Psychology

Increasingly, individuals with an interest in psychology are demanding educational opportunities that are both convenient and economical. This is especially true for working professionals who want to advance their careers in the field without causing too much disruption to their personal or professional lives. With the need for more psychologists in various niches and sectors, there’s never been a better time to pursue a master’s in psychology online program.

An online degree is a great choice, particularly for busy professionals, but these programs often follow the traditional academic term schedule. This means that they can sometimes take the same amount of time to complete as a regular on-campus program. However, many online master’s psychology programs –such as the ones featured in our ranking–can be completed in just two years or less without ever visiting campus. The 35 schools below showcase the best accelerated master’s in psychology online programs available today.

Methodology

Time to Completion

  • Less Than 2 Years: 1 point
  • 20 Months or Less: 2 points
  • 18 Months or Less: 3 points
  • 16 Months or Less: 4 points
  • 14 Months or Less: 5 points
  • 12 Months or Less: 6 points

Graduate Tuition

  • Less Than $20,000: 1 point
  • Less Than $15,000: 2 points
  • Less Than $10,000: 3 points
  • Less Than $5,000: 4 points

Accreditation (School-Wide and Program-Specific) – 1 point per item

Online Student Support Services—1 point

Ranking Low-Cost Accelerated Master’s in Psychology

To develop this ranking, our editors began with an initial pool of 42 colleges and universities across the nation that offer online masters in psychology programs. We then applied a tuition filter, eliminating programs associated with tuition costs of over $25,000 per year. Finally, the rating and ranking methodology above was applied using data from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), PayScale, and each school’s website. In the case of a tie, the more affordable program was awarded the higher ranking.

Types of Online Masters in Psychology Degrees Featured in this Ranking

  • Online Master of Science (MS) in Psychology
  • Online MS in Psychology: General Psychology
  • Online MS in Experimental Psychology
  • Online MS in Counseling Psychology
  • Online Master of Arts (MA) in Psychology
  • Online MA in Applied Psychology
  • Online Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology
  • Online Master of Arts in Performance Psychology
  • Online Master of Arts in Human Behavior

#35—LeTourneau University

Longview, Texas

Online Master of Arts in Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 2 Years
  • Points: 3
Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online LeTourneau University

LeTourneau University offers a 39-credit hour online master’s in psychology offering that can be completed entirely via distance education. This MA option is a non-licensure program comprised of core courses like:

  • Ethical, Legal & Professional Standards in Counseling
  • Counseling Theories and Family Therapies for Professional Counselors
  • Integrative Theology for Counselors
  • Group Counseling Methods

Students will also fulfill a required 15-credit hour elective component, choosing from optional classes such as:

  • Counseling Diverse Populations
  • Advanced Abnormal Psychology
  • Research Methods
  • Career Counseling and Lifestyle Development

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges has fully accredited LeTourneau University to confer masters in psychology credentials. The university is a top 15 best value school, according to U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $18,618

#34—Mercy College

Dobbs Ferry, New York

Online MS in Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 2 Years
  • Points: 3
Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online Mercy College

Mercy College offers a comprehensive 36-credit hour online masters in psychology that can be pursued on a part-time or full-time basis. The bulk of the program’s curriculum consists of core courses, including:

  • Physiological Psychology
  • Contemporary Theories in Psychology
  • Statistics and Research Methodology
  • Psychopathology

In addition to online coursework, students must also complete either a master’s thesis or comprehensive exam as a capstone element. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education has institutionally accredited Mercy College to award the master’s in psychology degree. The school has been ranked among the leading regional universities in the North by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $16,146

#33—Divine Mercy University

Sterling, Virginia

Online MS in Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 2 Years
  • Points: 3
Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online Divine Mercy University

The online master’s in psychology program from Divine Mercy University is a unique program rooted in Catholic beliefs. The fully online curriculum for the program features course titles such as:

  • Common Psychological Problems and their Treatment
  • The Catholic-Christian Vision of the Person
  • Statistical Analysis for Psychology and the Social Sciences
  • Relationship and Intervention Skills Theory and Application

A capstone course entitled The Transformational Leader in the Helping Professions is also required before graduation. Divine Mercy University holds institutional accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award masters in psychology credentials.

Graduate Tuition: $15,890

#32—Regent University

Virginia Beach, Virginia

MS in Psychology Online

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 2 Years
  • Points: 3
Regent University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

Regent University offers a comprehensive online master’s in psychology degree program that requires a minimum of 39 credit hours of coursework. Offered through the university’s School of Psychology & Counseling, the program features required core courses such as:

  • Research Methods in Psychology
  • Affect, Cognition, and Motivation
  • Integrative Psychology
  • Biological Bases of Behavior

Six concentration options are available, including:

  • Cyberpsychology
  • Leadership Coaching
  • Marriage & Family
  • Industrial- Organizational Psychology

Depending on the specialization they choose, students may also take additional classes like:

  • Health Psychology
  • Multicultural Psychology
  • Concepts of Family Systems
  • Helping Skills and Techniques

Regent University is fully accredited to confer this master’s in psychology credential. Its clinical psychology program has been ranked among some of the best in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $15,552

#31—University of Hartford

West Hartford, Connecticut

Online MS in Organizational Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 2 Years
  • Points: 4
University of Hartford Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

Offered through its College of Arts and Sciences, the University of Hartford’s online master’s in psychology program is an MS in Organizational Psychology that can be pursued on a part-time or full-time basis. The 36-credit hour curriculum for the program is available entirely online and is comprised of two core courses:

  • Personnel Psychology
  • Introduction to Industrial/Organizational Psychology

The bulk of the program consists of elective classes relative to organizational studies such as:

  • Motivation in the Workplace: Theory and Application
  • Managerial Skills and Project Leadership
  • Dynamics of Group Decision Making
  • Power and Influence in Organizations

A capstone project or internship is required before graduation from the program. The New England Commission on Higher Education has accredited the University of Hartford to award the master’s degree in psychology online. The school’s clinical psychology program is one of the best in the country, according to U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $14,292

#30—California Baptist University

Riverside, California

Online MS in Counseling Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 2 Years
  • Points: 4
California Baptist University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

The convenient online masters in psychology option from California Baptist University is an MS in Counseling psychology that can be completed either fully online or via a hybrid learning model. The program is built upon a foundation of Christian principles and requires a 60-unit core curriculum. Sample course titles include:

  • Human Growth and Development
  • Couples Therapy and Intimate Partner Violence
  • Advanced Psychopathology
  • Human Communications in Group Process

The program also features an optional Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor track, which requires an additional six units of coursework. CBU holds institutional accreditation to offer this master’s in psychology online program from the WASC Senior College and University Commission.

Graduate Tuition: $12,830

#29—Brandman University

Irvine, California

Online MA in Psychology: Counseling

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 2 Years
  • Points: 4
Brandman University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

Brandman University’s online master’s in psychology offering is a Master of Arts program with an emphasis in Counseling. The curriculum for this robust 48-credit hour option features foundation courses such as:

  • The Counseling Process
  • Research and Bibliographic Methods
  • Psychological Assessment
  • Lifespan Development/Aging and Long Term Care

Additional specialization classes may include:

  • Clinical Issues in Human Diversity
  • Theory and Practice of Group Counseling
  • Assessment and Treatment of Substance Abuse
  • Family Therapy Theories and Techniques: A Modern Emphasis

In addition to coursework, a practicum or capstone case study is also required. The WASC Senior College and University Commission has accredited Brandman University to offer this master’s in psychology online program. Enrollment for the program is open exclusively to Washington state residents.

Graduate Tuition: $11,880

#28—Bellevue University

Bellevue, Nebraska

Online MS in Industrial and Organizational Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 2 Years
  • Points: 4
Top 15 Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Public Policy Online for 2019

The fully online master’s in psychology program from Bellevue University is a 36-credit hour MS option in Industrial-Organizational Psychology. The curriculum for the program is entirely prescribed and features course titles such as:

  • Job Analysis and Performance Appraisal
  • Applied Organizational Psychology
  • Personnel Selection
  • Applied Research Methods

A practicum in industrial-organizational psychology and an applied research capstone project is also required for successful program completion. The Higher Learning Commission has accredited Bellevue University to award the master’s degree in psychology online. The school has been identified as one of the leading regional universities in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $10,530

#27—Colorado State University

Fort Collins, Colorado

Online Master of Applied Industrial/Organizational Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 2 Years
  • Points: 4
Colorado State University Fort Collins Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

The fully online master’s in psychology offering from Colorado State University is a Master of Applied Industrial/Organizational Psychology. The program’s 38-credit hour curriculum emphasizes quantitative research and can be completed within two years of full-time study. Required course titles include:

  • Applied Psychological Research Design
  • Competency Modeling and Criterion Development
  • Applied Cross-Cultural Industrial/Organizational Psychology
  • Succession Planning and Leadership Development

A practicum and skills development capstone is also required before graduation. The Higher Learning Commission has accredited Colorado State to award the master’s degree in psychology online. The school’s graduate psychology program has been ranked among the top 100 nationwide by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $10,520

#26—Palo Alto University

Palo Alto, California

Online Master of Science in Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 18 Months
  • Points: 5
Pal Alto University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

The accelerated online masters in psychology option from Palo Alto University is a versatile program featuring three content customization tracks:

  • General Psychology Track
  • Forensic Psychology Track
  • Ph.D. Preparation Track

Both the general and forensic tracks may be completed within 18 months of full-time study. Sample courses associated with the degree plan include:

  • Child & Adolescent Development
  • Psychopathology & Psychodiagnosis
  • Social and Personality Psychology
  • Cognitive Bases of Behavior

No thesis is required for the program. Palo Alto University is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission to confer masters in psychology credentials.

Graduate Tuition: $22,184

#25—Southern Wesleyan University

Central, South Carolina

Online MS in Counseling Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: Less Than 2 Years
  • Points: 5
Southern Wesleyan University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

Offered through the school’s Division of Social Science, the online master’s in psychology program from Southern Wesleyan University is a Master of Science in Counseling Psychology. The program is faith-based and features required course titles such as:

  • Counseling Foundations and the Helping Relationship
  • Counseling in a Multicultural World
  • Psychological Assessment and Testing
  • Psychopathology

Three elective classes are also required for the degree and include options such as:

  • Trauma-Informed Practice
  • Addiction and Recovery
  • Psychopharmacology of Addiction
  • Counseling Children and Adolescents

Students must also complete an internship for successful program completion. Southern Wesleyan University is accredited to award the master’s degree in psychology online by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. It has been ranked among the top regional universities in the South by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $10,170

#24—Saint Leo University

St. Leo, Florida

Online Master’s in Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 2 Years
  • Points: 5
Saint Leo University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

The two-year online master’s in psychology option from Saint Leo University is structured around accelerated eight-week courses. The 36-credit hour curriculum for the program is cohort-based and features required courses such as:

  • History and Systems of Psychology
  • Psychology of Teaching and Practice
  • Learning and Cognition
  • Diversity and Ethics

A capstone thesis is also required for successful program completion. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges has accredited Saint Leo University to confer masters in psychology online degrees. The university has been identified as one of the top 5 best value schools in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $7,296

#23—University of Louisiana-Monroe

Monroe, Louisiana

MS in Psychology Online

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 2 Years
  • Points: 5
University of Louisiana- Monroe Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

The University of Louisiana-Monroe offers one of the cheapest online master’s degrees in psychology options in our ranking. The program features both a general track as well as a concentration in Forensic Psychology. The program’s curriculum features three core courses, including:

  • Research Methods
  • Neuropsychology
  • Quantitative Methods in the Behavioral Sciences

Students who elect the Forensic Psychology concentration will take additional specialization classes like:

  • Advanced Theories of Crime and Delinquency
  • Sociology of Law
  • Counseling in Criminal Justice

Students who desire to pursue a PhD in Psychology upon graduation from the program are encouraged to complete a thesis. ULM is accredited to award the masters in psychology degree by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. The university has been listed among some of the country’s top public schools by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $6,490

#22—Golden Gate University

San Francisco, California

Online MA in Industrial- Organizational Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 18 Months
  • Points: 6
Golden Gate University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

The accelerated online master’s in psychology offering from Golden Gate University is a Master of Arts in Industrial-Organizational Psychology. The degree plan for the program requires 42 total units of coursework. This includes required courses such as:

  • Structure, Theory, and Ethics of Conflict Resolution
  • Organizational Behavior and Development
  • Executive Coaching Theory and Practice
  • Applied Psychological Research

In addition to this mandatory coursework, students will choose three elective classes, including:

  • Ethics in Managing People at Work
  • Therapeutic Communication and Counseling Skills
  • Acquiring and Retaining Human Resources
  • Adaptive Decision Making

An optional internship may also be completed at the culmination of the program. Golden Gate University is fully accredited to confer the master’s degree in psychology online by the WASC Senior College and University Commission.

Graduate Tuition: $19,620

#21—Northcentral University

La Jolla, California

Online MA in Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 18 Months
  • Points: 6
Northcentral University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

Northcentral University’s online masters in psychology program is a versatile MA option featuring three different concentration options:

  • Applied Behavior Analysis
  • Sport Psychology
  • Gender and Sexual Fluidity

This accelerated 30-credit hour program is designed to be completed in just 18 months and features core courses such as:

  • Theories of Human Development and Functioning
  • Professional Ethics, Law, and Psychology
  • Foundations for Graduate Study in Psychology

In addition to core coursework, students are also required to take several classes in their chosen specialization. A capstone course must also be completed before graduation. Northcentral University is institutionally accredited to award this master’s degree in psychology online by the WASC Senior College and University Commission.

Graduate Tuition: $16,983

#20—Grand Canyon University

Phoenix, Arizona

Online MS in Psychology: General Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 19 Months
  • Points: 6
Top 20 Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Public Safety Administration Online for 2019

Grand Canyon University offers its master’s in psychology online program through its College of Humanities and Social Sciences. The 36-credit hour program follows guidelines published by the American Psychological Association (APA) and emphasizes contemporary issues in psychology. Students enrolled in the program will follow a prescribed curriculum featuring courses such as:

  • Contemporary and Ethical Issues in Psychology
  • Learning, Cognition, and Motivation
  • Social and Cultural Psychology
  • Health Psychology

A professional capstone course is also required prior to graduation from the program. The Higher Learning Commission has accredited GCU to award the master’s degree in psychology online.

Graduate Tuition: $10,175

#19—Eastern Kentucky University

Richmond, Kentucky

Online Master’s in Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 22 Months
  • Points: 6

Eastern Kentucky University is home to two master’s in psychology online programs:

  • Online Master’s in Industrial-Organizational Psychology
  • Online Master’s in Psychology: Applied Behavior Analysis

Both programs feature accelerated eight-week classes, and the Applied Behavior Analysis option can be completed in just 22 months. Course titles associated with this degree include:

  • Advanced Topics in Behavior Analysis
  • Philosophical Underpinnings in Behavior Analysis
  • Behavioral Research and Measurement

Students who opt for the Industrial-Organizational program will take classes like:

  • Introduction to Industrial-Organizational Psychology
  • Performance Management
  • Organizational Change and Development

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges has accredited EKU to award these masters in psychology degrees. U.S. News & World Report has ranked the school among some of the best regional universities in the Midwest.

Graduate Tuition: $9,900

#18—Austin Peay State University

Clarksville, Tennessee

Online MS in Industrial- Organizational Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: Less Than 2 Years
  • Points: 6
Austin Peay State University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

Austin Peay State University’s accelerated online master’s in psychology program is a fully online option that can be completed in less than two years of study. Offered through the College of Behavioral and Health Sciences and the Department of Psychological Science and Counseling, the program requires a total of 34 credit hours of coursework. Major courses include:

  • Orientation to Industrial/Organizational Psychology
  • Research Methods and Statistics in Psychology
  • Applied Measurement in Industrial/Organizational Psychology
  • Personnel Assessment and Selection

A thesis or comprehensive exam is also required prior to graduation. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges has accredited Austin Peay State to confer the master’s degree in psychology online. The university has been ranked among the top 25 public schools nationwide by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $8,100

#17—American Public University

Charles Town, West Virginia

Online MA in Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 23 Months
  • Points: 6
American Public University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

American Public University’s online master’s in psychology program is an MA option offered through the university’s School of Arts and Humanities. The program features a customizable curriculum with four concentrations for students to choose from:

  • Child Life
  • Developmental/Personality Psychology
  • Industrial/Organizational Psychology
  • Military and Trauma Psychology

A general track is also available. Regardless of specialization, all students will enroll in core psychology courses, including:

  • Multicultural Issues in Human Behavior
  • Professional Ethics and Standards
  • Qualitative Methods in Social Science Research
  • Introduction to Scholarly and Technical Writing

Courses are eight weeks in length, and students with transfer credits can complete the program in less than two years. American Public University is fully accredited by The Higher Learning Commission to confer masters in psychology credentials.

Graduate Tuition: $6,615

#16—University of Oregon

Eugene, Oregon

Online Master’s in Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 18 Months
  • Points: 7
University of Oregon Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

University of Oregon’s master’s in psychology online program is an accelerated, six-term option that can be completed within just a year and a half. The curriculum for the program requires a minimum of 47 credits and includes core course titles such as:

  • Translational Neuroscience in Adulthood
  • Substance Use and Addiction
  • Community Needs Assessments
  • Methods of Program Evaluation

Elective classes are also available and include:

  • Child Psychology and Neurological Development
  • Statistics for Practitioners
  • Implementation Scalability
  • Communication

The University of Oregon holds accreditation to confer the master’s degree in psychology online by the Northwest Commission on Higher Education. Its graduate psychology program is one of the 50 best in the nation, according to U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $14,958

#15—Capella University

Minneapolis, Minnesota

MS in Psychology Online

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 18 Months
  • Points: 7
Capella University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

The comprehensive yet accelerated online master’s in psychology program from Capella University requires 48 credit hours of coursework and can be completed in as few as 14 months. The program’s curriculum requires four core courses:

  • Quantitative Design and Analysis
  • Foundations of Theory and Practice for Master’s in Psychology Learners
  • Tests and Measurements
  • Survey of Research Methods

Additional specialty courses include:

  • Learning Theories in Psychology
  • Lifespan Development
  • Ethics and Multicultural Issues in Psychology
  • Cognitive/Affective Psychology

Toward the end of the program, students are also required to complete an integrative project. The Higher Learning Commission has accredited Capella University to confer masters in psychology credentials.

Graduate Tuition: $14,767

#14—Tiffin University

Tiffin, Ohio

MS in Psychology Online

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 18 Months
  • Points: 7
Tiffin University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

The online master’s in psychology program from Tiffin University is an MS option that emphasizes scientific and experimental psychology rather than counseling or clinical psychology. The program is offered entirely online and can be completed within a year and a half of full-time study. Course titles required for the degree may include:

  • History and Systems of Psychology
  • Professional Issues: Cross-Cultural Issues in Psychology
  • Research Design and Analysis
  • Cognitive Psychology

In addition to core coursework, students are also required to complete two capstone research classes. Tiffin University holds institutional accreditation from The Higher Learning Commission. U.S. News & World Report has ranked the school among some of the top regional universities in the Midwest.

Graduate Tuition: $12,600

#13—Indiana Institute of Technology

Fort Wayne, Indiana

Online MS in Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 17 Months
  • Points: 7
Indiana Institute of Technology Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

Offered through its College of Arts & Sciences, the online master’s in psychology program from Indiana Tech is an accelerated program that can be completed within just 17 months. The 33-credit hour curriculum for the program is prescribed and aligns with APA guidelines for educational programs in psychology. Required courses include:

  • Legal and Ethical Issues in Psychology
  • Advanced Social Psychology
  • Writing in Psychology
  • Advanced Counseling Theory

Students are also required to complete a capstone course before graduation. The Higher Learning Commission has accredited Indiana Tech to confer this master’s degree in psychology online. The school has been ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of the leading regional universities in the Midwest.

Graduate Tuition: $10,026

#12—Angelo State University

San Angelo, Texas

Online Master’s in Applied Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: Less Than 2 Years
  • Points: 7
Angelo State University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

Angelo State University offers one of the cheapest online master’s degrees in psychology programs in the nation. This Master of Applied Psychology option offers both thesis and non-thesis tracks and can be completed in less than two years of accelerated study. The curriculum for the program is comprised of core and elective classes such as:

  • Applied Economic Psychology
  • Health and Wellness Psychology
  • Core Concepts on Psychological Science
  • Social Perception

During the final semester of the program, students must also complete a comprehensive examination. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges has accredited Angelo State University to award the online masters in psychology credential. The university has been ranked among the top 50 public schools nationwide by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $4,059

#11—Medaille College

Buffalo, New York

Online Master of Arts in Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 1 Year
  • Points: 8
Medaille College Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

The MA in Psychology from Medaille College is not the cheapest online master’s degree in psychology in our ranking, but it is one of the most accelerated. Designed to be completed in just one year, the program features an optional concentration in Sport Psychology. Required core courses include:

  • Evolutionary Psychology
  • Biological Bases of Behavior
  • Psychopathologies
  • Special Topics in Psychology

In addition to online coursework, students are also required to complete either an internship or a thesis as a capstone element of the program. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education has accredited Medaille College to confer masters in psychology credentials. The school has been named one of the top regional universities in the North by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $21,167

#10—The Chicago School of Professional Psychology

Chicago, Illinois

Online MA in Psychology: Applied Behavior Analysis

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 1 Year
  • Points: 8
The Chicago School of Professional Psychology Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

The Chicago School of Professional Psychology is home to an online master’s in psychology program that emphasizes Applied Behavior Analysis. Course titles comprising the curriculum for the program include:

  • Concepts and Principles in Behavior Analysis
  • Professional Ethics and Issues
  • Measurement and Design in Behavior Analysis

Students may elect to pursue the degree on a part-time or full-time basis, and full-time students can complete the program in just one year. The Chicago School of Professional Psychology is fully accredited to offer this master’s in psychology online program by The Higher Learning Commission. The school’s graduate psychology programs have been ranked among some of the best in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $20,610

#9—Franklin University

Columbus, Ohio

Online MS in Business Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 14 Months
  • Points: 8
Franklin University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

The online master’s in psychology option from Franklin University is a unique MS in Business Psychology. The program’s accelerated 14-month completion time makes it an attractive option for busy adults looking to advance their careers quickly. The curriculum for the program is prescribed and features course titles such as:

  • Managerial Psychology
  • Psychology of Human Resources
  • Behavioral Economics and Neurofinance
  • Individual & Organizational Intelligence

A business psychology mastery demonstration is also required as a capstone element. The Higher Learning Commission fully accredits Franklin University to award master’s in psychology credentials.

Graduate Tuition: $16,080

#8—Liberty University

Lynchburg, Virginia

Online MA in Applied Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 18 Months
  • Points: 8
liberty-university

The online master’s in psychology degree program from Liberty University is a fully online MA in Applied Psychology. The program is flexible in terms of content, featuring two available concentrations:

  • Developmental Psychology
  • Industrial/Organizational Psychology

Core courses required of all students who enroll in the program include:

  • Psychology & Christianity
  • Research Methods & Statistics in Psychology
  • Cognitive Psychology
  • Social Psychology

Both concentration options require 36 credit hours of coursework and emphasize the application of real-world concepts and skills. Liberty University is institutionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award masters in psychology degrees.

Graduate Tuition: $7,980

#7—Arizona State University

Scottsdale, Arizona

Online MS in Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 18 Months
  • Points: 8
Arizona State University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

Offered through its New College of Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences, Arizona State University’s online masters in psychology option can be completed in as few as 18 months. Students who require a more relaxed pace may enroll in the program’s part-time track. Required core courses comprising the program’s curriculum include:

  • Research Methods
  • Quantitative Analysis I
  • Professional Issues in Psychology

A capstone course in General Psychology is also required as a culminating experience. ASU is fully accredited by The Higher Learning Commission to confer this master’s degree in psychology online. The school’s graduate program in clinical psychology has been ranked among the 30 best in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $6,384

#6—Southern New Hampshire University

Manchester, New Hampshire

Online Master of Science in Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 1 Year
  • Points: 9
Southern New Hampshire University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

The versatile and accelerated online master’s in psychology program from Southern New Hampshire University can be completed within just one year of study. Students enrolled in the program will select one of three available concentrations:

  • Forensic Psychology
  • Industrial Organizational Psychology
  • Child & Adolescent Development Psychology

In addition to coursework in their chosen concentration, all students will complete major courses such as:

  • Ethical Practice in Psychology
  • Theories of Personality
  • Social Psychology
  • Cognitive Processes

As culminating elements of the program, students will also complete a capstone course and seminar in psychology. The New England Commission of Higher Education has accredited Southern New Hampshire University to award this master’s in psychology credential. The university has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report as one of the 75 best value schools in the country.

Graduate Tuition: $18,810

#5—National University

La Jolla, California

Online MA in Counseling Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 10 Months
  • Points: 9
National University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

Impressively, National University is home to three different online master’s in psychology degree programs:

  • Online Master of Arts in Performance Psychology
  • Online Master of Arts in Human Behavior
  • Online Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology

Courses for each of these programs are delivered via a highly accelerated 4-week format. Course titles will vary from program to program but may include:

  • Stages of Adult Development
  • Theories of Behavior Change
  • Consulting Practice Development
  • Family Therapy

It is important to note that the online MA in Counseling Psychology is a licensure program designed specifically for California. The WASC Senior College and University Commission has accredited National University to offer these masters in psychology online programs. U.S. News & World Report has ranked the school among the leading regional universities in the West.

Graduate Tuition: $15,480

#4—Fayetteville State University

Fayetteville, North Carolina

Master of Arts in Psychology Online

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 18 Months
  • Points: 9
Fayetteville State University Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

Fayetteville State University is home to the cheapest online master’s degree in psychology program in our ranking. This fully online MA option is comprised of eight-week courses, including core titles like:

  • Biological Aspects of Behavior
  • Psychology of Diversity
  • Psychological Consultation and Supervision
  • Psychology of Social and Interpersonal Communication

Students will also choose two elective classes from options such as:

  • Cognitive Aspects of Behavior
  • Principles and Techniques of Teaching Psychology
  • Psychopathology
  • Advanced Designs and Analysis

At the culmination of the program, students will also complete a capstone seminar course. Fayetteville State is institutionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to confer masters in psychology degrees. It’s also been ranked among the 50 best public schools nationwide by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $3,438

#3—Lynn University

Boca Raton, Florida

Online Master of Science in Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 1 Year
  • Points: 10

Lynn University offers a highly accelerated online master’s in psychology option that can be completed in just one year of full-time study. The 37-credit hour curriculum for the program was designed in accordance with APA guidelines and features an optional track in Industrial/Organizational Psychology. Foundation courses required of all students include:

  • Advanced Social Psychology
  • Research and Program Evaluation
  • Personality Theories
  • Testing and Assessment

Depending on the track they choose, students may take additional classes like:

  • Human Growth and Development
  • Psychobiology
  • Managing Human Resources
  • Leadership and Management of Organizations

A practicum in applied psychology is also required for program completion. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges has accredited Lynn University to award the master’s degree in psychology online. The university has been recognized as one of the 55 best value schools in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $13,320

#2—Touro University-Worldwide

Los Alamitos, California

MA in Psychology Online

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 1 Year
  • Points: 11
touro university worldwide

Touro University – Worldwide offers a dynamic and accelerated master’s in psychology online program. This option features a one-year completion time and four distinct specialization options:

  • Media Psychology
  • Health Psychology
  • Forensic Psychology
  • Educational Psychology

The 36-semester hour program is comprised mostly of core courses, including:

  • Foundation of Applied Psychology
  • Principles of Consumer Psychology
  • Professional Ethics
  • Applied Research Methods and Statistics

A capstone course is also required for successful program completion. Touro University-Worldwide is fully accredited to award this master’s degree in psychology online by the WASC Senior College and University Commission.

Graduate Tuition: $9,000

#1—University of West Alabama

Livingston, Alabama

Online MS in Experimental Psychology

  • Website
  • Minimum Time to Completion: 1 Year
  • Points: 11
University of West Alabama Top Most Affordable Accelerated Master's in Psychology Online

The online master’s in psychology option from the University of West Alabama offers prospective students an attractive blend of flexibility, rigor, and affordability. This MS in Experimental Psychology program features two distinct concentrations:

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Health and Sports Psychology

Regardless of their choice in concentration, all students enrolled in the program will take theory and research classes such as:

  • Research Methods and Evaluation
  • The Diagnosis Process for Mental Disorders
  • Theories of Personality
  • Advanced Developmental Psychology

UWA is institutionally accredited to award the master’s degree in psychology online by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. The school has been named one of the 65 best public schools in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate Tuition: $6,678

About Online Master’s in Psychology Programs

According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), nearly 28,000 masters in psychology degrees were conferred in 2018. The rise in popularity of these graduate psychology credentials can be attributed in part to convenient online masters in psychology programs. These reputable postsecondary educational options in the field enable busy and working students to earn valuable degrees from their homes, avoiding lengthy commutes and time-consuming in-person classes. Offered from accredited colleges and universities across the nation, masters in psychology online programs are surprisingly affordable and often resemble traditional on-campus programs in terms of curriculum and academic outcomes.

Types of Masters in Psychology Online Programs

As you peruse the various master’s degree in psychology online programs in our ranking, you’ll likely note many differences. Clearly, not all graduate degree programs in the field are alike, least of all online programs. When choosing an online master’s in psychology degree, it’s important to keep common distinctions in mind. Below, we’ll discuss some of these distinguishing factors.

Part-Time/Full-Time Masters in Psychology Tracks

Most of the accelerated master’s degree in psychology online offerings highlighted in this ranking are full-time programs. That’s because it’s easier to complete your degree requirements quickly when you’re studying full-time. There are exceptions, however. Some part-time online masters in psychology options can also be finished in less than two years, despite a more relaxed course load.

Synchronous/Asynchronous Online Masters in Psychology Options

When evaluating any online degree program, it’s crucial to understand the two basic delivery modes for distance learning options—synchronous and asynchronous. Synchronous programs are structured degree plans that require specific log-on times for online students. Some students report that these programs are more interactive, albeit less convenient. On the other hand, asynchronous online programs provide more flexibility, enabling enrolled students to access course content and complete assignments at their convenience. Some master’s in psychology online programs combine asynchronous and synchronous course delivery methods.

Hybrid/Fully Online Masters in Psychology Programs

In our ranking of the top accelerated, affordable online master’s in psychology programs, our editors attempted to include only fully online options that require no visits to campus. However, you should keep in mind that these aren’t the only types of master’s in psychology programs offered via distance education. Hybrid options are also available. These master’s degree in psychology online offerings combine online learning with on-campus attendance for a “best of both worlds” experience. If you’re open to some in-person requirements, these programs are worth considering.

Masters in Psychology Online Program Admissions

As you learn more about online masters in psychology programs, you’ll notice that admissions requirements can vary somewhat depending on the college or university in question. Still, you can expect some basic requirements to remain consistent across the board, including proof of a bachelor’s degree, for instance. Other requirements may include:

  • Entrance Exam scores (i.e., GRE or GMAT)
  • Minimum Undergraduate GPA
  • Recommendation Letters
  • Statement of Purpose
  • English Proficiency
  • Nominal Application Fee

Curriculum for Online Masters in Psychology Programs

Like admissions criteria, curricula for online masters in psychology programs can vary depending on the college or university you choose to attend. Even so, you can expect a minimum of 30 credit hours of coursework covering advanced psychological topics such as human development, cognitive and behavioral psychology, quantitative and qualitative research methods, and psychological testing and diagnostics, for instance. Though course titles will inevitably vary from one program to the next, we’ve listed some sample core courses below for the sake of example. In addition to these required courses, our editors have also identified some elective classes typical of master’s degree in psychology degree plans.

Sample Core Courses

  • Research Methods in Psychology
  • Developmental Issues Across the Life Span
  • The Psychological Impact of Media and Technology
  • Ethical and Professional Issues in Psychology
  • Psychopathology
  • Advanced Cognitive Psychology
  • Human Sexuality
  • Aging and Mental Health
  • Psychodiagnostics

Sample Elective Courses

  • Introduction to Organizational Conflict Management
  • Leadership and Ethics
  • Neuroscience in the Community
  • Social Aspects of Behavior
  • Mindfulness Therapy
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • Counseling Diverse Populations
  • Psychology of Religion
  • Cyberpsychology
  • Coaching: Interpersonal Skills and Practices

Popular Concentrations for an Online Masters Degree in Psychology

Many of the online masters in psychology programs featured in our ranking include one or more concentrations. These specialization options enable students enrolled in the program to focus their studies in a specific area of psychology. Below, we highlight some of the more common concentration options found within online masters in psychology degree plans as well as some of the course titles you may find associated with each concentration.

Child and Adolescent Psychology

Counseling kids and teens requires a special skill set. Online master’s in psychology programs with concentrations in Child and Adolescent Psychology bridge this gap through coursework such as:

  • Developmental Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuropsychology
  • Therapeutic Play
  • Advanced Child Life Theory and Practice

Forensic Psychology

Forensic psychologists must have a broad understanding of psychology within the context of criminal behavior, legal issues, and the courts. Thus, a master’s in psychology with a concentration in Forensics will include classes like:

  • Assessment for Forensic Psychology
  • Intersection of Law and Psychology
  • Understanding Forensic Psychology Research
  • Criminal Behavior

Industrial-Organizational Psychology

Although highly personal, the psychology of an individual affects everyone around the person, including those they work with. The field of industrial-organizational psychology explores how individuals work as teams and how psychological concepts influence the working environment. Course titles associated with an online master’s in psychology with a concentration in Industrial-Organizational Psychology may include:

  • Motivation in the Workplace
  • Organizational Consulting
  • Leadership and Change
  • Advanced Topics in Industrial/Organizational Psychology

Clinical Psychology

Students who pursue a master’s degree in psychology online with a concentration in Clinical Psychology will study the clinical aspects of the field such as psychological testing, research, and therapy. Classes comprising such a program may include:  

  • Personality Assessment
  • Psychopharmacology
  • Abnormal Psychology
  • Psychological Tests and Measurements

Health and Sports Psychology

An online master’s in psychology with a Health and Sports Psychology concentration explores how psychological concepts influence fitness and performance issues. Graduates of these programs enjoy career opportunities in coaching, consulting, teaching, and management. They are required to complete coursework such as:

  • Psychology and Sociology of Human Performance
  • Exercise Physiology
  • Performance Enhancement in Sports
  • Industrial, Clinical, and Corporate Wellness

Military and Trauma Psychology

The highly specialized subfield of military and trauma psychology addresses the specific psychological issues that arise as a result of military service, including war and conflict. A master’s degree in psychology online program with a concentration in Military and Trauma Psychology may include coursework such as:

  • Deployment Psychology
  • Crisis and Emergency Intervention
  • Organizational Psychology for the Military
  • War, Trauma, Grief, Death, and Loss

Frequently-Asked Questions About Masters in Psychology Online Programs

Pursuing any type of master’s degree is a huge endeavor. Therefore, it’s not uncommon for prospective students to have numerous questions about online master’s in psychology degree offerings. Below, we will address some of the most common inquiries related to these types of distance education degree plans. For more specific information or for questions about a specific school or program, it’s best to speak to an admissions counselor.

Q: How much does an online masters in psychology cost?

A: Tuition expenses for these programs can vary significantly from one school to the next. While conducting research for this ranking, our editors identified the cheapest online master’s degree in psychology for under $3,500 per year. The most expensive program was over $35,000 a year.

Q: How long does it take to earn a master’s degree in psychology online?

A: Your exact completion time can only be determined by factoring in your course load and time commitment. Still, each of the masters in psychology degree plans featured in this ranking can feasibly be completed in two years or less.

Q: What is the best online master’s in psychology degree program?

A: No ranking can definitively identify the best master’s degree in psychology online program for everyone. While the University of West Alabama is our pick for the top accelerated and affordable online masters in psychology, your ideal program may differ depending on your preferences and needs. We recommend evaluating your options in terms of priorities like curriculum, cost, and schedule, for instance.

Career Questions for Master’s Degree in Psychology Online Programs

Q: What career opportunities will I have with an online masters in psychology?

A: Career opportunities are plentiful for individuals who hold a master’s in psychology credential. Some of these job opportunities may include:

  • Marriage and Family Therapist
  • Mental Health Counselor
  • Behavioral Disorder Counselor
  • Substance Abuse Counselor
  • School Psychologist
  • Psychology Research Assistant
  • Human Resources Specialist
  • Psychology Instructor
  • Social Worker

This is not an exhaustive list. Moreover, the job opportunities you qualify for may vary depending on your exact degree as well as any specializations or concentrations you elect.

Q: How much will I earn with an online masters in psychology credential?

A: PayScale has calculated the average salary of professionals with an MS in Psychology degree to be just under $60,000 a year. However, your precise wages will depend on several different factors like your exact degree type, job title, and years of experience in the field, for example.

Q: Are careers in psychology in demand?

A: Yes. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, job opportunities for marriage and family therapists are growing much faster than average as are positions for substance abuse and mental health counselors.

Q: What professional organizations in psychology can I join?

A: As a master’s degree in psychology online student or graduate, you may consider joining professional associations like:

This concludes our ranking of the Top 35 Most Affordable Accelerated Master’s in Psychology Online.

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