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Program Overview

Program Overview

Hone your research skills with a Lipscomb M.S. in psychology. Build your identity as a psychological researcher. Grow in a community where you'll receive personalized attention from faculty with diverse research backgrounds.

You'll have opportunities for competitive internships that will boost your career. Mature as a researcher while crafting a thesis project that deepens your knowledge and feeds your passions. 

Most of our graduates receive acceptances into prestigious Ph.D. programs. Others apply what they've learned in the mental health field—or their dream jobs. Gain the foundation you want and need to advance in your field.

Are you a current Lipscomb undergraduate psychology major interested in pursuing your M.S.? Learn how you can get ahead with our bridge program

Admissions Requirements

Admissions Requirements

Please submit:

  • Lipscomb University's online application
  • A two-page (500-750 words) essay detailing your goals and why you are applying to Lipscomb
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Official transcripts from all schools in which a degree was conferred
  • GRE scores*
    • GRE scores are waived if you already hold a master's degree or if your undergraduate GPA is 3.0 or above
    • GRE scores are required if your GPA is below a 3.0
    • If you are applying to the Psych/ABA program, then GRE or MAT scores are required regardless of GPA
  • Interview

Deadline to apply for Fall 2022 will be July 1, 2022. 

All Interviews are on a rolling basis.



The 39-hour M.S. in psychology is for degree-seeking students who will not seek licensure as a counselor. If attending full-time, this degree could be completed in four semesters. The courses are listed below.

Core Courses (30 Hours, 3 hours each)

  • PSG 5103 - Theories of Counseling and Personality
  • PSG 5203 - Introduction to Psychopathology and Adaptive Behavior
  • PSG 5303 - Lifespan Development
  • PSG 5603 - Research Methods and Statistics
  • PSG 5803 - Integration of Psychology and Christianity Seminar
  • PSG 6713 - Biological Psychology
  • PSG 6613 - Statistics I
  • PSG 6623 - Statistics II
  • PSG 6933 - Thesis I
  • PSG 6943 - Thesis II

Elective Courses (select 9 Hours)

  • COUN 5903 - Introduction to Counseling Skills
  • COUN 6003 - Grief and Crisis Counseling
  • COUN 6053 - Multicultural Issues in Counseling
  • COUN 6253 - Career Counseling
  • PSG 6403 - Psychopharmacology
  • PSG 6603 - Advanced Psychopathology
  • PSG 6653 - Assessment Techniques
  • PSG 6503 - Human Sexuality
  • PSG 675V - Psychological /Counseling Topics
  • PSG 685V - Research Practicum
  • COUN 6303 - Substance Abuse Counseling
  • Other courses, as approved by the Psychology program director

Suggested course sequence for Full-time M.S. in Psychology (39-hour program) students entering in Fall:

Note: Some of the classes listed below are only offered once per year. If a student deviates from this plan, it may delay graduation. Students should consult with their advisor about any deviation from this course sequence.

Fall 1:
Biological Psychology
Research Methods & Statistics
Introduction to Psychopathology & Adaptive Behavior

Theories of Counseling & Personality
Lifespan Development
Thesis I

Statistics I
Elective 1 
Integration of Psychology and Christianity Seminar

Fall 2:
Statistics II
Thesis II
Elective 2
Elective 3

Suggested course sequence for full-time M.S. in Psychology (39-hour program) students entering in Spring:

Spring 1:
Theories of Counseling & Personality
Introduction to Psychopathology and Adaptive Behavior
Research Methods and Statistics

Statistics I
Thesis I
Integration of Psychology & Christianity Seminar

Statistics II
Biological Psychology
Elective 1
Elective 2

Spring 2:
Thesis II
Elective 3
Lifespan Development

Suggested course sequence for ABA for students beginning in FALL:

46 hour, 4 semester program (M.S. in Psychology + 16 hour ABA certificate for BCaBA certification)
54 hour, 5 semester program (M.S. in Psychology + 24 hour ABA certificate for BCBA certification)
This is a HIGHLY compressed program, not suitable for students working full time.

Fall 1 (12 hours):
Research Methods and Statistics (3 hours)
Introduction to Psychopathology and Adaptive Behavior (3)
Foundations of Applied Behavior Analysis (3) in Term I
Program Design, Implementation, and Evaluation (3) in Term II

Spring 1 (12 hours):
Research Methods in Behavior Analysis (3)
Lifespan Development (3)
Theories of Counseling and Personality (3)
Thesis I (3)

Summer 1 (11 hours):
Statistics I (3)
Behavioral Field Supervision I (2)
Behavior Change Procedures (3) in Term II
Thesis II (3)

Fall 2 (11 hours):
*Will be eligible for graduation from M.S. program and for 16-hour certificate at the end of this semester
Integration of Psychology and Christianity Seminar (3)
Statistics II (3)
Biological Psychology (3)
Behavioral Field Supervision II (2)

Spring 2 (8 hours): *Additional classes for 24-hour certificate
Ethical and Professional Conduct (3) in Term I
Advanced Applied Behavior Analysis (3) in Term II
Behavioral Field Supervision III (2)

Tuition & Aid

Tuition & Aid

Program tuition is currently $962* per credit hour.

*Note: The graduate tuition rates may increase annually, effective each summer semester.

Types of Aid


Both our deeply connected faculty and our experiential learning opportunities offer myriad ways for you to form relationships with leaders in the industry. These connections will serve and support you throughout your career.

Higher Education

Many individuals pursue a Master of Science in Psychology with the goal of obtaining a Ph.D. We have implemented a rigorous program to ensure that any student who graduates from our program is a competitive candidate for any APA accredited doctoral program. Many of our students are successfully pursuing a Ph.D. or other post graduate program at institutions including Virginia Tech, University of Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Baylor, Mississippi State and Notre Dame.


A big city. An even bigger opportunity. We consider Nashville an extension of our classroom, and as a leading city in many industries, that means you’ll gain experience and insight you won’t find anywhere else.

Small Class Sizes

You’ll have opportunities to engage in meaningful discussion, receive one-on-one faculty mentorship and ask difficult questions in our small class sizes. Plus, you’ll feel supported in a tight-knit learning community.

Our Faculty

  • Shanna Ray headshot

    Shanna Ray

    Professor and Chair, Psychology

    Shanna Ray has a B.S. in Psychology from Lipscomb University, M.A. in Experimental Psychology from Middle Tennessee State University and a Ph.D./M.S. in Developmental Psychology from Vanderbilt University. Ray joined...

    Meet Shanna Ray
  • AJ Heritage headshot

    A.j. Heritage

    Visiting Professor

    A.J. joined the Lipscomb faculty full time in January of 2021 after several years as an adjunct faculty member and faculty fellow with Lipscomb Online. A.J. earned his Ph.D. in...

    Meet A.j. Heritage
  • Katie Osborn Spirko

    Katie Spirko

    Assistant Professor

    Meet Katie Spirko
  • Jaclyn Spivey headshot

    Jackie Spivey

    Associate Professor

    Dr. Jaclyn Spivey is originally from Las Vegas, NV. She has a B.A. in Psychology from Loyola University New Orleans and a Ph.D. in Psychology (Behavioral Neuroscience) from the University...

    Meet Jackie Spivey

Career Paths

Social science research assistants

Assist social scientists in laboratory, survey, and other social science research. May help prepare findings for publication and assist in laboratory analysis, quality control, or data management.


Our program prepares you to move into a Ph.D. psychology program where you will prepare to teach or work on research in psychology.

Postsecondary Teachers

Postsecondary teachers instruct students in a wide variety of academic and technical subjects beyond the high school level. They may also conduct research and publish scholarly papers and books.