MA in Psychology

Admission Information

We admit around 40 new students to our graduate program each year (the majority being admitted to the Master of Arts Program). New students are generally distributed among the seven areas. Applicants are expected to specify the areas that are of primary and secondary interest to them. Once admitted, changing from one area to another is often not permitted. We give preference to applicants with strong academic backgrounds who appear promising as researchers; for the Clinical and Clinical-Developmental areas, we admit those who appear promising as scientist-practitioners. Our M.A. students normally proceed and successfully complete the requirements for a Ph.D. degree in Psychology.

Master of Arts Program Requirements

The usual requirement for admission is an honours degree in psychology (or its equivalent with at least eight full courses in psychology) with a B+ or higher standing in the last two years of study. The honours degree equivalent for students not applying to the Clinical Area should include:

  1. One full-course in Introductory Psychology
  2. One full or two half-courses from the following:
    Child Psychology, Social Psychology, Abnormal Psychology, Personality Theory and Behaviour Disorders, Theories of Personality
  3. One full-course in Research Design and Statistical Analysis
  4. One full or two half-courses in Experimental Psychology: Cognitive Processes, Learning, Motivation, Perception, Physiological Psychology
  5. Four other full psychology courses or the equivalent

The honours degree equivalent for students applying to the Clinical Area should include:

  1. One full-course in Introductory Psychology
  2. One full-course in Research Design and Statistical Analysis
  3. The equivalent of six other full-courses in psychology

Applicants to the Clinical Area* are expected to have a general background and knowledge in core content areas of psychology. Of the six other full-courses, one full-course or two half courses in each of the following core content areas, taken at the senior undergraduate level, are accepted as satisfying this expectation:

  • Biological Basis of Behaviour (e.g. physiological psychology, comparative psychology, neuropsychology, sensation, psychopharmacology, health psychology)
  • Cognitive-affective Basis of Behaviour (e.g. learning, memory, perception,
    cognition, thinking, motivation, emotion)
  • Social Basis of Behaviour (e.g. social psychology, cultural, ethnic and group processes, sex roles, organizational and systems theory)

Students may apply and be accepted into the program without satisfying the breadth expectation. However, students admitted to the program without sufficient breadth are required to complete relevant coursework during graduate training to fulfill breadth requirements.

Applicants to the Clinical-Developmental (CD) Area)* are expected to have a general background and knowledge in core content areas of psychology. Applicants should have taken at least:

  1.    One full-course in Introductory Psychology
  2.    One full-course in Research Design and Statistical Analysis
  3.    The equivalent of six other full-courses in psychology that cover the following core areas:
  • Biological Basis of Behaviour (e.g. physiological psychology, neuropsychology, sensation, psychopharmacology, health psychology)
  • Cognitive-affective Basis of Behaviour (e.g. learning, memory, perception, cognition, emotion)
  • Social Basis of Behaviour (e.g. social psychology, cultural, ethnic and group processes, sex roles, organizational and systems theory)
  • Individual Behaviour (e.g. personality theory, human development, individual differences, abnormal psychology)

Applicants with insufficient breadth from their undergraduate training may be asked to demonstrate competence in these major areas of psychology by enrolling in undergraduate courses before beginning the graduate program.

In addition to meeting the graduate admission requirements, a student can only be admitted if there is a faculty member available and interested in serving as the applicant’s supervisor.  For this reason, applicants are strongly encouraged to determine whether a faculty member with compatible research interests is available for supervision.

* Students who plan to limit their studies to the Masters of Arts (MA) degree in the Clinical or Clinical-Developmental Area are discouraged from applying to the program.

GRE Scores

All students applying to the Masters Program in Psychology must submit official scores from the Graduate Record Examinations (General Test). A Subject Test in Psychology is also required for those applicants applying to the clinical areas. It is the responsibility of the applicant to schedule the examinations and request that a copy of the results is forwarded to the Graduate Admissions Office, York University. This should be done as soon as possible so that the results will be available near the closing date for applications. It is strongly advised that students book and/or complete GRE testing well in advance of the application deadline. Our school code is 0894, York University, and the department name is Psychology. We do not set a minimum test score as there are many factors that influence the admissions decision. Please use the exact same name on your GRE scores as the name on your application. Only 1 set of scores is required regardless of your first and second choices.

Please visit How to Apply for application deadlines and frequently asked questions.