Online Colleges For Associates Degree In Psychology
Psychology is the study of individual thought and behavior. Students in this field investigate unconscious and conscious experiences, reactions, and beliefs. Psychologists explore the social, behavioral, and cognitive functioning of individuals, including their mental processes, attention span, emotions, and personality. Students should study psychology if they have an interest in the inner workings of the mind and want to understand how cognitive processes impact behavior.
According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers Salary survey, graduates with an online associate degree in psychology are earning higher starting salaries each year. The average starting salary for graduates earning psychology degrees in 2015 was $35,108, an increase from the previous year’s average starting salary of $33,210.
What Else Can I Expect from an Online Associate in Psychology Program?
Most online psychology associate degrees will require students to earn 60-65 credits, which takes about two years. Learners can expect to take courses in cognitive psychology, cognitive development, self and identity, and child psychology. Common concentrations include developmental psychology and social psychology. Students should also expect to take a range of general education courses.
WHAT ARE THE BEST ONLINE ASSOCIATE IN PSYCHOLOGY PROGRAMS?
RANKING SCORE 76.09
Los Altos Hills, CA
Foothill College offers 74 associate degrees, including an associate in arts in psychology, which is available online through the Canvas platform. The 90-credit degree includes 15 credits of core courses and 20 credits of support courses. Most support courses are four or five credits each, with options such as psychology of sports, psychological aspects of disability, and sociology of gender. Students can meet with academic, career, or personal counselors through live video chat. Foothill also offers reading and writing support to online students at a weekly scheduled time and through individual online appointments.
Located in Los Altos Hills, California, the online associate degree in psychology offers open enrollment. Students must earn a minimum GPA of 2.0 in each core and support course. If necessary, students must complete elective courses to reach the 90-credit requirement.
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RANKING SCORE 74.84
Liberty’s associate of arts in psychology is offered through the School of Behavioral Sciences. The program is completely online and teaches skills in developmental psychology, psychology of personality, and counseling through a Biblical perspective. Students can specialize in Christian counseling, which prepares graduates to work in lay ministry Christian counseling. Learners can transfer up to 45 credits towards the 60-credit degree requirement. At least 24 credits must be completed in major psychology courses. The Christian counseling specialization requires three courses, which can be taken as major elective courses.
In addition to completing the online application, prospective online associate degree in psychology students must confirm that they have earned a high school diploma and submit all college transcripts. For those who wish to continue their studies, Liberty also offers a bachelor’s in psychology. Graduates are prepared for careers in case management, counseling, and mental health services.
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RANKING SCORE 69.84
Odessa College, located in Odessa, Texas, offers more than 45 associate degrees through on-campus, satellite, and online offerings. The associate of arts in psychology is a 60-credit program that can be completed with two years of full-time study. The curriculum includes a 42-credit core requirement, and students can start taking psychology courses during their first term.
Applicants to the psychology associate degree should submit high school and college transcripts. There is no application deadline. Students should be aware that there are different tuition rates depending on how many semester hours they take and their district and state of residency. Financial aid and scholarships are available, including Odessa’s first course is free discount, which waives the standard tuition and fees of the first three credit hours taken at the college. Online programs are taught through the Blackboard platform.
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Holmes Community College
RANKING SCORE 64.22
The associate of arts in psychology is a 62-credit degree that is part of the Social and Behavioral Science Department. Students choose from a number of departmental electives, including child psychology, social problems, and marriage and family. The associate degree in psychology can be completed in two years.
HCC, part of the Mississippi Virtual Community College (MSVCC), offers online courses through the Canvas platform. By being a part of MSVCC, Holmes’ students are able to take courses through other participating colleges. Online students have access to the same student and academic support services provided to students at the campus in Goodman, Mississippi. Students can live chat with the helpdesk and have continuous access to Canvas support. HCC has an open admissions policy. Students must submit a high school diploma, GED, or college transcripts. Residents of Maryland are not currently eligible for the college’s online programs.
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Coastline Community College
RANKING SCORE 63.05
Fountain Valley, CA
The associate in psychology can be earned entirely online. Coastline programs allow students to choose their courses within specific curriculum groups, such as basic subjects, arts and humanities, and self-development. Courses include psychology of aging, principles of human sexuality, life span developmental psychology, and social psychology.
Coastline, located in Fountain Valley, California, offers more than 15 associate of art degrees online, as well as a number of certificates. Online tuition is the same as on-campus tuition. Public speaking, which is required by many colleges, is not offered online. Students must complete 60 credits with a minimum 2.0 GPA, and at least 12 units must be earned through Coastline. The psychology associate degree is open to anyone over the age of 18. Learners under the age of 18 must meet certain requirements.
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South Texas College
RANKING SCORE 61.64 7
Allen County Community College
RANKING SCORE 61.25 8
Southwestern Assemblies of God University
RANKING SCORE 60.47 9
San Joaquin Delta College
RANKING SCORE 60.47 10
Palo Alto College
RANKING SCORE 59.14 11
Tyler Junior College
RANKING SCORE 57.34 12
Florida Institute of Technology-Online
RANKING SCORE 55.78 13
Truckee Meadows Community College
RANKING SCORE 55.70 14
Colorado Christian University
RANKING SCORE 55.00 15
RANKING SCORE 54.30 16
Sinclair Community College
RANKING SCORE 54.30 17
Bunker Hill Community College
RANKING SCORE 51.95 18
Hobe Sound Bible College
RANKING SCORE 51.48 19
American River College
RANKING SCORE 51.41 20
Alvin Community College
RANKING SCORE 50.70 21
Georgia Military College
RANKING SCORE 49.30 22
Lansing Community College
RANKING SCORE 48.52 23
RANKING SCORE 47.50 24
College of Southern Nevada
RANKING SCORE 42.34 25
Eastern Oklahoma State College
RANKING SCORE 41.25
What Can I Do With an Associate Degree in Psychology?
The basic skills learned through an online associate degree in psychology, such as critical thinking, qualitative and quantitative research methods, and psychological theory can be applied in a variety of other fields, such as law, business, social work, and politics. An associate in psychology also prepares students for advanced study. Many psychology positions require at least a bachelor’s degree, while more specialized clinical researchers and counselors need a doctorate degree and/or private practice licensing. However, there are job opportunities available for those with a psychology associate degree. Below is a list of potential occupations for psychology graduates, including some that require further study.
Psychiatric Technicians and Aides
Psychiatric technicians and aides work in psychiatric hospitals or clinical facilities and assist patients, who are often individuals with mental illnesses or developmental disabilities. They provide care, monitor the safety of patients, and assist on-call psychiatrists. Technicians require postsecondary education, and aides must have at least a high school diploma.
Median Annual Salary: $28,670
Projected Growth Rate: 5%
Substance Abuse and Behavioral Disorder Counselors
Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists
Social and Human Service Assistants
It’s common for associate degree in psychology students to eventually apply their credits toward a bachelor’s program. This allows students to transfer their knowledge of cognitive functioning and social behavior towards a more specialized career, like social work. Some professions require a higher degree. Teaching psychology at the college level or conducting clinical psychology research requires at least a master’s degree. If these are careers you’re interested in, then earning a bachelor’s degree in psychology is the next step.
Psychology: A bachelor’s degree in psychology allows students to specialize their education. Many four-year psychology programs offer centrations in child psychology and forensic psychology.
Sociology: Sociology is the examination of society and social norms. This field encompasses several subfields, including family and kinship relations, sociology of education, political sociology, deviance and crime, sociology of religion, and urban sociology.
Social Work: Social work programs combine social science research and methodology in order to develop programs that help solve social problems. Many social work programs include coursework in other departments, like sociology, psychology, economics, and law.
Employment Outlook for Associate in Psychology Graduates
ASSOCIATE IN PSYCHOLOGY SALARY
Workplace and industry can impact the annual earnings of psychologists. The following table features data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics showing the median annual wages for psychologists in various industries, including government, hospitals, mental health offices, elementary and secondary schools, and individual and family services.
INDUSTRY MEDIAN SALARY
Hospitals; state, local, and private $81,740
Offices of mental health practitioners (except physicians) $75,670
Elementary and secondary schools; state, local, and private $72,910
Individual and family services $66,220
Professional psychology organizations are dedicated to promoting engagement in psychology, clinical psychiatry, therapy and counseling, and other related fields. These organizations are a great way to meet other professionals working in the discipline. They offer the opportunity to participate in psychology conferences, receive notifications about psychology-related job openings, and discover publication opportunities in psychology journals. If you are interested in academia, many conferences hosted by professional organizations provide an outlet to present psychological research and learn about pedagogy practices. If you are interested in clinical psychology or counseling, there are organizations that specialize in cultivating resources for those applying psychological knowledge in medical clinics or private practice.
American Psychological Association
The American Psychological Association is dedicated to the cultivation of psychological knowledge to improve individual lives and benefit society. They are the leading professional psychology organization in the United States and are comprised of researchers, educators, counselors, consultants, clinicians, and students of psychology. The APA has produced the most widely used citation style in the social sciences and is an important organization for academics and clinicians.
American Board of Professional Psychology
The ABPP is an organization that provides oversight for the certification of professional psychologists. Board certification by the ABPP assures clients and patients that these specialists have completed educational and training requirements for their area of practice. They host an annual conference with workshops for continuing education in psychology
American Counseling Association
The ACA is an organization that promotes the advancement of the counseling profession. It is the world’s largest counseling organization. The ACA hosts several international awards for professionals and students.
Financing Your Online Associate in Psychology Program
Students in online associate programs are eligible for financial aid opportunities. Check with your school to verify if they offer any financial aid programs or scholarships to students on the associate degree track. Some schools offer psychology-specific, merit-based, or need-based fellowships. Even if the institution you attend provides financial aid, be sure to fill out the FAFSA. This allows you to see how much federal aid you’re eligible to receive.
AN OVERVIEW OF FINANCIAL AID
Approximately two-thirds of today’s college students rely on loans to fund their education, but there are plenty of overlooked financing options you can use to reduce your overall student debt.
UNDERSTANDING THE FAFSA
Completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is a crucial first step for any student with financial needs. Our FAFSA guide features a step-by-step rundown on the process and answers to several frequently asked questions.
FINANCIAL AID FOR ONLINE STUDENTS
Financial aid for online learning is equivalent to what you’ll find for campus-based learning, but that hasn’t always been the case. Learn about the changes that have taken place, as well as the different funding opportunities available to online students.
SCHOLARSHIPS FOR SINGLE PARENTS
Online college programs can be a flexible, affordable option for single parents who are interested in earning a degree and securing their family’s financial future. We’ve compiled a list of scholarships, grants, and other financial aid options geared toward single moms and dads.
FINANCIAL AID FOR VETERANS AND ACTIVE MILITARY
Millions of dollars in free money is available to U.S. military personnel, but much of it goes unused. Learn more about grants, scholarships, and other financial aid opportunities available to veterans, active-duty service members, and reservists.