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When is the application deadline?
December 15th of this year to be considered for Fall entry the following year.

How many students apply to the program each year? How many are typically accepted?
We typically have over 100 applicants each year, and our incoming class is about 5-7 students. Thus, there are typically 10-14 students enrolled in the program at any given time (including first and second year students).

What are the admissions criteria?
The applicants’ entire file is considered in making admissions decisions. Recent entering graduate students had a median grade point average (GPA) of 3.6. Applicants with a GPA below 3.0 are considered only when other aspects of the applicants’ profile are compensatory. In addition to GPA criteria, the admissions committee considers previous research activities, letters of recommendation, and how well the student’s background and research interests match those of our faculty seeking new students.

What is the average GPA of enrolled students? Is there a specific GPA cutoff?

  • Average undergraduate GPA for enrolled students: 3.67
  • Minimum undergraduate overall GPA: 2.85
  • Minimum undergraduate psychology GPA: 3.0

Is the GRE required for admission?
Yes, the general GRE (not the Psychology subject GRE) is required. We use the GRE in a holistic, compensatory way that does not include the use of cutoffs. For example, a high quantitative GRE score could be useful to indicate quantitative reasoning readiness that may not be reflected in the GPA/transcript, but a low quantitative GRE score could be offset with other evidence of quantitative reasoning readiness.

What is the average GRE score of admitted students? 

  • Average GRE verbal score for enrolled students: 158
  • Average GRE quantitative score for enrolled students: 156
  • Average GRE writing score for enrolled students: 4.5

Do you need a degree in psychology to apply?
Most applicants have a degree in psychology, but it is not absolutely necessary. Please see the psychology coursework that is required for admission.

Do you need research/work experience in psychology to apply?
Work experience in psychology is not required, but applied experiences can strengthen your application, especially if you did not have a course in I-O psychology. However, this is a research-oriented program, so previous participation as a research assistant is expected.

When will I receive a decision on my application?
Applications will be reviewed throughout February and initial decisions will be made mid March. Admissions close on April 15th.

Can I apply for Spring admission?
No. Only Fall entry is available for this program.

What can I do to prepare myself before applying to the Master’s program?
Participate in research, and familiarize yourself with the ongoing faculty research in the Psychology department.


Can I enroll in the program part-time?
No. This is a full-time program and therefore serious commitment to graduate training is expected.

What is the length of the program?
The MS program takes 2-3 years to complete.

Is a thesis required?
Yes, all master’s students are required to complete and present a thesis project.

What are the requirements of a master’s thesis?
A master’s thesis involves the design of an original empirical study, data analysis, and a write-up of the study hypotheses and findings. The thesis must fulfill the requirements of the Graduate School, described in the Graduate Catalog.

What are some examples of former students’ thesis titles?

  • Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Demands and Fatigue: The Moderating Effects of Extraversion, Conscientiousness, and Neuroticism
  • Display Rules, Surface Acting, and Self-Monitoring: What Makes for a More Effective and Less Exhausted Employee?
  • Multitasking Under Stress: The Moderating Effect of Polychronicity in the Relationship Between Job Demands and Work Outcomes
  • Cultural Moderation of the Relationships between High-Performance Work Systems and Firm-Level Performance Outcomes
  • Should You Fake It till You Make It? How Climate of Authenticity, Self-Efficacy, and Personality Influence the Effects of Surface Acting
  • The Effect of Gender and Social Class on Work Values: Mediated by Person and Thing Orientation
  • Customer Service Performance: The Effects of Support, Emotion Regulation Strategy, and Empowerment
  • The Influence of Gender and Leadership Style on Follower Preferences

Will I have to take Comprehensive Exams?
No. You will not be required to take Comprehensive Exams to complete the program.

Is an internship required?
Yes, an essential component of graduate training in Applied Psychology is an internship experience, which provides students with an opportunity to apply their classroom training in an actual field setting and gain new skills.

Will I get help finding an internship and/or job after graduation?
Yes, the Internship Coordinator notifies students when local internships become available. Many students find internships where previous students interned/currently work. It is ultimately the responsibility of the student to obtain a job/internship, but the Internship Coordinator, Faculty Internship Advisor, and strong alumni network will be useful resources in your search.

What jobs do graduates typically pursue after graduation?
Recent graduates typically pursue work for public or private sector jobs, including both internal consulting (HR) or external consulting roles. The types of jobs that our alumni hold vary widely. We encourage you to explore the Alumni and Students page to learn more about where our students are employed.

Will this program prepare me for a PhD?
The MS is a terminal degree program, so MS students typically do not go into a Ph.D. program but rather enter the workforce after graduation. However, the Master’s program can prepare students for doctoral studies by providing a strong foundation in research methodology and quantitative analysis through research involvement and course work.

Are assistantships available to master’s students?
Yes, teaching and research assistantships have been typically available to most students.

Do students typically work while enrolled in the program?
Students do not typically work while enrolled, as this is a full-time program. Funding in the form of assistantships is typically available so that students can give their full attention to their graduate studies. Additionally, students complete an (oftentimes paid) internship over the summer between their first and second year.

What are the I-O classes like?
I-O classes have a seminar structure, unlike typical lecture-based classes. They are designed to be interactive and include student-led discussions. Typical course requirements may include assigned readings from research material, academic critiques, debates, presentations, group projects, papers, discussion leads, and more.

How can I get involved in research within the program? Do students work with specific faculty members?
Yes, upon admission to the program, each student is assigned a faculty research mentor. It is expected that the student will work in the mentor’s laboratory to gain research experience and to work toward development of a master’s thesis.

How many credits do I take each semester?
Each semester students take 2-4 classes and are enrolled in credits related to their research/thesis work. Here is an example of a typical course load for the first semester in the program.

  • PSY 600 Research Orientation (1 unit)
  • PSY 670A/670B or PSY 770A/770B Advanced Statistics (3 units)
  • PSY 621 Seminar in Personnel or Organizational Psychology (3 units)
  • PSY 630 Seminar in Organizational Research and Ethics (3 units)
  • PSY 797 Research (2-3 units)