Do you dream of pursuing a Masters in Psychology in the USA? But, is it worth going to the USA for a Masters in Psychology? And does it guarantee a job there? These questions swirl around in the mind of every student looking to pursue a master’s degree in the USA.

The USA is among the top choices for students who wish to go for Masters abroad; especially for the STEM ( Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) courses.

Masters of Psychology is one of these courses, as it provides you with the benefit of staying in the country and pursuing a good job. Let’s take a look at the important details regarding the Masters in psychology in the USA here.

Also Read: IELTS Writing Task 2 Topics 2021 with Answers: Common Topics for Your IELTS Preparation

Facts about Masters in Psychology in the USA

  • It is a graduate degree that can either be earned as a terminal master degree or as part of a doctoral program.
  • About 200 universities in the USA offer Masters in Psychology as one of their best courses.
  • Masters in psychology usually takes around 1-2 years.
  • The cost is usually between 25,000 USD and  60,000 USD. Overall it costs around 18 to 43 Lakhs INR for Indian students.
  • Currently, the salary of Psychology graduates in the USA has a range of 25,000 USD to 100,000 USD, which is between INR18 to 73 LPA. This will vary with respect to experience and years spent in the field. The salary range is relatively higher in many other countries where psychology is still not an economic field.
  • The American Psychological Association states that there are 50 subdivisions of psychology that goes from neuropsychologists to industrial-organisational psychologists. This provides a wide range of options for people practising in the field of psychology.
  • With the world changing rapidly every single day, we have a growing need for mental health awareness and treatment, and psychology proves to be an effective method.

Why Study Psychology in the USA?

Now that you have known about Masters in Psychology from the USA, you must also know why you should study Psychology in the USA. Here are some reasons to make you confident in your decision of choosing the USA for psychology:

  • Universities in the USA provide students with a wide range of choices among all the 50 subdivisions of Psychology. This opens multiple career opportunities for the graduates. The common employment centres in the USA are elementary schools, colleges, or universities and family services. Among these, elementary and secondary schools have been hiring the most psychology graduates, with over 355,241 employees in 2018.
  • According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the employment share of psychologists is 14% from 2018-28.
  • There were a total of 181,700 psychologists in the year 2018, and this number is expected to be around 207,800 by the year 2028.
  • The annual salary pay of psychologists was 80,000 USD in the year 2018, as mentioned by the  BLS.
  • Because of the various subdivisions of Psychology, students have ample choices between jobs and other career opportunities.

What are the Requirements for Universities in the USA?

A relevant bachelor’s degree in the field of Psychology is of the major requirements for Masters in US universities. They may also ask for some work experience as an added advantage for branches like counselling. Let’s find out the eligibility and documents required for US universities.

Eligibility

The required eligibility may vary from university to university, however, the following are the standard required eligibilities:

  • A bachelor’s degree in psychology, or in any related field.
  • Your academic results of a bachelor’s degree are required. They ask for a minimum GPA of 3.0-3.5, out of the total 4.0 GPA.
  • Applicants practising in general psychology, experimental psychology with a laboratory course, and statistics are usually preferred for masters in psychology.
  • Every top university requires you to sit for a GRE ( Graduate Record Examinations), it is a prerequisite for every Masters course in the USA. It is a tougher version of ACT and SAT, the exams given for undergraduate programs in the US. Although there is no minimum requirement in GRE, however, a scorecard of 360 and above is usually considered for admissions.

Documents Required

The US universities ask for some specific documents to get entry into their programmes.

  • A completely filled application form that you can get from the official website of your preferred universities
  • Your academic qualification proofs
  • GRE scorecard
  • Letter of Recommendation
  • Personal Statement
  • CV or Resume
  • Work Experience ( if any)
  • Proof of English Language Proficiency through TOEFL or IELTS.
  • Proof of finances to at least cover one-year expenses in the USA
  • A valid passport
  • Mandatory health insurance in the USA

What are the Top Universities for Psychology in the USA?

The USA has 300 universities with the QS World Rankings, with 12 of them proven best for Masters in psychology. To get into these universities, you are required to get high points in your GRE, as well as in your English proficiency tests, whether it be TOEFL or IELTS.

IELTS score is a widely accepted proof of English proficiency in American universities for entry levels. The range of IELTS bands for the USA is between 7.5 to 6 for the top universities. Given below is the list of top universities for MS in Psychology with their generally asked IELTS scores.

Top Universities

QS Ranking

2020

University Academic Requirements IELTS Score
39 New York University (NYU) Relevant bachelors with high grades 7
18 Columbia University UG with high scores 7.5
10 University of Chicago Excellent academic records 7
31 Northwestern University UG with 3.2 GPA (83-86%)
65 The University of Texas at Austin Relevant degree in UG 6.5
75 University of Illinois Urbana Champaign Relevant degree in UG 6.5
144 Michigan State University GPA- 3.2
101 Ohio State University GPA- 3.8 7
156 University of Minnesota Twin Cities GPA- 3.0 6.5

To know about IELTS preparation for US universities, visit IELTS Ninja.


What are the Best Psychology Programs in the US?

According to a report by the American Psychological Association, there were 24,113 admission applications for masters in psychology in the USA, and only 49.3% of these were accepted, i.e., 11,897 applications. The US provides a Masters in Psychology in the USA in different specialisations, the most preferred programs being:

  • Counselling Psychology
  • Industrial-Organisational Psychology
  • Child Development
  • Criminal Psychology
  • Forensic Psychology
  • Experimental Psychology
  • Neuropsychology

According to the 2019 report, the following table will give you a view which specialisation received and accepted the most applications.

Course Application Received Application Accepted
Clinical Psychology 2551 1021
Counselling Psychology 6105 3468
Experimental Psychology 3418 1458
Industrial or Organisational Psychology 3797 1471
School Psychology 1988 1121

Apparently, we can find that Counselling Psychology is at the top of all the specialisations of psychology.

Conclusion

According to IDP ( International Development Program), the USA is considered the best country for masters in psychology. In order to fulfil the dream of study in the USA, one should remain aware of its eligibility criteria, cost and living expenses. Also, IELTS remains one of the major requirements for the US. To know more about IELTS preparation for the USA, follow IELTS Ninja. IELTS Ninja offers IELTS preparation courses that focus on all four spheres (reading, speaking, listening, writing) of the IELTS exam. Visit IELTS Ninja, to know more about IELTS preparation for different countries.

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About the Author

Shilpa

Shilpa is a professional web content writer and is in deep love with travelling. She completed her mass communication degree and is now dedicatedly playing with words to guide her readers to get the best for themselves. Developing educational content for UPSC, IELTS aspirants from breakthrough research work is her forte. Strongly driven by her zodiac sign Sagittarius, Shilpa loves to live her life on her own notes and completely agrees with the idea of ‘live and let live. Apart from writing and travelling, most of the time she can be seen in the avatar of 'hooman' mom to her pets and street dogs or else you can also catch her wearing the toque blanche and creating magic in the kitchen on weekends.

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