With the curriculum of an online psychology degree matching that of a traditional program, students can be secure they are receiving the best possible education. With more and more colleges and universities across the United States adopting American Psychological Association (APA) approved curriculum standards, online students can be confident that their curriculum rivals that of a traditional psychology program.
Most colleges and universities have adopted similar curriculums for their psychology programs. Most undergraduate psychology degree programs cover a basic curriculum including developmental psychology, social psychology, abnormal psychology, child psychology and organizational psychology. Each program will also include optional coursework that allows students to cater to their future career specialization. While this may vary slightly from program to program there is definite overlap. Graduate degree programs offer slightly more variations in their coursework, as graduate programs in psychology will often cater to a specialty. For example, a program with a strong focus in neuropsychology will offer more classes in that realm than a program that focuses on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. It is recommended that potential candidates pay special attention to the focus of the psychology program before applying.
This basic curriculum has been widely accepted by the vast majority of psychology programs both online and in the classroom. Online psychology programs are strictly adhering to this curriculum to ensure that their students receive the same quality education that they would in a traditional setting. Students completing their degree online are covering the same curriculum as their counterparts in a traditional classroom.
Related Resource: What Types of Specializations are Available When Obtaining a Psychology Degree?
American Psychological Association Accreditation
One of the ways that students can ensure that their programs coursework adheres to the industry standard is by attending a program that has been accredited by the APA. The APA has standards for the curriculum that must be required for both undergraduate and graduate programs in Psychology. If a program has been accredited by the APA, a student can be reassured that the program will cover all of the material that they will need in their future career.
Because colleges and universities offering online educational options want their programs to be held in high regard, most offer very comparable curriculums. Many of the same professors that teach in the classroom setting will teach the online sections of the same course. This way programs are offering the same material, the same information and the same caliber of professor whether you attend in the classroom or complete your coursework online.
Advanced Pedagogical Material
With education related technological advances gaining ground each year, earning a degree online means that online students have tools available to them that students in a classroom may not. The Internet is full of high quality information including search engines, field related videos, study aides and tools and many other resources that online psychology students can use to their significant advantage. Many critics of online learning contend that this format means no face-to-face learning. With the availability of web chats, video cameras, whiteboard options and other learning tools students can have more interaction with instructors and fellow students than traditional students receiving only a few hours of class time each week. These advances make for a much richer learning environment for online students.
With increasing standardization of the curriculum required by psychology programs, online psychology students are receiving an excellent education. Curriculums are being not only met by these programs, but in many cases, far exceeded. With so many options at their disposal, students and educators have all of the learning materials at their fingertips. Online psychology degree curriculums, compared to a traditional psychology program curriculum, are meeting and exceeding educational goals.