5 Best Online Master’s in Child and Adolescent Psychology in 2021

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Updated June 28, 2021

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Students who are ready to earn their Master's in Psychology can use Grad School Hub's 5 Best Online Masters' in Child and Adolescent Psychology to decide which online degree is best for them!

Child and Adolescent Psychology examines the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors of children and adolescents. Master's degree programs in Child and Adolescent Psychology can equip students with significant insight into both the universal and atypical aspects of the young psyche.

What can you do with a Child and Adolescent Psychology degree?

Child and Adolescent Psychology lends itself to a variety of professions under the psychology umbrella. Related programs generally align most closely with Development Psychology, where psychologists study psychological progress in children and adolescents during their formative years.

A Child and Adolescent Psychology degree can also provide a foundation for more specific areas of psychology. Clinical psychologists, for example, focus on assessing and treating psychological disorders in young people. Students may otherwise become counseling psychologists or school psychologists and work with young people to solve problems at school or home.

How much money do people make with a Child and Adolescent Psychology degree?

The median pay for psychologists in 2017 was $77,030 per year or $37.03 per hour. Some child and adolescent psychologists work independently, whether with clients or while conducting research. Others may work as part of a team in an educational or healthcare environment. With the field the psychiatric industry experiencing an above-average 14 percent growth rate, current job prospects are promising for psychologists.

Explore these promoted online degree programs.

These top, accredited schools offer a variety of online graduate degree programs. Figuring out where to apply? Consider one of these online Master’s or PhD programs.

Best Online Master’s in Child and Adolescent Psychology

  1. University of Minnesota – Twin Cities

    Minneapolis, MN



    The University of Minnesota is a public research university which stretches across the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota. UMN is classified as one of the country's "Public Ivy" universities, with an educational quality comparable to that of the Ivy League. U.S. News & World Report ranks the school #76 in National Universities and #88 in Best Online Graduate Education Programs. The Master of Arts in Applied Child and Adolescent Development at UMN offers three specialized tracks. The first track, The Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health, focuses on the social and emotional development of infants and toddlers. Students following the second – Child Life Track – will learn how to help children cope with disabilities, hospitalization, illness, and injury. Lastly, the Individualized Studies Track helps prepare individuals for careers in fields intersecting with child development, such as child welfare and law. UMN is known for its innovation in research, with photosynthesis and puffed rice among discoveries by alumni. In the early 1990s, UMN researchers developed Gopher, a preliminary protocol for organizing and sharing documents over the Internet. The protocol's name reflects "The Gopher State" of Minnesota and UMN's "golden gopher" mascot.

  2. University of South Florida

    Tampa, FL



    The University of South Florida is a public metropolitan university and a member of the State University System of Florida. It is classified in the top tier of research universities by the Carnegie Foundation. U.S. News & World Report ranks USF #124 in National Universities and #46 in Best Online Graduate Education Programs. The university's online Master of Science in Child & Adolescent Behavioral Health offers two tracks: thesis and applied. The thesis track is more research-based and ideal for students planning to further their education beyond a master's degree, while the applied track has a field experience component. Students can also choose between four concentration areas: Youth and Behavioral Health, Leadership in Child/Adolescent Behavioral Health, Research and Evaluation, and Developmental Disabilities. Any student who is unsure about the program can take up to four courses – or 12 credit hours – as a non-degree seeking student. Students do not have to obtain acceptance into the full MS program before taking these courses. Once students commit to the entire program and are accepted, the classes are applied toward their degree.

  3. Liberty University

    Lynchburg, VA



    Concerning enrollment, Liberty University is the largest Christian university in the world and the largest private nonprofit university in the United States. Liberty's online component, LU Online, provides degrees from associate to doctoral level. Niche ranks Liberty the #1 "Best Online College in America," as well as the "Most Conservative College in America." Liberty's online MA in Applied Psychology is a 36-credit hour program which takes a year and a half to complete on average. As with all of its programs, Liberty's Applied Psychology courses are presented to students from a Baptist Christian perspective. Core courses include Advanced Social Psychology, Cognitive Psychology, and Psychology & Christianity. In 1985, Liberty began a distance learning program which involved mailing VHS tapes to students. With the rise of high-speed internet connections around 2005, Liberty introduced its new online college. In 2012, the university reported its online enrollment as six times greater than residential enrollment. Despite this high enrollment, however, LU Online class sizes are limited to 25 students.

  4. Capella University

    Minneapolis, MN



    Capella University is a regionally accredited online university with an enrollment composed primarily of graduate students pursuing their masters' degrees. Through its Harold Abel School of Psychology, Capella offers a Master of Science in Psychology with a Child and Adolescent Development Specialization. Students can choose between a "GuidedPath" with a structured schedule and deadlines or a "FlexPath" with a self-paced learning format. The specialized MS program addresses educational, mental health, and social issues facing modern youth. Its curriculum aims to prepare students to employ the best practices developed through clinical research and evaluation. Course offerings include Adolescent Psychology, Child Psychology, and Lifespan Development. Capella serves a diverse community of nontraditional students and minority groups. According to Capella University, the average age of a Capella student is 39 years old, 77 percent of students are female, and 51 percent are ethnic minorities. Only 11 percent of the university's students are enrolled full-time.

  5. The Chicago School of Professional Psychology

    Chicago, IL



    The Chicago School of Professional Psychology is a graduate university established in 1979 by practicing psychologists and has been accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. Although based in Chicago, the school has six additional campuses throughout the United States. The Chicago School offers a Master of Arts in Psychology with a Child and Adolescent concentration. Chicago School students typically complete their online degree between one full-time year or two part-time years. Students must complete nine credit hours relating to the Child and Adolescent concentration, 21 credit hours in foundational psychology, and six credit hours on a research project focused on children or adolescents. Since its early days, academia has recognized The Chicago School for its exemplary commitment to diversity and multicultural training. The school's Center for Multicultural and Diversity Studies holds an annual Cultural Impact Conference. The National Council of Schools honored the university in 1998 with The Institutional Diversity Award before receiving a 2005 Advocacy Award from the Programs of Professional Psychology.

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Grad School Hub compiles rankings based on public data released from educational, commercial, and government databases. Sources such as the National Center for Education Statistics and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics play a significant role in how we source our educational data. After collecting insight for each institution, we organize information into five weighted categories.
Metric Data Used Percentage
Academic Quality Full-time faculty percentage, student-to-faculty ratio, student retention and graduation rates 30%
Affordability Tuition rates, median student debt, and financial aid 10%
Reputation Admission and enrollment rates 30%
Program Offerings Number of program options 20%
Online Enrollment Score Portion of learners taking at least one online course 10%
A more comprehensive evaluation of how each category is determined and scored is accessible on our Ranking Methodology page.

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GradSchoolHub.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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