Getting a bachelor’s degree in forensic psychology is the first step in a rewarding, important career. Forensic psychology includes evaluating criminals and helping to strengthen the criminal justice system, which requires a higher level of expertise than a bachelor’s. Therefore, it’s important to think about the bachelor’s as a preparation for graduate school, and to seek out programs that will give you the best chance of getting accepted to a master’s program.
If you want a bachelor’s in forensic psychology, it’s primarily important to find a school that offers the program in your area or online. A person wants to compare the schools based on their affordability and reputation. To help a person understand what is the best school for forensic psychology. Often, a person can earn a higher forensic psychology salary by going to an accredited school. Therefore, a person should make sure that at least the school has accreditation through an association like the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).
How We Ranked the Best Degree in Forensic Psychology Online
Criminal Justice Degree Hub editors sought out programs that are available entirely or primarily online, from reputable, accredited universities and colleges with a known reputation for quality. From there, we ranked programs according to three factors: Cost, Salary Potential, and Student Satisfaction. We used data from Niche, IPEDS, and College Scorecard to rank programs based on their ability to deliver for graduates.
1. Purdue University Global
Purdue University Global offers a BS in Criminal Justice – Forensic Psychology that is available entirely online. PG’s degree in Forensic Psychology online requires the completion of 180 credit units, a culminating capstone project, and a comprehensive internship to provide each student an opportunity to gather real-world work experience while studying for their degree. Purdue University Global’s forensic psychology online degree requires coursework to be completed in Criminal Justice Ethics, Criminal Procedures, and Criminal Justice Information Systems.
Purdue University Global was established in 2018. PG is the distance learning annex of the Purdue University System. Purdue University Global was born when Purdue University bought a nonprofit education company known as Kaplan University. PG offers all levels of online degrees.
Highlight: The main campus of Purdue University Global is in Indianapolis, with satellite facilities in Nebraska, Maryland, and Iowa.
Degree: BS in Criminal Justice – Forensic Psychology
2. Arizona State University
Arizona State University offers a BS in Forensic Psychology that is available 100% online. This forensic psychology online degree requires the completion of 39 classes that cover 120 credit units. ASU’s degree in Forensic Psychology online explores the scientific procedures that connect psychology with the legal profession. Each of ASU’s online classes covers 7.5 weeks. Degree candidates graduate prepared to enter the workforce as a Corrections Manager, Intelligence Officer, Psychiatric Aide, Detective, and Behavioral Health Specialist.
Arizona State University was established in 1885. ASU holds the distinction of having one of the largest student enrollments of any public institution of higher learning in the country. Of the nearly 111,000 undergraduate and graduate students, almost 40,000 students through ASU’s online learning platform.
Highlight: Arizona State University operates five regionally based learning facilities in the greater Phoenix area.
Degree: BS in Forensic Psychology
3. Florida Institute of Technology
The Florida Institute of Technology offers a BS in Forensic Psychology – Criminal Justice Applications degree program that can be completed entirely online. Coursework for Florida Tech’s forensic psychology online degree program includes coursework regarding crime analysis, crime prevention, plus an extensive internship program then culminates in a final senior research project. The degree in Forensic Psychology online program specializes in the legal venture of child advocacy throughout the legal system. Florida Tech is located in Florida’s high technology corridor, where more than 5,000 high tech corporations are headquartered.
Florida Tech was established in 1958 and is a space-grant institution of higher education. This private school serves more than 6,400 students on the small city campus of 125+ acres.
Highlight: Florida Tech’s campus is situated only 50 miles of the Kennedy Space Center and about 70 miles from Orlando’s playground for kids and adults.
Degree: BA in Forensic Psychology – Criminal Justice Applications
4. Eastern Kentucky University
Eastern Kentucky University offers a Bachelor’s in Forensic Psychology degree program that is 100% online. EKU’s degree in Forensic Psychology online program requires the completion of 120 credit hours, of which up to 90 credit units may be transferred to the program, if applicable. Degree candidates graduate prepared for an entry-level position as a mental health counselor, speech pathologist, or a research psychologist, to name a few. The forensic psychology online degree program offered by EKU has been recognized by US News among the best online baccalaureate level degrees.
Eastern Kentucky University was established as Central University in 1874. The operates with several localized campuses and serves nearly 16,000 students each semester studying the university’s six academic divisions.
Highlight: Eastern Kentucky University’s main campus in Richmond, however, there are satellite branches in Manchester, Lancaster, Corbin, and Hazard, KY.
Degree: Bachelor’s in Forensic Psychology
5. Maryville University
The Maryville University of St. Louis offers a distance learning BA in Forensic Psychology that integrates the fields of criminal justice and the law. Coursework, for this degree in Forensic Psychology online program, has been developed to meet the criteria developed by the APA – the American Psychological Association. Maryville University’s forensic psychology online degree curriculum delves into the academic/real-world areas of social science, criminal justice, and psychology. Additionally, Maryville University requires the completion of 150 hours of practical experience and a culminating senior research project.
The Maryville University of St. Louis was established in 1872 as a private institution of higher learning. The school remains affiliated with the Society of the Sacred Heart. Maryville University’s suburban campus serves more than 6,000 students.
Highlight: Maryville University of St. Louis was initially founded to support women and children from unfortunate circumstances.
Degree: BA in Forensic Psychology
6. Northwest Christian University
Northwest Christian University offers a BS in Psychology with a specialization in Forensic Psychology. Northwest Christian University’s forensic psychology online degree program combines the fields of psychology and criminal justice. NCU’s coursework for this degree in Forensic Psychology online program includes Statistics, Social Psychology, Cognition, Human Development, Research Methodologies, Abnormal Psychology, and a culminating senior capstone project. Degree candidates graduate prepared to enter the fields of Victim Advocacy, Research, corrections, the courts, or private security, to name a few.
Northwest Christian University was established in 1895 as the Eugene Bible/Divinity School. NCU is affiliated with the Disciples of Christ Church. The university operates with two academic schools, the Liberal Arts & Bible School and the School of Professional Studies.
Highlight: Northwest Christian University is located adjacent to the University of Oregon, where NCU students have specific access privileges.
Degree: BS in Psychology – Forensic Psychology
7. Union Institute and University
Union Institute and University offers a BA in Psychology – Forensic Psychology concentration that can be completed entirely online. UI & U’s degree in Forensic Psychology online program with a forensic psychology major offers a curriculum that integrates the fields of criminal justice, corrections psychology, and law enforcement. The forensic psychology online degree program offered by Union Institute and University requires the completion of 48 credits in the forensic psychology major requirements.
Union Institute and University was established in 1964 and specializes in adult distance learning options. UI & U was founded for research activity regarding interrelated social relevant issues. Union Institute and University offers degree programs at all academic levels. UI & U’s first doctoral students began their inaugural class in 1970.
Highlight: Union Institute and University operates satellite learning centers in the states of California and Florida.
Degree: BA in Psychology – Forensic Psychology concentratio
8. Louisiana State University of Alexandria
Louisiana State University of Alexandria offers an all-online BS in Psychology with the option to select from one of the criminal justice electives provided by the school. LSU of Alexandria’s forensic psychology online degree program requires the completion of 120 credit hours that prepares students for vital roles as a psychiatric technician, a corrections officer, or a mental health professional, among others. The degree in Forensic Psychology online program offered by LSU of Alexandria has been recognized among the best online psychology online degrees on the market.
The Louisiana State University of Alexandria was established in 1959 and is a unit member of the Louisiana State University System. The school’s urban campus is built upon an old plantation and is home to more than 3,300 students.
Highlight: Louisiana State University of Alexandria’s grounds have many mature oak trees that like date back to the 19th century.
Degree: BS in Psychology – choose criminal justice electives
9. Liberty University
Liberty University offers a BS in Psychology with a specialty in Criminal Psychology that is available 100% online. Liberty University’s forensic psychology online degree program requires the completion of 120 credit units, which can be completed in an average of 3.5 years. The degree in Forensic Psychology online program offered by Liberty University permits upwards of 90 qualified credit units. AffordableColleges.com and BestColleges.com have recognized Liberty University’s forensic online degree. LU provides tuition discounts for active first responders and law enforcement members.
Liberty University is a private institution of Christian learning that was established in 1971. Liberty University’s student enrollment exceeds 100,000 students, with most students (90,000+) studying through the school’s distance learning platform.
Highlight: Liberty University holds the distinction of being one of the largest Christian institutions of higher education in the world.
Degree: BS in Psychology – Criminal Psychology
10. Faulkner University
Faulkner University offers a BS in Forensic Psychology that is available to be completed 100% online. Faulkner’s degree in Forensic Psychology online program explores the intersection of the criminal justice system with the field of psychology. Careers available for graduates of Faulkner’s forensic psychology online degree program include a trial consultant, Criminal Assessment Service Provider, Researcher, or Expert Witness, to name a few. Students study techniques for interrogation as it applies to the field of psychology.
Faulkner University was established as the Montgomery Bible School in 1942. Faulkner University is affiliated with the Churches of Christ. The school’s urban campus covers more than 70+ acres and is home to more than 3,500 students.
Highlight: Faulkner University operates from its main campus in Montgomery and satellite learning centers in Birmingham, Mobile, and Huntsville.
Degree: BS in Forensic Psychology
How Do I Choose a Forensic Psychology Program?
The first thing a person must consider when choosing a forensic psychology program is that most accredited schools only offer a forensic psychology degree option at a master’s degree level, although a few offer it at a bachelor’s. The reason for this is because most jobs in the field of forensic psychology require at least a master’s degree.
A person can earn a higher forensic psychology salary by obtaining a doctorate. However, most schools offer that partially online or fully on campus because a person must complete a clinical portion. If a person is wondering what can I do with a forensic psychology degree and wants to become a forensic psychologist, he or she should consider earning a doctorate.
Is a Bachelor’s in Forensic Psychology a Good Choice?
If a person is wondering “What can I do with a degree in forensic psychology,” it’s important to understand that there’s limited to no job potential for someone who has a bachelor’s degree in that specialty. In fact, the only way to answer “What can I do with a degree in forensic psychology” is that a person requires at least a master’s.
Generally, the best response to what can I do with a bachelors in forensic psychology is to continue on to earn a master’s and possibly a doctorate. Because what can I do with a bachelors in forensic psychology is so limited, a person may want to choose another bachelor degree path and choose to specialize at a master’s degree level.
What are Some Jobs in Forensic Psychology?
The job outlook for forensic psychology is good. As long as there are criminals, a person is going to have a job. Plus, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) states that the need for psychologists in general is expected to grow, meaning the job outlook for forensic psychology majors who plan to earn a doctorate is high.
A person who is looking for jobs in forensic psychology may find a position as a crime analyst. This is one of the jobs in forensic psychology that doesn’t entail a person to work with the criminals. Instead, a crime analyst works with law enforcement to control crime as well as prevent crimes and possibly predict them.
A correctional officer is another option a person has with a forensic psychology degree. This forensic psychology job description includes working in state or federal prisons or even in jails. This individual helps control inmates and prevent escapes.
A person with a forensic psychology degree may want to consider becoming a forensic social worker. The forensic psychology job description for this job includes helping either the victim or perpetrator. They often work to address issues associated with crimes, such as violence, homelessness, and poverty.
One of the forensic psychology degree jobs is becoming a jury consultant. This person acts as an expert in human behavior and helps the court system choose jurors for a case. This individual must research by conducting background checks and interviews on the jurors.
Another one of the forensic psychology degree jobs is a psychologist’s assistant. Although what jobs can I get with a forensic psychology degree includes a psychologist, a person usually has to have a doctorate to work as a forensic psychologist. However, what jobs can I get with a forensic psychology degree with a master’s degree includes a psychologist’s assistant.
How Much Can I Make with a Bachelor’s in Forensic Psychology?
To answer how much can I make with a bachelor’s in forensic psychology, a person has to consider there’s little need for individuals with this qualification in that field. However, a person can find opportunities as a correction officer, social worker, or probation officer. The forensic psychology job salary is around $53,020 per hour for a probation officer. A social worker makes around the same. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) states that someone with this job earns about $49,470 per year.
The forensic psychology jobs salary increases tremendously once a person earns a master’s degree. In fact, someone with a master’s degree in forensic psychology may earn over $70,000 per year.