The graduate program in psychology provides intensive master’s degree level education and training, with most students selecting an applied track which emphasizes clinical and counseling psychology. The program can also provide preparation for further graduate education or, for a limited number of students, the opportunity to pursue specific interests in experimental psychology.
The M.S. program in psychology is designed as a full-time, day-time and year-round program. Most students complete their degree requirements in two years, earning credits in advanced foundation courses (e.g., learning, social, personality, statistics), applied course work (e.g., psychometry, counseling/ therapy, psychopathology) and supervised internship experience in treatment facilities or research laboratories. The department operates a psychometric and clinical training facility, and an animal and human research laboratory. Internship opportunities are available at many local agencies including a Veterans Administration Medical Center, a regional state psychiatric hospital, the Medical College of Georgia, a regional state school and hospital for the developmentally disabled, a regional state training center for juvenile offenders, and the Dwight David Eisenhower Army Medical Center at Fort Gordon.
The Department and its faculty members maintain active relationships with the discipline’s various governing and professional bodies, such as the American Psychological Association (APA), Association of Psychological Science (APS), Council of Graduate Departments of Psychology (COGDOP), Council of Applied Master’s Programs in Psychology (CAMPP), and North American Association of Master’s in Psychology (NAMP).
Admission Procedures and Requirements
Please see the Office of Academic Admissions website for specific admissions information: http://www.gru.edu/admissions/graduate/master-psychology.php
Financial Aid and Graduate Assistantships
Students are expected to arrange their own means of paying tuition and other fees. Persons requiring financial assistance should first contact the Office of Financial Aid to inquire about funding alternatives, including the Work Study Program and low-interest loans. The department offers a limited number of graduate assistantships which reduce tuition and provide a monthly income in return for services to the university. These are assigned on a competitive basis each semester from among those students applying or recommended by the faculty. The award of an assistantship one semester is not a guarantee of future awards, and the university and department reserve the right to modify the number and conditions of awards as necessary. Graduate assistants are required to carry an academic load of at least nine semester hours.
The Master of Science in Psychology offers three tracks: The clinical/counseling track, the general experimental track and the applied experimental track. Students who seek to pursue the doctoral degree are advised to complete the general experimental track. Those individuals who wish to work in more applied settings after graduation, such as a medical research environment, technical college, or community agencies are advised to choose the applied experimental track.
General Experimental Track
The general experimental track requires the satisfactory completion of a minimum of 47 semester hours of graduate work including Professional Issues in Psychology (PSYC 6190 ) and Ethical Issues in Psychology (PSYC 6191 ), Research Methods I and II (PSYC 6121 and PSYC 6122 ), Research Methods Lab I and Research Methods Lab II (PSYC 6921 and PSYC 6922 ), six semester hours of Research Practicum (PSYC 6930 and PSYC 6931 ), and six semester hours of Thesis Research (PSYC 6990 ). Beyond this, an individualized plan of study, conforming to the requirements of the department and approved by the student’s Academic Advisor and the Director of the Graduate Program, is used to establish a program of study. Students will be given formal permission by the faculty to pursue a thesis or internship at the end of the spring of their first year of graduate studies. The faculty will review the student’s professional goals, academic performance and professional and ethical behavior to determine whether the student will be in the thesis or internship track. For this track, at least 38 of 47 total hours required must be earned in the major field; and no more than six of the 45 total hours may be earned in PSYC 6990 .
Applied Experimental Track
The applied experimental track requires the satisfactory completion of a minimum of 48 semester hours of graduate work including Professional Issues in Psychology (PSYC 6190 ) and Ethical Issues in Psychology (PSYC 6191 ), Research Methods I and II (PSYC 6121 and PSYC 6122 ), Research Methods Lab I and Research Methods Lab II (PSYC 6921 and PSYC 6922 ), six semester hours of Research Practicum (PSYC 6930 and PSYC 6931 ), Cognitive Assessment (PSYC 6126 and PSYC 6926 ), and six semester hours of Internship (PSYC 6940 , PSYC 6970 and/or PSYC 6980 ). Beyond this, an individualized plan of study, conforming to requirements of the department and approved by the student’s Academic Advisor and the Director of teh Graduate Program, is used to establish a program of study. Students will be given formal permission by the faculty to pursue a thesis or internship at the end of the spring semester of their first year of graduate studies. The faculty will review the student’s professional goals, academic performance, and professional and ethical behavior to determine whether the student will be in the thesis or internship track. For this track, at least 38 of the 48 total hours required must be earned in the major field; and no more than six of the 47 total hours may be earned in PSYC 6940 , PSYC 6970 , and/or PSYC 6980 .
The clinical/counseling track offers a thesis or a non-thesis (internship) option. The plan of study, as approved by the student’s Academic Advisor and the Director of the Graduate Program, is used to determine whether the student will be in the thesis or internship track. The non-thesis option requires the satisfactory completion of a minimum of 53 semester hours of graduate courses as detailed below. Students who pursue the non-thesis option will need to complete at least 8 hours of PSYC 6960 Clinical Internship. All clinical/counseling students are strongly encouraged to carefully study the license requirements in the states where they may be employed in the future. For this track, at least 50 of the total hours required must be earned in the major field; and no more than 8 of the 53 hours may be earned in PSYC 6940 , PSYC 6960 , PSYC 6970 , PSYC 6980 , and/or PSYC 6990 .
The M.S. program is scheduled on a year-round basis; students attend the summer term as full-time students.
Transfer of credit from another institution is contingent upon a positive recommendation by the student’s Academic Advisor and approval by the Department Chair, and may not exceed nine semester hours. The plan of study may also not include more than nine semester hours taken in academic units other than the Department of Psychology. Only that course work completed within the six calendar years prior to completion of degree requirements will apply toward graduation.
Admission to candidacy for the Master of Science degree may occur no earlier than the completion of 15 semester hours of graduate work. To be admitted to candidacy, the student must additionally be classified as a regular graduate student, earn (and maintain) the endorsement of the graduate faculty, successfully complete Professional Issues in Psychology (PSYC 6190 ) (including the general psychology component), successfully complete the Research Methods sequence (PSYC 6121 and PSYC 6122 ), and achieve a GPA of at least 3.00 in all graduate course work.
Comprehensive written and oral examinations are an integral part of the program of study and are designed to measure the student’s knowledge of and competency in the field of psychology, to include conceptual, language, interpersonal and professional competencies commensurate with an advanced degree. The admissibility of candidates to the comprehensive examination will be based on the following criteria: possession of a currently viable admission to candidacy, a GPA of 3.0, successful completion of 33 semester hours of the plan of study, and official enrollment in the university in the semester during which the candidate will be examined.
Students are expected to maintain a GPA of at least 3.00 across all courses attempted in the M.S. degree program. Dismissal is probable for the student who earns a C in two or more courses in the program of study. Dismissal may also occur when students display unethical and unprofessional behavior, fail to pass comprehensive exams, or when students in provisional status have deficient academic records (i.e., grades lower than a B while on provisional status). Students who are dismissed from the program must formally reapply to gain re-admittance.
Please Note: The Policy Manual for the M.S. Program in Psychology may be obtained from the department website, and should be consulted for a more thorough and sometimes more current description of the program and its regulations.