Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

Forensic psychology is a fascinating field that is growing in career options year after year. As a result, more and more people are looking to earn this type of degree. One option that forensic psychology students should consider is getting a master’s degree in the field which will carry with it a whole host of new job opportunities. Once you have graduated, there are several career paths that can earn you up to $72,372 a year.

Forensic psychology used to be a field reserved for law enforcement, but with the growing need for mental health professionals and a lot of new master’s in forensic psychology programs, more mental health practitioners are entering this lucrative career.

Students who are interested in human behavior and the legal system may consider pursuing an Online Master’s In Forensic Psychology. Obtaining a master’s degree can lead to many career opportunities in the field. This list of top forensic psychology programs can help prospective students find a program that fits their career goals.

Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology Overview

Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

Forensic psychology means different things to different people. Technically, it’s a subfield of psychology where psychological training is applied to criminal justice and law application. With each university offering their own options for how you prefer to apply for this degree, a forensic psychology master’s degree can take many forms to suit your needs.

Top 25 Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

#1 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

George Washington University

GW is a private school located in Washington, D.C. It offers a master’s degree program in forensic psychology that enables students to examine criminal motivations. This program prepares students for careers in law enforcement, homeland security, and community services.

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#2 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

University of Denver

DU offers a master’s degree in forensic psychology specializing in clinical psychology and law. Students who complete this program are prepared to work in clinical settings as mental health professionals. Graduates typically pursue careers in crisis intervention, victim assistance, and police consultation.

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#3 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

Roger Williams University

Bristol University in Rhode Island offers a master’s degree in forensic and legal psychology that prepares students for doctoral programs in research. The program prepares students in research design, statistical analysis, and clinical assessment.

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#4 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

Marymount University

Marymount University’s master of arts in forensic and legal psychology program, based in Arlington, Virginia, prepares students to use psychological knowledge in the legal system. Students may also apply for an intelligence studies concentration to learn skills for highly competitive careers in the intelligence community.

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#5 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

University of North Dakota

The University of North Dakota (UND) in Grand Forks, North Dakota, offers a master of science in forensic psychology. This degree prepares students to work as forensic psychologists.

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#6 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

Holy Names University

HNU, a Catholic university in Oakland, California, offers a master’s degree in forensic psychology with an emphasis on restorative justice in the criminal justice system. Graduates usually go on to work as probation officers, restorative justice advocates, or victim advocates.

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#7 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

Fairleigh Dickinson University-Metropolitan Campus

FDU’s Metropolitan campus, a private school in New Jersey, offers a master of arts in forensic psychology that teaches students the fundamentals of forensic psychology in an accelerated time frame.

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#8 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

California Baptist University

CBU, a Baptist school in Riverside, California, offers a master of arts in forensic psychology, preparing students to provide psychological services in the criminal justice system.

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#9 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

CUNY John Jay College of Criminal Justice

John Jay, one of the region’s top public colleges, offers a master of arts in forensic psychology, which teaches students the fundamentals of applied forensic psychology.

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#10 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

American International College

AIC is a private liberal arts college in Springfield, Massachusetts that offers a master’s degree in forensic psychology. This degree prepares students to study and work in the field of forensics.

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#11 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

Northcentral University

Northcentral University is a completely online school. Its Master of Science in Forensic Psychology program consists of ten courses and 30 credit hours and is expected to take approximately 23 months to complete.

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#12 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

The Chicago School of Professional Psychology

The Chicago School of Professional Psychology’s MA in Forensic Psychology program is a hybrid of online courses and what the school refers to as virtual residencies – one-hour webinars and teleconferences.

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#13 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

Grand Canyon University

Grand Canyon University’s College of Humanities and Social Sciences offers a Master of Science in Psychology with an emphasis in Forensic Psychology.

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#14 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

Alder University

Alder University offers a Master of Arts in Counseling with a Forensic Counseling specialization. The online program takes about three years to complete. It prepares graduates to work as counselors and advocates for people involved in the criminal justice or behavioral health systems.

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#15 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

Southern New Hampshire University

Southern New Hampshire University’s Master of Science in Forensic Psychology program consists of 36 credit hours.

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#16 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

University of Florida

The University of Florida’s College of Pharmacy offers a Master of Science in Forensic Science degree.

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#17 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

University of Houston-Victoria

In its MA Forensic Psychology program, the University of Houston-Victoria places graduate students in organizations throughout the Texas Gulf Coast community for practicum experience.

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#18 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

University of Central Florida

The Forensic Science MS degree is offered by the University of Central Florida’s chemistry department. Graduates can pursue careers in crime scene investigation as well as a variety of forensics-based disciplines such as toxicology, statistics, and pathology.

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#19 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

University of Louisiana at Monroe

A Master of Science in Psychology with a Forensic Track is available at the University of Louisiana at Monroe.

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#20 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

Liberty University

According to Liberty University, the Master of Science in Criminal Justice with a Forensic Psychology Cognate degree can be completed in about 1.5 years.

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#21 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

Oklahoma State University

Oklahoma State University offers a Master of Science in Forensic Sciences: Forensic Psychology degree with 39 credit hours of coursework.

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#22 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

Nova Southern University

Nova Southeastern University’s MS in Forensic Psychology program is designed to provide graduates with the skills needed to apply psychology in criminal justice settings, social service and child welfare agencies, national security offices, prisons, and treatment facilities.

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#23 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

University Of North Dakota

The University of North Dakota’s Forensic Psychology MA program consists of 30 semester credit hours and can be completed in two years entirely online while taking classes part-time.

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#24 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

Arizona State University

As the name implies, the Arizona State University Online Master of Science in Forensic Psychology can be completed entirely off-campus and at the student’s own pace. Eleven courses totaling 33 semester credit hours are offered.

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#25 Top Online Masters Degree In Forensic Psychology

University Of California, Irvine

The Master of Legal and Forensic Psychology (MLPF) program is offered in collaboration with the Departments of Psychological Science and Criminology, Law and Society at the University of California, Irvine.

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What Is A Masters In Forensic Psychology?

Forensic psychology can be a confusing topic. It is not a discipline of psychology, but rather it is a set of forensic psychologists who perform work in a variety of criminal justice and legal application areas. If you have an interest in the law, and understanding how our behavior is affected by psychological training, then this might be the path for you.

There are several universities and college programs throughout the country that offer degrees in Forensic Psychology. Before deciding where to enroll for your Masters in Forensic Psychology, you should carefully consider which university is right for you.

Forensic psychology is a very diverse graduate field with many jobs and potential areas for study. If you are interested in forensic psychology, there are several steps you should follow to get started. You should do a little research using the site linked below, many of the schools will not advertise their programs on their websites. I hope this helps.

A master’s degree in forensic psychology usually takes two years to complete. The degree can be completed in a variety of ways, so your timeline depends on the courses you take.

Common courses within the forensic psychology degree include:

  • Criminal psychology
  • Social behavior
  • Cognitive psychology
  • Criminal justice
  • Psych in the courtroom
  • Ethics in psych
  • Police Psychology
  • Crisis Intervention

 

What Are The Admissions Requirements?

The admission requirements for a forensic psychology master’s degree are similar to other graduate programs, but they will differ from school to school.

Applicants should have earned or be on their way to earning a bachelor’s degree. Though not required, it is usually preferred that the degree is in a field related to forensic psychology, such as criminal justice, law, psychology, human resources, social work, or public policy. If you have a bachelor’s degree in a different field, you may need to complete psychology prerequisite courses before beginning the master’s program.

Most programs require at least a 3.0 undergraduate GPA and a GRE test score. Some programs will accept a test score from a comparable graduate-level standard exam like the LSAT, GMAT, or MCAT.

For master’s programs, it’s common to ask for multiple letters of recommendation and relevant writing samples. An application may require previous work, sometimes research-oriented or topically relevant, or a personal essay.

What Are The Concentrations In Forensic Psychology?

A forensic psychology degree is useful in many fields, including law and government, mental health, and government. With today’s broad applications, it’s important to research the type of job you’d like to have and find a school that offers it. If you have an interest in law, consider schools with specific concentrations in criminal justice or courts. If you are interested in working within a government agency as a profiler or examiner, research federal jobs and look for a school with good connections within the government. Schools that offer degrees with concentrations may offer more practical experience than schools without specific specialties.

In addition, some universities do not offer a forensic psychology master’s degree, but rather a master’s degree in psychology or criminology with a forensic psychology concentration.

Forensic Assessment

In this course, students learn the basic skills necessary to provide forensic assessments. Assessing cases of criminal insanity, competency to stand trial, and violence risk is part of the learning process. The course teaches students how to compose assessment records and present them to the court, as well as the legal and ethical issues related to forensic assessment.

Legal studies

If you want to work in the courtroom, a legal concentration will get you there. It will involve evaluating accused parties and witnesses, providing expert testimony, and advising law offices. Some courses you might take include consultation and testimony, psychology and the law, issues in the American legal system, death penalty and mitigation, and field experience in criminal court.

Counselor licensure

Those who prefer working directly with patients and victims on rehabilitation and treatment might prefer the counselor concentration. The psychology concentration allows you to focus on direct client contact, victim rehabilitation, evaluation, and treatment. These courses might include: victimology, evaluation and treatment of sexual offenders, children and adolescents in the legal system, and people with mental illness in the legal system.

Correctional

In the corrections concentration students will learn how the principles of forensic psychology can be applied to probation services, correctional facility design, prisons, and juvenile facilities. You may take courses in criminal psychology, psychology of criminal behavior, psychology and treatment of juvenile offenders, interventions and treatment in forensic psychology, and advanced issues in correctional and community counseling.

Police psych/intelligence studies

You can also focus on the application of forensic psychology to criminal investigation. This would involve studying interrogation, investigation, police psychology, and terrorism with the goal of working for a government agency or in the intelligence community. You may take courses in interrogation and interviewing, profiling, investigative psychology, terrorism, and counterterrorism.

Masters In Forensic Psychology Jobs Outlook

There are a few ways to apply for a forensic psychology degree. You can evaluate criminals, treat those who have committed crimes in a correctional facility, and investigate and profile potential criminals, or you can focus on mental health counseling for victims.

A career in forensic psychology would provide an opportunity to explore your interest in crime, and the origins of human behavior. It is a growing field with a lot of room for growth.

There are a wide variety of options for those with a degree in forensic psychology. Since psychology is a broad-based science, you will likely be able to find something that fits your specific interests and skill set.

While the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) does not report salaries specifically for forensic psychologists, clinical and counseling psychologists earn just over $87,400 a year on average.

Masters In Forensic Psychology Salary

A forensic psychology master’s degree can cost anywhere from $11k to $40k, depending on the program. The salaries for careers you can pursue with this degree vary as well. For example, social workers and victim advocates earn about $35k annually, while clinical psychologists earn about $80k annually. The average salary for public service and government work is lower than that of clinical work or intelligence agency employment.

Certifications and Licences

There are several certifications you can complete to gain credibility in the field of forensic psychology, but no specific certification is required. There are, however, certifications offered by the American Board of Professional Psychology for Forensic Psychologists and Advanced Specialty Certificate in Forensic Psychology. Certain degree programs include licensure at the end of the master’s program.

Licensure requirements vary by state. As an example, in Virginia, candidates for licensing in forensic psychology must have a doctorate in psychology. Also required in Virginia are internship hours and passing the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology. Licensed psychologists in Virginia must meet continuing education and professional development requirements to maintain their credentials. The Association of State and Provincial Psychology lists licensure information for each state.

Is There Any Scholarships Or Financial Aid Available For Forensic Psychology Students?

There are a few notable forensic psychology scholarships available, and you can also apply for general graduate and psychology degree funding.

APA Dissertation Research Award

30-40 $1,000 grants, with some larger grants of $5,000. The award is intended for graduate students in forensic psychology who are working on a research dissertation.

Melanie Merola O’Donnell Memorial Scholarship

This $2,500 scholarship is available to students pursuing a master’s or doctoral degree in a field related to mental health.

Dr. Christine Blasey-Ford Grant

Graduate students researching the understanding, prevention, or treatment of traumatic events will receive a $1,500 grant. Applicants must demonstrate affiliation with an educational or charitable institution, such as a nonprofit organization or government agency.

How Can I Become A Forensic Psychologist?

Get a bachelor’s degree in psychology

In order to pursue a career in forensic psychology, an undergraduate degree in psychology or a closely related field is required. This will prepare the student for advanced study, research, and expertise.

Get a graduate degree in forensic psychology

For most forensic psychology careers, you’ll need an advanced degree. After completing a bachelor’s degree in a related field, you can earn a master’s degree in forensic psychology with a specialization.

Get work experience

Most graduate programs include an externship requirement and set you up for real-life experience. You should also take any licensing or certification tests to prove your expertise, and qualify you for the career path you’ve chosen.

Connect with professionals and peers

Once you have completed the required education, start thinking about pursuing a career in forensic psychology. Connect with peers and professionals in a field you admire and start applying for jobs in forensic psychology.

Methodology

Based on public data released from educational, commercial, and government databases, the staff of Grad School Hub has compiled the following 10 Best Masters’ in Forensic Psychology for the 2019-20 academic school year. Data from sources such as the National Center for Education Statistics and the United States Department of Labor play an important role in how graduate degree programs are ranked because institutional transparency is essential for deciding which career path is right for you. Based on these data, GSH organizes information into five weighted categories:

  • Alumni Feedback: 20%
  • Continued Enrollment: 20%
  • Degree Selectivity: 10%
  • Graduate Expenses: 25%
  • Projected Annual Salary: 25%

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