How Fast Can You Get a Psychology Degree Online?

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Jobs in psychology are growing due to the increasing awareness of mental health.

How Fast Can You Get a Psychology Degree Online?

It may be a great career choice for those interested in learning about human behavior and making a difference in people’s lives.

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The timeline for obtaining a psychology degree online depends on several factors, including your specific program, the level of the degree, and your dedication to studying. Here are a few things to consider:

Associate’s Degree in Psychology

student taking Associate’s Degree in Psychology online

Typically, the fastest online degrees for psychology are associate degrees. These can usually be completed in 2 years of full-time study.

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Some online programs have accelerated options, which can potentially allow you to finish your studies in 18 months. Accelerated programs allow students to take more classes at once or offer shorter, intensive terms.

Career opportunities that may be pursued with an associate degree in psychology include:

  • Psychiatric nursing assistants
  • Addiction rehabilitation assistants
  • Support roles in social and human services

These are just some of the entry-level careers that may be pursued with an associate degree.

Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology

student taking Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology online

A bachelor’s degree can traditionally be completed in 4 years of full-time study. This timeline can often be accelerated with online programs if you take more courses per semester.

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You can potentially finish an online degree early, perhaps in as little as 3 years! With a bachelor’s degree in psychology, you may pursue careers in:

  • Case management
  • Mental health
  • Human resources
  • Marketing

This degree is also the minimum requirement for entry into most graduate programs in psychology.

Master’s Degree in Psychology

licensed counselor taking Master’s Degree in Psychology online

A master’s degree typically requires 2 years of full-time study beyond the bachelor’s degree. Taking an accelerated program can increase how fast you get a master’s degree online, potentially allowing you to earn your degree in 1 to 1.5 years.

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Like a bachelor’s degree, many online master’s programs can be accelerated by taking more courses per term or choosing an accelerated program.

Many positions in psychology, particularly those in leadership or independent practice, require at least a master’s degree. This includes roles like:

  • Licensed counselors
  • Clinical psychologists
  • Organizational consultants

A master’s program can also allow you to focus on a specific area of psychology, such as clinical psychology, industrial-organizational psychology, or forensic psychology.

How to Complete Your Psychology Degree as Early as Possible

student taking psychology degree classes online
If you are excited to get out into the workforce and start helping people, then you may wish to complete your psychology degree as quickly as possible. Here are a few ways you may be able to earn your degree faster.

Maximize Your Course Load

Maximizing your course load requires careful planning. It’s important to understand your degree requirements and plan your courses accordingly. Some classes are prerequisites for others, so you’ll need to take them first.

Similarly, some courses are only offered during certain terms, so you need to account for that.

If your school offers summer or winter sessions, you may consider taking one or two classes during that period. These terms often provide condensed versions of courses and can be a great way to complete required courses or electives faster.

Don’t Delay Research

online psychology research projects

Research is vital to a psychology degree, often entailing a thesis or small-scale project. It will likely be necessary to start early with your project ideas, utilizing online methods like surveys or interviews, and regularly check in with your supervisor.

You may wish to consider participating in online psychology research projects, collecting data through digital surveys, interviews, or assessments. As an online student, you may be able to help administer these studies, as well as gather and analyze data.

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Some universities offer virtual research assistantships. In these, you may get the opportunity to assist professors with tasks like:

  • Literature reviews
  • Data collection
  • Data analysis
  • Publication processes

It can also be a great idea to network with professors and peers to learn about online research opportunities.

Complete Statistics Courses Early On

psychology student taking statistics class

It’s important not to delay completing your required statistics courses because they’re often prerequisites for other necessary classes. Statistics in psychology is used to analyze research data, summarize findings, and inform study design, such as determining the needed sample size.

Various psychology careers, like clinical, neuropsychology, or industrial-organizational psychology, require the practical application of statistics. Even in non-research jobs, understanding statistics is a vital skill that can help you comprehend research studies in your field.

Transfer Credits

If you’ve attended another college or university, it can be very beneficial to make sure to transfer as many credits as possible. You’ll need to submit official transcripts from your previous institutions to the online program you’re applying to.

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The credits you hope to transfer should match the course descriptions of the classes required for your online psychology degree. You might also be able to earn credit for Advanced Placement (AP) courses taken in high school, as well as CLEP or DSST exams.

Next Steps

student obtaining his psychology degree online

Are you considering a future in psychology? With decades of experience, My College Guide can assist in your college selection by providing information on costs, a school’s major strengths, faculty ratio, and accreditation.

To find out more, you can visit our website today!

Ready to start your journey?
Isaac Scott
WRITTEN BY Isaac Scott

Isaac has a Master of Business Administration in Strategic Management and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. His primary focus is accredited schools offering degrees online or in a hybrid format.