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Human thought and behavior are continuously influenced by social, cultural and environmental factors. GCU’s online psychology programs include a broad education in the fundamental aspects of human thought and behavior at all stages of life.

Graduates with a psychology degree may qualify for employment with private companies, nonprofit organizations, schools or social service agencies in careers such as:

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  • Academic Excellence – For more than 70 years, GCU has been offering quality academic programs that provide the skills and credentials needed for career success.
  • Affordability  – GCU offers a competitive, affordable online tuition rate and numerous financing options, including scholarships for academic achievement.
  • Earlier Graduation  – Our 4-credit programs allow you to complete your degree program in less time.
  • Dynamic Learning Environment  – GCU’s online classroom ensures students are engaged and learning with each course designed to promote maximum collaboration.

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If you’ve worked in the field or industry of your degree path, GCU’s Lifelong Assessment (LLA) allows qualified students to earn up to eight general education or elective credits based on previous work and life experiences.

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National exams such as the College-Level Examination Program (CLEP) offer a great way for you to get credits for what you know. You can earn up to 30 GCU transfer credits toward your bachelor’s degree through these tests.

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Grand Canyon University Psychology PhD Review

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phd psychology gcu

Completing a doctoral program is a challenging-yet-rewarding accomplishment that represents reaching the heights of academic achievement. While many Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) programs are based in traditional modes of education, some students may not be able to access the old forms of education.

Fortunately, an increasing number of colleges and universities are offering online Ph.D. programs, such as the online Ph.D. in Psychology offered at Grand Canyon University. Let’s take a look at what prospective students need to know about their options at GCU.

About the Program

Before diving into the benefits and drawbacks of earning an online Ph.D. in Psychology at GCU, let’s study the basic facts surrounding the institution.

  • Institution type: Private, for-profit
  • Main campus: Phoenix
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

Tuition and fees

  • Total expected tuition: $41,700
  • Per credit-hour tuition: $695

Degrees & requirements

  • PhD degrees offered: Online PhD in Performance Psychology, Online PhD in Cognitive Psychology, Online PhD in Counselor Education, Online PhD in Industrial-Organizational Psychology, Online PhD in Psych Tech
  • Number of credit hours required: 60 (includes dissertation)
  • Application method: Online
  • Admission requirements: Master’s degree with GPA of 3.4 or higher, transcripts for all levels of education
  • Admissions office address: 3300 W. Camelback Road, Phoenix, AZ 85017

Biggest Pros

What factors make GCU’s online Ph.D. in Psychology programs appealing for the average student?

Online delivery method

Particularly for students who either have no educational options in their state or who simply cannot afford to relocate to another city or state to attend a Ph.D. program, online education is a very attractive prospect. Not only does an online Ph.D. program open education up to more students, but it allows learners a wide degree of flexibility, ensuring their education fits into their lives, not the other way around.

SEE ALSO: Most Affordable Online PhD in Psychology Programs

Several degree options

GCU students can choose from several possible online Ph.D. tracks — cognitive psychology, counselor education, industrial-organizational, performance and psych tech. Most of these programs represent rapidly expanding and very popular fields in psychology, particularly I-O and cognitive psychology. This means students can remain on the cutting edge of the field.

Affordability

Compared to most other Ph.D. in Psychology programs, GCU’s online Ph.D. is quite affordable, with expected total tuition costs reaching to about $41,000. Other programs in the space, even many that are offered online, can cost upwards of $100,000 or more.

Faith tradition

GCU’s connection to the Christian faith is a very strong selling point for many students. While psychology scholars are not required to be Christians, all courses and programs center that faith tradition.

Biggest Cons

What factors work against Grand Canyon’s appeal to the average Ph.D. in Psychology student?

Lack of APA accreditation

Grand Canyon University’s online Ph.D. in Psychology program is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, but it has not earned the stamp of approval from the American Psychological Association. The APA is the gold standard of accrediting bodies in psychology education, and graduates may have a hard time finding employment or earning state licensure, though how big a problem this is will depend on a student’s individual career ambitions.

No internship requirement

While students are required to complete a dissertation project as part of their online psychology Ph.D. from GCU, there are no requirements to complete an internship. So for students who want to go on to work directly with patients and clients, they will need to find another source of that hands-on experience.

Not designed for licensure

We’ve touched on this already, but GCU’s online psychology Ph.D. options are not designed to provide the foundation for licensure in any state, and the university makes this clear through its informational offerings.

The Bottom Line

Here’s a quick breakdown to help you decide if earning an online Ph.D. in Psychology from Grand Canyon University could be right for you.

An online Ph.D. isn’t ideal for every student, but for those learners who need a wide degree of flexibility and want to be able to fit doctoral education into their lives, GCU’s online Ph.D. options are attractive and affordable.

Additional Resources

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Grand Canyon University

Ph.D. in General Psychology: Performance Psychology (Qualitative Research)

The Path to a better future is right in front of you

3300 W Camelback Rd

Phoenix, AZ 85017

United States

1-800-800-9776

Program Information

Degrees offered:.

Format: Online

Program Description:

Examine Human Performance Psychology Factors That Influence Peak Performance Peak performance psychology focuses on human psychology during professional performance, often psychomotor performance. Grand Canyon University’s qualitative Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in General Psychology with an Emphasis in Performance Psychology is designed for learners who want to apply research about emotion, cognition and motivation to the study of peak performance. Graduates of the PhD in General Psychology: Performance Psychology program are taught to use psychology to improve and enhance all kinds of human performance. The College of Doctoral Studies developed this performance psychology emphasis around the following aspects of the field:     Theoretical foundations of emotion, cognition and behavior in performance settings          Constructs and theories of psychomotor skill and motor control to improve learning and performance          Principles of behavior modification to enhance individual performance          Psychological theories to promote effective leadership          Applications of psychological theories and principles underlying performance Earn Your Online PhD in Psychology: Performance Psychology At GCU, the online PhD in psychology allows you to complete your program coursework through a digital online platform for added flexibility and convenience. You will have access to knowledgeable faculty and advisors as well as dissertation resources throughout your doctoral program. Residency Opportunities In addition to the online classes, you will participate in two five-day residencies on or near GCU’s Phoenix campus. These are opportunities to network and collaborate in-person with other doctoral students and faculty. During the first residency in the performance psychology emphasis, you will apply research design principles to develop foundational elements for your potential dissertation. Research skills will continue to be developed through hands-on activities. In the second residency, you will present and defend a preliminary design of your dissertation research from the first residency. Learn and Practice Peak Performance Psychology Concepts When pursuing the qualitative PhD in psychology for performance psychology you will have the opportunity to expand your skill set by developing a research study and gaining insight into how and why people think, believe and behave in a certain way — particularly in the area of human performance psychology. This differs from GCU’s quantitative PhD in performance psychology, which focuses on developing expertise in human performance psychology through the creation of a sampling plan and in the collection of numeric data. Benefits of Earning Your PhD in Psychology With Qualitative Performance Psychology From GCU Those looking to position themselves for career advancement in peak performance psychology, medicine, business, sales and marketing can benefit from this general psychology doctoral degree. The PhD in psychology with an emphasis in qualitative performance psychology program at GCU integrates the research and hands-on methodology needed to complete a dissertation. In addition to the online coursework, this program includes two in-person doctoral residencies. During this time, you will have the opportunity to work with faculty, advisors and peers to receive feedback on your dissertation research. This degree does not lead directly to licensure. Admission into this Doctor of Philosophy in General Psychology with Performance Psychology emphasis program requires a graduate degree and related coursework. Course Topics in Performance Psychology Emphasis When peak performance psychology is applied outside of the realm of sports and physical performance, it is closely related to industrial and organizational psychology. Both practices intend to improve employee performance. The disciplines even use some similar strategies, such as goal setting, to enhance work output. However, human performance psychology digs deeper into the principles of behavior modification to determine how to improve work and leadership. Additionally, it studies traits of high achieving leaders to learn how to motivate and change work habits from the top down. GCU’s online PhD in psychology with performance psychology teaches you to conduct empirical research and learn theories related to mental and thought processes. In addition, graduates examine:     Factors affecting individual behavior          Mass communication’s impact on social awareness and control          The construction, analysis and interpretation of psychological tests          Measurement of learning outcomes          How to improve learning and performance conditions          The dimensions that impact information processing, decision making and regulating emotions Career Paths for PhD in Psychology: Performance Psychology Graduates GCU’s online PhD in psychology with a focus on peak performance psychology can lead you into many different fields, including higher education, fitness and nutrition, research and training. As a doctoral learner, you are guided throughout the program to become capable of consulting or leading change in an organization. Some areas you may pursue with this degree and relevant credentials are:     Sports performance psychology          Industrial-organizational psychology          Social science research          Higher education 1 American Psychological Association. (2014). Sports and Performance Psychology Delivers Peak Performance. Retrieved on May 15, 2023. 2 American Psychological Association. (2014). A Career in Sport and Performance Psychology. Retrieved on May 15, 2023.

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PhD in Psychology from Grand Canyon University (GCU)

Discussion in ' General Distance Learning Discussions ' started by DoctorPhD , Jan 4, 2012 .

DoctorPhD

DoctorPhD New Member

Hi, everyone. I'm thinking about signing up for Grand Canyon University's PhD in General Psychology with an emphasis in industrial and organizational psychology. It is 100% online and costs about $38,000. Does anyone have any feedback regarding this program? College of Doctoral Studies | Grand Canyon University - general page Doctor of Philosophy in General Psychology with an Emphasis in Industrial and Organizational Psychology | Grand Canyon University - program-specific page  

Koolcypher

Koolcypher Member

Grand Canyon is a fine school, they have a B & M campus in Arizona, a nice plus. I considered them for my Ph.D sometime ago. If I do ever decide to obtain a doctorate degree, GCU will be on my list. Other members here will probably give you a better perspective on Grand Canyon , I know that some members here are currently, or have pursued, degrees from this school. Good choice!  

emmzee

emmzee New Member

GCU is not APA accredited, so you'll need to determine whether having a non-APA doctorate will end up limiting your future options. If you determine that having an APA accredited degree isn't necessary, then GCU sounds like a decent school.  

StefanM

StefanM New Member

emmzee said: ↑ GCU is not APA accredited, so you'll need to determine whether having a non-APA doctorate will end up limiting your future options. If you determine that having an APA accredited degree isn't necessary, then GCU sounds like a decent school. Click to expand...

Bruce

Bruce Moderator

Ah thanks for the clarification!  
I'm not too concerned about the APA accreditation, as I am not pursuing a clinical psychology track. However, the bit about re-specialization is very interesting...provides a great avenue in the future if I change my mind. Thanks! Basically, I did a search for distance learning or very limited residency psychology PhD programs. GCU was the only one with a campus and NCAA sports team. The cost seems reasonable, too, relatively speaking. I can't help but think there is some kind of catch? I don't like the fact that GCU is owned by a for-profit corporation (it used to be non-profit, but the trustees had financial problems and sold out). Also, it looks like only about 4,000 students are on-campus, and the other 36,000 are distance-learning students. Furthermore, I'm not too fond of the school's very sales-oriented/telemarketing recruiting tactics. Additionally, the Department of Education's Financial Aid website shows that the graduation and retention rates for all students combined is in the 25-29% range. Any thoughts?  

Steve King

Steve King Member

Bruce said: ↑ The GCU program is in general psychology which doesn't qualify for licensure in any state, so the lack of APA accreditation isn't that big a deal. Click to expand...
Posted in error.  
Thanks for the info on re-specializing in clinical psychology - that leaves another option down the road! I did a search for psychology PhD programs with little to no residencies. GCU is the only school with a B&M campus and NCAA sports teams. The tuition is also the lowest. There has to be a catch - what is it? While I am attracted to the program, things I'm not too happy with are: - Owned by a for-profit corporation - Heavy sales-oriented/telemarketing-type recruiting tactics - Only about 4,000 students are at the B&M school; the other 36,000 are distance learners (and this relates to the above two points) - The FAFSA website shows graduation and retention rates in the 25-29% rate (this also relates to the above points) So, what do you all think? What are some reasons for choosing other schools, such as NCU, Capella , or Walden? I know about Fielding, but unfortunately, it's not viable for me since I work full-time and because the program is too expensive.  
So, what do you all think? What are some reasons for choosing other schools, such as NCU, Capella , or Walden? I know about Fielding, but unfortunately, it's not viable for me since I work full-time and because the program is too expensive. Click to expand...
Steve King said: ↑ The Commonwealth of Virginia offers licensure, and in many situations requires state licensure, for psychologists even if they aren't clinical or counseling psychologists. DoctorPhD expressed an interest in industrial/organizational psychology. Virginia puts I/O psychologists in the category of applied psychologists for purposes of licensure. Graduation from an APA approved program is not required (for the reasons previously mentioned). The education requirements for each state is available online. Here are Virginia's as an example of what states may require. 18VAC125-20-55. Education requirements for applied psychologists. A. The applicant shall hold a doctorate from a professional psychology program from a regionally accredited university which meets the following criteria: 1. The program is within an institution of higher education accredited by an accrediting agency recognized by the United States Department of Education , or publicly recognized by the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada as a member in good standing. Graduates of programs that are not within the United States or Canada must provide documentation from a credential evaluation service acceptable to the board which demonstrates that the program meets the requirements set forth in this chapter. 2. The program shall be recognizable as an organized entity within the institution. 3. The program shall be an integrated, organized sequence of study with an identifiable psychology faculty and a psychologist directly responsible for the program, and shall have an identifiable body of students who are matriculated in that program for a degree. The faculty shall be accessible to students and provide them with guidance and supervision. The faculty shall provide appropriate professional role models and engage in actions that promote the student's acquisition of knowledge, skills and competencies consistent with the program's training goals. 4. The program shall encompass a minimum of three academic years of full-time graduate study or the equivalent thereof. 5. The program shall include a general core curriculum containing a minimum of three or more graduate semester hours or five or more graduate quarter hours in each of the following substantive content areas. a. Biological bases of behavior (e.g., physiological psychology, comparative psychology, neuropsychology, sensation and perception, health psychology, pharmacology, neuroanatomy). b. Cognitive-affective bases of behavior (e.g., learning theory, cognition, motivation, emotion). c. Social bases of behavior (e.g., social psychology, group processes, organizational and systems theory, community and preventive psychology, multicultural issues). d. Psychological measurement. e. Research methodology. f. Techniques of data analysis. g. Professional standards and ethics. B. Demonstration of competence in applied psychology shall be met by including a minimum of at least 18 semester hours or 30 quarter hours in a concentrated program of study in an identified area of psychology, e.g., developmental, social, cognitive, motivation, applied behavioral analysis, industrial/organizational, human factors, personnel selection and evaluation, program planning and evaluation, teaching, research or consultation. Click to expand...
Bruce said: ↑ If those are the only requirements, Virginia is the only state I've seen that doesn't require supervised internship hours for licensure. Click to expand...
Steve King said: ↑ That's a great point, Bruce. These are by no means the only requirements for licensure as a psychologist in Virginia. To be licensed in Virginia, psychologists must also complete a supervised internship / practicum and pass a national exam. The list I posted showed only the education requirements for applied psychologists. Clinical and school psychologists have even more requirements for the kinds and numbers of courses they are required to pass. Click to expand...

japhy4529

japhy4529 House Bassist

japhy4529 said: ↑ These are the requirements for Applied Psych (e.g. Psychologists who do not intend on seeing patients). I would imagine that that is the reason for the lack of internship requirements. Interesting though. I've never seen anything like this before. Most states only license clinical, counseling and school psychologists. Click to expand...
Thanks for the replies so far. Steve King asked how I intend to use the PhD in I/O psychology, should I be fortunate enough to attain one. It would mostly be a personal achievement. It may also provide some type of post-retirement opportunity in training research/management (more likely) or HR/business consulting (much less likely), but that's not my main motivation for seeking a PhD. I am not looking to provide therapy or counseling to individual clients.  
To clarify, for Tom and Bruce, anyone who wishes to "engage in the practice of...psychology" must be licensed in Viginia. This includes applied psychologists who don't see patients, like industrial/organizational psychologists. The exceptions, which I mentioned previously, are very limited. DoctorPhD mentioned "personal achievement," which I can relate to because I considered an online psychology degree several years ago. It is very important to look at your state's regulations regarding the profession. Otherwise, you might not take enough of the right courses to meet your state's licensing requirements. Without licensure, you might not be able to even use the title "psychologist" in any professional setting (depending on your state's regulations). I can't imagine the frustration of successfully completing a PhD in psychology and then being barred from calling yourself a psychologist in any professional settings.  
DoctorPhD said: ↑ Thanks for the replies so far. Steve King asked how I intend to use the PhD in I/O psychology, should I be fortunate enough to attain one. It would mostly be a personal achievement. It may also provide some type of post-retirement opportunity in training research/management (more likely) or HR/business consulting (much less likely), but that's not my main motivation for seeking a PhD. I am not looking to provide therapy or counseling to individual clients. Click to expand...
japhy4529 said: ↑ I would like to suggest that you look into options outside the U.S. For example, University of South Africa (UNISA) offers a number of masters and doctoral programs in I/O psychology and Consulting Psychology . Tuition is extremely inexpensive. Click to expand...

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How My Psychology & Chemistry Degrees Can Be Used in Sustainability

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phd psychology gcu

How do my Psychology and Chemistry degrees prepare me for careers in the field of Sustainability? Before diving into the different career paths, you could take to pursue a career in the field of Sustainability let’s define what Sustainability is. Sustainability is “the ability of causing little or no damage to the environment and therefore able to continue for a long time” (Cambridge University Press & Assessment, 2023).

Let’s take a closer look at some companies that promote sustainability. McCormick & Company was ranked #6 globally for most sustainable corporation and they actively manage their global impact as they are transitioning their packaging of the different seasonings to 100% circular packaging, meaning it is intended to be reused, recycled, or composted rather than thrown away. ExxonMobil is another company that has a dedication to sustainability, and they prioritize energy conservation and lowering carbon emissions by providing solutions to customers while they oversee natural resources such as lubricants, fuels, and chemicals. Both organizations are sustainability giants where ExxonMobil prioritizes energy conservation and McCormick & Company places an emphasis on minimizing their environmental impact.

To learn more about what it’s like to work in the field of the sustainability, the Center for Career Development has many resources such as HuskyLink . This platform connects current University of Connecticut students with alumni within aspiring career fields to provide students with an opportunity to gain insight into the company or career field. Students interested in pursuing a career in the field of sustainability can connect with alumni that have either had experience within that career field or currently work in the field of sustainability.

Now that we’ve looked at what sustainability is and what organizations and corporations are actively changing their environmental impact, let’s take a deep dive into the different career fields you can take as a CLAS graduate in Sustainability.

Environmental Chemists

Recent chemistry graduates can pursue a career in environmental chemistry. An Environmental Chemist will spend their time researching how chemicals affect the environment and how the environment can be damaged or restored by human activity Their responsibilities may involve working in the field or collecting samples and making measurements, and usually operate in mixed environments, such as an office or a laboratory. Environmental chemists are often employed by numerous organizations, including local, state, and federal agencies that handle regulations and administration. Some careers that you can pursue with a degree in chemistry include industrial ecologist, climate change activist, and environmental auditor.

Clinical and Environmental Psychologists

A career in sustainability is certainly possible for recent psychology graduates. Climate and Environmental psychologists are usually employed in nonprofit organizations, government agencies, businesses, and nongovernmental organizations. Researchers investigate how people interact and react to their environment. Through their investigations, they aim to explore questions like why someone might decide to recycle, what drives others to embrace eco-friendly habits, and why some choose not to take part in sustainability initiatives. Recent graduate students can pursue one of two paths to become a clinical or environmental psychologist: obtain a master’s degree in environmental or clinical psychology or earn a doctorate (PhD).

Although pursuing a career in sustainability may seem overwhelming at first to recent College of Liberal Arts grads, it’s important to keep in mind that there are several options. While environmental chemistry offers a more technical approach to addressing environmental concerns, clinical and environmental psychology offer opportunities to explore the human aspect of sustainability. Graduates may contribute to the effort in creating an environmentally friendly future by seeking further education or exploring certain career opportunities within these sectors. To ask any questions about pursuing a career in sustainability or explore possibilities for your major, schedule an appointment a Career Coach !

  • A Career in Climate and Environmental Psychology (apa.org)
  • Gcu.edu/blog/engineering-technology/environmental-chemistry-jobs-consider-pursuing
  • SUSTAINABILITY | English meaning – Cambridge Dictionary
  • McCormick & Company Ranked World’s 6th Most Sustainable Corporation and No. 1 in Food on Corporate Knights 2021 Global 100 Sustainability Index | McCormick & Company, Inc.

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