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Online | Bachelor of Arts

Bachelor’s (B.A.) in Applied Psychology

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Program Overview

Adler University’s Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Applied Psychology program prepares students to bring leading-edge psychological science and social justice passion to a variety of fields and settings. Students develop broad interpersonal skills, cultural and psychological knowledge, and socially responsible attitudes that can help them grow their current career or branch into a graduate degree, all while completing their college education.

Graduates of the B.A. in Applied Psychology program are poised to enter a wide variety of fields, including behavioral and medical health care; criminal justice; addiction services; child, adolescent, and older adult services; human resource management; public relations; and other business settings.

The program also develops the educational foundation to pursue graduate study in a variety of related fields, such as counseling, clinical psychology, industrial organizational psychology, healthcare management, and social work.

The B.A. in Applied Psychology is an ideal option for those who:

  • Have an associate’s degree
  • Have at least 60 courses of college credit and want to complete their degree

Our program is designed with working professionals in mind and can be completed from anywhere in the world, without having to sacrifice the academic rigor and personalized attention that has characterized Adler University for more than 65 years.

Request Information

      You need a Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution to enroll in Adler University programs.


      Student Outcomes

      Program Objectives

      The B.A. in Applied Psychology program prepare graduates with a unique blend of training in applied psychology theory and practice. This is a nonclinical degree that focuses on developing core competences in applied research, business and community applications and varied skills for leadership, program management and evaluation and cross-cultural communication.

      The program prepares graduates to integrate science and practice, to understand the application of psychological theory to their unique practices and fields, and effectively engage in culturally diverse environments. A key focus is learning to work in adherence to high ethical and professional standards in their unique settings.

      The program culminates in a capstone experience that provides students the opportunity to acquire real-world experience within an applied psychology setting.

      Graduates of the Online BA in Applied Psychology Program will apply their professional skill and knowledge base to various fields in entry level to middle management roles related to:

      • Mental Health Professional
      • Human Resource Specialist
      • Hospital Psychiatric Technician
      • Addictions Counselor
      • Home Health Care Worker
      • Mental Health Crisis Worker
      • Parole and Probation Officer
      • Child Advocacy Counselor
      • Social Services Case Manager
      • Behavioral Health Specialist (Veteran and Military Specialization)


      The Bachelor of Arts in Applied Psychology requires the following 60 credits of coursework. Instead of participating in Adler’s Social Justice Practicum, all students in the online B.A. in Applied Psychology program go through the unique Civic Engagement experience, a collaborative partnership that strengthens communities, provides service, and prepares students to promote social justice.

      Find course descriptions and more information in the Adler University course catalog here.

      Core Courses

      PSYC 300 - Applied Psychology Theory and Practice (3 cr.)

      In a fast-evolving global environment, Applied Psychology has an increasingly critical role in a variety of systems and settings. This course provides students with a foundation in the applied theories of psychology within these systems and settings. The course incorporates how organizations implement social justice missions and socially responsible practices.

      PSYC 301 - Adlerian Psychology, Social Action, and Advocacy (3 cr.)

      Within healthy communities, social action and advocacy promote the values of social justice and human rights. In this course, students will learn the foundations of Adlerian Psychology. Topics covered will include social interest concepts, commitment and responsibility to equity, human rights, advocacy, and social action planning for individuals, groups, and systems within evolving global communities.

      PSYC 302 - Theory and Psychology of Personality (3 cr.)

      Examining the historical and contemporary research and theories of personality development, this course explores the competing ideas about why people think, feel, and behave the way they do. It further investigates individual differences in preferences, and our interpersonal and cognitive styles.

      PSYC 303 - The Psychology of Diversity and Inclusion (3 cr.)

      As communities, organizations, families, and other social structures move into an increasingly global and multicultural society, the importance of cultural competence grows. Focusing on developing knowledge, skills, and attitudes to function capably across a broad range of social and cultural differences, this course introduces students to psychological perspectives on the social identities of self and others.

      PSYC 304 - Abnormal Psychology (3 cr.)

      Persons who assist individuals experiencing conditions of adjustment contribute greatly to the welfare of humanity. This course offers students a broad understanding of the various psychological disorders that impact the quality of life of individuals.

      INDS 305 - Statistics and Research Methods (3 cr.)

      Statistics and research methods comprise the essential tools for social scientists to generate the knowledge base across all of the domain. This course introduces students to various research methods and statistical concepts required to demonstrate scientific findings in the social sciences.

      PSYC 306 - Cognitive Behavioral Psychology (3 cr.)

      This course explores both the basic science of cognitive psychology as well as its application in CBT. Cognitive psychologists study perception, memory, attention, language, and emotion, in order to understand how these processes influence cognition, behavior, and decision making.

      PSYC 307 - Biological Basis of Behavior (3 cr.)

      Drawing on current neuroscience research, this course introduces students to the structures of the brain and nervous system, the complexities of the endocrine system, and the research on the roles of these systems in behavior and other psychological phenomena. Students will explore the role biological structures and physiological systems play in psychological experiences.

      PSYC 401 - Community Psychology (3 cr.)

      In response to the increasing complexity of social systems, community psychology plays a vital role in understanding and shaping the quality of life for individuals, communities, and society.

      INDS 402 - Ethics, Socially Responsible Organizations, and Leadership (3 cr.)

      This course will expose students to socially responsible practice and leadership approaches that create the foundations for building effective and ethical organizations, groups, and systems.

      PSYC 403 - The Psychology of Gender and Sexual Orientation (3 cr.)

      This course examines scientific findings about the gender spectrum and transgender identity, as well as the spectrum of human sexuality. Students will examine the knowledge, skills, and attitudes that ethical and socially responsible practitioners employ to pursue advocacy and inclusion within organizations, communities, and society.

      PSYC 404 - Global Health Psychology (3 cr.)

      Addiction within culture, society, and global environments has a dramatic impact on the health and welfare of multiple systems. Within this course, students will explore the biopsychosocial elements of addiction and the impact upon global societies, science, legal systems, public policy, and popular culture.

      INDS 406 - Transformations and Innovations in Healthcare (3 cr.)

      This course offers students a broad understanding of historical and current political, legal, technological, and economic developments within the healthcare field. Students will explore the elements of strategic planning initiatives essential to delivering healthcare in an evolving global community.

      PSYC 450 - Applied Psychology Capstone

      The capstone course provides a culminating experience designed to allow students to integrate their learning and demonstrate competency of the outcomes associated with this program. This course requires students to apply psychological theories and research to engage in ethically and socially responsible practice within the field.

      PSYC 407 - Life Span Development (3 cr.)

      Developmental psychology examines the various lines of development–physical, linguistic, social, cognitive, emotional, moral, relational–across the lifespan. Developmental psychology attempts to understand normative development and promote conditions to support optimal development.

      PSYC 408 - Social Psychology (3 cr.)

      Social psychology explores the topics of attribution, social desirability, social influence, discrimination, and prejudice. This course examines the breadth of social psychology and its application in applied psychology and diversity studies.

      INDS 409 - Group Dynamics and Theory (3 cr.)

      This course introduces concepts of group and organizational dynamics that influence individual and collective behavior. Topics include group concepts such as leadership and authority, stages of group development, research on group cohesion, and intrapersonal/interpersonal/group-as-a-whole levels of analysis.

      INDS 410 - Social Exclusion and Marginalization: Theory and Practice (3 cr.)

      This course examines the persistent exclusion of various identity groups (based on race and ethnicity, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, ability, physical difference, physical and mental health, poverty, and other factors that marginalize people) as well as the structural impediments to equal access to resources and social power.

      PSYC 308 - Psychology, Law, and Political Process (3 cr.)

      This course will explore the theoretical knowledge base and applied tools of psychology in understanding legal systems, correctional approaches, and political processes. Students will apply psychological principles to various scenarios relating to political, governmental, and civil and criminal court systems.

      PSYC 309 - Political and Economic Psychology for Social Sustainability (3 cr.)

      From a social justice perspective, current and future generations should have equal access to resources that provide for an enhanced quality of life. This course describes the impact of psychological principles upon political and economic systems to support the viability of persons and groups.

      PSYC 310 - Industrial and Organizational Psychology (3 cr.)

      In this course, students will explore the major foundational theories, and the history and systems of Industrial and Organizational Psychology. The course explores topics such as employee performance evaluation, training, talent development, and change management.

      PSYC 311 - Applied Psychology and Technology (3 cr.)

      This course examines the social history of technology and the influence of technology on the delivery of psychological services, its impact on behavioral dysfunction, and the application of psychological principles in the use of technology. Additional topics include the social impact of technology use upon individuals and systems, the influence of social media, and the consequences of leaving a digital footprint.

      Faculty Spotlight

      Irene Jones, Ph.D.
      Program Director, Bachelor of Arts in Applied Psychology

      Irene Jones, Ph.D., is a visionary leader, educator, and an experienced talent acquisition professional. She has a strong foundation in research analytics, human resource functions, and the overall understanding of business concept modules.

      Dr. Jones is a graduate of Adler University (PhD, Industrial Organizational Psychology), Robert Morris University (M.B.A Human Resource Management) and The Illustrious Tuskegee University (B.S. Political Science). Dr. Jones was drawn to Adler because her values were consistent with the mission of the University. Her main goal is to inspire all her students to become fully engaged in the learning process so that, through mentorship, she can help her students attain their academic goals and experience success in their careers.

      Online Learning Format

      Adler University approaches online learning with the same commitment to academic excellence and student support that has been the hallmark of our 65-year history. Our innovative online graduate courses deliver an engaging, interactive learning experience designed to accommodate your busy schedule.

      Online learning offers a great deal of independence and flexibility, but that doesn’t mean that you’re alone. Our online student body is supported by the same administrative and academic staff who serve our on-campus students. Your instructors are also available to answer your questions, provide more information, and connect you with additional resources to help you succeed. In addition, your cohort classmates will be a source of ongoing support and collaboration as you progress through your degree program, and well after graduation.

      Admissions Requirements

      Applicants are required to have:

      • Acquired a conferred associates degree OR have 60 credits of general education credits
      • A GPA of 3.0 or better (on a 4.0 scale) in their baccalaureate degree courses.
      • Applicants are required to submit the following items to be considered for admission:
        • Application
        • Statement of Intent (2-3 pages double-spaced) answering the following questions:
          • Why are you interested in your chosen field and program?
          • Why is Adler University’s program a good fit for you?
          • What are your career goals and interests?
        • Resume or Curriculum Vitae
        • Official transcripts from all undergraduate schools attended (U.S. or equivalent institution)
          • Please have official transcripts sent directly to the Office of Admissions
          • Unofficial transcripts are accepted for any schools in which a degree was not received

      International Applicants

      • Applicants with international (outside the U.S. or Canada) post-secondary education should send a scan of their official transcript to the admissions office as this program is exempt from the requirement to complete a transcript evaluation. Please speak to your Admissions Counselor if you require more details.

      Tuition & Fees

      Tuition for Adler University’s programs is charged each term according to the number of registered academic credits. The number of credits a student will register for varies by academic program and by term. To estimate the amount of tuition and fees that would be charged in a given term, please use our Tuition Estimator tool below, or read about tuition and fees for all Online programs.

      Tuition Estimator

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