M.S. in Applied Psychology

The Department of Psychology offers a Master’s degree in Applied Psychology (MAP). The program emphasizes the application of psychological principles and methodologies to real world problems. The program was designed to provide coursework aimed at three primary purposes for students:  1) career advancement, 2) training to enter a new career/profession, and/or 3) preparation for doctoral study. The coursework offers a balance of theory, application, and methodological skill sets used in the workplace. The program is delivered 100% online in an accelerated format so that it can be completed in one year (12 months) of full-time study or two years of part-time study.  In consideration of students’ busy and varying schedules, we have rolling admissions so you can begin and complete the program in any term. A total of 10 courses (30 credits) of graduate work is required for the MAP degree. 

For questions contact:

Dr. Thomas Hatvany
Graduate Program Coordinator
FSC 111
717-477-1514


Resources for Prospective Students

Prospective students must have: 1) completed at least three semester hours of undergraduate work in psychology, 2) have completed an undergraduate statistics course, and 3) submit a graduate application containing the Goal Statement Form listing your personal and professional goals.

Majors from any field are welcomed to apply as long as the admission requirements are met. In the recent past, students with undergraduate degrees in the following fields have been admitted to our program:  biology, business, communications, criminal justice, education, exercise science, mathematics, philosophy, political science, psychology, and sociology.

The curriculum combines a sequence of required courses in research methodology, psychology courses with an applied emphasis across a variety of content areas, electives, and a Capstone course.  We routinely examine market forces, trends, and patterns to gauge the relevance of our curriculum offerings and delivery to best position our students for success. And, we have consistently adapted to the changing times to better prepare students for an ever evolving work environment. 

The course requirements include three methodology courses, four core courses (one course from each core), two electives, and the Capstone course.  All courses are 8-weeks in duration except for the Capstone course which is 10-weeks. The Capstone course is taken during the last semester and is a culmination of the coursework and experiences in the program.  Students can begin and end the program during any semester. All students are assigned an academic advisor upon enrollment in the program.

Behavior Specialist Certificate

The Department also offers a Behavior Specialist Certificate for individuals working toward the Behavior Specialist License in Pennsylvania. The Psychology graduate program also offers a Behavior Specialist Certificate (BSC) which fulfills some of the requirements for a Behavior Specialist License (BSL) in Pennsylvania. This can be taken as part of the MAP degree requirements, with no additional courses necessary (i.e. you can still complete the MAP in 30 credits), or as a post-graduate certificate for those that already have a graduate degree. The certificate requires the completion of three courses:

  • PSY 518 Behavior Analysis
  • PSY 539 Community Psychology
  • PSY 543 Behavioral Treatment and Systems Support

In summary, the requirements for a BSL in Pennsylvania are: 

  • A Master’s (or higher) degree or a Post Master’s Certificate in certain specified fields
  • 90 hours of evidence-based coursework in eight specified content areas
  • 1,000 hours of in-person clinical experience
  • 1-year of experience involving Functional Behavior Assessments

The department provides a master’s degree and the evidence-based coursework. The student is responsible for gaining the necessary 1,000 hours of clinical experience and 1-year experience involving functional behavior assessment. 

The MAP program does not provide specific training or accreditation for those interested in employment in the areas of Clinical or Counseling Psychology. If Clinical or Counseling Psychology is your area of interest, please see the Department of Counseling and College Student Personnel at Shippensburg University. If Clinical Social Work is your area of interest, please see the Social Work Master's Program at Shippensburg University.


Alumni and Workforce Analysis

The Psychology graduate program at Shippensburg University has existed for over 35 years and we have some distinguished alumni that make us very proud.  Our primary objective is and will always be the success of our students.  Graduates have continued or began careers in business, government, health and human service, and education settings.  The following provides 2 lists; one is a list of some of the job titles of our recent graduates and the second includes doctoral programs that have accepted our recent graduates. 

Job titles

Doctoral programs 

Analysis Manager

Miami University

Associate Consultant

Southern Illinois University

Associate Director-Institutional Research and Assessment

SUNY - Albany

Behavior Consultant

SUNY – Binghamton

Behavior Services Trainer

SUNY- Stony Brook

Behavior Specialist

University of Massachusetts at Lowell

Business Analyst

University of North Dakota

Category Analyst

Utah State University

Clinical Director of Behavioral Services

Virginia Tech University

Data Analyst

West Virginia University

Data Scientist

Western Michigan University

Event Manager

Wright State University

Health Program Manager

 

Market Researcher

 

Mobile Therapist

 

Operations Research Analyst

 

Program Evaluator

 

Project Manager

 

Publications Manager

 

Quality Assurance Specialist

 

Quality Control Analyst

 

Sales Manager

 

Senior Consultant

 

Survey Researcher

 

Teacher

 

 

The types of jobs our graduates have secured are in demand and projections by the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicate that the growth rates for most of these fields are far above average and are projected to continue to thrive during the next 10 years. A recent workforce analysis (June, 2019) was conducted which predicts strong demand for graduates of our program. Specifically, the number of job postings that identified occupations appropriate for students with a master’s degree from a program like ours was 20% greater than the national average.  The same analysis also indicated that the median salary for these positions was $72,000/year.  The vast majority of our alumni indicated that an emphasis on applied aspects of psychology and specific methodology courses provides a competitive edge in the marketplace.  Thus, our curriculum is structured on the comments made by successful alumni, consistent skills identified in job postings, industry trends, and faculty expertise.