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Last Updated: May 01, 2024

Best Psychology Schools in California

Psychology is a major that is widely sought after in the US because it fosters a deeper understanding of related areas and human behavior. There are several degree options available to students, including an associate's, bachelor's, master's, PhD, and PsyD.

One of the biggest states in the United States, California is home to a reputable, well-run network of institutions that offer programs in psychology. The sections below examine a few of the top universities for psychology.

Choosing the Best Psychology School

When choosing a psychology program at the university of their choice, candidates need to consider a lot of factors. The most important factors are the program's certification, the school's reputation, the caliber of education provided, and, in certain cases, the types of financial assistance the organization provides. Applicants will be able to compile a list of universities offering the program and specialization they require, and they can then utilize the tuition costs of those universities to reduce the number of options on their list.

Cost of Studying Psychology in California

In California, the cost of studying psychology depends on the kind of school and degree level a student is enrolled in. The cost of living in the state, whether or not they have to live on campus, the cost of transportation, etc. are other factors to take into account. Students can also evaluate the financial aid packages that the colleges that rank highest on their lists of preferred institutions offer. It generally results in a decreased cost of living. Depending on the individual's particular circumstances, other factors may alter.

10 Best Psychology Schools in California

InstitutionLocationIn-state Tuition FeesOut-of state Tuition Fees
Stanford UniversityStanfordUG-$21,000 annuallyG-$1,300 per unitUG-$21,000 annuallyG-$1,300 per unit
University of CaliforniaBerkeleyUG-$6,300 per semesterG-$6,200 per semesterUG-$6,300 per semesterG-$6,200 per semester
University of Southern CaliforniaLos AngelesUG-$34,000 per semesterG-$34,000 per semesterUG-$34,000 per semesterG-$34,000 per semester
University of CaliforniaLos AngelesUG-$13,000 annuallyG-$18,000 annuallyUG-$13,000 annuallyG-$34,000 annually
University of CaliforniaSan DiegoUG-$20,000 annuallyG-$19,000 annuallyUG-$55,000 annuallyG-$35,000 annually
University of CaliforniaSanta BarbaraUG-$14,000 annuallyG-$14,000 annuallyUG-$47,000 annuallyG-$29,000 annually
Pomona CollegeClaremontUG-$31,000 per semesterG-$31,000 per semesterUG-$31,000 per semesterG-$31,000 per semester
University of CaliforniaIrvineUG-$14,000 annuallyG-$20,000 annuallyUG-$47,000 annuallyG-$35,000 annually
San Diego State UniversitySan DiegoUG-$2,900 per termG-$3,600 per termUG-$400 per unitG-$400 per unit
California State UniversityLong BeachUG-$3,100 per semester G-$3,800 per semesterUG-$3,600 per semesterG-$4,300 per semester

Stanford University

The Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior College and Institution Commission has granted accreditation to Stanford University, a private research institution (WSCUC). The university provides students with about 200 graduate programs and about 65 undergraduate programs. The institution has a total research budget of $1.98 million with over 7,500 externally financed projects. For undergraduate students from households making less than $100,000 a year, the university pays for their tuition, housing, and board expenses. Psychology undergraduate and graduate programs are available at the university.

University of California - Berkeley

The University of California at Berkeley is a public land-grant research university that was the state's first land-grant university, the founding site of the University of California system, and a founding member of the Association of American Universities. The Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) has granted it complete accreditation. Six research topics are covered by the programs offered by the university's psychology department. Psychology degree programs at the university include bachelor's, master's, Ph.D., and PsyD.

University of California - Los Angeles

The University of California, a public land-grant research university, is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC). The university provides 115 online programs to specific universities throughout more than 40 nations. Over $1 billion is awarded to the institution for research. The university provides a wide range of financial aid to undergraduate students. Psychology undergraduate, graduate, and doctorate programs are available at the university.

University of Southern California

The University of Southern California is the oldest private research institution in California. It holds accreditation from the Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC), a division of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education has awarded the university a gold rating. In 2022-2023 a total of $814 million were awarded as financial aid. The university offers undergraduate, graduate, and doctorate programs in five different fields of psychology.

University of California - San Diego

With more than 100 research centers on campus, the University of California, San Diego is a public land-grant research university that is ranked among the top 20 research universities in the world. In 2023-2024, research was financed to the tune of about $1.80 billion. WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC) has granted the university accreditation. Undergraduate students at the university are eligible to receive up to $10,000 in scholarships annually. The university offers psychology PhD and bachelor's degree programs.

University of California - Santa Barbara

The University of California, Santa Barbara is a public land-grant research university that offers more than 200 majors, degrees, and credentials. It is one of just 69 research-intensive universities in the country. Ten national institutes and centers are located there, and it is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC). Donor scholarships totaling more than $4.5 million have been awarded to students. The program was ranked in the top 15% of psychology programs throughout the country by the National Research Council. Psychology undergraduate and graduate programs are available at the university.

Pomona College

As a member of Claremont schools, Pomona College is a private liberal arts college with accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Schools-Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC). Students can choose from about 650 courses and 48 majors offered by the college to pursue their chosen field of study. The college provides a range of financial aid options. This college offers a Ph.D. program in psychology science along with a number of other courses.

University of California - Irvine

The University of California at Irvine is a public land-grant university that is recognized by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Senior College, and University Commission (WSCUC) as one of the ten campuses of the University of California system. It is one of the 71 American and Canadian universities that have been chosen to join the esteemed Association of American Universities. Psychology undergraduate, graduate, and post-baccalaureate programs are offered by the university.

San Diego State University

San Diego University is a public research institution accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC) and numerous national organizations. There are more than 20 PhD programs and almost 100 disciplines of study available to students. The institution funds research with over $192 million. The doctorate program in clinical psychology is frequently rated as one of the greatest in the nation. Two undergraduates, two graduate, and one doctorate programs in psychology are available at the university.

California State University

The largest public university system in the country, California State University is recognized by ABET, CHEA, WSCUS, and the WASC Senior College and University Commission. About 4,000 undergraduate and graduate degrees, including online courses, are offered by the university. While attending the university, students are eligible for scholarships of up to $18,000. The institution grants degrees in several areas of psychology, including bachelor's, master's, and doctoral.

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