Graduate Schools for Industrial Psychology: How to Choose

Industrial psychology involves bringing scientific psychological practices into the workplace. Prospective students are typically required to have a bachelor's degree in psychology or a related field. Graduate studies include master's and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree programs.

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Industrial-organizational psychology is the scientific study of the workplace; professionals in this field apply psychological principles to a company's procedures to increase efficiency. Specializations within industrial-organizational psychology graduate programs include organizational psychology, which focuses on the group processes within an organization, and personnel psychology, which focuses on the relationship between the organization and the individual.

10 Schools with Industrial-Organizational Psychology Programs

Some of the top schools offering relevant programs are:

College/University Location Institution Type Degrees Offered Tuition 2015-2016*
Michigan State University East Lansing, Michigan 4-year, Public Doctorate In-state: $16,122, Out-of-state: $31,674 Fees: $0
University of Minnesota-Twin Cities Minneapolis, Minnesota 4-year, Public Doctorate In-state: $15,844 Out-of-state: $24,508 fees: $1,445
Bowling Green State University Bowling Green, Ohio 4-year, Public Doctorate In-state: $7,632 Out-of-state: $13,284 Fees: $1,364
University of South Florida Tampa, Florida 4-year, Public Doctorate In-state: $8,350 Out-of-state: $19,047 Fees: $2,078
Angelo State University San Angelo, Texas 4-year, Public Master's In-state: $3,726 Out-of-state $10,746 Fees: $2,538
Appalachian State University Boone, North Carolina 4-year, Public Master's In-state: $4,518 Out-of-state: $17,060 Fees: $2,891
Austin Peay State University Clarksville, Tennessee 4-year, Public Master's In-state: $8,080 Out-of-state: $21,680 Fees: $1,453
Central Michigan University Mount Pleasant, Michigan 4-year, Public Master's, Doctorate In-state: $11,770 Out-of-state: $17,600 Fees: $0
Clemson University Clemson, South Carolina 4-year, Public Doctorate In-state: $8,404 Out-of-state: $17,590 Fees: $816
Colorado State University-Fort Collins Fort Collins, Colorado 4-year, Public Master's, Doctorate In-state: $9,348 Out-of-state: $22,916 Fees: $2,009

*Source: National Center of Education Statistics

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School Selection Criteria

When choosing a graduate program in industrial psychology, prospective students may want to consider the opportunities for relevant laboratory and field research offered by a school, as well as professional affilations and flexibility.

  • State-of-the-art research facilities and affiliations with local and national businesses, government agencies and consulting organizations may offer students the best opportunities to gain relevant educational and occupational experience.
  • A prospective student may want to look for programs endorsed by the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP) of the American Psychological Association (APA).
  • An advisory board of working professionals can help to ensure an up-to-date curriculum and education for students.
  • Some programs are designed for working students and offer online or evening classes, and allow for full or part-time enrollment.

Master of Science in Industrial-Organizational Psychology

Master's degree programs in this field of study tend to be highly research-oriented, with students conducting surveys and analyzing data in relevant fields. Required coursework includes classes in clinical psychology.

Ph.D. in Industrial Psychology

Students can expect focused studies covering the application of advanced research methods and analysis to data relevant to the subject of a chosen dissertation. Some schools also require students to gain teaching experience and complete a portfolio of relevant work. Fieldwork experiences are also commonly required.

There are a number of schools in the U.S. that offer graduate programs in industrial-organizational psychology. When selecting an institution, students should consider the amount of research opportunities, professional alliances, advisory boards and flexibility.

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