*This deadline applies to both the CSU Apply and the departmental application*


All application materials must be submitted online through CSU Apply.


Required Materials:
  • University Application
  • Department ApplicationPDF File
    • Download the department application, fill it out, and then upload it in CSU Apply
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Three (3) Letters of Recommendation 
  • Transcripts of ALL previous coursework
    • One set for the university and an additional set for the department
    • Submit unofficial transcripts with your department application
  • Baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0 in psychology courses, 2.5 GPA in last 60 semester units, and overall GPA of 2.5.
  • Research experience 
  • Click herePDF File for a list of Required Prerequisite Coursework 




Please note the Master of  Arts program requires 36 units for the degree.

The Master of Arts (M. A.) Program offers advanced coursework and research experience in several specialized areas of psychology, including cognitive, developmental, evolutionary, social, legal, personality, industrial, clinical/community, quantitative, gerontology, perception, and biological/physiological. Our program provides excellent preparation for Ph.D. work by offering advanced statistical and methodological courses and research experience. Our graduate education also prepares students for a variety of careers in industry, education, and mental health. Students who are committed to the field of psychology, but are undecided on a specialty, have an opportunity to explore options.

The Department of Psychology is recognized for its outstanding research program and it was ranked eighth nationally among comparable institutions for research productivity in master's-level psychology programs in Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, February 1990. Our faculty have authored several books and hundreds of journal articles, serve on many advisory and editorial boards, and receive substantial support from national granting agencies. The department support several research centers, and our faculty members sponsor and mentor several students as research assistants. Opportunities are also available for graduate students to work as graduate assistants for psychology faculty and in other departments.

MA Student Handbook 2020-2021PDF File


The program requires 36 units of course work, as specified below. 

Core courses (18 units)

  • PSYC 467     Multivariate Statistics for Psychology (3)
  • PSYC 500     Issues and Perspectives in Psychological Research (3)
  • PSYC 510     Experimental Design (3)
  • PSYC 599     Independent Graduate Research (3)

(Note: Psych 500 must be completed in the first semester of the program. Psych 599 is recommended in the second semester.)Two seminars from Psych 520T Advanced Topics in Psychological Research (6; topics vary)

400- and 500- level Content Courses (12-15 units): (Three psychology courses must be completed from three of the following categories) 

University Catalog-Course DescriptionsOpens in new window

  • Applied Research
  • Cognitive
  • Social/Personality/Industrial
  • Clinical
  • Developmental
  • Quantitative
  • Sensory Processes/Physiological/Biological 

Thesis (3-6 units) 

MA Thesis OptionsPDF File  
MA Thesis ListPDF File Opens in new window  

A Study Plan is developed in consultation with the M. A. graduate program coordinator and must be filed in the University Office of Academic Programs. Once students have met all university and department requirements for admission into the program, classified standing is granted. To be advanced to candidacy for the M. A. degree, students must file a graduation check and have received a grade of "B-" or better on all study-plan classes.


The Department of Psychology Graduate Mentor Program facilitates students' early involvement in research, provides academic and career counseling, and helps students develop their thesis topic. New students, in consultation with the graduate Coordinator,select a faculty mentor prior to their second semester. The faculty mentor serves as adviser of the Independent Graduate Research Course (Psych 599). It is anticipated that students' mentors will serve as their thesis adviser in the second year. However, students are free to select a different person for their advisor.


Graduates of the program choose either to continue their studies in a doctoral program or begin their career by taking a job in a wide variety of settings. Cal State Fullerton graduates have been accepted into several highly respected Ph.D. programs at universities across the country such as Yale, University of Illinois, Northeastern, Perdue, Vanderbilt, Tufts, Duke University, Texas, Auburn, Alberta, University of Michigan, and others. Many graduates choose to continue their studies closer to home at Stanford, UCB, UCLS, UCSB, UCI, and USC. Those choosing to begin their career following graduation attain positions in settings such as industry, mental health facilities, and education. Our graduates enjoy successful careers in consulting, program evaluation, research, human resources, education, counseling, community services, health, and teaching.


Each year, the Department recognizes one or more outstanding M. A. students from the graduating class to receive the Outstanding M. A. Graduate Award. This award is presented at the annual celebration in May. The Professor Ed Stearns Exemplary Statistics and Research Design Award is presented to a student (graduate or undergraduate) who demonstrates extraordinary talent in statistics or research methodology. The Department offers Travel-Grant Awards for students presenting at professional conferences, typically for reimbursement of conference registration expense.


For Additional Information Contact:

CSUF Psychology Department

E-mail: or (657) 278-3515

Department of Psychology - Graduate Office
California State University, Fullerton
P.O. Box 6846
Fullerton, CA 92834-6846