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Students entering an online master’s in educational psychology program can pursue multiple career paths, such as a school or career counselor, earning a median annual salary of $60,140 annually, or a social worker, earning a median salary of $55,350 annually.

Both public and private institutions offer online master’s degrees in educational psychology. The average tuition for graduate degrees is $12,596 at public schools and $28,017 at private schools.

How to Choose an Online Master’s in Educational Psychology Program

Choose your area of study

Choosing an area of study means choosing between a master of science (MS) and a master of arts (MA) degree. MA degrees focus more on theories and applying evidence-based approaches in a clinical setting. In contrast, MS degrees focus on research methodology, data analysis, and designing experiments. Also, some programs allow you to choose a concentration and focus your studies on a specific specialty area, such as school psychology or adult education.

Once students establish their career goals, they can search for a master’s program to help them get where they want to go.

Research schools and programs

Students must research multiple online master’s programs and schools to compare what the different options offer. This research can help students determine the best online master’s in educational psychology program for their needs and goals.

You should only consider institutions that have been approved by a DOE-recognized regional accrediting organization, such as the New England Commission of Higher Education or Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities. These organizations evaluate schools to ensure they provide students with a high-quality education. Those who attend a school that isn’t regionally accredited may be unable to access financial aid or transfer credits to another institution if needed.

If you’re interested in a counseling career, you should look for a program that has also been approved by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). This programmatic accrediting organization has particularly high standards for counseling education.

Once you have a list of accredited programs, other factors to investigate include the following:

  • Faculty expertise in the industry
  • Faculty accessibility
  • Base tuition costs and extra fees
  • Student learning experiences
  • Student support services
  • Core curriculum and electives
  • Graduation requirements

To learn more about any schools that you’re interested in, you can visit the school’s website, contact an admissions counselor, follow the school on social media, or attend an in-person or virtual open house.

Prepare for Tests and Applications

Application requirements vary by school and program. Some of the best master’s in educational psychology programs require passing the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). Every school has application deadlines, so it is vital to complete the GRE in time to submit it with any other materials that are needed, which often include:

  • Application
  • Application fees
  • Transcripts
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Personal statement
  • Resume

The testing and application process can sometimes feel overwhelming unless you stay organized. Develop a digital file system, make copies of all documents, and create a spreadsheet for tracking and meeting deadlines.

Before submitting an application, always contact an admissions counselor to ensure you have the most accurate information regarding requirements and deadlines.

Select your program

Before selecting their school and program, students should verify everything, including total program costs, online classes, acceptance of transfer credits, accreditation, and graduation rates and placements.

Students entering an online master’s program may not think the university’s location is a factor. However, some schools may charge out-of-state tuition and fees for students living in different states.

The key to making a good decision is gathering accurate information. The more you know about a program, the easier it will be to select one.

Finally, review your needs and goals again. Do you plan to attend school full-time or part-time? Do you want your program to be as online as possible, or are you fine with a hybrid program that has a fair amount of in-person requirements? Some programs offer asynchronous courses, which can be completed at your own pace, while others only offer synchronous courses, which involve remotely attending lectures and completing assignments at the same time as other students — which of these two online learning formats do you prefer? Your school should accommodate your scheduling needs and learning preferences.

Determine how you will pay for your degree

Students who plan to continue working full-time while attending an online master’s in educational psychology program in the evenings and weekends may want to check with their employer about tuition assistance benefits. Tuition reimbursement is an exchange between a student and an employer. Typically, the employer agrees to pay part of your master’s degree program in exchange for the student continuing to work for the company after graduation.

Students also benefit from contacting the financial aid office of a university. A financial aid officer can assist with the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application process and share available scholarships, grants, fellowships, work-study opportunities, and assistantships for which students can apply.

Best 50 Accredited Online Master’s in Educational Psychology Programs

Best Online Master's in Educational Psychology Degree Programs

University of Georgia

University of North Texas

Texas A&M Education & Human Development

University of Missouri

Ball State University

University of South Carolina

University of Alabama

Florida State University

University of Southern Maine

University of Northern Colorado

Eastern Michigan University

National University

University of Memphis

University of Nevada at Las Vegas

The College of Saint Rose

Texas A&M University at Central Texas

Fort Hays State University

Pennsylvania Western University

Touro University Worldwide

University of Tennessee, Knoxville

University at Buffalo

Miami University

Rutgers Graduate School of Education

Oklahoma State University

University of Missouri at St. Louis

Regent University

Kent State University

Discover More Options

How We Rank Schools

All of the programs on our list can be completed remotely with fully online courses. Some programs also offer their coursework on campus or give students the option of completing classes in person or online.

To ensure a high standard of quality, we only included institutions with regional accreditation. Many of the degrees on this list also have programmatic accreditation through accrediting bodies like the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP).

We reviewed these programs for flexibility, course offerings, cost, faculty, and reputation. Using this information, we calculated the Intelligent Score of each program on a scale from 0 to 100. For a more extensive explanation, check out Our Ranking Methodology.

What Can You Expect from an Online Master’s in Educational Psychology Program?

Online programs for a master’s degree in educational psychology take about two years to complete unless a student attends part-time. Most programs require at least 30 credit hours of core and elective curriculum, a practicum in an educational or counseling setting, research projects, and final exams.

Instruction focuses on human development and learning, research foundations and applications, assessment and diagnosis, counseling theories and techniques, mental health disorders, and neuropsychology.

A graduate working in the school system will need to pass criminal background checks as well as professional skills assessments (e.g., the Praxis Core tests) to become qualified for teaching roles.

Graduates working as mental health counselors or social workers may need to pass their state’s licensing exams before applying for state licensure.

Potential courses you’ll take in an online master’s in educational psychology degree program

  • Behavior Assessment. Students will learn to evaluate a student or client’s behaviors to determine a diagnosis, treatment plan, or learning improvement plan. They learn to identify why people behave the way they do and connect them with appropriate resources.
  • Learning and Development. Students learn the developmental stages from childhood to adulthood. They also learn about cognitive, social, behavioral, and emotional changes throughout a lifetime, how these changes affect learning abilities, and how culture, economics, lifestyle, and environment influence learning.
  • Research and Data Analysis. Students learn the various ways in which statistics apply to education and psychology. The course covers making decisions based on statistical evidence and how to use software to analyze data.
  • Educational Technology. Students will learn the history and evolution of technology and how to integrate it into educational and counseling settings.
  • DSM5. Students will learn about the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders, fifth edition (DSM5), created by the American Psychological Association to assist professionals in diagnosing mental health disorders.

What Can You Do With an Online Master’s in Educational Psychology?

Career outlook

Educational psychology is a specialized field that focuses on understanding how students learn and develop. It plays a crucial role in shaping educational practices, curriculum design, and support systems for students. Earning an online master’s degree in educational psychology equips individuals with the knowledge and skills to positively impact educational environments and student outcomes.

The career outlook for individuals with a master’s degree in educational psychology is promising, driven by the increasing emphasis on improving educational experiences and student success. Indeed, a master’s in educational psychology offers diverse career paths in education, research, social work, and other fields.

Here are some common career options:

  • School or career counselor — School counselors help students develop academic and social skills, while career counselors assist students with choosing an occupation and taking the steps needed to reach their career goals.
    • Median annual salary: $60,140
    • Projected employment growth (through 2032): 5%
    • New job openings projected: 26,600 annually
  • Psychologist — Research cognitive, emotional, and social processes as well as how people interact with each other and their environments.
    • Median annual salary: $85,330
    • Projected employment growth (through 2032): 6%
    • New job openings projected: 12,800 annually
  • Social worker — Help individuals and families deal with problems in their everyday lives, such as health, behavioral, and financial issues.
    • Median annual salary: $55,350
    • Projected employment growth (through 2032): 7%
    • New job openings projected: 63,800 annually

Online Master’s Degree in Educational Psychology Frequently Asked Questions

How do I apply to an online master's in educational psychology degree program?

University admissions counselors can give students the most accurate information regarding application materials and deadlines. It’s crucial to contact the admissions department early in the application process. Don’t hesitate to ask questions like the following:

  • Do you require the GRE for the online master’s program?
  • Do you have open enrollment or specific deadlines each semester?
  • Do you prefer a written or digital personal statement?
  • Can I submit everything online, or do you need original documents?
  • What are the payment deadlines? Can you waive the application fee?

How much does an online master's in educational psychology degree cost?

Many variables influence the cost of an online master’s in educational psychology program. Average tuition rates vary, with private schools typically charging much more than public schools.

Some universities add extra fees to the base tuition, such as fees for the following:

  • Textbooks
  • Digital media
  • Laboratory
  • Technology
  • Academic records
  • Security
  • Activity
  • Maintenance
  • Advising
  • Student services
  • Library
  • Thesis
  • Graduation

How long does it take to earn an online master's in educational psychology degree?

The time it takes to complete an online master’s degree may differ for every student. With online study, you have flexibility on your side. Online students can complete coursework at their own pace. On-campus courses require students to show up in person at a set schedule.

Those with more time may be able to complete a course faster. Another factor affecting completion time is how many courses a student can enroll in. Some online students may want to take classes only part-time, while others may wish to enroll in more than the full-time allotment. The more courses you take per semester, the faster you’ll earn your degree. And in addition to the traditional fall and spring semesters, you may be able to take classes over the summer and winter to speed up the process as well.

Is an online master's in educational psychology worth it?

Earning an online master’s degree in educational psychology can be highly valuable for individuals seeking careers in education and psychology. Individuals with a master’s degree are likely to find the door open to specialist and leadership positions in areas like school counseling, curriculum development, or education research. Also, graduates with a master’s degree often command higher salaries and increased earning potential compared to those with only a bachelor’s degree.

Online programs offer the flexibility to balance your education with work and personal commitments, making it accessible for working professionals and those with busy schedules. These programs attract a diverse group of students from around the world, providing networking opportunities and exposure to different educational practices and perspectives.