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Psychology Degree Programs in Illinois (A-D)

Psychology degree programs in Illinois offer opportunities for students fresh out of high school as well as those who already have some field experience or a bachelor in a social science field. These programs look at various aspects of psychology like learning, behavior, human development and evaluation and testing. Depending on the program that you choose, you may have the chance to gain practical experience as you work or do internships with medical centers and health care facilities. No matter where you are in your studies, you can find a good psychology program in the state that will help you in the future.

Adler University

Adler University is an advanced university that offers programs at both the graduate and doctoral levels. Founded in 1952 as a psychological institute, it named itself after Alfred Adler, a famous psychologist who started the individual psychology movement. Adler was one of the first colleges in the country to start a program specifically designed for inmates, which allowed those serving time in the Cook County Jail to attend college. In addition to its flagship campus in Chicago, Alder University also operates an accredited college in Vancouver, British Columbia that offers psychology programs at the graduate and doctoral levels as well as certificate programs.

M.A. in Counseling: Specialization in Forensic Psychology

The M.A. in Counseling: Specialization in Forensic Psychology program offered by Adler University is perfect for those who have an interest in criminal justice and forensics. This program is open to those who studied criminal behavior at the undergrad level, and you do not necessarily need a degree in psychology before enrolling. It includes courses on family and individual counseling as well as group counseling for those who want to work with the victims of crimes as well as criminals. You can also take classes on addiction counseling, counseling skills, counseling theories and working with the victims of trauma and violence.

M.A. in Counseling: Specialization in Sport and Health Psychology

The sport and health psychology specialization available at Adler lets you study specific topics that can improve the health and well-being of people of all ages. Many of its graduates work in rehabilitation centers as well as for the government and in community health clinics. Once you complete this program, you will meet the standards necessary for obtaining a national counseling license or a counseling license valid in Illinois. This program features classes like human performance enhancement, professional development, addiction counseling and health psychology. You can also take exercise physiology, business development in health and sport psychology and other electives.

Doctor of Philosophy (Psy.D.) in Clinical Psychology

Once you complete a master's program, you might consider enrolling in the clinical psychology PhD program available through Adler, which ranks as one of the top psychology degree programs in Illinois. This program lets you earn your degree in five years and study unique fields like military psychology, victim psychology or substance abuse rehabilitation. There are six different concentrations available in this program. It uses a cohort system that lets you move through the program with the same group of students that you started with and develop long-lasting friendships along the way. Adler University requires that students do a one-year internship too.


Higher Learning Commission

American Psychological Association


17 N. Dearborn Street

Chicago, IL 60602

(312) 662-4000


Augustana College

Augustana College is a small private college in Illinois with an enrollment of around 2,500 students. Founded as a seminary in 1860, it opened for classes in a small town and offered students the chance to study religious topics. The seminary grew slowly over the coming years and received donations of both land and money that helped it expand. Since becoming a college, it developed a good reputation as one of the country's best liberal arts schools because a large number of its graduates later earn more advanced degrees. Augustana now offers undergrad degrees in more than 40 different subject areas.

Major in Psychology

Unlike other colleges that offer a wide range of psychology majors, Augustana College offers just one. Called its major in psychology, this program allows students to study a large number of fields within that subject area, which is especially helpful for those going on to graduate school. Students must complete all general education courses and take a minimum of 31 credits of psych courses that will include one experimental psychology class and some specific courses. This program features classes like lifespan of a child, lifespan of an adolescent, bystander intervention, victim advocacy, industrial and organizational psychology and theories of personality.


Higher Learning Commission


639 38th St.

Rock Island, IL 61201

(800) 978-8100


Aurora University

Founded in 1893 as a seminary, Aurora University originally served as a training institute that prepared students for working in the Advent Christian Church. As enrollment grew, its curriculum expanded to include courses in business, medicine, arts, education and other subjects. A merger between the university and a college in Wisconsin further increased its enrollment and gave students the option of taking classes on that campus. Aurora also offers classes through the Woodstock Center in Wisconsin and through the Orchard Center near its main campus as well offering online classes, and all campuses offer bachelor, master and doctoral courses.

Bachelor of Arts in Applied Psychology

Though Aurora University does offer a Bachelor of Arts in Applied Psychology program, this program is only available through its George Williams College campus in Wisconsin. You cannot enroll in this program on its Illinois campus or enroll in an online version of the program. It includes 42 semester hours of required courses and 20 semester hours of electives and upper level psych courses that you can choose. You must also take a class on psychological assessments and a course on careers in the field. Aurora University also requires that all psychology undergrads do an internship too.

Bachelor of Arts in Psychology

As other colleges do, Aurora University requires that all psychology students take general education courses like life science, humanities and math classes. They must also take at least 37 semester hours of psychology courses. You'll take two courses from two different distinct groups as well as 21 semester hours of required classes that teach you basic things you'll need later and include general psychology, careers in psychology, brains and behavior, research and statistics and experimental psychology. The university also asks that you take a class on contemporary issues in psychology that looks at some of the modern issues that affect working psychologists.


Higher Learning Commission


347 S. Gladstone Ave.

Aurora, Illinois


(63) 892-6431


Benedictine University

Though there are several private colleges that have an affiliation with the Roman Catholic Church in Illinois, one of the most prominent of those campuses is Benedictine University, which has a main campus in Lisle. It also operates two other campuses in Illinois and a campus in Arizona. Students also have the chance to study abroad through one of its programs in Vietnam or China. Forbes named Benedictine one of America's Top Colleges for six straight years, but it also ranks as one of the best colleges in Illinois and in the Midwest because of its vast curriculum and education opportunities.

Psychology (B.A.)

The College of Liberal Arts at Benedictine University offers a number of social sciences programs including a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology program. Designed to help students learn more about human behavior and development, it offers courses on cognition, learning, perception, human development, abnormal psychology and social science. If the university does not offer a class on a topic that you want to study, you can talk with your adviser about doing your own independent study project. Benedictine University also recommends that students do internships too. You can study other social studies fields too, including social work, sociology and anthropology.

Clinical Psychology (M.S.)

Benedictine University started its Clinical Psychology program more than three decades ago and watched as it became one of the best psychology degree programs in Illinois. The program helps students meet the steps necessary for getting an Illinois counseling license or a national counseling license. It includes courses on different types of counseling like group and individual counseling. You can expect to take classes like professional, ethical and legal issues in counseling, psychopathology, cognitive therapy, career counseling, testing and planning, social and cultural foundations and addiction and the family. Benedictine also offers electives on subjects like human sexuality and childhood disorders.


Higher Learning Commission


5700 College Rd.

Lisle, IL 60532

(630) 829-6000


Blackburn College

Founded in 1897, Blackburn College is one of just several work colleges that still exist in the United States. A work college is one that requires students do a specific amount of work each semester, even if they do not need financial aid. Students must also take part in service learning opportunities that give back to communities in need. The university reduces the amount of tuition that students owe based on how much work they do, which makes Blackburn one of the nation's most affordable colleges. Located in the small town of Carlinville, Blackburn has an enrollment of less than 1,000 students.

Psychology Major

Blackburn College encourages its psychology students to do internships while enrolled and offers opportunities both on-campus and away from campus for its students. Doing an internship can help you develop skills that you could not get in a more traditional program. The program also has two concentration tracks available: a clinical and counseling track and an experimental psych track. The experimental track includes courses like statistics for social sciences, human sexuality and social psychology. Its clinical and counseling track includes classes like abnormal psychology, research design for the social sciences, psychology of religion, sensation and human development across the lifespan.


Higher Learning Commission


700 College Ave.

Carlinville, IL 62626



Bradley University

More than 5,400 students take classes through Bradley University, which dates back to 1897. Originally called the Bradley Polytechnic Institute, it offered practical courses that taught students skills that they could actually use to find jobs and skills they could use on the job. Its enrollment quickly expanded from fewer than 200 students to thousands of students in just a few years. The university, which U.S. News & World Report, ranked as one of the nation's best, now offers classes through six different colleges. It also has an exploration program that lets students design their own majors based on their interests.

Psychology Major

Majoring in psychology at Bradley University will require that you take four different types of classes. You'll start with foundation classes that give you a better understanding of psychological topics like social psychology, personality and human development. These courses also include brain and behavior and principles of psychology. You can then take core courses that can include psychology of learning, cognitive psychology, personality psychology and behavior neuroscience. Other courses include advanced psychology classes and electives that can include courses from other departments. Bradley University can also help students find internships in major hospitals, counseling centers, homeless shelters and with other organizations.


Higher Learning Commission


1501 W Bradley Ave.

Peoria, IL 61625

(309) 676-7611


Chicago State University

Chicago State University, also called CSU and Chicago State, is one of the largest colleges in Chicago and has a population of more than 3,500 students. Founded in 1867 as the Cook County Normal School, it sought to change the way teachers learned how to work with students. It required that students take courses that prepared them on how to work with students. This small school later became a college and awarded degrees to graduating teachers. As its curriculum grew and changed, the campus eventually became Chicago State, which is still home to one of the state's top teaching programs.

Bachelor of Arts in Psychology

One of the best accredited psychology degree programs for undergrads is the Bachelor of Arts in Psychology program offered by Chicago State. Students must take 28 credits of core classes that include social psychology, abnormal psychology, cognitive psychology and psychology of childhood and adolescence among others. Though this is an undergrad program, it also requires that students write or create a thesis during their senior years. Your adviser can help you choose between doing a paper or a project and help you incorporate experiments into your work. This program includes some counseling courses too.


Higher Learning Commission


9501 S. King Drive

Chicago, IL 60628

(773) 995-2000

DePaul University

Founded in 1898, DePaul University is a large private university in Illinois that originally opened as St. Vincent's College and later changed its name in honor of Saint Vincent de Paul. The university operates two campuses in neighborhoods of Chicago and also operates two campuses in suburbs near Chicago. Both U.S. News & World Report and Washington Monthly rank DePaul as one of the best colleges in the country. All of its campuses offer fun recreational activities and opportunities for students, including Greek organizations, athletic teams and social clubs. With an enrollment of more than 15,000 undergrads and more than 7,000 grad students, DePaul also ranks as one of the largest schools in the state.

Bachelor of Science in Psychology

One of the top psychology degree programs in Illinois is the Bachelor of Science in Psychology program offered by DePaul University. Designed for those who prefer the scientific applications of psychology, this program requires that students take more scientific courses. Courses may include neuroscience, human development and perception. DePaul offers students the chance to study abroad and to take courses from some of the top scientific minds working in the world today. Students enrolled in the BS program can pick a concentration in either general psychology or cognitive neuroscience, which can help them succeed in the medical and health care fields.

Bachelor of Arts in Psychology

DePaul University is a little unique because it offers a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology program that you can design around your own unique interests. This means that you can take the psychology courses that you want and that you can take courses from other departments too. The university has a departmental honors program that is only open to those who do well in social science courses, but you may qualify for its general honors program too. Some of the concentrations or minors that the university recommends for its psychology students include those in industrial and organizational psychology, human development and human services.

BA in Psychology – Online Program

Do you want to study psychology but don't have the money needed to travel all the way to Chicago and live in that big city as you complete your studies? Thanks to the BA in Psychology – Online Program designed by DePaul University, you can now live anywhere you want as you work on your degree. This program is open to those who took at least 45 quarter hours or 30 credit hours of classes from another accredited university. You must also maintain a 2.0 grade point average while in college. DePaul will transfer the credits that you earned into this program.

BA Combined

The BA Combined option from DePaul gives students the chance to earn both a bachelor degree and a master's degree in a shorter period of time. Though all programs award students a BA in Psychology, students have the option of selecting an MA degree in industrial and organizational psychology, secondary education with a specialization in social sciences or communications and media. These programs let you take graduate courses while still and undergrad and uses some of those courses to complete your undergrad required courses. You must receive acceptance to both the psychology program as well as the department associated with the graduate program.

BS Combined

DePaul University also offers a BS Combined program that helps you earn both a Bachelor of Science in Psychology as well as a Master of Education in Secondary Education with a specialization in social science. This can help you qualify to work as a high school social studies or government teacher and get your teaching license in Illinois. Students can enroll right out of high school and begin taking education courses while still an undergrad, but the program is also open to students who already completed some college classes. You have the chance to gain some teaching experience too.

Psychology (MS)

Not every student enters graduate school with an exact idea of what he or she wants to do in the future, which is why DePaul offers a Master of Science in Psychology, which is a more general graduate program. Instead of picking a concentration and focusing on that specialization, you can take classes from a wide range of psychological topics. You'll learn about psychological science, social psychology, clinical psychology and development psychology. Many of the courses that you take require some interaction with your peers too. DePaul believes that students can learn more when they work with those from different backgrounds.

Clinical Psychology (MS/PhD)

The DePaul University Clinical Psychology program trains future psychologists and has accreditation from the American Psychological Association. If you choose the community counseling path, you'll take classes designed to help you treat and work with patients in community care centers and clinics. This program is also available with a concentration in child counseling, which is suitable for those who want to work as school counselors and in other jobs in schools. Students can complete their practical fieldwork as clinical settings all around Chicago. You'll typically spend the last year in the program doing fieldwork to learn and improve your practical counseling skills.

Community Psychology (MA/PhD)

If you like helping others and working closely with clients, the Community Psychology program from DePaul might be a good choice for you. This is a longer program because it allows students to earn both an MA degree and a PhD degree in around five years. In addition to classes, you'll also spend a year working with patients to gain confidence in your skills and to learn what you need to do to work with those patients. Some of the courses that you take will teach you how to assess and evaluate others, come up with intervention programs and teach students at the college level.

Psychological Science (MA/PhD)

The psychological science program offered by DePaul is a little unique because it focuses on the science behind psychology. This program is available in three different concentrations: cognitive psychology and cognitive neuroscience, social psychology or developmental psychology. The university assigns all new students a mentor, who is a professor working in the department with experience in both research and practice, who will help guide the work that students do later as well as help them with their thesis projects and papers. Students take courses from within their concentrations as well as general psychology courses and courses offered through its other psych programs.

Industrial & Organizational Psychology (MA/PhD)

Industrial & organizational psychology is a field of study that looks at how and why people work and behave. Those who study this field are often responsible for creating ergonomic products that make it easier for people to get work done without suffering common injuries. Students enrolled in this program must take two statistics courses as well as several research courses. They also take two core psychology courses and six IO psychology classes. Though you can choose the classes you want to take, you might sign up for psychological theories of organizations, organizational consultation or psychology of work and motivation.


New England Association of Schools and Colleges

North Central Association of Colleges and Schools


1 E. Jackson

Chicago, IL 60604

(312) 362-8000


Dominican University

Dominican University is a private university in River Forest, Illinois that has a religious affiliation with the Sinsinawa Dominican Sisters. Originally called St. Clara's College, it taught lower level classes before moving to a new city and changing its name to Rosary College. After its move, it also changed its curriculum to focus more on traditional college classes. The university now offers nearly 50 undergrad programs and a handful of upper level programs as well as certificate programs too. Dominican University has a convenient location that is just 15 miles away from Chicago but holds classes on a large suburban campus.

Bachelor of Arts – General Psychology

When you first enter college, you might wonder what you should study and what you can do with your degree, but the general psychology program offered by Dominican University is a good choice for those confused about their future options. This program includes some required courses but also gives you the option of taking any classes that you want to take as electives. It can help you become a better teacher or assist you in working in a research position. The program includes four core credits that count towards the 38 required credits you must take as well as 12 credits of courses at the 300 level or higher.

Bachelor of Arts – Clinical Psychology

Clinical psychology is a completely different field of study that is best suited for those who want to work with real patients in clinical settings. Though you'll still take many of the same courses, this program also requires that you do a clinical internship during your senior year. You'll work directly under the supervision of a licensed counselor during your internship. The program also requires that you take a developmental psychology course and do two service learning programs that let you work in the field and help others in need.

Bachelor of Science

Dominican University designed its Bachelor of Science in Psychology program for those who know that they want to go on to graduate school. This program includes more science and research courses as well as math and statistics classes. You'll take six credit hours of biology courses and six credits of upper level math classes. The university asks that you take 12 credits of work at the 300 level or higher and that you take three specific courses too like one on the systems and history of psychology. You must also take a class on learning and cognition and behavior neuroscience.


Higher Learning Commission


7900 West Division St.

River Forest, IL 60305

(708) 366-2490


Psychology programs available in the state range from bachelor programs to doctoral programs, and you can earn a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science too. As you learn more about the best psychology degree programs in Illinois, you can find out which one covers the subjects and areas you want to study.

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