MSPS Program Description

Psychology Building

The Master of Science in Psychological Science Degree at The University of Illinois is a two-year program designed to:

  • provide advanced training for students who wish to pursue doctoral education, but do not yet have sufficient preparation or research experience in the field of psychology,
  • and/or to prepare students who wish to pursue professional careers in industry that require or value a master’s degree in psychology.

The program provides training by engaging students in research labs, advanced coursework, and professional development.

Lab Experience

Upon acceptance to our program, master’s students at Illinois are paired with faculty sponsors and are active members of research labs throughout their two years of study. Students participate in producing cutting-edge research and get hands-on experience using the tools of psychological science.  Our student's recent accomplishments can be found in our MSPS CV.


In addition to lab work, students complete core coursework to build their statistical and methodological skills.  Students select elective courses that expand their knowledge in specialized areas of psychology and inform their unique research interests. In most cases, master’s students register for the same courses as doctoral students, allowing them to demonstrate their ability to excel at the doctoral level.

Professional Development

Students in the MS program receive formalized professional development guidance and training for a variety of professional topics, including publishing, public speaking, academic writing, research ethics, mentoring, interviewing for jobs or doctoral interviews, and preparing for post-graduate work. Professional development topics are customized for the needs of each cohort with the aim of preparing students for their future plans.

"Before the fall semester had even started, my soon-to-be advisor called me and told me he wanted to do everything he could to help me gain admission into a PhD program, and to help me lock down a job as a psychological scientist within the next few years.  Since arriving at the University of Illinois, I have had at my disposal any resource imaginable to conduct high-quality research, write clearly and effectively about said research, and present myself professionally as a contributor to the shared corpus of psychological knowledge."

-Drew Weiner, MSPS graduate, 2019

Please contact for additional information.

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