What is a Master of Arts in Psychology?

Explore the mind by gaining additional research knowledge from your Master of Arts in Psychology. By completing your online master’s in psychology from the University of Arizona Global Campus (UAGC), you will learn how to integrate psychological research into real-world applications. Understanding what moves people into action and then effectively employing that information to your staff, your clients, and your colleagues will set you apart from the competition.

Accelerated 6-week courses
Transfer up to 9 approved credits
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Degree Completion Journey

When pursuing your online master’s in psychology, you will take courses that introduce you to several psychological domains, including, but not limited to, developmental, social, and biological psychology. You will also evaluate the scientific merit of psychological research and literature in your online courses, which will give you a solid foundation of psychological knowledge when going into your field of practice. When you graduate with your online UAGC Master of Arts in Psychology, you will be prepared for a career in which a broad background and specialized knowledge in psychology may be required.


Year 1

  • This course introduces students to the Master of Arts in Psychology program at the University of Arizona Global Campus. Students will navigate student success resources to support development of graduate-level communication and research skills. Students will critically examine relationships between psychological concepts, applications, and research while applying ethical principles and professional standards in discussions and assignments. Finally, students will discuss historical and contemporary issues in psychology surrounding diversity, equity, inclusivity, and belongingness.

  • This course will cover developmental and contextual experiences of humans across the lifespan. Emphasis will be placed on issues and questions that have dominated the field over time and continue to provide impetus for research. Interactions will focus on articles that describe and illustrate current theories and trends. Students will read selected research articles and self-select additional readings related to weekly topics and personal interest. These topics include theoretical trends and foundations in research, policy and ethics, health and wellness, human developmental context, and end-of-life issues.

  • This course provides a comprehensive examination of the science of social psychology as well as how it is applied to manage and aid the understanding of contemporary social issues. Topics include social quandaries encountered in the fields of mental and physical health, the workplace, the education system, and the legal system. Students will study seminal theories and research that informs the practical application of social psychology to real-life situations. Students will also apply social psychology theory and research to explain current social issues.

  • This course provides an overview of the basic concepts and principles of the major theories of personality. The importance of the interaction between environment and genetics will be stressed. Cultural influences as well as personality disorders will be considered. Students will be challenged to begin to build their own construct of personality development by synthesizing existing theories and research.

  • This course introduces students to multiple dimensions of learning and cognition, which range from the basic processes underlying learning to the contexts that promote self-regulation and metacognition. As the foundation of cognitive psychology, learning and cognition encompasses many topics including attention, memory, categorization, problem solving, epistemology, language acquisition, and recognition of diversity. During the course, students will study a broad range of content through an eclectic collection of peer-reviewed articles focusing on the different aspects of learning and cognition. This course highlights main findings, established facts, and skills in learning and cognition that are applicable to a wide range of contexts.

  • Students will explore the biological bases of human behavior, cognition, and emotion while learning how to apply biological theory and research to psychology and daily life. Students will discuss relationships between nervous system anatomy, neuronal communication, and biopsychological research methods with topics including sensation, perception, movement, emotions, learning and memory, language, drug effects, psychological disorders, and neurological diseases.  Course activities include options for students to complete standard assignments or explore specific topics of their choice. Prerequisites: PSY 600, PSY 605, PSY 610, PSY 615 and PSY 620.

  • Students will examine the activity of drugs, both therapeutic and recreational, on the body with an emphasis on the brain. Theories of the biological basis of psychiatric disorders will be explored as a basis for examining the professional standards behind therapeutic drug use. The history of drug use, research methods and ethical concerns will be examined. Prerequisite: PSY 625.

  • This course presents the concepts of quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods research designs and methods, as well as issues involved in the ethical conduct of research. Students will be challenged to select appropriate research designs and methodologies for various research questions. The course will culminate in a detailed research proposal on topics chosen by the students.


Year 2

  • The course includes an overview of individual and group approaches to testing in psychology. Students will review psychological assessments utilized to evaluate personality, intelligence, achievement, and career-related interests and skills in a variety of work settings. The course will provide students with opportunities to analyze psychometric methodologies typically employed in the development and validation of psychological and educational tests. Students will apply knowledge of psychological measurement principles to testing and assessment data with an emphasis on ethical and professional interpretation. Issues and challenges related to testing and assessment with diverse populations will be integrated into the course. Prerequisite: PSY 635.

  • This course introduces students to the scientific study of psychological symptoms and disorders. Students will draw from theoretical and historical perspectives to build their understanding of diagnostic methods and evidence-based treatment methods for psychological disorders. Additionally, students will examine sociocultural factors that impact presentation, maintenance, and treatment of psychopathological symptoms and the use of diagnostic manuals in applying diagnostic criteria.

  • Students will examine models of health, stress, and wellbeing and evaluate their applications in diverse community and occupational settings, with attention to disparities and inequities that serve as barriers to health and wellbeing. Students will explore evidence-based behavioral change and health communication strategies to promote equitable access and information-sharing in their communities and workplaces. Prerequisite: PSY 645.

  • The capstone course is the culminating educational experience for the Master of Arts in Psychology. In this course, students will integrate and apply what they have learned throughout the program to meet competencies as outlined in the program learning outcomes. Students will be exposed to a holistic view of psychology as a discipline, and they will be encouraged to think critically about the broader themes that link various subfields of psychology. Students will reflect on the experience of the program as a whole and will consider how the program’s themes apply to a variety of civic and professional settings. The capstone affords students a final opportunity to practice and demonstrate the skills they will need to succeed after graduation.

Program Requirements

To be awarded the Master of Arts in Psychology degree, all students must complete 36 credit hours with a 3.0 minimum grade point average in all coursework attempted at UAGC.

Special Terms and Conditions

This program does not lead to certification or licensure. The UAGC Master of Arts in Psychology is not a licensure program and does not prepare an individual to become a licensed psychology professional. UAGC does not guarantee that any professional organization will accept a graduate’s application to sit for any exam for the purpose of professional certification or licensure. Students seeking licensure or certification in the field of psychology should carefully research the requirements prior to enrollment. Requirements vary by state. Further, a criminal record may prevent an applicant from obtaining licensure, certification, or employment in this field of study.

California Students: This program does not lead to licensure. According to the California Board of Psychology, candidates for licensure must have a doctorate degree in clinical or counseling psychology. The Board of Behavioral Sciences which governs licensure for LMFT, LPC, LPCC, and LCSW requires candidates to meet didactic requirements and rigorous practicum/supervised professional hours that range between 500 to 2,000 hours depending on the type of license. Coursework in the MAPSY may partially meet didactic requirements for CA licensure but that evaluation is done by the respective boards, and the purpose of the program is not designed to prepare students for licensure of any type. A criminal history background check by fingerprint via a Live Scan service must be passed that may include an investigation into felony and misdemeanor convictions. For additional details regarding the CA requirements for obtaining licensure, please visit: http://www.psychology.ca.gov/licensees/.

Washington Students: This program may not necessarily qualify a student for licensure in Washington State. All Washington students should contact the Health Professions Quality Assurance Division of the Washington Department of Health at 360.236.4700 to inquire about the criteria for licensure.

Certain degree programs may not be available in all states.

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Careers in Psychology

Your degree in psychology can work in a variety of fields, including mental health, education, business, health care, and social and human services. Furthermore, if you have also acquired several years’ experience in business and industry, you can obtain jobs in consulting and marketing research.

If you earn an MA in Psychology, some of the industries and careers you may choose to pursue include:

  • Social and Community Service Managers
  • Adoption Services Manager
  • Community Services Director
  • Graduate Research Assistant
  • Psychology Teacher, Post-secondary
  • Human Services
  • Education
  • Business
  • Research
  • Community Colleges
Psychologist talking to client Psychologist talking to client

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