Do you have a knack for working with kids? Are you fan of science? Here are the best master's degrees in child and adolescent psychology!
The most crucial developmental changes happen in the first 18 years of a person’s life. We all know that childhood and adolescence can be a tricky time. Child and adolescent psychologists combine talk therapy with science to make huge changes in the lives of young people. A degree in child and adolescent psychology will allow you to study both the biological and psychological advancement of children, through every stage of their lives. This degree is perfect for those who are fascinated by how factors like family, culture, and friends can affect a child and adolescent’s development into adulthood.
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What kind of online master's in child and adolescent psychology should you get?
If you want to pursue an online master's degree program in child or adolescent psychology, you can consider many specializations. Some programs are not appropriate for exclusively online programs, however, due to the need for hands-on training and clinical experience.
Some thesis-based programs target students who want to go into positions that have a strong advocacy or research component. These programs will require the completion of coursework (and sometimes a thesis), but do not have a face-to-face or clinical component. If you want to use your degree without becoming a practicing therapist or psychologist, this type of program provides a platform for doing so.
Other programs require students to find a local organization or psychologist to work with to get real-world experience in child and adolescent psychology. These programs cannot be completed exclusively online, though students can still take all coursework online and work face-to-face only during the capstone period.
How much money do people make with an online master’s in child and adolescent psychology?
In 2018, child and school psychologists made almost $80,000 per year on average. This pay scale includes many professionals with doctoral degrees instead of master's degrees, however, and many of these positions require a doctorate.
Other similar positions which only require a master's degree, such as school and career counselors, made closer to $56,000 per year.
Prospects for both psychologists and school counselors look stable. Open positions in these are projected to grow at a rate of about 13 to 14 percent until 2026, beating the national average.
What can you do with an online master's in child and adolescent psychology?
Some child and adolescent psychology students go on to work in the school system, helping children directly. Others use their understanding of children's needs to improve child-centered systems as administrators, advocate as part of a non-profit group, or consult with businesses that serve children.
- School administrator - School administrators handle leadership and administrative duties, such as budgets, scheduling, crisis response, and strategy, for schools and other educational institutions. Those with a background in child and adolescent psychology can use their knowledge to tailor these activities to children's needs.
- Research analyst - Research analysts help organizations like schools and non-profit groups use data to solve problems. Those with a mix of qualitative and quantitative skills and a passion for child psychology can help organizations identify problems facing the children they serve, and find evidence-driven solutions to those problems.
- School counselor - School counselors work with children in one-on-one and small group settings. They can identify psychological issues challenging these children, plan interventions regarding school work or disciplinary trouble, and help students find the places they can best apply their skills.
- Social and community services manager - Social and community services managers oversee organizations that serve children. They might operate youth outreach programs or direct child mentoring groups.
- Psychologist - While this requires a doctoral degree or specialist degree in most states, some organizational psychologist jobs require only a master's degree. Psychologists may perform research, observe and survey children, or consult with other school professionals to solve specific problems.
- Foster family case manager - Foster family case managers work with children in the foster care system and the families that support them. They prevent abuse within foster families, support children struggling with mental health issues, and prepare case-related documents for court hearings and state services departments.
The Best Online Master's in Child and Adolescent Psychology
See our rankings methodology page.
CUNY School of Professional Studies
|Location||New York, New York|
Prospective graduate students searching for flexibility should consider CUNY School of Professional Studies for a degree. The MA in psychology's flexibility is a draw for those who may have had challenges pursuing graduate education because of their busy schedules.
Applicants typically need a bachelor’s degree or a related credential to apply to master’s programs. Candidates in the program engage in intensive coursework that prepares them for more advanced career opportunities than undergraduate degrees allow. This credential lays the foundation for a doctorate or other terminal degree.
Learners can use resources at the financial aid department to find out if they qualify for grants and scholarships. Students can help pay for a graduate degree with federal loans.
Montclair State University
|Location||Montclair, New Jersey|
|Percent Online Enrollment||
Montclair State University provides students with an online child psychology program that ranks highly among similar degree offerings. This degree provides learners with advanced knowledge and training required for many higher-level job opportunities in the field. The MA in clinical psychology with a concentration in child/adolescent psychology gives graduates the credential they need to pursue a terminal degree like a doctorate.
The effective management of time is a key consideration for many learners, and this program accommodates that need. The program gives them an opportunity to manage various aspects of their lives without sacrificing the advanced education a master’s degree provides. The school ensures that enrollees receive the personalized attention they need whether they study in person or online.
Degree-seekers interested in pursuing a master’s usually need a bachelor’s in the major or a related field to apply. The admittance rate to this school is 76%, with some differences possible across programs. If accepted, students in New Jersey can expect to pay around $12,600 per year before applying grants, loans, and scholarships.
University of Minnesota
|Percent Online Enrollment||
Students can pursue an online degree from the University of Minnesota that ranks highly among child psychology programs. Learners pursuing the MA in applied child and adolescent development acquire advanced skills that employers want in middle- to high-level professionals. Students earn the master's so they can also pursue a doctorate later on if they choose.
The convenient online format makes this school an especially good choice for many. A big part of this program's allure is that it allows students to manage other aspects of their lives without sacrificing their education. Enrollees also like the fact that whether they study in person or online, faculty serve as mentors who can adequately prepare them for advanced work.
The application requirements for this program include a bachelor’s degree and transcripts, but the department can provide more information. The data from this school show a 57% admission rate, but expect some variances across programs. Students can expect to pay around $17,580 per year for tuition if they live in Minnesota and can use grants, loans, and scholarships to help fund their education.
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