Skip Navigation
search: People | Departments | Penn State | Web
Penn State mark
Penn State mark

University Bulletin

Graduate Degree Programs

Applied Psychological Research (APSYR)

Program Home Page (Opens New Window)

THOMAS G. BOWERS, Graduate Program Coordinator
Penn State Harrisburg
W-311 Olmsted Building
777 West Harrisburg Pike
Middletown, PA 17057

Degree Conferred:



The Graduate Faculty


The Program

The Master of Arts program in Applied Psychological Research focuses on the development of research skills within the context of scientific training in psychology. The program requires 35 credits of course work (29 credits of core courses and 6 credits of electives).

The program is designed to meet the needs of students who plan careers in research or administration within human service or similar organizations, who plan to conduct research in other settings, or who plan to pursue doctoral study. Students can select electives and research experiences to reflect their individual interests in consultation with their adviser.

The program is intended for both part- and full-time students. Students are admitted for fall semester only. The deadline for admission is May 1.

Admission Requirements

Students will be admitted on a competitive basis and must submit the following:

  • a completed application form with the application fee
  • two official transcripts of all colleges and universities attended
  • three professional letters of recommendation
  • a brief (two-page) interest statement
  • verbal, quantitative, and analytical scores on the Graduate Record Examinations

The applicant must have a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited academic institution, must have completed at least 18 credits in psychology, and must have a cumulative grade-point average of 3.0 or above in the last 60 credits of coursework. The undergraduate work must include a statistics course and a psychology research methods course with grades of B or higher. A personal interview is required.

Transfer Credits

Penn State allows for the approval of up to 10 transfer credits to graduate programs.

Degree Requirements

The M.A. in Applied Psychological Research requires 35 credits of course work, including 6 credits of supervised research experience and a master's research paper.

Psychology Core Courses(29 credits) (provide a foundation in professional ethics, individual differences and cultural diversity, the scientific bases of behavior, and scientific research skills)


  • 500. Ethics and Professional Practice in Psychology (3)
  • 501. Cultural Competency in Psychology (3)
  • 502. Applied Social Psychology (3)
  • 520. Research Methods (4)
  • 521. Statistics (4)
  • 524. Biological Basis of Behavior (3)
  • 530. Research Paper (3)
  • 594. Applied Psychological Research (6)

Elective Courses (6 credits) (should be selected in consultation with the student's adviser in support of the student's research focus) Possible elective courses include:


  • 400. Health Psychology (3)
  • 403. Adult Development (3)
  • 405. Child Development (3)
  • 406. Adolescence (3)
  • 409. Child Behavior Disorders (3)
  • 410. Psychology of the Differently-Abled (3)
  • 415. Abnormal Psychology (3)
  • 421. Behavior Modification (3)
  • 425. Cognition and Perception (3)
  • 427. Learning Theory (3)
  • 465. Psychology of Women (3)
  • 482. Personality Theory (3)
  • 514. Preventive Psychology (3)
  • 515. Clinical Health Psychology (3)
  • 516. Child Health Psychology (3)
  • 525. Forensic Psychology (3)
  • 526. Behavioral Systems in Criminal Justice (3)
  • 535. Behavioral Management (3)




Graduate courses carry numbers from 500 to 599 and 800 to 899. Advanced undergraduate courses numbered between 400 and 499 may be used to meet some graduate degree requirements when taken by graduate students. Courses below the 400 level may not. A graduate student may register for or audit these courses in order to make up deficiencies or to fill in gaps in previous education but not to meet requirements for an advanced degree.

PSYCHOLOGY (PSYC) course list



SCR 29-07-034

Faculty linked: 8/14/14