About the Program

FAQ

What areas of specialization does the department offer?

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The objective of our graduate program is to provide coursework and applied opportunities that meet the educational goals of the individual student. The MA degree can be obtained with both thesis and non-thesis options. Regardless of a students’ primary educational goals, our graduate program is designed to strengthen quantitative skills and provide students with research experience that will increase one’s competitiveness when applying to Ph.D. programs in psychology and/or for positions where these skills are required.  

Can I get licensed as a therapist with a degree from your program?

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The program is not designed to lead to a counseling credential or license. If you seek such a credential, the Masters in Community Counseling degree in Educational Psychology or (forthcoming) Masters of Social Work program at NAU may be right for you.  We do offer limited training experience in Positive Behavior Support and NAU offers courses which are prerequisites to obtain a Board Certified Behavior Analyst ® credential. It is possible to take these courses (in addition to our coursework)

Yes, we have competitive funding available in the form of Graduate Assistantships and a small number of tuition waivers. These GA assignments support our undergraduate courses and range from large Introductory Psychology sections to survey content courses (e.g., social, developmental) as well as statistics and research methods courses. These Graduate Assistantships provide a tuition reduction and a stipend for Graduate Assistant work. GA hours are initially allocated during the application review process and are finalized just before the semester begins. For the 2013-14 academic year 100% of our full-time graduate students had some form of funding.

How long is the program?

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The program is designed to be 2 years (4 semesters). Students often take extra time after finishing coursework to finish their thesis projects. 

Do graduate students get funding?

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Yes, we have competitive funding available in the form of Graduate Assistantships and a small number of tuition waivers. These GA assignments support our undergraduate courses and range from large Introductory Psychology sections to survey content courses (e.g., social, developmental) as well as statistics and research methods courses. These Graduate Assistantships provide a tuition reduction and a stipend for Graduate Assistant work. GA hours are initially allocated during the application review process and are finalized just before the semester begins. For the 2013-14 academic year 100% of our full-time graduate students had some form of funding.

What do your MA students do after graduation?

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Our students go on to a variety of top tier doctoral programs in psychology, teach at the community college level, work in health departments and research institutions, and in health promotion settings. 

Our students go on to doctoral programs in psychology (clinical, social, neuroscience, gerontology), teach at the community college or university level, work in county or state health departments, and work at research institutions. They are also working for health maintenance organizations (HMOs) or insurance agencies doing health promotion and groups (e.g., for reducing high blood pressure, diabetes education), working in health and wellness centers, health departments, pain management programs, biofeedback centers, neurofeedback centers, and practicing health psychology in more traditional mental health centers.

How can I be a successful applicant?

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Competitive applications are characterized by the following:

  • Minimum combined grade point average of 3.0
  • Minimum of 18 units of psychology credit, including Introductory Psychology, statistics (in Psychology) and research methods
  • A combined verbal and quantitative GRE score of 300 or more
  • Three references, preferably from academic sources (we understand that this may not be possible if people have been out of academia for a while)
  • Prior research experience is desired but not required for admission

We also require a vita, all unofficial transcripts (the University requires official transcripts after admission) and a statement of interest (500-700 words), discussing the following (with examples): 

  • why you are interested in our graduate program in psychology
  • educational, research, and professional qualifications that highlight your fit with our program
  • career goals
  • level of independence as a student
  • level of motivation

 

Where do I send my GRE scores?

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Northern Arizona University - Department of Psychology. The school code is 4006 and the department code is 2001. 

Do you offer summer courses?

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Currently, we do not offer graduate courses in the summer.

Do you require the GRE subject test in Psychology?

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No.

Do I have to have an undergraduate degree in psychology?

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No, but you do have to have 18 hours of college level psychology credits including introductory psychology, statistics (in psychology) and research methods.

How many applications do you receive?

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We usually receive between 40-60 applications. We enroll 10-15 students for an incoming class.

Do you admit applicants to work with specific faculty?

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We admit students who are a good match with our training but we do not admit students to work with specific faculty members. If you have specific faculty with whom you would like to work please include those preferences in your statement of interest.

When do I hear about admission decisions?

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Students who apply or have applied by the application deadline are usually notified by March. Potential graduate students will be contacted for a phone interview prior to any admission offer.

Do you have online degree programs?

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Our department values face to face collaboration and mentoring. Therefore we do not offer an online degree.

Where do you offer your degree?

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Our degree program is exclusively on the Flagstaff Mountain Campus.

Can I apply/begin in the Spring?

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No, admission is only offered for the Fall semester.

Do you offer summer courses?

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We generally do not offer graduate courses in the summer.

Do you offer summer funding?

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Although there may be a few Graduate Assistantships available during summer sessions, we generally do not offer graduate funding in the summer.

What kind of courses do you offer?

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A list of courses can be found in our program of study forms in our Graduate Handbook (need link here to the handbook: GradHandbook_8_21_2013.pdf). Further descriptions of these courses can be found the NAU Graduate Catalog.

What is Flagstaff like?

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Flagstaff is a mountain town with a population of 67,468. Nestled at 7,000 feet at the base of the San Francisco Peaks, Flagstaff is surrounded by the largest ponderosa pine forest in the world.

Flagstaff has four distinct seasons, an annual average of 288 days of sunshine, and a climate that encourages year-round outdoor activities. For more information see the About NAU pages.