New! M.S. in Psychological Science - Program Details

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Graduate Program

The Master of Science Degree in Psychological Science at The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is designed with two training goals.  The first goal of the program is to provide advanced training for students who wish to pursue doctoral education, but do not yet have sufficient preparation or research experience in the field of Psychology. The Department of Psychology has found that within the last several years, as doctoral student funding has decreased, admissions to doctoral programs in psychology has becoming increasingly competitive.  In 2015, on average, according to American Psychological Association, 9% of those applying for Ph.D.’s in clinical psychology were offered admission. In order to make themselves more competitive for admission, some students opt for a master’s degree before applying for a Ph.D. (although it is not necessary for applying).  For example, almost 30% of the applicants to our doctoral program, and 25% of those admitted to our doctoral program, had already obtained Master’s Degrees. Click here for a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).

The second goal of the program is to prepare students who wish to pursue professional careers in industry that require or value a master’s degree in psychology. Knowledge of human behavior and advanced analytic and statistical skills have become increasingly desirable across sectors (e.g., in technology, healthcare, education, government). Graduates of this program will be competitive for placements in education, industry, consultant groups, state governments, federal government, and healthcare systems based on current hiring requirements in these areas.  Examples of these jobs include the following titles: Child-Life Worker, Statistician, Senior Program Manager In Talent Management, Deputy Commissioner Of Employment Services in a City Resources Administration, Employment And Training Counseling, Director Of Admissions And Financial Aid, Academic Support Service Associate, Research Study Coordinator, Assistant Lab Director, Market Research Consultant, Director Of Admissions And Financial Aid And Manager In Selection And Assessment. 

This is a stand-alone Master’s degree program. Although students may take coursework with graduate students in the PhD program in the Psychology Department, the Master’s degree program is separate from the department’s doctoral degree program. It should be noted that unlike some Master’s programs, our Master’s faculty are chosen from among the core faculty of the department. 

Our MS in Psychological Science is not a pre-requisite for admission to any doctoral program in psychology, although the additional training and experience might make students more competitive for admission to such programs. It also will not enable graduates of the program to be licensed within the mental health professions.  Qualified students who are interested in earning a PhD in clinical and community psychology, which includes the pre-requisites for licensure, should apply directly to our doctoral program

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Please contact for additional information.

This web page is only for informational purposes. Official program requirements should be obtained from the Graduate Admissions Office, Department of Psychology, University of Illinois, 603 East Daniel Street, Champaign, Illinois 61820.

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Graduate Spotlight

Katherine WoodKatherine Wood

Congratulations to Katherine Wood! She's been awarded an NSF fellowship for her research she describes below. Katherine is a Graduate Student in the VCHP program area working with Dan Simons. Research Summary: We don't perceive everything that passes before our eyes. Often this means that irrelevant information doesn't occupy limited cognitive resources, but sometimes these failures of awareness blind us to important aspects of our environment. My research focuses on these failures of awareness, particularly on the information that gets filtered out. What kinds of objects are we most likely to miss? When are we most vulnerable to these failures of awareness? How do changes to the task or environment affect this filtering? Better understanding of how we filter information from our environment can potentially help us understand demanding real-world tasks, such as driving.

Graduate Information

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