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Psychology Schools and Colleges in Mississippi (MS)

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Residents of The Magnolia State make up less than one percent of the total national population, according to 2015 estimates by the U.S. Census Bureau, but there exists a nonetheless healthy selection of psychology schools and colleges in Mississippi. Here are a few fast facts about educational and employment opportunities for aspiring Mississippi psychologists:

  • There are 23 psychology schools and colleges in Mississippi in 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
  • Competition for space in the psychology career market in Mississippi is comparatively small, with the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) counting just 550 licensed psychologists and less than 100 psychiatrists actively practicing in the state in in 2015.
  • Mississippi is also home to several doctoral and post-doctoral programs accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA) — six doctorates, four internships and one post-doctoral fellowship program, to be exact.

BLS reports also show that the mean annual salary figures for psychologists and psychiatrists in Mississippi far outpace the state's average yearly wage of $37,620 for the job market at large. Here's a quick table showing some 2015 salary calculations for graduates of psychology schools and colleges in Mississippi working as clinical, counseling or school psychologists:

RegionCareerTotal EmploymentAnnual Median Wage
Gulfport-Biloxi-Pascagoula, MSClinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists$80$45,690
Gulfport-Biloxi-Pascagoula, MSPsychologists, All Other$30$86,240
Gulfport-Biloxi-Pascagoula, MSMental Health Counselors$100$46,850
Hattiesburg, MSMental Health Counselors$50$41,040
Source: 2015 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov.

Mississippi psychology licensing requirements

The requirements and regulations that graduates of psychology schools and colleges in Mississippi must meet to become licensed are set by the Mississippi Board of Psychology. Here are the requirements that must be met by serious candidates for a first-time Mississippi psychology license in 2016, according to the Board's website:

  • Provide documented proof of U.S. citizenship and age of at least 21 years
  • Submit to and successfully pass a criminal background check
  • Complete an APA-accredited doctoral degree program in psychology at an institution accredited by an official regional accrediting body
  • Work for two years in the field under the supervision of an established practitioner, including one year of internship and one year of post-doctoral experience
  • Take and pass the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP) with a National Scaled Score of at least 500

Mississippi psychology licenses must be renewed on an annual basis, which requires the licensee to remit a renewal fee and provide documentation of at least 20 clock hours of continuing education activities. The annual fee was $700 as of 2016, but Board statutes indicate that it may be subject to change as appropriate — review the Psychology Law section of the Board's website for up-to-date information.

Featured psychology schools in Mississippi

There isn't space to profile all 23 psychology colleges in Mississippi, but we've picked out a few that are either great across-the-board choices or have a few nuances that make them worth a second look. Check out these psychology schools and colleges in Mississippi as you're browsing for locations to work toward your degree:

The University of Southern Mississippi

As the home of APA-accredited doctoral programs in clinical psychology, counseling psychology and school psychology, there's a case to be made for The University of Southern Mississippi as one of the premier psychology schools in Mississippi. What's more, U.S. News and World Report lists the Hattiesburg institution on its nationwide lists of best graduate programs in both clinical and general psychology. The full slate of psychology degrees offered at Southern Miss is diverse, as well; it also features a brain and behavior concentration for post-graduate students and master's degree plans in counseling psychology and applied behavior analysis.

  • Department: Department of Psychology
  • Location: Hattiesburg, Mississippi
  • Online options: Southern Miss does offer a psychiatric nursing master's degree online, but no formal psychology degree program at the university can be earned entirely in the virtual classroom.

The University of Mississippi

Not only is the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) program in clinical psychology at the The University of Mississippi accredited by the APA and recognized by the National Register of Health Service Psychologists, but U.S. News ranks it among the top 100 clinical psychology graduate programs in the country. The northern Mississippi institution, known colloquially as Ole Miss, also offers an experimental psychology graduate program that can lead to a doctoral degree in such areas of the discipline as cognitive psychology, social psychology and behavioral neuroscience. Ole Miss is also home to the only university-based psychological internship in the state that's accredited by the APA.

  • Department: Department of Psychology
  • Location: University, Mississippi
  • Online options: No fully online psychology degrees are offered at Ole Miss, but individual courses from the psychology department occasionally become available via distance education.

Jackson State University

Despite being awarded full-fledged national university status as recently as 1979, Jackson State University has operated consistently for over 100 years and holds APA accreditation for its clinical psychology doctoral program. The clinical Ph.D. at JSU typically takes five years to complete, including a postdoctoral internship section, and contains significant amounts of clinical practicum coursework and dissertation research time as the program progresses. The Jackson institution's undergraduate program takes the form of a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree and features courses in such subjects as abnormal psychology, developmental psychology, behavior modification and more.

  • Department: Department of Psychology
  • Location: Jackson, Mississippi
  • Online options: JSU offers a B.S. in child care and family education and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree online, but no psychology degrees have yet been added to the online catalog.

Mississippi State University

It's the school psychology Ph.D. at Mississippi State University that's recognized by the APA and National Register, although students pursuing school psychology may also choose among two other degree tracks in the discipline: an Educational Specialist (Ed.S.) degree with a concentration in school psychology for post-grads, and a Master of Science (M.S.) degree in psychometry, or psychological measurement, for aspiring graduate students. The undergraduate psychology program at MSU is delivered as a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree, and the Ph.D. in clinical psychology, while not currently accredited by the APA, is actively seeking accreditation status. An applied cognitive science Ph.D. is also available.

  • Department: Department of Psychology
  • Location: Mississippi State, Mississippi
  • Online options: Although several online degree options exist at MSU, no psychology degrees were among them as of Fall 2016.

Sources:

  1. QuickFacts, Mississippi, U.S. Census Bureau, accessed June 28, 2016, http://www.census.gov/quickfacts/table/PST045215/28
  2. College Navigator, National Center for Education Statistics, accessed June 28, 2016, http://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/?s=MS&p=42
  3. Psychologists, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, accessed June 28, 2016, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/psychologists.htm
  4. Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2015, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, accessed June 28, 2016: Clinical, Counseling and School Psychologists, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes193031.htm; Psychologists, All Other, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes193039.htm; Psychiatrists, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes291066.htm;
  5. Mississippi, May 2015 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, accessed June 28, 2016, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_ms.htm
  6. Search for Accredited Programs, American Psychological Association, accessed June 28, 2016, http://apps.apa.org/accredsearch/
  7. All Approved Doctoral Programs Listed by Jurisdiction, National Register of Health Service Psychologists, accessed June 28, 2016, http://www.nationalregister.org/resources-links/doctoral-programs/approved-doctoral-programs-by-jurisdiction/
  8. Mississippi Board of Psychology, accessed June 29, 2016: Applying for Licensure, http://www.psychologyboard.ms.gov/Pages/Licensure.aspx; Psychology Law, http://www.psychologyboard.ms.gov/Pages/Psychology-Law.aspx;
  9. U.S. News & World Report, accessed June 28, 2016: University of Southern Mississippi, http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-colleges/university-of-southern-mississippi-176372/overall-rankings; University of Mississippi, http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-colleges/university-of-mississippi-main-campus-176017/overall-rankings;
  10. School pages, accessed June 28, 2016: Department of Psychology, The University of Southern Mississippi, https://www.usm.edu/psychology; Programs, Online at Southern Miss, The University of Southern Mississippi, https://online.usm.edu/programs/; Department of Psychology, The University of Mississippi, http://psychology.olemiss.edu/; Degree Programs, Ole Miss Online, http://www.online.olemiss.edu/degree_programs.html; Courses, Ole Miss Online, http://www.online.olemiss.edu/courses.html; Department of Psychology, Jackson State University, www.jsums.edu/psychology/; Degree Requirements, Curriculum, and Course Description, Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program, Jackson State University, http://www.jsums.edu/psychology/graduate/curriculum-plan/; Curriculum and Degree Requirements, Bachelor of Science: Psychology Major, Jackson State University, http://www.jsums.edu/psychology/files/2010/01/psychology.pdf; Graduate Programs, Department of Psychology, Mississippi State University, http://www.psychology.msstate.edu/gradprograms/index.php; Undergraduate Students, Department of Psychology, Mississippi State University, http://www.psychology.msstate.edu/undergraduate/index.php/; About Us, School Psychology Program, Mississippi State University, http://www.schoolpsych.msstate.edu/about/