15 Best Bachelor's Degrees in Psychology

Explore the best bachelor's degrees in psychology and learn what it will take to earn your degree.

Updated August 16, 2023

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Psychology is a broad field covering behavior, neuroscience, cognition, human development, and more. Students interested in the mind and why people act the way they do may consider earning their bachelor's degree in psychology.

Graduates can go on to advanced study in psychology or branch off and apply to law school, medical school, or even business school. Those who stay in the field can earn a median salary of $81,040 as a psychologist, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

For those thinking of majoring in psychology, it is important to consider the degree and the curriculum. For example, some schools offer both a bachelor of arts and a bachelor of science. A BA allows students to take more electives in the humanities, while a BS focuses more on applied psychology and research methods.

Bachelor's in Psychology Quick Facts

  • Credits Required: 120 credits
  • Completion Time: Four years
  • Average Cost: $9,596/year (public) or $34,041/year (private), according to the National Center for Education Statistics
  • Admission Requirements: High school diploma, standardized test scores, minimum GPA, admission essay
  • Key Skills Learned: Scientific reasoning; integrative thinking and problem-solving; interpreting, designing, and conducting research; teamwork and effective communication

Popular Online Psychology Programs

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

FAQ Section: Questions About Psychology Degrees

What are the different degrees in psychology?

You can pursue a psychology degree at the associate, bachelor's, master's, and doctorate levels.

How many psychology degrees are there?

While there are four levels of psychology degrees, students can also pursue many specialties. Options include clinical, counseling, and school psychology.

Is an online bachelor's in psychology worth it?

A bachelor's in psychology may be worth it if you have a strong interest in the mind and human behavior. A bachelor's degree in psychology can prepare you for counseling careers and advanced study.

What can you do with a bachelor's degree in psychology?

You can work as a counselor if you have a bachelor's degree in psychology. You can also work in marketing, social work, or education. To become a psychologist, you must complete a graduate degree in psychology.

How long does it take to complete a psychology degree online?

A typical bachelor's degree takes four years to complete online. A master's degree in psychology typically requires two years of study.

Career and Salary Outlook for Psychology

Earning a degree in psychology can prepare you to enter counseling. You can also work in marketing, research, or teaching. To become a psychologist, you must earn a master's degree and often a doctorate.

  • Psychologist: A psychologist can work with clients or for a company. Psychologists who work directly with clients to develop treatment plans. Other psychologists may work in research and conduct studies to expand the field. Psychologists need a master's degree to work with organizations, but most roles require a doctorate.
  • Marriage and Family Therapist: Therapists in marriage and family counseling typically work with clients to resolve conflicts. Their daily tasks can involve recommending outside resources. To become a therapist, you need a master's degree and a state license.
  • Substance Misuse, Behavioral Disorder, or Mental Health Counselor: Working as a counselor varies depending on your organization or the type of counseling. Typically, mental health counselors recommend or develop treatment plans for clients. They also record a client's progress through treatment. Education requirements vary by employer.
Career and Salary Outlook
Career Median Annual Salary Projected Growth Rate (2021-2031)
Psychologist $81,040 6%
Marriage and Family Therapist $49,880 14%
Substance Misuse, Behavioral Disorder, and Mental Health Counselor $48,520 22%

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Top Psychology School Rankings


15. Columbia University

  • Location: New York, NY
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
  • Score: 84.6

Ranked No. 3 for National Universities and No. 6 for Best Value Schools by U.S. News and World Report, Columbia University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. In this program, students complete three foundational courses, which include The Science of Psychology, a statistics course, and a research methods course. They must also take courses in the areas of perception and cognition, psychobiology and neuroscience, and social, personality, and abnormal psychology. Additionally, the psychology department is home to its own honors program for psychology and neuroscience and behavior majors. Students can also get involved with research by volunteering in a lab, working with a faculty member, participating in a study, or through other work-study and paid positions on campus. In total, students must complete 30 points of psychology coursework.

Net Price: $22,824

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14. University Of Minnesota - Twin Cities

  • Location: Minneapolis, MN
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Psychology
  • Score: 84.7

The University of Minnesota-Twin Cities allows students to complete either a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. The BA requires four semesters of a foreign language and values interdisciplinary study. On the other hand, the BS focuses more on the science side of the field while incorporating subjects such as quantitative psychology, neuroscience, computer science, biology, chemistry, and mathematics. Both programs have a minimum of 36 credits required in psychology, but the BS also has 18 credits of outside foundational courses. Outside of the classroom, students can become involved in a variety of research and internship opportunities. They can also join organizations like the Psychology International Student Association and Industrial-Organizational Psychology Club. Finally, students can also study abroad in places like Spain, England, and Thailand.

Net Price: $16,808

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13. University Of Michigan

  • Location: Ann Arbor, MI
  • Degree: Bachelor of Science in Psychology
  • Score: 85.3

Students completing their Bachelor of Science in Psychology at the University of Michigan benefit from the university’s holistic approach to the field. In this program, students can take part in research opportunities to prepare them for graduate school, have a lively on-campus experience with their classmates through student organizations, and prepare for careers in the field. The University of Michigan also connects students with internship opportunities through the institutions’ Department of Psychology and universities in, both, Pittsburgh and Glasgow, Scotland. Additionally, all students can take advantage of a research lab immersion experience, Research Methods in Brain, Behavior, and Cognitive Science

Net Price: $16,408

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12. Carnegie Mellon University

  • Location: Pittsburgh, PA
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Psychology
  • Score: 85.3

Carnegie Mellon University has both a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology. The BA requires 15 courses, including two science courses and a computer programming class. The BS has students take 17 courses, two of which involve additional science classes. Regardless of which degree they choose to complete, students can choose a concentration within a specific area of psychology. The options include Developmental Psychology, Social Psychology, Cognitive Psychology, and Cognitive Neuroscience. Carnegie Mellon also emphasizes research and provides its students with the foundations necessary to research in the field of psychology.

Net Price: $29,817

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11. The University Of Texas At Austin

  • Location: Austin, TX
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Psychology
  • Score: 85.5

The University of Texas at Austin allows students to finish either a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science in Psychology based on their post-graduate interests. The 120-credit BS is designed for students working toward a medical or health-related degree, where these students complete 25 hours of natural science and math courses. The BA prepares students for upper-level study in psychology, as well as for careers in law or business. That program also requires intermediate proficiency in a foreign language. Additionally, students in both programs can join the departmental honors program, which allows them to do an independent research project. Students can also study abroad in countries such as South Korea, Austria, Denmark, South Africa, and Peru.

Net Price: $14,356

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10. University Of Wisconsin - Madison

  • Location: Madison, WI
  • Degree: Bachelor of Science in Psychology
  • Score: 85.8

The University of Wisconsin-Madison draws from all areas of the field through its Bachelor of Science in Psychology. Students must complete 120 credits at the institution, 33 of which are in psychology-specific courses. In working through the degree, they receive a breadth of knowledge in the biological, clinical, cognitive, developmental, and social areas of psychology before taking depth-oriented courses. These include courses like Hormones, Brain, and Behavior, The Structure of Human Thought: Concepts, Language and Culture, and How We Read: The Science of Reading and Its Educational Implications. Students can also get involved with the Psychology Club or with the Psi Chi Honor Society.

Net Price: $15,910

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9. Vanderbilt University

  • Location: Nashville, TN
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
  • Score: 85.8

Students at Vanderbilt University can complete their Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. This program requires 36 of psychology-specific coursework, unless a student is in the honors program, in which case a student must complete 42 credit hours of psychology classes. This includes classes like Learning and Memory, Behavioral Decision-making, Spatial Cognition, and Brain Damage and Cognition. In the end, students must take and pass a comprehensive exam. Additionally, students can gain valuable research experience as a research assistant in a lab. Vanderbilt also allows students to earn a combined BA/Master of Arts in Psychology in five years.

Net Price: $23,295

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8. Indiana University Bloomington

  • Location: Bloomington, IN
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Psychology
  • Score: 86.9

Indiana University Bloomington offers, both, a Bachelor of Arts and Science in Psychology. Each program requires 120 credits of study to graduate, which includes the liberal arts curriculum and the psychology-specific courses. The BS is more science-heavy than the BA, and so students can choose between the two between their areas of interest. Students can also earn certificates in clinical psychological science, the psychology of business, and neuroscience. IU also requires a focus area outside of the major, allowing students to gain experience and knowledge on an additional topic that interests them.

Net Price: $12,488

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7. University of Illinois - Urbana Champaign

  • Location: Champaign, IL
  • Degree: Bachelor of Science in Psychology
  • Score:

The University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign allows students to complete their undergraduate studies to finish a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. This program requires 32 to 36 credit hours of psychology courses. In completing this coursework, students can choose from a variety of concentrations, including Diversity Science, Clinical, Community Psychology, Behavioral Neuroscience, Personality Psychology, and Intradisciplinary Psychology, among others. Additionally, students can earn college credit in exchange for their time working via internships. Some past internships have included the Alliance for Human Services, Orleans Public Defenders, and the Elgin Mental Health Center. Students can also commit to a year-long community project.

Net Price: $16,638

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6. University of California at Los Angeles

  • Location: Los Angeles, CA
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
  • Score: 88.1

The University of California at Los Angeles offers a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology that requires 10 courses. This includes courses like Brain, Mind, and Motion Pictures, Integration of Face and Brain, Brain Bugs: Understanding BRain through Its Flaws, and the Psychology of Sleep and Dreams. Students can also complete fieldwork courses to get hands-on experience interning in the community. The department also has several research opportunities, including a research assistantship program, and the UCLA Psychology Undergraduate Research Conference. Students can also publish their work in the UCLA Undergraduate Psychology Journal and the Undergraduate Science Journal.

Net Price: $14,760

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5. Duke University

  • Location: Durham, NC
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Psychology
  • Score: 90.3

Duke University has both a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. The BA requires 11 psychology courses while the BS needs 14, including and two additional natural sciences courses. Some of these classes include the Psychology of Gender, Self and Society, Relationships across the Lifespan; Behavior and Neurochemistry; and Looking Inside the Disordered Brain. Duke is also home to Child Studies lab, focusing on learning about how children develop and learn, and where students gain valuable experience volunteering within these spaces. Additionally, Duke is ranked as #8 in National Universities, according to U.S. News and World Report.

Net Price: $22,011

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4. University of Pennsylvania

  • Location: Philadelphia, PA
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
  • Score: 91.2

Students can earn their Bachelor of Arts in Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania. In this program, students complete 33 credit hours toward their major, including psychology, statistics, and research courses. If they are high-achieving, they can complete an additional statistics class in addition to two honors seminars as seniors. Students can also participate in research, and some of the research areas of faculty members include animal learning and behavior, behavior and cognitive neuroscience, evolutionary psychology, psychopathology and psychotherapy, and social and cultural psychology. Additionally, UPenn has been ranked as #12 on U.S. News and World Report’s Best Values Schools list.

Net Price: $24,539

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3. University of California - Berkeley

  • Location: Berkeley, CA
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
  • Score: 93.8

At the University of California at Berkeley, students can finish their Bachelor of Arts in Psychology in a program that offers insight into human behavior, prepares them for a variety of post-graduate educational opportunities, and provides a foundation for psychological study. Over four years, students complete 121 credits of study. Additionally, students can study abroad during their time at UC Berkeley or take part in an independent research project. They also benefit from the wide variety of research areas in which faculty members specialize, including behavior and systems neuroscience, clinical science, cognition, cognitive neuroscience, developmental, and social personality. UC Berkeley also maintains an active list of internships with other universities in the California state system as well as private institutions and business likes Kaiser Permanente and Stanford University.

Net Price: $18,178

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2. Harvard University

  • Location: Cambridge, MA
  • Degree: Bachelor of Science in Psychology
  • Score: 96.5

Harvard University allows students to complete a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. Students on the traditional track can do so through 12 courses while students who wish to do a thesis will take 14 courses. There are also three concentrations students can choose between in this degree. The first is a general track, which covers a wide variety of psychology-based subjects. The second is the cognitive science track, and the third is the cognitive neuroscience and evolutionary psychology track. Additionally, students can take advantage of research opportunities at several different labs on and off campus. Harvard is also ranked #2 on National Universities and #2 in Best Value Schools by U.S. News and World Report.

Net Price: $17,030

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1. Stanford University

  • Location: Stanford, CA
  • Degree: Bachelor of Science in Psychology
  • Score: 100.00

At the top of this list is Stanford University, where students can earn their Bachelor of Science in Psychology. The degree program requires 70 units of coursework, and include several foundational courses introducing students to the breadth of their field. They can also choose to specialize. The four specialization tracks are as follows: cognitive sciences, health and development, mind, culture, and society, and neuroscience. There is also an honors program within the department for high-achieving students. Outside of the classroom, Stanford undergraduates can complete independent research and/or spend the summer collaborating with a faculty member on a research project. Additionally, they can join the Stanford University Psychology Association.

Net Price: $16,562

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