Psychology Degree Programs

The degrees and certifications offered by the Professional School of Psychology provide students destined for careers in clinical psychology, organizational psychology and organizational coaching with distinctive programs that blend theory and practice. The programs effectively prepare human service professionals for the emerging challenges of twenty-first century mental health and leadership, provide enrolled students with a unique opportunity at the forefront of the rapidly changing field of psychology, and those seeking certification with the exciting opportunity to become certified organizational coaches.

Tom Hill [Second from Right]. Doctoral Graduation 2014

Tom Hill [Second from Our Right]. Doctoral Graduation 2014

Description of our master degree programs in both clinical psychology and organizational psychology are provided on this website, as are our doctoral degree programs in clinical psychology, Clinical psychology with a health emphasis and organizational psychology. In addition, we have provided information about our distinctive International Graduate Degree Programs and about our Advanced Organizational Coach Training Program.

Master’s or Doctoral Degree?

Prospective students who have been awarded a bachelor’s degree, but have neither a master’s degree nor doctoral degree often inquire about the advantages associated with each of these graduate degrees if they are to enter the psychology profession. Typically, a person with a Masters Degree in Psychology who wishes to work in the clinical psychology area will be able to obtain a Master’s Level license (the Marriage Family Therapy license in California), provided they have completed all required courses and obtained an appopriate number of intership hours. With this license, one can practice psychotherapy and some related activities. With a Master’s Degree in Organizational Psychology, one can obtain work in many settings, providing both organizational consultation and training.

There are restrictions, however, in the type of work one can do with a master’s degree in either clinical or organizational psychology. Many types of clinical assessments can only be administered and interpreted by someone with a doctorate and many organizations look for someone with a doctorate if they are hiring or contracting. In many states (including California), one can not call themselves a “psychologist” unless they have a doctorate and have passed the psychology licensing exam.

Fortunately, PSP offers a unique degree structure, whereby one can enter its Master’s Degree Program in either Clinical or Organizational Psychology, and decide at a later point whether or not to obtain a doctorate. Most other graduate schools require that one obtain a master’s degree from their institution as part of their doctoral program — hence a choice must be made at the very start of one’s graduate career about whether or not to obtain a Doctorate in Psychology. At PSP we believe that an informed choice about obtaining the doctorate often occurs after one has completed many courses in one of our master’s degree programs.

Ph.D. or Psy.D.?

Prospective students also often inquire about the distinction between the Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy) and the Psy.D. (Doctor of Psychology). A Ph.D. program typically leads one to a lab as a researcher or teacher, whereas the Psy.D. typically leads one to become a practitioner, albeit with research competency and scholarly interests. The Doctor of Psychology degree first began to appear in the 1970’s. At PSP, we conceptualize the Psy.D. as a practitioner-professional doctoral program.