What You Should Know About This Degree
While a master’s degree in forensic psychology will give you valuable skills necessary for a career as a forensic psychologist, it is not considered a terminal degree in the field. In order to obtain a state-issued psychology license and become eligible for most jobs, you will need to earn either a Doctor of Psychology (PsyD) or Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in psychology. At this stage, it’s important to consider how this additional commitment of time and money will fit into your lifestyle, budget, and career.
You should also think about whether you will pursue a PhD or PsyD, and research the requirements for any programs you may want to attend. This will help ensure that you select a master’s program that meets the requirements for your doctoral program of interest. Otherwise, you may have to take prerequisite coursework before enrolling in the doctoral program of your choice.
While most of the programs on our list are offered online, look carefully at all of their curricula, as some do have in-person requirements for residencies, capstone projects, or internships. If you are selecting an online program that requires occasional in-person attendance, make sure that this fits into your schedule and budget.
Here are some questions to ask when researching Masters Forensic Psychology programs:
- Am I eligible for this program? For some programs, you must have an undergraduate degree or undergraduate coursework in psychology, criminal justice, or a related field in order to qualify for admission. Check the admissions requirements for programs before applying to make sure you have the right academic background.
- Does this school have an accelerated master’s-to-doctorate track? Because a doctorate degree is generally required for psychologists, some schools allow students to apply their master’s-level coursework towards their doctorate program. If you are planning to obtain your doctorate from the same school as your master’s, find out if they offer this option, as it can save you time and money in the future.
Throughout your research process, you should also keep track of schools’ admissions procedures and deadlines, to ensure that your application process is smooth and stress-free. You should also consider your options for financing your graduate education. This can include loans, scholarships, assistantships, and tuition benefits from your employer.