Whether you are an advertiser trying to make your product more desirable, a manager trying to inspire the best in your employees, or a criminal investigator trying to piece together the motive for a crime, an understanding of what makes people tick is going to make your job so much easier.
It is also going to make you so much more valuable regardless of what line of work you choose.
Well, the scientific study of human behavior is the definition of psychology. It is not just a degree for those hoping to be psychologists and psychiatrists!
What kind of Online Psychology degree should you get?
If you want to study the fascinating field of psychology but are looking for a cheap and flexible way to earn your degree, there is no better way to do so than through an online psychology degree program. Online degrees are an increasingly popular and accepted way of pursuing higher education.
Even more, we’ve narrowed down your options to not only online programs but the most affordable online psychology programs in the nation. Rest assured, you’ll get the best of both worlds: affordability and flexibility.
How much can you make with an Online Psychology degree?
Your earning potential as a psychologist looks very hopeful. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, psychologists on average earn around $77,000 per year. But if you work in a government or hospital setting, your earning potential is upwards of $94,000 per year.
The job outlook signals full speed ahead for future psychologists, too. Overall employment of clinical, counseling, and school psychologists is expected to increase by 14 percent in the next ten years.
What can you do with an Affordable Online Psychology degree?
The majority of psychology majors end up working at for-profit companies in jobs as diverse as law, human resources, consulting, and real estate. Others choose to work in the public sector as—among many other things—deputy sheriffs, caseworkers, and child protective specialists.
Maybe this broad application explains why—year after year—psychology is among the most popular majors chosen by undergraduates. If you think about it, it is hard to imagine a job in which psychological literacy would not help you immensely.
What are the Most Affordable Online Psychology degrees?
College Choice has done all of the heavy research to present you with the most affordable online programs out there. The following list will have you on the road to exploring the mysteries of the human mind in no time—without having to quit your job or move closer to campus to do so.
Fort Hays State University
Total Tuition: $5,284
The most affordable choice for a psychology degree is Fort Hays State University, a medium-sized public university located in Fort Hays, Kansas. Fort Hays has gained a well-earned reputation for affordability, especially for its online degree programs. These have become so popular that roughly half of Fort Hays’ 11,000 students are online learners.
FHSU offers two options for an undergraduate psychology degree: a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. The former requires ten credits of foreign language among its general education requirements, and the latter requires twenty credits in mathematics and the natural sciences. Stand-out classes include:
- Abnormal Psychology
- Child and Developmental Psychology
- The Science of Psychology
- Drugs & Behavior
Whatever curriculum suits your needs, both tracks align with the guidelines for undergraduate education of the American Psychological Association. FHSU has been regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Total Tuition: $7,200
Baker College is a private, non-profit college that started in Flint, Michigan, and now has satellite campuses throughout that state.Since its founding, Baker has been committed to educating students for employment and upskilling the workforce. Part of this commitment has meant keeping their degree programs in line with the highest professional standards.
Baker’s online Bachelor’s of Science in Psychology requires 156 credits, 72 of which are general education requirements and 84 of which are courses within the psychology curriculum. Among the upper-level classes, you’ll find:
- Abnormal Psychology
- Psychology of Gender
- Sensation and Perception
- Sports Psychology
The American Psychological Association’s Board of Educational Affairs Task Force has established guidelines for undergraduate education in psychology, and Baker has designed their curriculum with this benchmark of professionalism as its criterion. Baker also assists all of its students and graduates in their search for employment with its Lifetime Employment Services program. Baker has been regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Chadron State College
Total Tuition: $7,380
Chadron State College is a small public college in Chadron, a town located in the Pine Ridge region of the state of Nebraska. It enrolls around 3,000 students annually. The school has been regionally accredited by The Higher Learning Commission.
Chadron State College offers ten different online degree programs, one of which is their Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. The program is meant both for students intent on graduate work in the social sciences as well as those hoping for post-baccalaureate jobs relevant to the field of psychology. Among the highlight classes are:
- Culture and Psychology
- Theories of Personality
- Intro to Behavioral Neuroscience
- Developmental Psychology
Among the stated learning outcomes are imparting a broad knowledge of psychology, training in scientific inquiry, a knowledge of socially/ethically responsible conduct, improved communication, and professional development. Chadron also encourages and sponsors many internships with organizations in the surrounding area.
California Southern University
Total Tuition: $7,500
California Southern University is a private, for-profit, and online only school headquartered in Costa Mesa. Students choose from online degrees at the associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate levels. It boasts a four-year fixed tuition rate.
One of the most popular degrees at California Southern University is their 120 credit online Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. This program offers a broad grounding in the scientific study of human behavior while also imparting skills in writing composition, critical thinking, information literacy, scientific reasoning, and the ethical/legal dimensions of psychological issues. Course offerings include:
- Human Sexuality
- Intercultural Psychology
- Forensic Psychology
California Southern University also boasts a liberal credit transfer program for those who have completed an associate’s degree or have transferred from another program. It has been regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.
Southeast Missouri State University
Total Tuition: $7,950
Southeast Missouri State University is a medium-sized public university located on the banks of the Mississippi River in the city of Cape Girardeau. Southeast Missouri State University has been regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
Among its online undergraduate degrees is its Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. Students with the hope of pursuing future graduate studies are welcome, but the curriculum is primarily oriented toward educating students in psychology for careers in fields such as business, human resources, and social services. You’ll take classes such as:
- Ethics and Diversity in Psychology
- Psychology and the Law
- Learning and Memory
SMSU boasts and impressive 90% of former students employed within a year of graduation. This is due to two factors. First, they encourage all students to participate in internships, clinical opportunities, student teaching, and research assistantships. Second, they have a team of career counselors who help students with job placement after graduation.
American Public University
Total Tuition: $8,100
American Public University is a private, for profit, and online-only university headquartered in Charles Town, West Virginia, and owned by a publicly traded corporation. Because of its outreach to military members and their families, many of APU’s 48,000 students are current or former service members.
APU prides itself in consulting industry experts for each particular curriculum, making sure the course content includes topics most relevant to the marketplace. Their 121 credit BA in Psychology covers practical topics as diverse as the following course options:
- Psychology of Combat
- Psychology of Sports
- Psychology of Addiction
- Psychology of Disaster Response
AMU boasts a very generous credit transfer policy that allows for as much as 91 credits, making it attractive for those moving from another school. APU has been regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Total Tuition: $8,250
Columbia College is a medium sized, private, non-profit college located in Columbia, Missouri. It has a historic affiliation with the Disciples of Christ and Columbia University in New York. Its degree programs have been regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Columbia’s online BA in Psychology is distinctive in offering two curricular tracks, one of which is an applied degree designed for those entering the workforce after the completion of their undergraduate and another which is an academic studies program focused on preparing students for graduate-level work. Some cross-over coursework includes:
- Personality Theory
- Animal Behavior
- Psychological Testing and Measurement
- Lifespan Developmental Psychology
Those opting for the latter then have seven different specializations to choose from: clinical psychology, school psychology, counseling, neuroscience, developmental psychology, social psychology, and cognitive psychology. In addition to these specializations, Columbia offers a separate emphasis in the emerging field of sports psychology.
Indiana University- Bloomington
Total Tuition: $8,309
Indiana University-Bloomington boasts a student population of over 40,000 and is the flagship campus of the Indiana University System. The Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Learning lists IU as one of the top research universities in the country.
IU’s Bachelor’s of Science in Psychology is one of their nine degree completion programs. These are programs designed for those who have already completed at least 60 credits (with a minimum 2.0 GPA) at another institution or who have completed an associate’s degree at the community college level. Your curriculum includes some of the following elements:
- Psychology Core Courses (12 credits)
- Psychology Advanced Courses (15 credits)
- Psychology Elective Courses (6 credits)
IU’s program offers three different options for the completion of their degree: either two capstone seminars in the history of psychology and psychological research, respectively, or a senior seminar in which students discuss and debate current issues in psychology and the social sciences. Indiana University has been regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Total Tuition: $8,850
Lynn University is a small, private, non-profit university in Boca Raton, Florida. The school places a lot of emphasis on educational and technological innovation and its online programs – called iLynn – delivers course content by way of iPad. You’ll even be provided a brand new iPad upon admission!
Online students pursuing their Bachelor’s in Psychology at Lynn do no need to take prerequisites since Lynn allows students to jump right into whatever undergraduate courses they find interesting. It also encourages students to collaborate with faculty in developing research programs and presenting their findings at academic conferences—activities typically reserved for graduate students. Featured classes include:
- Human Behavior
- Personality Theory
- Abnormal Psychology
This major is intended for those going into professions in the field of human services such as human resources management, crisis management, and assessment. It can also serve as a springboard for graduate work and more traditional psychological professions such as counseling and social work. Lynn University has been regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Utah State University
Total Tuition: $8,970
Utah State University is a large public research university in Logan, Utah. It has been regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities. The school offers an online Bachelor in Psychology that is designed principally for students hoping to go on for graduate studies in psychology and related fields.
This program offers two tracks. Their Behavioral Analysis Track focuses on behavioral analysis. It would be an appropriate track for those hoping to do further graduate study in, for instance, sports or organizational/industrial psychology. Their Interpersonal Relationships Track revolves around the development of interpersonal skill such as conflict management, listening, and anger management. Overlapping courses include:
- Analysis of Behavior
- Abnormal Psychology
- Lifespan Development
- History and Systems of Psychology
The program at Utah State University is a good choice for students hoping to use their degree in a field such as business administration or human relations. However, it would also be valuable for those wishing to pursue graduate work in counseling and clinical psychology.