The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment opportunities in psychology will continue to grow at a 19% over the next decade (2014-2024), for people with advanced degrees, in career areas such as schools, hospitals, social service agencies and consulting firms and private companies. Several subspecialties exist in this field, from school psychology, institutional psychology, school counseling, human resources, etc. These subspecialties are not clinical psychology degrees, which require licensure and certification; but, are degrees which allows students to seek positions in schools, businesses and private companies.
On average, those with a Master in Psychology degree may earn an average yearly salary between $73,200 and $82,760 depending on their work environment. Best Medical Degrees has developed a ranking which examined colleges and universities offering Master of Science or Master of Arts in Psychology, Master of Science in Educational Psychology, etc. Programs are ranked from information provided on the schools’ websites, based on tuition cost, accreditation, length of program and any recognition from rating publications such as U.S. News and World Report, Forbes Magazine or the Princeton Review.
Best Medical Degrees prepares rankings on base tuition costs. Schools often have additional fees associated with enrollment, including online programs, which may increase the total educational cost. Information on tuition and fees may be found on the college or university’s website.
Employee Tuition Reimbursement
Some employers offer tuition assistance for their employers returning to school or advancing their degree. You may want to check with your Human Resources department to see if this is an option for you.
There are no federally subsidized grants for graduate students. Check with the school to which you’re applying to see if the department or college has internal grants available for graduate students. If you want to apply for a federal student loan, you will need to file a Federal Student Aid form offered online.
Veterans, Active Military, Spouses and Dependents
Many schools offer tuition discounts for active or retired military personnel. Check the school’s website to determine if you may qualify.
Accreditation and Certification
Program accreditation is important to assure that the program you select meets educational guidelines and standards. Qualified independent accrediting agencies are recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and provide periodic audits of schools educational programs. Typical agencies are the Higher Learning Commission, regional associations, etc.
1. Angelo State University
A Master of Applied Psychology degree, this online program has a thesis or non thesis option. Students will be exposed to core concepts, application of theory and research, application of psychology methods in industrial/organizational settings and psychological development. Angelo State University is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).
Founded in San Angelo, Texas in 1928, Angelo State University has been acknowledged by the Princeton Review “Best Colleges” guide. Currently, the university has an over 9,000 students in one of its seven colleges and is affiliated with the Texas Tech University System.
Program Length: 36 Credit Hours
Tuition Estimate: $7,704 (Resident); $22,644 (Non Resident)
2. Fort Hays State University
Consistently one of the most affordable online universities, Fort Hays University offers an online Master of Science in School Psychology. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, this Fort Hays State University program is a hybrid one, requiring five day workshops conducted on campus. The program is created to allow for completion within four semesters along with two summer workshops.
With its campus located in Fort Hays, Kansas, the university was established in 1902 and currently has an on campus enrollment of 4,712 students; and, over 6,000 online students in its Virtual College. U.S. News and World Report has recognized several of the online Fort Hays State University programs and is considered a military friendly school.
3. LeTourneau University
LeTourneau University offers an online Master of Arts in Counseling that offers three tracks. Students may chose from LPC, LMFT or a dual LPC/LMFT Licensure or a School Counselor Specialization. While courses are offered online, students will be expected to a three-day intensive experience on campus. LeTourneau University is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
Located in Longview, Texas, LeTourneau University maintains a Christian focus and hosts nearly 1,000 students online in one of four disciplines. LeTourneau University, a private institution, was founded in 1946 and has been ranked #27 in U.S. News and World Report’s Regional Universities, #4 in Best Value Schools and #15 Best Colleges for Veterans.
4. Ball State University
Ball State University offers an online Master of Arts in Educational Psychology program which may be completed in 18 months. The university holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission and boasts of a nationally recognized faculty. There are three specializations available in gifted and talented, human development and statistical and research methods.
This university is located in Muncie, Indiana and has been recognized by U.S. News and World Report in the top 200 National Universities and #93 in its Top Public Schools rankings. The school has an enrollment of over 22,000 students and was founded in 1918.
5. American Public University
Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, American Public University provides an online Master of Arts in Psychology, which combines theory, research and pertinent skills. This program is not a terminal degree in psychology, but is considered a solid background for those wishing to advance their education to the doctoral level.
Acknowledged by U.S. News and World Report for its undergraduate, online programs, American Public University has also been rated a Best For Vets by Military Times (offering a tuition discount for qualified military personnel). American Public University was established in 1991 by a retired military officer to provide educational opportunities for military personnel, regardless of their location. The school is a for-profit institution and is headquartered in Charles Town, West Virginia. (Note: American Public University is not affiliated with American University nor the U.S. military).
6. University of Idaho
The University of Idaho, located in Moscow, Idaho, provides an online Master of Science in Psychology which covers the biomechanics, advanced human factors and human-computer interactions. Coursework includes studies in sensation and perception, cognitive psychology, engineering psychology and advanced research methods.
This is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU) and is a public institution which has received recognition from U.S. News and World Report’s as #171 in Regional Universities and as #90 in its Top Public Schools rankings. Founded in 1889, UI has an enrollment in excess of 11,000 students in 10 colleges.
7. Union College
Union College holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission and provides an online Masters in General Psychology degree which is good preparation for those students wishing to pursue a psychology doctoral degree. Union College also offers psychology specialization degrees in Clinical Psychology and Substance Abuse Counseling. These programs require more hours than the general psychology degree.
Union College was established in 1879 in Barbourville, Kentucky to serve the people of Appalachia. Since its beginning, Union College has grown to a student enrollment of over 1100 students from 35 states and 17 countries.
8. Edinboro University of Pennsylvania
This online program is accredited by the National Association of School Psychologists and the university is accredited by The Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Successful graduates will receive a Masters in Educational Psychology. The program’s intention is to provide educators with skills to monitor, apply research and theory and supportive practices in the education of children.
Edinboro University was established in 1847 and has been recognized by U.S. News and World Report for its online graduate programs in nursing and education. The university has over 6,000 students enrolled in one of the schools 152 degree programs.
9. Aspen University
An online Master of Arts in Psychology and Addiction Counseling offered by Aspen University is designed to examine individual and family counseling theories, techniques and topics. Students will study addiction counseling, psychology of addiction, substance abuse prevention, as well as ethics and completion of a capstone project.
Aspen University maintains accreditation through the Distance Education Accrediting Commission which holds national accreditation status from the U.S. Department of Education. The university is located in Denver, Colorado.
10. University of North Dakota
The University of North Dakota offers an online MS Forensic Psychology which may be completed in a little over two years. Focusing on the study of applying the science psychology to social and legal systems. The curriculum requires a one-week on campus capstone experience. The university holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.
The university is located in Grand Forks, North Dakota; and, U.S. News and World Report has recognized UND #202 in National Universities, #110 Top Public Schools and its online programs in business and engineering. Founded in 1882, the university lists an enrollment of over 14,000 students.
11. Austin Peay State University
Austin Peay State University provides an online MS in Industrial Organizatonal Psychology through its TN eCampus. This program follows the Guidelines for Master’s Level Training set forth by the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP) and concentrates on the theories and research methodologies for application in government and private industry. The university programs are accredited by Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).
This Tennessee school is located in Clarksville, Tennessee and was founded in 1927 as a teachers college; and, has been involved in online education since 2001. Ranked in the top 100 of U.S. News and World Report’s National Universities and ranks #29 in its Top Public Schools. Current enrollment figures from Austin Peay State University reports over 10,000 students enrolled.
12. Grand Canyon University
Grand Canyon University holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission and offers several graduate programs in psychology. Among the psychology degrees with special emphasis are: General Psychology, Forensic Psychology, GeroPyschology, Health Psychology, Human Factors Psychology, Industrial and Organizational Psychology and Life Coaching Psychology. Programs are offered through Grand Canyon University’s College of Humanities and Social Sciences.
Grand Canyon University is a private, Christian university located in Phoenix, Arizona. Established in 1949, Grand Canyon University offers degrees in seven colleges and its estimated the school has over 19,000 on campus students and over 60,000 students enrolled in its online degree programs.
13. California Southern University
This online program is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) Senior College and University Commission and provides a MS in Psychology. The curriculum offered through California Southern University’s School of Behavioral Sciences provides a solid foundation in communication, cultural and social aspects, enhanced critical thinking skills, scientific and quantitative reasoning as well as ethical and professional considerations.
Located in Costa Mesa, California, California Southern University was established in 1978. Prospective students are encouraged to determine if this MS in Psychology programs meets their individual state’s licensure requirements.
14. University of Georgia
The University of Georgia offers three online specializations in educational pyschology programs. These programs are the Master of Education in Educational Psychology, Master of Educational Psychology in Gifted and Creative Education and Master of Education in Learning, Design and Technology, Instructional Design and Development. The University of Georgia is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).
U.S. News and World Report ranks these online programs #6 in its 2017 ratings; and, the university is ranked #56 in Regional Universities, #18 in Top Public Schools and #32 Best Colleges for Veterans. The University of Georgia, a public institution, has a history dating to 1785 and has a current enrollment of over 36,000 students.
15. Texas A&M University
Offered entirely online through Texas A&M’s College of Education and Human Development, this MS in Educational Psychology degree prepares students for a school counseling career. The degree may be completed in two years and does not require a thesis; and, a practicum experience is required between the first and second years of study.
Located in College Station, Texas, the university was established in 1862 and now claims an enrollment of more than 59,000 students. U.S. News and World Report ranks the university #74 in National Universities, #44 Best Colleges for Veterans and #27 Top Public Schools.
16. Walden University
Walden University offers several online Master in Psychology and Counseling degrees. The specialization programs include: MS in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, MS in Forensic Psychology, MS in Psychology, MS in Clinical Psychology, MS in Industrial and Organizational Psychology, MS in School Counseling, MS in Developmental Psychology and MS in Marriage Couple and Family Counseling. These online psychology degrees at Walden are accredited by The Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs (CACREP) and the university holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.
Started in 1970 by two teachers, Walden University is a for profit institution and projects an enrollment of over 47,000 students. The headquarters for Walden University are located in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
17. Adams State University
Adams State University offers an online Master of School Counseling degree which holds accreditation from the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). This program focuses on the areas of counseling, consulting, advocacy and community and parental collaboration. The program requires students to attend one week on campus during two consecutive summers in the program.
Located in Alamosa, Colorado, Adams State University was founded in 1921 and has been recognized by U.S. News and World Report in the top 120 Midwestern regional universities. The university has an on campus enrollment of over 2,500 student and more than 10,000 students in extended studies (i.e., distance learning). Note: Adams State University, as of August, 2017, is currently under accreditation probation review by the Higher Learning Commission. The university remains fully accredited until a final HLC decision is made in February, 2018. Additional information may be found here on Adams State University’s accreditation probation. This does not effect the CAREP accreditation.
18. Capella University
Capella University offers several online specialized psychology programs, in MS in General Psychology, MS Child and Adolescent Development, MS Educational PsychologyMS Evaluation Research MeasurementMS Industrial Organizational PsychologyMS Leadership Coaching Psychology and MS Sport Psychology. Capella University holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.
A for profit, proprietary school, Capella University is headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota and has an enrollment in excess of 37,000 students. Capella University has been providing distance education since 1997
19. Colorado State University
An online Master of Industrial and Organizational Psychology degree from Colorado State University is a practitioner oriented program to analyze and conduct research to develop change in organizations. Students will enhance their professional skills to improve workplace issues, employ psychology principles and theories and enhance human resources and leadership development.
Located in Fort Collins, Colorado, this university is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Founded in 1870, this school has a current enrollment of over 31,000 students and has been ranked #129 in National Universities by U.S. News and World Report; and, #86 in its Best Colleges for Veterans and #61 in Top Public Schools.
20. Penn State World Campus
Offering an online Masters in Psychology of Leadership, the Penn State World Campus program provides students research and theory to improve leadership capabilities. This program is an excellent choice for those in current leadership and organizational roles As a division of the Pennsylvania State University, the online program holds accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.
The University of Pennsylvania was established in 1855 and ranks #50 in U.S. News and World Report’s National Universities and ranks #14 in Top Public Schools. Located in University Park, Pennsylvania, the university has an enrollment of over 47,000 students.
21. Kansas State University Global Campus
Kansas State University has a hybrid, online Industrial and Organizational Psychology Master’s Degree through its College of Arts and Sciences. Students will study analytical and quantitative theory of organizations, communication skills, ethical standards and techniques to develop organizational specific training and performance. During the 2 1/2 year program, there is a two-week on campus attendance required. This is considered a terminal degree. Kansas State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
This university was established in 1863 and has a current enrollment of over 24,000 students. U.S. News and World Report has ranked the school #135 in its National Universities listing and in the top 100 Best Colleges for Veterans and Top Public Schools.
22. Southern New Hampshire University
Southern New Hampshire University offers three, online master’s programs in psychology in Child and Adolescent Development Psychology, Forensic Psychology and Industrial and Organizational Psychology. Southern New Hampshire University holds accreditation from the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.
Founded in 1932, Southern New Hampshire University is ranked #101 in Regional Universities and #1 in Most Innovative Schools by U.S. News and World Report’s rankings. The university’s main campus in Manchester, New Hampshire and has an on campus enrollment of over 3,000 students.
23. Adler University
Adler University has a unique Masters of Art in Military Psychology degree which focuses on the particular mental health issues faced by military personnel, veterans and their families. Students learn prevention and intervention approaches, study research and evaluation, analysis and critical counseling skills. This program is not affiliated with any government agency; but, Adler University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Located in Chicago, Illinois, Adler University was established in 1952 and established its online programming in 1972. The school provides 20 graduate level degrees and is the oldest, independent psychology school in the United States.
24. Medaille College
An online Master of Arts in Psychology, this program is concentrated on the methods and principles of psychology; and, offers an optional concentration in sports psychology. Objectives of this degree allows students to examine different psychology fields, develop analytical skills, advanced training and examine the science and practice of psychology. The college is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.
private college established in 1875 as a teachers institute, Medaille College has been providing online educational programs since 2010. With a campus located in Buffalo, New York, Medaille reported an enrollment of over 2,100 students. The school has been recognized by Military Times as a Best for Vets school.
25. Sacred Heart University
This is a Master in Applied Psychology which has three concentrations. One in Applied Psychology and the others in Industrial-Organizational Psychology and Community Psychology. These programs are research driven and based in fundamental psychological concepts. Sacred Heart University is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC).
Sacred Heart University has consistently been rated in U.S. News and World Report’s rankings for Best Colleges in the North (2015-2017), Institutions with the Best Online Programs (2015) and Best Colleges for Veterans (2014-2017). Located in Fairfield, Connecticut, Sacred Heart University was started in 1963 and is the second largest Catholic university in New England.
Program Length: 38 Credit Hours
Estimated Tuition: $33,250