic year
Fast Fact: The graduate program in psychology at UO ranks #45 in its Best Graduate Schools ranking
19. New York University
You’ll have six concentrations from which to choose, although not required, with this MA in Psychology from NYU. Areas offered are Social Psychology, Cognition, Perception, and Neuroscience, Clinical Neuroscience, Forensic Psychology, Social and Consumer Psychology, and Clinical Psychology.
Students must take classes in Research Methods, Statistics, and three core classes. Core classes are from two groups in topics such as Physiological Basis of Behavior, Psychology of Social Behavior, Cognitive Psychology, Child Development, and also Affective Neuroscience. The program requires 36 points and will culminate with either a thesis or comprehensive exam. While enrolled, you can participate in research labs, gain hands-on experience through an internship, the opportunity develop a poster for a judges panel, and/or conference presentations.
An application is, of course, required and available online. The GRE, three letters of recommendation, and academic transcripts demonstrating completion of a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited college or university.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $34,704/per academic year
Fast Fact: Niche places NYU #29 in its Best Colleges for Psychology in America
20. Ohio State University
You can earn a MA in Psychology from this well-known Columbus, Ohio university.
This program offers six core areas of study: Behavioral Neuroscience, Social Psychology, Cognitive Psychology, Developmental Psychology, Quantitative Psychology, or Clinical Psychology. Some of the classes offered may include History of Psychology, Comparative Psychology, Behavioral Genetics, Sex Differences in the Brain and Behavior, Psychobiology of Learning & Memory, Introduction to Cognitive Science, and more.
There’s a $60 fee required with the admission application, along with a statement of purpose, curriculum vitae/resume, letters of recommendation, academic transcripts, and GRE test scores.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $11,560-$36,276/per academic year
Fast Fact: OSU’s graduate psychology programs rank #24 in U.S. News and World Report’s Best Graduate Schools
21. Central Washington University
If research in psychology is your main area of interest, you’ll want to explore the Master of Science in Experimental Psychology (MS EXP PSY) from CWU located in Ellensburg, Washington.
To prepare you for work in a wide variety of research topics, you’ll choose from a range of courses, depending on your goals. According to the Graduate Catalog, among classes offered on the graduate level, CWU’s Psychology Department has courses in Graduate Research, Individual Study, Special Topics, Seminar, Advanced Statistics, Ethics in Research, Applied Clinical Neuroscience, Psychopharmacology, as well as a Master’s Thesis. You may also participate in a practicum or internship, as part of your overall studies.
You need a bachelor’s degree, provide academic transcripts, three reference letters, and a personal statement as part of your application process. Admission to the Graduate Studies and Research requires an application.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $9,822-$23,007/per academic year
Fast Fact: Niche includes Central Washington University in its Best Value Colleges in America
22. Eastern Washington University
Here’s another Washington State university that offers a Counseling: Clinical Mental Health Counseling (MS). This is a 94-quarter-hour program that’s accredited by CACREP . Graduates qualify for licensure as a Licensed Mental Health Counselor Associate in Washington. To meet the program objectives of the program as stated in the Student Handbook, you’ll take classes in Social and Cultural Diversity,
Professional Counseling Orientation and Ethical Practice, Career Development, Human Growth and Development, Group Counseling and Group Work, Counseling and Helping Relationships, Research and Program Evaluation, and Assessment and Testing. An internship is also part of the curriculum.
You’ll make an application to the Graduate School and submit a $75 fee. In addition, academic transcripts, GRE scores, a personal statement, letters of recommendation, as well as description of work or volunteer activities.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $12,015-$27,895/per academic year
Fast Fact: Eastern Washington University ranks #24 in Top Public Schools by U.S. News and World Report
23. Western Carolina University
This is a two-year Master of Arts degree in Clinical Psychology degree at Western Carolina University situated near the Blue Ridge and the Great Smoky Mountains in Cullowhee, North Carolina.
The overall curriculum emphasizes research methods, evidence-based psychotherapy, assessment, neuropsychology, practicum experiences, and a master’s thesis. There are required courses, some of which are, Advanced Developmental Psychology, Human Neuropsychology, Personality Assessment, Cognitive and Behavioral Interventions, Group Psychotherapy, and others. You’ll also be able to participate in research projects along with department faculty.
You’ll submit an application, academic transcripts, an essay, resume/cv, as well as letters of recommendation for admission. GRE test scores are required.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $4,435-$14,842/per academic year
Fast Fact: WCU is in the top 10 of U.S. News and World Report’s Best Value Schools
24. Gonzaga University
Located in Spokane, Washington, Gonzaga University awards a MA in Clinical Mental Health
Requiring 60-credit hours for completion, this degree includes an internship and practicum as part of its course of study. The curriculum Assessment in Counseling, Occupational Choice and Career Development in Counseling, Psychopathology & Psychopharmacology, Child-Adolescent Counseling, Advanced Theories & Professional Seminar, Group Facilitation, along with other classes, and culminates with a Comprehensive Oral Examination.
Applications are available beginning September 1 and close in early January. A baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited school is necessary as is a completion of an application. Applicants must submit two professional letters of recommendation, a resume, and a statement of purpose. You do not have to submit GRE test scores.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $17,296/per academic year
Fast Fact: Niche considers the psychology program at Gonzaga University as one of the Best Colleges for Psychology in America
25. Seattle University
The MA in Psychology at this school covers not only research but incorporates clinical psychology, humanities, and philosophical disciplines and theories. Only 20 students attend the two-year program.
This 72-credit hour program model is unique from other programs with an Existential Phenomenological Psychology approach to psychology. Among the required courses is Phenomenology of the Face, Listening Skills, Therapeutic Communication, Ethics, and Phenomenology, among others. Clinical Supervision, Clinical Psychology Internship, and an Integration Paper are other requirements. A full slate of electives is available on topics ranging from Family Therapy, Play Therapy, Lifespan Growth and Development, and more.
Applications for admission have a January 15th deadline for fall enrollment. You’ll complete an admission form and provide a $55 processing fee, proof of a baccalaureate degree, an autobiographical essay, letters of recommendation, as well as academic transcripts, etc.
Estimated Tuition Cost: $13,500/per academic year
Fast Fact: Founded as a Jesuit Catholic university in 1891, Seattle University has consistently appeared as one of The Princeton Review’s 386 Best Colleges
Why Should You Attend One of the Best Psychology Master’s Programs?
Psychology is one of the oldest fields of study and dates back to Ancient Greece. The modern field has been around for about 150 years. If you have an interest in why people do what they do and feel how they feel, an advanced psychology degree may be for you. The Master of Arts typically indicates a more liberal arts approach to the field, while a Master of Science is more beneficial for careers in research and sciences.
What is the Job Outlook with a Master’s in Psychology?
While most psychologists hold a doctorate, master’s prepared students can find rewarding careers in business, law, schools, research, and industrial organization. There are jobs for individuals with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. However, an advanced degree can also qualify you to work with doctoral psychologists as assistants in research, clinics, or individual and family clinical settings.
Of course, a graduate degree is an excellent foundation for continued study toward a doctorate and licensure. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates the job outlook for psychology majors is at 3% which is fast as average nationally. Salary ranges for psychologists can range from $46,270, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $137,590, according to the BLS.
Is APA Accreditation Important?
According to the American Psychology Association (APA) website, the APA Accreditation organization only offers accreditation to doctoral psychology programs. That doesn’t mean, however, that accreditation in psychology programs is not important. Accreditation indicates the school meets standards in academics, quality, improvement, student outcomes, etc.
You should look for programs, such as those in this ranking, that hold regional accreditation. Regional accreditation is through independent organizations such as the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE), Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE), or Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU). These accrediting bodies and others have approval from the U.S. Department of Education.
What Can I Do with a Psychology Masters?
Going back to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are many rewarding career opportunities for MA or MS prepared psychology graduates. These careers, which make up 60% of the jobs for psychology students can include educational instruction, social services, counseling, management, healthcare and technical positions, and support positions.
A psychology major is a great background for employment in Human Resources, school counseling, and assisting in psychological research. Nearly 50% of the estimated 3,035,610 professionals currently working in the field hold either a MA or MS in psychology.
How Much Can You Earn with a Master’s in Psychology?
May 2021 information from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates those with a master’s in psychology can earn a median salary of $81,040. The rate of pay is influenced by specialization or role.
|Type of Psychologists||Annual Salary|
|Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists||$79,510|
Additionally, salary is influenced by the employment sector.
|Top Industries for Psychologists||Annual Salary|
|Ambulatory Healthcare Services||$87,770|