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Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Social Action

Offered Fully Online and In-Person

The bachelor's in psychology and social action from Palo Alto University is a degree completion program designed for students who have completed some college credits.

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The program empowers you to chart a fulfilling journey toward making a positive impact on the lives of individuals and communities. It also serves as a solid foundation for pursuing an advanced degree, opening up a world of possibilities for your future career path.

Why Transfer to PAU?

  • Affordable and accredited
  • Flexibility to choose the fully online format or in-person format
  • 80% graduation rate (compared to the 60% national average)
  • Transfer-friendly, with many transfer pathways
  • 45-year legacy of being at the forefront of psychology and counseling
  • Psychology programs with real-world relevance and applications

Who Should Consider the Psychology and Social Action Program?

The bachelor’s degree in psychology and social action is well-suited for students who have already completed some college credits and are interested in the human mind and social justice. While PAU's program is ideal for California Community College transfer students who have earned core credits from another institution, nontraditional students who have completed two years of college are encouraged to apply.

PAU's psychology and social action program may be even more valuable than a traditional psychology degree because it explores perspectives of human behavior and social issues that require a grasp of psychology and understanding individual behaviors in a social, cultural, ethnic, political, and economic context. 

The degree is ideal for attaining a rewarding entry-level position and helps working professionals expand their career opportunities. Our program also serves as the perfect stepping stone for those interested in a master's or doctoral degree in psychology.

Learn more about the program, and discover if it is right for you!

Delve Into the Human Mind Through Courses in Social Action and Psychology

Accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, the program combines foundational and advanced courses in psychology and social action, providing students with both the depth and breadth of study needed to master the key concepts of each subject. Courses in the program include:

  • Psychological writing
  • Psychology of learning and memory
  • Social psychology
  • Research design and methods
  • Psychology of gender
  • Cross-cultural psychology
  • Cultural anthropology
  • Ethnic identity and social stratification
  • Philosophy of ethics
  • Social problems
  • Theories of personality

The program offers online and on-campus courses, allowing students the flexibility to choose the learning option that best suits their circumstances. 

PAU students are also guaranteed a spot in their desired classes, with no waitlists or risk of being frozen out. This ensures they can always secure a place in the courses they want. Additionally, students can complete the BS in psychology and social action degree in just two years.

Palo Alto University is Transfer Honor Roll university
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Our Office of Admissions staff will assess your general education courses or elective units for credit, while the program faculty will evaluate your major courses for transfer credit.

Senior Internship Requirements

A nine-month senior internship provides practical experience in applying newly acquired skills at nonprofit or community agencies. The internship gives students experience with the practical applications of psychology and social action and helps them explore career options. Students may supplement their training through extracurricular opportunities and research projects with our graduate faculty.

Learn More About PAU Internships
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Online and In-Person Options

Courses in the psychology and social action bachelor’s degree program are offered both online (in “live” synchronous and recorded asynchronous sessions) and on campus during the day. Whether you need the adaptability of online learning or want the in-person college experience, our offerings uniquely position us to help you earn your degree without compromising your work schedule.

Learn More About Class Formats


To be eligible for the BS in psychology and social action program, students must have completed 84 quarter units of transferable coursework and must submit the following materials:

  • Completed online application
  • Unofficial transcripts (official transcripts required upon enrollment)
  • Statement of purpose
  • Completion of: Introduction to Psychology or higher, Intermediate Algebra or higher, most general education requirements

Learn more about admissions by visiting the undergraduate admissions page.


Lenard Admissions
Lenard Wilson, Associate Director of Admissions
Tania Romero Headshot
Tania Romero, Senior Admissions Counselor

What Can You Do With a Psychology Bachelor’s Degree?


As a versatile degree strongly grounded in social justice, a bachelor's in psychology can serve as a valuable foundation for a wide variety of career paths. PAU’s Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Social Action program equips graduates with the skills to pursue careers in psychology, law, education, or business.

Mental Health Professional
Social Worker
Human Resources or Customer Service
Marketing or Sales Professional

Additionally, our program prepares students for graduate studies in psychology, social work, law, and related fields. Career opportunities include:

PAU Psychology and Social Action Student Spotlight

Sheila Park
Sheila Park, BS in Psychology and Social Action, Class of 2020

Why PAU? "When I took my first psychology class in community college, it really resonated with me. Psychology encompassed an empathetic understanding of helping others, and it had scientific appeal. When deciding between Palo Alto University (PAU) and a UC school, it was ultimately PAU’s two-year cohort model and quality graduate psychology program that really made a difference for me."

Francesca Pedraza
PAU Undergrad Francesca Pedraza Will Advocate for Students Statewide

Pedraza is a single mother and a senior in the Psychology and Social Action Program interested in advocacy and leadership. “I am eager to walk the path of leadership with ICCAP and to learn skills that will allow me to grow into the leader and advocate I aspire to be and be the voice representing those that do not have one.”

Kick-Start Your Career With PAU’s BS in Psychology and Social Action

PAU 2022 Commencement Student Photo

Become an agent of social change by completing your bachelor’s degree in psychology and social action at Palo Alto University!