Earn a Master's in Child Psychology
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If you want to make a difference in the lives of children and adolescents, then consider an online Master of Science in Psychology (MS) with a concentration in Child and Adolescent Psychology with Southern New Hampshire University online. Focus on the study of research methods, cognitive psychology, social psychology, personality, learning theory, ethical practice and more. You’ll study how people grow and adapt at different stages of life, while helping them reach their full potential.
In the master's in child psychology online program, you'll develop assessment, evaluation and treatment strategies that address the unique individual, cultural and psychological needs of children and families. You will hone your research methods and learn about developmental psychology and intervention strategies in depth, specifically as they relate to children and adolescents.
Learn how to:
While the child psychology master’s program does not lead to state licensure, the degree program can prepare you for a rich and rewarding career working with children and adolescents, as well as prepare you to pursue doctoral studies.
A goalkeeper has 0.08 of a second to make a decision on how to stop a penalty kick, Dr. Michael Hendery, SNHU psychology professor, told former MLS player Calen Carr in this look at how psychologists analyze split-second information processing and decision-making.
The MS degree in child and adolescent developmental psychology degree typically attracts others who want to help young people, either immediately after graduating or upon completion of a doctoral degree.
While the master's in psychology online program does not lead to licensure or certification, it does prepare you to continue your education or to enter fields like social services, education or health care.
With a predicted 14% increase in job outlook across the entire psychology profession from 2018 to 2028, career prospects are strong.1
Some of the places in which you might work as a specialist in child or adolescent development include:
Your skills can translate to virtually any setting where children, adolescents and families need professional guidance or intervention.
While the master's in child psychology online program does not lead to any form of licensure, the program is well aligned with industry standards and expectations. The program can prepare you for a career in a wide range of settings or to continue on to doctoral studies.
If you are interested in working hands-on with patients in a clinical setting, consider enrolling in our Master's in Counseling. This program was designed to prepare students to meet the educational requirements for licensure as a clinical mental health counselor in most states.
Graduates of the child and adolescent developmental psychology program can enter the psychology career field confidently possessing the knowledge and skills in research, analysis, assessment, human behavior and professional collaboration necessary to succeed in the job of your choice.
With no set class meeting times, you can learn on your schedule and access online course materials 24/7.
Take advantage of some of the lowest online tuition rates in the nation, plus financial aid for those who qualify. We also make it easy to transfer to SNHU by accepting up to 12 credits from your previous institution.
Founded in 1932, Southern New Hampshire University is a private, nonprofit institution with over 100,000 graduates across the country. SNHU is regionally accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE), which advocates for institutional improvement and public assurance of quality.
Recently, SNHU has been nationally recognized for leading the way toward more innovative, affordable and achievable education:
At Southern New Hampshire University, you'll have access to a powerful network of more than 200,000 students, alumni and staff that can help support you long after graduation. Our instructors offer relevant, real-world expertise to help you understand and navigate the field. Plus, with our growing, nationwide alumni network, you'll have the potential to tap into a number of internship and career opportunities.
96.5% of students would recommend SNHU.2 Discover why SNHU may be right for you.
Acceptance decisions are made on a rolling basis throughout the year for our 5 graduate terms. You can apply at any time and get a decision within days of submitting all required materials. To apply, simply contact an admission counselor, who can help you explore financial options. Your counselor can also walk you through the application process, which involves completing a graduate application and providing undergraduate transcripts.
The online master’s in psychology degree program requires individuals to have earned an undergraduate psychology degree online, or on campus, or a bachelor’s degree in another discipline and have completed undergraduate coursework in the following 3 areas:
For those who do not meet the minimum requirements, one or more of the following courses may be required:
This program does not prepare you for state licensure.
Simply contact an admission counselor, who can help you explore financial options, answer all your questions, and walk you through the application process, which includes:
In this master's program, you'll learn to apply psychology research and theories to real-world contexts. Courses are taught by instructors with professional credentials and real-world, hands-on experience.
"Psychology’s status as a science is grounded in the use of the scientific method," said Dr. Nickolas Dominello, associate dean of social sciences at Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU). "Psychologists base their professional practice in knowledge that is obtained through verifiable evidence of human behavior and mental process." The curriculum for the master's in child psychology at SNHU was designed with this in mind.
The degree program consists of 36 credits total, with 24 major credits in general psychology and 12 credits that focus specifically on child and developmental psychology. All students must have a bachelor's degree that includes coursework in introduction to psychology, social science statistics and research methods in a social science. Students without this coursework are still eligible for the child psychology master's program, but may have to complete comparable foundational coursework prior to beginning major coursework.
Throughout all courses, you'll deepen your understanding in crucial areas of psychology including cognitive psychology, social psychology, developmental psychology and cognitive neuropsychology. Major courses may include:
In addition to these areas, you'll also sharpen your critical thinking and problem solving skills while applying theory to practical applications. All coursework integrates how mental processes such as memory, language, attention, learning and decision-making inform the practice of psychology.
“Developmental psychologists study how people grow and adapt – physically and psychologically . . . and conduct research to understand and support people to reach their full potential,” said Dr. Jay Greiner, adjunct instructor of psychology at SNHU.
To build on this foundation in general psychology, you can then add key coursework to prepare you for a career working with children and adolescents. Child and developmental psychology concentration courses include:
Across all courses in the program, students will hone key transferable skills that will position them to apply these skills in the study of psychology across the profession. Such skills include written and oral communication, statistics and research methods.
The master's in child development online culminates in a capstone course for all students. This course is designed to allow you to synthesize and integrate the knowledge and skills you've gained in the study of child and developmental psychology. Rather than introduce new concepts, the aim of this course is to support student success in readying you to apply the scientific method and use observation, experimentation and analysis throughout your career.
Total Credits: 36
Tuition rates for SNHU's online degree programs are among the lowest in the nation. We offer a 25% tuition discount for U.S. service members, both full and part time, and the spouses of those on active duty.
Tuition rates are subject to change and are reviewed annually.
$150 Graduation Fee, Course Materials ($ varies by course)
While child psychologists do have a broad background in psychology overall, their focus is on children and adolescents. This includes patients from the very young to age 19.
The work involves evaluating children for a range of disorders, such as anxiety and depression, learning disabilities or attention deficit disorder. On a daily basis, the work may include interviewing new patients and conducting assessments, performing psychotherapy or administrating diagnostic tests and determining a treatment plan.
The work may take place in a hospital or private practice, or perhaps in a clinic. Because child psychologists also work with adolescents up to age 19, the work may also happen at a university or even a prison or teen detention center.
With a master’s in child development, there are many opportunities available to make a real difference in the lives of others. Studying child and adolescent development involves studying how people grow and adapt at different life stages. Expertise in this area allows you to help others reach their full potential, be it through clinical work, education or as an advocate.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job market across all positions for psychologists is expected to grow by 14% from 2018 to 2028.1 The median salary for psychologists was $80,370 in 2019.1 Note: The title "psychologist" requires a doctoral degree.
Of course, a master’s in child development can prepare you for a variety of career options. Some possible career paths include:
Note: Becoming a psychologist requires a doctoral degree. Many of the positions above require education, training or licensure beyond a master's degree.
Whichever career path you choose, you can have the opportunity to apply your understanding of how people learn and develop at different stages of life.
“While a bachelor’s provides required knowledge in the field, pursuing an advanced degree affords learners the opportunity to expand on the foundational knowledge and focus on a specialized area within the field,” said Dr. Nickolas Dominello, associate dean of social sciences at Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU).
With a master's in child development, you will have the unique training and understanding necessary to help others grow, adapt and reach their fullest potential in all areas of life.
Not only are child development classes available online, they are available at a high level of rigor and accessibility.
When considering an online program, it’s important to ensure that the school is accredited. You should also look for evidence that the school has a demonstrated commitment to student success. Internship and experiential opportunities can round out an online education and prepare you for the workplace.
Perhaps the best part of studying for a master's in child development online is the ability to customize the pace of your education. Courses are available 24/7, so you can complete your work on your schedule and at your pace. At Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU), our instructors are professionals working in their respective fields, so you will benefit from their professional expertise as well as from the subject matter.
With SNHU, you will be able to take courses such as:
Each of these courses is designed to provide you with top-of-the-line instruction in the field of child development so that whichever direction you choose to take your career, you are ready to help others reach their fullest potential.
A great deal of formal education is required to become a licensed child psychologist. A bachelor’s degree online, or on campus, in a related field is the best place to start. From there, a master's in child psychology or other related field is the best next step.
At Southern New Hampshire University, you'll get the opportunity to begin your career in psychology with us even if your existing bachelor’s degree is in another field. If needed, you’ll simply complete up to 3 foundational courses in general psychology to prepare you for the major coursework in the degree program.
While the child psychology master’s program does not lead to licensure or certification, students will find the coursework well aligned with industry standards and expectations. You will also graduate with the preparation necessary for doctoral-level coursework should you choose to continue with your studies. It can also lead to a host of rewarding careers that allow you to help children and adolescents reach their fullest potential.
At SNHU, the child and adolescent developmental psychology degree can be completed in as little as 15 months. Our admission counselors and academic advisors can help ensure that you receive the maximum number of transfer credits possible based on any past coursework you may have taken. From there, you can take courses at your pace that suit your schedule.
To become a fully licensed child psychologist, you generally need a doctoral degree in psychology. A focus on an aspect of child psychology, child development or adolescent psychology is also needed.
No matter the area of specialty, every state requires licensure to practice as a clinician. While the MS program at Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) does not prepare you for state licensure, it does provide the foundation needed for a rich and rewarding career in child and adolescent psychology.
Our program includes 24 credits of major coursework, including such courses as:
The earning potential for psychologists looks bright. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary across psychologists of all specialties was $80,370 in 2019.1 Between the years of 2018 and 2028, jobs for psychologists are expected to grow by 14%, which is higher than the national average for all professions.1
Child psychologists may work in a variety of professional settings including local, state and federal government. They may also work in hospitals and clinics or in private practice. It’s also not uncommon for child psychologists to work in elementary and secondary schools, assisting students of all ages.
Southern New Hampshire University is a private, nonprofit institution accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE) as well as several other accrediting bodies.
1 Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, on the internet, at: https://www.bls.gov/OOH/life-physical-and-social-science/psychologists.htm (viewed June 15, 2020) Cited projections may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions and do not guarantee actual job growth.
2 According to more than 9,200 SNHU online students in survey responses from the fall of 2019.