Top Online Psychology Degree Programs in California

Trained mental health professionals are in high demand in California. According to a 2018 research study at the Healthforce Center at UCSF, a deficit of behavioral health specialists in many parts of the state could develop into substantial shortage by 2028.

Exploring online psychology degree programs in California can help you decide if an online psychology degree matches your academic and professional goals.

Consider an online counseling program: Syracuse University’s CSWE-accredited online Master of Social Work program is preparing the next generation of social work leaders. Learn more.
MA in Clinical Psychology from Pepperdine
Search More Schools

Consider a Featured Online Counseling Program


☰ For detailed degree information, view the guides to:
Online CACREP Accredited programs | Online MPCAC Accredited programs

Online Psychology Degree Programs in California

Universities across the state are working double time to meet the increasing need for licensed mental health professionals. Over the next decade, more therapists, counselors, and licensed psychologists will be prioritized in the workforce, which means that aspiring psychologists will have several programs to choose from. 

Accredited Psychology Schools in California

To help you narrow your search for the right California online psychology degree that best fits your career and academic goals, here is a curated database of all Accredited Psychology Schools in California.  

Online Psychology Bachelor’s Degree California

If you have no prior knowledge or college-level education in psychology, an online bachelor’s psychology degree is the best fit for you, especially if you are looking for a solid foundation and curriculum in this field.

Requirements for an Online Psychology Bachelor’s Program in California

Before admission, you’ll need to prepare all the essential documentation required by your chosen higher institution. Here are some of the minimum admission requirements for a bachelor’s in psychology program:

  • Minimum educational attainment of High School Level or GED
  • High school transcripts
  • 2-5 recommendation letters from authorized individuals
  • Your statement of intent
  • A writing sample, which may vary as per your school’s instructions
  • Standardized tests, such as ACT/SAT
  • Additional requirements, such as immunization records

Coursework for an Online Psychology Bachelor’s Program in California

Before deciding if a California online psychology degree is the right fit for you, there are still several factors that you need to consider. One essential element is whether your skills and interests align with the standard coursework.

Here are some examples of the courses that you may need to take when you enroll in an online bachelor’s in psychology program:

  • General Psychology
  • Abnormal Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Cognitive Psychology
  • Developmental Psychology
  • Mental Health/History of Psychology
  • Industrial/Organizational Psychology
  • Exercise/Sports Psychology

Skills Learned 

An online bachelor’s degree in psychology will introduce you to what psychology is as a scientific study of the mind and behavior. Through this program, you’ll be provided with a solid foundation of the core concepts, theories, and principles in psychology.

Here are some of the hard skills that you may learn once you take a bachelor’s degree in psychology:

  • Psychological & Cognitive Science Fundamentals
  • Numeracy & Quantitative Research
  • Clinical Reasoning
  • Experiment Design
  • Experiential Learning

On top of these hard skills, you must also develop exceptional interpersonal and communication skills, one of the most vital skills you need as a psychologist. Critical thinking and active listening are also two of the most crucial skills you must learn to perform your job efficiently while adhering to a strong professional code of ethics needed in this field of expertise.

California Psychology Bachelor’s Degree Salary and Prospective Jobs

According to APA, holding a bachelor’s in psychology means you can expect to earn an average annual salary of around $50,000 per year as of December 2021. On top of this, the overall employment for psychologists, in general, is projected to grow by 8 percent from 2020 to 2030. Comparatively, this percentage is as fast as the average projection for all other occupations.

With your California online psychology degree, you’ll have access to a wide range of employment opportunities. According to APA, here are some of the future jobs you may apply to as a psychology major:

  • Career/Employment Counselor
  • Career Information Specialist
  • Child Development Specialist
  • Caseworker
  • Employee Relations Specialist
  • Employment Counselor
  • Psychiatric Technician
  • Psychosocial Rehabilitation Specialist (PSR)
  • Research Assistant
  • Veterans Counselor

Online Psychology Master’s Degree in California

While a bachelor’s degree in psychology can already offer you a wide range of employment opportunities, taking an online master’s degree could help advance your career goals much faster. Graduate programs, such as a master’s California online psychology degree, can strengthen the basic foundation and knowledge you’ve gained in your bachelor’s. You’ll also be given more advanced training in statistical analysis, research methods, and specialized psychology subjects.

Requirements for an Online Psychology Master’s Program in California

Like a bachelor’s degree, you’ll also need to prepare the proper paperwork for your preferred graduate school. Generally, requirements may vary per program. Here are some of the minimum admission requirements for a master’s in Psychology Program:

  • Have completed a bachelor’s-level education with at least 120 course credits (or an equivalent)
  • At least a 3.0 GPA for admission
  • A Graduate Records Exam (GRE)
  • Other essential requirements similar to a bachelor’s degree in psychology

Coursework for an Online Psychology Master’s Program in California

Your coursework will differ depending on your selected master’s degree program, which should ideally be aligned with your interests and chosen specialization.

Here are some examples of the concentrations you may take when you enroll in an online master’s in psychology program:

  • Consumer Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Engineering Psychologists
  • Forensic Psychology
  • Learning, Cognition, and Child Psychology
  • Military Psychology
  • School Psychology

Skills Learned 

On top of the foundational knowledge and skills that you may learn in a bachelor’s degree in psychology, you’ll have access to more advanced training at the graduate level. As a graduate of master’s in psychology program, you’ll gain the necessary skills and practical experience to practice clinical psychology.

After finishing your graduate program in psychology, you’ll gain specialized research and analysis skills, excellent time-management skills, independence, and exceptional strategic planning abilities.

California Psychology Master’s Degree Salary and Prospective Jobs

According to APA, the salaries of psychology degree graduates vary widely, with those having higher degrees earning more in general. If you’re a graduate of an online master’s degree in psychology, your average annual salary is around $60,000. Your income could also vary depending on your position, relevant experience, and credentials.

Here are some of the prospective jobs you may apply to as a master’s degree in psychology holder with the corresponding average annual salary per career option:

  • Rehabilitation Counselors — $35,630
  • School and Career Counselors — $56,310
  • Mental Health Counselors and Marriage and Family Therapists — $50,090
  • Genetic Counselors — $80,370

Online PsyD Programs in California

According to APA, there are three distinct categories of doctoral programs you may choose from: clinical, counseling, and school psychology. If you’re interested in compiling and analyzing research data, clinical psychology will be more aligned with your interests. Counseling psychology will best fit your career interests if you want to treat emotional and mental health issues. On the other hand, if you’re more inclined to focus on child and adolescent development issues, then a school psychology program will work best for you.

Between Ph.D. and PsyD programs, your choice will depend on which aspect of the field of psychology you are more interested in. If you want to pursue a career in teaching or a research role, you’ll have to enroll in a Ph.D. in psychology. However, a PsyD will better suit your career goals if you intend to work with patients and pursue private practice.

Requirements for an Online Doctorate Degree in Psychology in California

Before enrolling in a doctorate program, such as a California online psychology degree, you must prepare the requirements before admission. Generally, requirements may vary per program. Here are some of the minimum admission requirements for a doctorate in psychology program:

  • Must be a master’s degree holder (other schools may also accept bachelor’s degree holders with the appropriate work experience)
  • All undergraduate and graduate degrees transcript of records
  • A minimum GPA of 3.0
  • 3-5 recommendation letters from authorized individuals
  • Personal statement of intent
  • previous academic research papers
  • GRE
  • Additional admission requirements (immunization records and health insurance; comprehensive qualifying exam; and interviews)

Coursework for an Online Doctorate Degree in Psychology in California

Your coursework will differ depending on your selected Doctorate program, which should ideally be aligned with your career goals and academic interests. Generally, a PsyD program will require five to seven years of completion. It also places less emphasis on the research aspect since you are prepared to work with clients in a clinical setting.

Here are some of the coursework you may need to take when you enroll in an online PsyD program:

  • Assessment, Statistics, and Research Techniques
  • Abnormal Psychological Disorders
  • Behavioral Neuroscience
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Developmental Psychology
  • Human Growth and Development
  • Multicultural Consistencies

Skills Learned 

The skills and knowledge you can gain from an online PsyD program will be much more advanced than bachelor’s and master’s due to the competencies’ complexity and the experience level. The skills you learn are designed to prepare you for your practice in a clinical setting.

Here are the critical skills you can learn after earning an online doctorate in Psychology:

  • Professional communication and interpersonal skills
  • Critical thinking and problem-solving skills
  • Specialized research and analysis skills
  • Excellent time-management skills
  • Exceptional strategic planning abilities

California PsyD Salary and Prospective Jobs

According to APA, as a graduate of the PsyD program, you can earn as much as $100,000, with an average annual salary of $90,000. Like any profession, your income could still vary depending on your position, relevant experience, and credentials.

Here are some of the potential career opportunities you may look into as a doctorate holder in Psychology with the corresponding average annual salary per career option:

  • Industrial-Organizational Psychologists — $97,260
  • Postsecondary Teachers — $78,470
  • Psychiatrist — $149,900
  • Sociologist — $82,050

Psychologist Licensure Requirements in California

Regardless of whether you’ve taken a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctorate online psychology degree in California, there are specific requirements you must meet to become a licensed psychologist. According to the Department of Consumer Affairs Board of Psychology in California, here are the following requirements you must comply with for licensure as a psychologist:

  • Must possess a qualifying doctoral degree
  • Must complete 3,000 hours of supervised professional experience, with 1,500 having been obtained post-doctorally
  • Must complete six specific types of pre-licensure coursework
  • Must pass both the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP) and the California Psychology Laws and Ethics Examination (CPLEE)
  • Must submit fingerprints to DOJ and FBI for a criminal history background check

California Psychologist Licensing Boards

All psychologists in California are required to take the appropriate licensing board exams before they can be officially recognized and licensed by the state’s Board of Psychology. As part of the licensure requirements, you must pass the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP) and the California Psychology Laws and Ethics Examination (CPLEE).

Enroll in an Accredited Psychology Degree Program in California

Regardless of what level you may intend to pursue, as you can see, earning a California online psychology degree is just the tip of the iceberg. On top of the time and resources you need to dedicate, you must also consider the corresponding requirements, coursework, and required licensure examinations.

To fully benefit from completing any academic degree, it’s vital to fully comprehend your reason before taking it. To help you get started in your pursuit of academic and professional advancement, here is a list of all the accredited counseling degrees in California.

List of Programs

Syracuse University 🗹 Online 🗗 Masters

University of Denver 🗹 Online 🗗 Masters

Northwestern University 🗹 Online 🗗 Masters

University of Southern California 🗹 Online 🗗 Masters

Capella University 🗹 Online 🗗 Masters 🗗 Doctorate

Fordham University 🗹 Online 🗗 Masters

Northwestern University 🗹 Online 🗗 Masters

University of Southern California 🗹 Online 🗗 Masters

Capella University 🗹 Online Masters

Touro University Worldwide 🗹 Online 🗗 Masters

Our Lady of the Lake University 🗹 Online 🗗 Masters

Pepperdine University 🗹 Online

University of West Alabama 🗹 Online 🗖 Bachelors 🗗 Masters

Northcentral University 🗹 Online Courses Start Weekly

University of Denver 🗹 Online 🗗 Masters

National Louis University 🗹 Online 🗗 Masters

Liberty University 🗹 Online

National Louis University 🗹 Online 🗗 Masters 🗗 Doctorate

Capella University 🗹 Online Masters

Counseling Career Guide

Still Looking for a Counseling Degree?

Here are some of the most popular online counseling programs. On each page you will find a detailed write-up of the program, specific courses, and schools that offer that program that are currently accepting applicants.