Different levels of psychology degrees are available online, which means that you can choose a distance learning education to advance your education no matter where you’re starting from. Online learning differs from one level of psychology degree to the next in terms of what subjects are studied, what academic options are available and how the degree program uses the Internet to present course material.
Online Bachelor’s Degrees in Psychology
Of all the different levels of psychology degrees that can be earned online, bachelor’s degrees might be the most plentiful. Psychology is a popular and versatile major at the undergraduate level, so it’s no surprise that so many schools are offering the option of earning a bachelor’s degree in psychology online.
Bachelor’s degree programs in psychology typically combine science and liberal arts coursework, the American Psychological Association (APA) reported. Students begin their foray into the field with introductory psychology classes. Other common coursework in an online bachelor’s in psychology program includes developmental psychology, the history of psychology, tests and measurements in psychology, statistics and research methods. Online bachelor’s in psychology degree programs often allow students to customize their education by choosing the psychology electives that are most of interest to them or most relevant to their intended career path.
Online Master’s Degrees in Psychology
When master’s level psychology degrees are earned online, they typically focus on counseling psychology, clinical psychology or industrial/organizational psychology. These are the most popular master’s degrees in the field, the APA reported. Students in online master’s in psychology programs should expect to learn more about psychological assessments and personality studies, ethics and research methods.
Some students pursue a master’s education as a terminal degree, while others earn a master’s in psychology in preparation for a doctoral program, according to the APA. When students go on to earn a Ph.D. or Psy.D. degree, their past graduate credits can often be transferred to the doctoral program.
Online Doctoral Degrees in Psychology
Unlike other levels of psychology degrees that can be earned online, getting your Ph.D. or Psy.D. degree through distance learning can be a bit trickier. As of July 2016, the American Psychological Association reports that its Commission on Accreditation “currently does not accredit online-only doctoral programs.”
The professional organization does, however, recognize the value of online learning’s flexibility. The APA does accredit programs that may be considered hybrid programs, including those that offer some online courses. If you choose an online learning option to earn your doctoral degree in psychology, be prepared for the likelihood that your program might not be available fully online. You will most likely need to complete practicum experiences in person, as well as courses that are heavily based in academic research.
With all of the different levels of psychology degrees that can be earned online, students interested in the field of psychology now have more options than ever for attaining their college education.