Top 20 Online Master’s Programs in Clinical Psychology

Last Updated: January 30, 2020

The field of psychology is ever-growing, as is the need for professionally trained counselors. Mental illness can feel like an uphill battle for so many, it is essential there are clinical psychologists who can field patient challenges. One way clinical therapists advance their degree is by earning an online master's in clinical psychology.

The following ranking represents the top 20 online master's degrees in clinical psychology. These graduate degree programs were selected through research on the key elements of a strong master's degree online in this field.

In determining the order of this ranking, we awarded points based on:

  • Range of online courses in clinical psychology (1-5 points)
  • Presence of multiple clinical psychology specialization options (1-4 points)
  • Scholar-level faculty in clinical psychology (1-3 points)
  • Quality of online classroom environment (1-3 points)
  • Recognition from respected education publications and/or recent alumni (1-3 points)
  • An additional point was awarded for noteworthy features that made it a top online clinical psychology program

In the event of a tie in points, the school with the lower net price appears higher in the ranking

Tuition data was sourced from each college's official website.

The following list of ranked colleges represents the top 20 online master's degrees in clinical psychology.

#20 – Northcentral University

Online Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Program Website

Points: 13
Program Tuition: $450.00 per credit-hourAn entirely online education, Northcentral University has a 100% doctoral-level faculty. This school is highly student-centered, offering a "one-to-one learning model" in every course. For those pursuing a master's in clinical psychology online, there is an MA in marriage and family therapy; this degree has specialization options in child and adolescent therapy, couple therapy, LGBTQ family therapy, medical family therapy, and military family therapy. Typically, the online master's in psychology is completed in 33 months, though this may vary for different students' needs. Graduate psychology students complete coursework online, and practicum/internship hours on-site in an approved facility.

#19 – Lamar University

M.Ed. in Clinical Health Counseling Online

Program Website

Points: 13
Program Tuition: $275.00 per credit-hour Established nearly a century ago, Lamar-University is a large, Texas-based school. Lamar offers a challenging online M.Ed. in clinical health counseling; this degree is based in both classroom and hands-on clinical practice with patients. Among the online clinical psychology courses include foundations of clinical mental health counseling, family therapy, group counseling, multicultural counseling, abnormal human behavior, and much more. Lamar's graduate tuition is highly affordable, and there are multiple grants, scholarships, and other types of aid for assistance.

#18 – Wake Forest University

Online Master of Counseling

Program Website

Points: 14
Program Tuition: $1,340.00 per credit-hourA respected private school, Wake Forest University has a 10:1 student-to-faculty ratio and diverse faculty. WFU's counseling department is well-received by both current and previous students, and there is an online component that provides the same great education. Wake Forest's online master's in clinical mental health counseling is a 60-credit degree program; this comprehensive graduate degree encompasses mental and emotional disorders, professional and legal issues, ethics, appraisal counseling, drug addiction, and other relevant curriculum areas. Online clinical psychology students are required to complete a professional identity capstone course, practicum, and internship. Additionally, Wake Forest's clinical counseling graduates have a high pass-rate on subsequent exams.

#17 – Edinboro University of Pennsylvania

Master of Arts degree in Adlerian Counseling and Psychotherapy Online

Program Website

Points: 14
Program Tuition: $575.00 per credit-hourA widely-renowned academic community, Edinboro University of Pennsylvania welcomes students from around the world. This school's graduate distance-learning program includes an online MA in counseling; this program includes multiple concentration options, among them including clinical mental health. The online clinical psychology program is led by accomplished faculty, 90% of which hold terminal degrees in the field. In addition to core and specialized coursework, clinical psychology students complete a final exam, master's thesis project, and 600-hour internship. Edinboro extends career development resources to both on-campus and online students; this service works closely with each student's career goals beyond graduation.

#16 – Lock Haven University

MS in Clinical Mental Health Counseling Online

Program Website

Points: 15
Program Tuition: $750.00 per credit-hourA respected institution with small class sizes, Lock Haven University maintains a personalized, student-centered community. Lock Haven has an online master's in clinical mental counseling, a 60-credit degree that attracts high-achieving students and faculty; this master's degree incorporates key field topics such as addiction counseling, research and program evaluation, diagnosis and treatment planning, counseling, and much more. LHU's clinical mental health counseling degree also includes a 100-hour practicum, and 600-hour internship; each student is assigned an internship coordinator to assist in the process of site approval and other requirements.

#15 – Fort Hays University

Online Master of Science in Counseling

Program Website

Points: 15
Program Tuition: $561.00 per credit-hourA 20 year-old online school, Fort Hays University welcomes distance-learning students from around the world. Fort Hays has a long list of degree options, among them including an online MS in clinical mental health counseling; this clinical psychology degree requires 60 credit-hours and a maintained 3.0 GPA. FHU has an accommodating course rotation calendar, assuring all interested graduate students are able to find the needed range of curriculum; some of this curriculum includes community counseling, ethical issues, human development, psychopathology, diagnosis, and much more. It is important to note that there is a brief residency requirement for the online clinical counseling master's; this requirement can be filled over two weekends or four consecutive days in the summer.

#14 – California Southern University

Online MS in Psychology

Program Website

Points: 15
Program Tuition: $495.00 per credit-hourDesigned especially for the adult learner, California Southern University is a 100% online education. CSU prides itself in providing engaging, dynamic academic programs that can fit into any student's schedule. This college's online MS in psychology is versatile in its specialization options; among these online clinical psychology options include sports psychology, pastoral counseling, chemical dependency, general, or industrial psychology. Graduates of these psychology degrees are well-versed in critical thinking, multi-cultural perspectives, communication, scientific reasoning, and other key industry skills. Nearly all of CSU's behavior sciences faculty hold the highest degrees in their field areas.

#13 – Medaille College

Master's in Clinical Mental Health Counseling Online

Program Website

Points: 16
Program Tuition: $955.00 per credit-hourFounded in 1875, Medaille College is a small, well-respected school based in Buffalo, New York. Medaille has extensive higher degree options, many of which available via distance learning. Among the distance-learning degrees include an online master of arts in clinical mental health counseling; this 60-credit degree has a fixed sequence of 17 seven-week classes, all of which has work that can done around each student's schedule. Graduate of the online master's in clinical psychology pursue careers as private practice therapists, mental health clinic counselors, substance abuse counselors, and other related roles.

#12 – Regent University

Online MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling

Program Website

Points: 16
Program Tuition: $710.00 per credit-hourConsidered one of the top Christian schools, Regent University has an ever-growing number of academic opportunities. Students seeking an advanced degree in psychology can enroll in an MA in clinical mental health counseling; this 60-credit program encompasses courses in the counseling profession, research and statistics, treatment planning, ethics, family systems, and much more. Clinical psychology students complete their degree with practicum and supervised internship hours. Regent's psychology curriculum has a Bible-based perspective, considering faith as a component of clinical counseling.

#11 – University of West Alabama

M.S. Clinical Mental Health Counseling Online

Program Website

Points: 16
Program Tuition: $429.00 per credit-hourA diverse academic community, University of West Alabama serves both the traditional and non-traditional learner. UWA's online MS in clinical mental health counseling, a 60-credit degree program, is both affordable and comprehensive in its curriculum. Online psychology students complete coursework in crisis intervention, research, program evaluation, group counseling, diagnostic techniques, and other relevant field areas. Graduates of the clinical psychology degree are prepared for careers in multiple settings, among them include private practice, behavioral health care, community agencies, behavioral health care, and substance abuse treatment centers.

#10 – Southern New Hampshire University

Online Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling

Program Website

Points: 17
Program Tuition: $627.00 per credit-hourSouthern New Hampshire University is an award-winning school, recently named a "Best Regional University" by U.S. News and World Report. SNHU is popular with adult distance learners, in part due to its excellent virtual classroom technology. This college offers an online masters in clinical mental health counseling, a program that delivers skills in numerous areas of the field; the clinical psychology master's is led by expert faculty, all of whom with national recognition. The online clinical psychology degree holds curriculum in human development, diversity in counseling, group counseling, program evaluation, and more. SNHU has engaged alumni members, many of whom provide internship and job prospects.

#9 – Capella University

Online MS in Clinical Psychology

Program Website

Points: 17
Program Tuition: $600.00A long-trusted name in academia, Capella University has a broad range of award-winning degree options. Capella's graduate offerings include a master of science in clinical psychology; this degree blends core and specialization courses, electives, three residencies, and two practicum programs. Capella's clinical psychology degree is designed to produce well-rounded clinical professionals who are ready for real-world practice. For students who wish to test Capella's online portal, there is a free sample course available for enrollment.

#8 – Bellevue University

Master of Science in Clinical Counseling Online

Program Website

Points: 18
Program Tuition: $575.00 per credit-hour A mid-size, non-profit college, Bellevue University offers degrees to career-driven students. Bellevue has an online master of science in clinical counseling, a program that fully prepares graduates for their national licensing exam; this online clinical psychology degree combines core foundational topics, advanced curriculum, electives, a 100-hour practicum, a 600-hour clinical internship, and more. Graduates of the online clinical counseling master's are prepared or long-term careers in field; this is largely due to a multi-perspective, well-rounded degree experience.

#7 – (removed by editor)


#6 – Palo Alto University

Master's Degree in Psychology Online

Program Website

Points: 19
Program Tuition: $542.00 per credit-hourFounded in 1975 as a graduate school of psychology, Palo Alto University has since largely expanded its academic offerings. This school's master's in psychology online is a part-time degree, typically completed within two years; this program has received accolades for its curriculum quality, flexibility, and low-tuition rates. Graduates of the online psychology master's often go on to Palo Alto's Ph.D. program. A noteworthy requirement of online psychology students is a one-week residency at the Palo Alto California Campus.

#5 – West Virginia University

Online Master of Science in Clinical Rehabilitation & Mental Health Counseling

Program Website

Points: 20
Program Tuition: $561.00 per credit-hour An affordable school with high-achieving graduates, West Virginia University is on numerous "best of" lists. The distance learning division continues to expand, now offering over 30 degrees and 600 courses; this division is home to an online MS in clinical psychology, a program based in clinical rehabilitation and mental health counseling. The 63-credit clinical master's prepares future counselors for careers in mental health and substance abuse, occupational therapy, marriage and family therapist, school guidance counselor, and related specializations. Regardless of residency, West Virginia charges the same tuition rate for online students.

#4 – University of Louisiana

Online MS Degree in Counseling: Clinical Mental Health Counseling

Program Website

Points: 20
Program Tuition: $500.00 per credit-hourAn innovative, modern institution, University of Louisiana has rigorous academics and top-notch faculty. ULM's online graduate degrees include a master of science in counseling; this degree can be further specialized in clinical mental health counseling (for children, adults, and adolescents). Students who select clinical mental health counseling are provided a challenging curriculum, collaborative learning, and the hands-on training needed to succeed. Graduates of the online clinical psychology degree take roles in mental health counseling, life coaching, addiction counselor, creative arts therapy, and much more. ULM's been named a top affordable online school on numerous trusted sites, and highly rated by recent alumni.

#3 – Indiana Wesleyan University

Master Of Arts with a Clinical Mental Health Counseling Major Online

Program Website

Points: 21
Program Tuition: $533.00 per credit-hourA Christian-based school, Indian Wesleyan University is recognized for its affordability and excellent degree programs. This school's MA in clinical mental health counseling, available 100% online, prepares graduates to work with families, groups, and individuals. IWU incorporates a Christian perspective in its courses, and nearly all instructor faculty hold terminal degrees in clinical counseling. Graduate clinical psychology students take courses in multicultural counseling, theory and techniques in counseling relationships, psychopathology, addiction recovery, and numerous other related areas. Additionally, clinical psychology online students complete supervised practicums and an advanced internship.

#2 – Adler Graduate School

Online Master's Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling

Program Website

Points: 22
Program Tuition: $575.00 per credit-hour Based in Minnesota, Adler Graduate School is a specialized college for future mental health professionals. Adler has programs in specific psychology degree areas, among them including clinical mental health counseling, marriage and family therapy, co-occurring disorders, school counseling, and art therapy. Adler's online master's in clinical counseling is a pathway to becoming a licensed professional clinical counselor (LPCC); this 60-credit program builds skills for future individual, group, or family therapy practices. Online psychology students complete hands-on fieldwork and a final master's project; these requirements allow for integration of all course material.

#1 – Antioch University

MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling Online

Program Website

Points: 23
Program Tuition: $853.00 per-credit-hour (if taking fewer than 12 credits)An esteemed college based in New England, Antioch University applies a progressive vision to its education. The online MA in clinical mental health counseling is just one of several available psychology degrees. AU's online clinical psychology program focuses on developing strong, ethical professional identity. Typically, clinical counseling students complete their master's in three years; in this 60-credit program, students gain knowledge in field areas such as ethical practice, human growth and development, research, program evaluation, and relationship counseling. In addition to coursework, Antioch requires twenty hours per week spent at an approved internship site; AU has extensive connections with community agencies, counseling centers, residential facilities, among others.

The preceding list of ranked colleges represents the top 20 online master's degrees in clinical psychology.

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