Philosophy of the Psychological Science Track
The Psychological Science track of the Master of Arts in Psychology provides the student with a solid foundation in psychological research. The program includes coursework in Psychological Science design, research methodology, and statistics. The student will also develop an area of specialization that will serve as a basis for elective coursework and the Master's thesis.
The program is primarily designed to prepare students for doctoral degrees in psychology or related fields. Consistent with this goal, a majority of our Master's students have been subsequently accepted into Ph.D. programs. The program is also relevant to non-traditional students who do not plan to pursue a doctoral degree but wish to become more knowledgeable about psychology and its applications to their particular interests.
Upon completing the MA program a student will be conferred a general degree in Psychology. However, as part of their graduate training, students will gain experience within a specialized area of Psychology. This will be reflected in the training and experience that students receive while completing their Master's thesis research project under the direction of a faculty mentor. Our department offers many areas of specialization within Psychology including but not limited to Abnormal Psychology, Developmental Psychology, Cognitive Psychology, Geropsychology (Aging), Neuropsychology, Personality, Program Evaluation, Psychology and Law, Psychometric Theory, Quantitative Psychology, Social Psychology, and Trauma Psychology. All of these areas of specialization are available to incoming students regardless of whether or not they select a formalized Sub-Plan.
Sub-plans are optional and include specific requirements for completion that include specific coursework and research areas. Applicants are asked to specify whether they are likely to pursue a Sub-plan at the time of application. However, please keep in mind that Sub-plans are optional, many students complete our MA program without completing formalized Sub-plans, and you do not need to specify a Sub-plan at the time of application in order to eventually earn that Sub-plan. Click below to view more information about each Sub-Plan.
Sub-Plan in Cognition (available only to students in the Psychological Science MA track)
Sub-Plan in Psychology and Law (available to students in Clinical and Psychological Science MA tracks)
Sub-Plan in Developmental Psychology (available only to students in the Psychological Science MA track)
Sub-Plan in Trauma Psychology (available to students in Clinical and Psychological Science MA tracks)
Sample Psychological Science-Track Course Sequence
The Psychological Science track requires a minimum of 36 credit hours. The required courses can be completed by a full-time student in 2 years if the following course sequence is followed:
Fall: Research Statistics and Methodology I, Elective Independent Study, Contemporary Issues in Psychology, and a Core Content Course
Spring: Research Statistics and Methodology II, a Core Course, Contemporary Issues in Psychology, and Research Practicum or an optional Core Content Course
Fall: Applied Multivariate Techniques I, History of Psychology, Contemporary Issues in Psychology, and Research Practicum or a Core Content Course
Spring: Methods and Design for Analyzing Change or Research Practicum, Masters Thesis,Contemporary Issues in Psychology, and a Core Content Course
This shows 43 credits, so student should adjust where it works best while fulfilling the general requirements.
A. MA Psychological Science students must take at least two of the following core content courses:
1. PSY 5210 Psychology of Aging I*
2. PSY 5220 Psychology of Aging II*
3. PSY 6100 Developmental Psychology
4. PSY 6110 Cognition
5. PSY 6120 Neuroscience
6. PSY 6130 Social Psychology
7. PSY 6140 Personality
8. PSY 6150 Psychology and Law
9. PSY 6160 Trauma Psychology
*Note: MA students may count either PSY 5210 or PSY 5220 as a core content course for graduation requirements, but not both.
B. MA Psychological Science students must take the following three courses
1. PSY 5810 Research Statistics and Methodology I
2. PSY 5820 Research Statistics and Methodology II
3. PSY 5830 Applied Multivariate Techniques I
C. One or more courses may be taken from the Core Content Courses listed above or from the following courses:
1. PSY 6410 Aging Seminar (Special Topics)
2. PSY 6510 History of Psychology
D. MA Psychological Science students must take one additional course listed above in A or C, or PSY 5840 Methods and Design for Analyzing Change
E. The following courses are required for MA Psychological Science students:
1. PSY 6030 Research Practicum
2. PSY 7000 Masters Thesis (6 credits)
3. PSY 6430 Contemporary Issues in Psychology (4 semesters)
Application Materials and Deadlines
The application deadline for Fall admission each year is January 1st.
The Graduate Student Handbook for the MA in Psychological Science can be found in .pdf format here.