May 21, 2022  
2019-2020 Academic Catalog 
2019-2020 Academic Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Psychology M.A.

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View information for the Department of Psychology .

The Master of Arts program in Psychology has two concentrations–Master of Arts in Psychology: General and Master of Arts in Psychology: Behavior Analysis. The two concentrations are described below.

Minimum Prerequisites for Admission

  1. A Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology and completion of the prerequisites for the concentration to which you are applying (see below), or completion of a course in Introductory Psychology along with completion of a minimum of 16 upper-division semester units in psychology, that include the prerequisites for the concentration to which you are applying. All courses must be passed with a grade of B or better and contain content acceptable to the Psychology Graduate Committee.
  2. A minimum 3.0 overall grade point average.
  3. Satisfactory performance on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) general test, which includes the GRE Analytical Writing Section.
  4. Three letters of recommendation.
  5. Approval by the Psychology Department.

Minimum Requirements for Continuation

  1. Maintenance of a 3.0 grade point average in all courses attempted.
  2. Satisfactory progress toward the degree, which includes successful completion of coursework and thesis.
  3. A classified graduate student in Psychology will be dropped from classified standing upon receiving more than three units of graduate study graded less than B-. However, any graduate student may retake a course graded less than B- for a higher grade, and a classified student must remove such grade deficits (in excess of three units) in the next semester or petition the Graduate Committee for a time extension if it is impossible to make up the deficit. In no case will more than three units of graduate study graded less than B- be counted towards a Master’s degree.
  4. Other requirements may be stated in University and Departmental Guidelines for Academic Probation and Termination. The student is responsible for obtaining current copies of these regulations and complying with the criteria listed.

Master of Arts in Psychology: General


The Master of Arts in Psychology: General concentration is designed to prepare students for advanced graduate work in an area of Psychology and to provide a research oriented program. Students work closely with faculty within a particular area of Psychology to develop graduate level competency in the principles and research methods of that area. Be advised that this degree program does not lead to licensure or certification.

Unique features

The General concentration allows students to complete individualized programs in a variety of areas, such as learning, human development, social psychology, etc. Although some students choose to sample courses across psychological topics and domains, most choose a program focused on one area of psychology. With advisement, students complete a set of courses and research experiences that prepare them for advanced work related to that area.

In this concentration students have the unique opportunity to partner with faculty in new and ongoing research programs. Because of the apprenticeship nature of the concentration, students are expected to have selected a faculty mentor prior to making application to the degree program.


(30 units)

1. Complete the Master of Arts program, as outlined below:

b. Select the remaining 22 units from the available 4000- and 5000-level catalog courses (including PSYC 5940 Fieldwork in Psychology).

These courses are to be selected with prior approval of the student’s thesis chair. Note that the therapy oriented and practicum classes (PSYC 5780, 5790, 5910, and 5930) are not open to Master of Arts in Psychology: General students.

c. At least 70% of all M.A. coursework must be at the 5000 level.

There are also restrictions as to the amount of coursework that can be graded “Credit/No-Credit.”

Note: No more than 9 units of graduate credit can be transferred from work taken while in unclassified status. The 9-unit limit may also apply to any graduate work transferred from other institutions. Once students complete all other coursework, they must be continually enrolled in at least one thesis unit (either PSYC 5990 or PSYC 7005).

Master of Arts in Psychology: Behavior Analysis

Prerequisites (in addition to Minimum Prerequisites for Admission)

•One upper-division course in Experimental Psychology (PSYC 3000 or equivalent)

•One upper-division introductory course on Learning Theory (PSYC 3700 or 4720)


The Master of Arts in Psychology: Behavior Analysis concentration is designed to provide students with knowledge and experience in applying the science of Behavior Analysis to a variety of areas in society. In addition students will be prepared to become Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBA).


(40 units)

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