Master of Science in Psychology


Program Description

You are not required to submit a TOEFL exam result in order to apply and be admitted into the University.


CalSouthern’s accredited online Master of Science in Psychology (MS) program is designed to provide the strongest and most comprehensive foundation in the study of psychology. Whether you already have a background in mental health and are looking to broaden your skillset or are simply interested in studying psychology on a post-graduate level, it’s an excellent degree choice.

The MS is also a stepping-stone to CalSouthern’s PsyD program, which satisfies the educational requirements for licensure as a clinical psychologist in California. Once enrolled in the MS program, you can choose to focus your studies in sports psychology, advanced addiction studies, industrial psychology, pastoral counseling, or general psychology.

CalSouthern’s Master of Science (MS) in Psychology degree program is designed to provide the strongest possible foundation in the study of psychology, while simultaneously allowing you to focus your studies on one of a variety of specialized fields, maximizing the relevance of your educational experience to your particular interests and career goals. By supplementing your required core courses with five elective courses in a specific topic area, you can customize your online MS in psychology with an emphasis on chemical dependency and compulsive disorders, industrial and organization psychology, pastoral counseling, sports psychology, and general psychology.

The online MS in Psychology degree program is an excellent option for a wide variety of students. People who are already working in mental health can utilize the MS to both enhance their skill sets and to position themselves for career advancement. The MS may also be the preferable degree program for people who want to transition into CalSouthern’s doctoral program and then perhaps pursue licensure as a licensed psychologist — it provides the most direct route to CalSouthern’s doctoral degree: the PsyD.

Students in CalSouthern’s accredited online MS in psychology program will benefit from a dedicated and accessible community of faculty, administration (even the deans readily make themselves available to you should you require their guidance), staff, and fellow students who are all eager to support you in your educational journey. Your faculty, as well as your personal academic advisor, are highly educated, experienced mental health professionals who are happy to share their expertise.

It won’t take long for you to see what makes CalSouthern—and its School of Behavioral Sciences—different. It may be an accredited online degree program—with the convenience and flexibility that allow adult, working students to study at their own pace and on their own time—but the dedication to service, integrity, and academic excellence combine to make CalSouthern a very humanistic, supportive environment.


The program learning outcomes of the Master of Science in Psychology degree program are:


Articulate increasingly complex psychological ideas through interaction with others, with the capacity to organize and develop concepts with professional-level scientific support.

Critical Thinking

Analyze evidence from the science of psychological theory and research, and interpret this information employing graduate-level applications of validity, reliability, and logical argumentation.

Cultural and Social Understanding

Apply and differentiate the critical impact that cultural and social institutions have on personal ethical systems, values, and worldview assumptions, including proficiencies in theories and issues in diversity: multiethnic, multicultural, gender, ageism, sexual orientation, and disability.

Information Literacy

Appraise and integrate information from the science of psychology, along with its sources, critically and in professional form.

Personal Development

Synthesize increasingly complex principles and scientific findings from within psychology, and apply them to personal experiences so that the information is meaningful and organically applied to humanistic scientific endeavors.

Quantitative Reasoning

Evaluate statistically based reasoning processes and apply to increasingly complex psychological research findings and emergent questions.

Scientific Reasoning

Formulate a system of inquiry that is dependent on empirical evidence, as well as demonstrate the ability to reason by advanced principles of deduction, induction, and analogy in psychology.

Ethical, Legal, and Professional Issues

Analyze and apply ethical behavior as it relates to professional standards of practice in psychological research.

Additional Content Specific Competencies

Individual Differences

Compare theories in assessing individual from multiple perspectives and discriminate between psychological issues that may arise within various non-clinical settings.


Below, please find the psychology degree courses in CalSouthern’s Master of Science in Psychology program. By taking five three-credit psychology degree courses in one of five different subject areas, you can earn your MS with an emphasis on advanced addiction studies, sports psychology, organizational psychology, pastoral counseling, or general psychology.

Required Core Courses
  • PSY 86502A Counseling Theories and Strategies - 3 Credits
  • PSY 86801 Therapeutic Boundaries - 3 Credits
  • PSY 82309 Advanced Ethical and Professional Issues in Addiction Counseling - 3 Credits
  • PSY 86506A Psychopathology - 3 Credits
  • PSY 86512A Group Counseling - 3 Credits
  • PSY 87515 Social Psychology - 3 Credits
Elective Courses
Applied Course
  • PSY 88002 Applied Concepts - 6 Credits
  • PSY 82508 Advanced Supervised Practicum & Fieldwork in Addiction Studies (Advanced Addiction Studies Concentration) - 6 Credits
  • PSY 86899 Master's Thesis - 6 Credits

Getting Started

Getting started on your Master of Science in Psychology is a quick and simple process. There are no entrance examinations and courses start monthly throughout the year; you can begin your program as soon as your schedule permits. Just complete these five steps:

  • Complete your enrollment application
  • Submit your official transcripts of your undergraduate coursework
  • Write and submit a personal statement
  • Pay your $75 application fee
  • Upon acceptance, sign your enrollment agreement

Once the signed enrollment agreement is received, you’ll be contacted by your academic support team including your academic advisor and student success advisor. They will confirm the start date for your first course and walk you through a quick, but thorough orientation process that will give you all the information you need to get started. And they will be there for you every step of the way to ensure that you successfully complete your degree program.

Last updated Nov 2020

About the School

California Southern University is a regionally accredited, online university offering degrees in psychology, business, criminal justice and nursing at the associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral ... Read More

California Southern University is a regionally accredited, online university offering degrees in psychology, business, criminal justice and nursing at the associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels. Read less