M.S. in Psychology
FAQs & Tuition/Fees
Click here to learn more about Palo Alto University’s Distance Learning Program for 2012-2013
Q: What are the total tuition and fees for the program?
A: For the academic year 2013-14 tuition is charged at a flat rate of $5,723 per quarter (excluding Summer) and fees are charged at a flat rate of $366 per quarter (including Summer). The total tuition and fees for the 46 unit program comes to $36,903. Because Palo Alto University has adopted tuition stabilization once you are in the program, tuition and fees will not be raised. In addition to tuition and fees, students are responsible for textbooks, test proctoring, and travel expenses to the 1-week Summer Clinical Interviewing intensive in Palo Alto, California.
Q. What can I do when I graduate?
A. Check out our Career Opportunities page for more information on the wealth of opportunities available to recipients of Palo Alto University’s M.S. in Psychology.
Q. Can I see patients with the M.S. in Psychology?
A. Generally, no. This degree is not designed for people who want a master’s degree in order to see patients or clients. If you are interested in doing clinical work as a mental health counselor in child, family, forensic or correctional setting, we offer our master’s degree program in counseling, which also can be completed online.
Q. Can I participate in the program from outside the United States?
A. Absolutely. The program happens where you live. We currently have (or have had) students from across the US, Canada, Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, and South America. Because much of the work is asynchronous, differences in location are not much of a problem. It only becomes an issue when we schedule synchronous activities (e.g., chat rooms). At that point we find times that work for students wherever they live.
Q. How do the online classes work?
A. Many of the courses use PowerPoint slides accompanied by lecture notes. A number of classes have an audio track so you can listen to the instructor as well. Readings for the classes are from texts or articles that are available on the course website in Adobe Acrobat format. Many classes also use threaded discussion groups to provide a way for students to discuss course materials with each other. Finally, chat rooms or conference calls are used to provide a forum for students to ask questions of the professor or TA. We now use the GoToMeeting technology that allows the instructor to show his/her computer screen to all students simultaneously. This allows the class to talk in a conference call while viewing the same materials. For more information, check out our Program Format page.
Q. What kind of computer and Internet connection will I need?
A. Students need access to a computer with a Web connection for this to work. It is strongly recommended that you have a fairly powerful PC computer with a DSL or cable modem connection, in addition to a headset with a microphone to join synchronous discussions. Students can get by with dial-up modems, but it will slow you down a great deal as there is a lot of information to download over the course of the program.
Q. Will I need to travel to Palo Alto at any point during the program?
A. Yes. During the summer after the first year, typically in late July, students are required to travel to Palo Alto for a one-week intensive course in Clinical Interviewing.
Q. Do I need a Bachelor’s degree in psychology to apply?
A. No. You only must be a graduate of an accredited undergraduate institution. For students coming from a non-psychology background, there are four courses that are prerequisites: developmental psychology, physiological psychology, personality or abnormal psychology, and statistics. Many students come to psychology from other fields and might not have all the prerequisites, so we offer the ability to take these four courses online in Palo Alto University’s Bachelor program as a non-matriculated student. For more application requirements, please check out our Admissions page.
Q. Is financial aid available?
A. Yes. You will need to apply through the financial aid office to see what you are eligible for. Although financial aid is not available in the form of scholarships, most students are eligible for student loans as long as they are enrolled in six units per quarter. Because it is an online program financial aid is available for tuition and fees, but does not cover living expenses.