The best online courses in psychology allow you to achieve excellent learning outcomes. High-quality, fully online programs are available, including bachelor degree courses, graduate diplomas and masters.
- You can gain a psychology degree from a leading Australian university through 100% online study.
- Australia's best courses deliver interactive content. They also encourage student collaboration.
Psychology is a naturally fascinating study area. Choosing a good online course can be the start a rewarding learning experience that culminates with a university degree.
Study Psychology Online
You can study psychology 100% online for most of the popular degrees and qualifications.
- If you haven't studied at university before, fully online courses are available for 3-year bachelor degrees and honours (4th-year extension) programs.
- For university graduates, you can study online for a graduate diploma (equivalent to a 3-year bachelor degree) or an advanced graduate diploma (equivalent to doing honours).
Psychology examines mental processes and how they affect human behaviour. In an undergraduate degree, or postgraduate course of a general nature, you may study
- cognitive science (the science of how people think)
- behavioural science (the science of how people act) and
- social science (the study of how people interact with one another).
Studying psychology teaches you about people in a disciplined way. Students learn about human thinking, behaviour and interaction. You gain skills that can be applied in both professional and personal capacities.
By studying psychology online, you develop research, analytical and writing skills. You also gain insight into human thought and strategies to manage behaviour.
Becoming a Registered Psychologist
Studying psychology at university is a path to working as a registered psychologist or even a clinical psychologist.
- Note that most undergraduate psychology students end up doing something other than being a registered psychologist. At least 6 years of university study and workplace training is required for you to become eligible for registration.
- The Australian Psychological Society (APS) has detailed information for students who want to formally practise psychology.
Professional psychology courses (i.e. courses that include clinical training) require you to attend residential schools on campus. The interactive map (further down the page) shows Australian campus locations.
Clinical training can also be done in the form of an internship following postgraduate studies.
Psychology graduates have specialist knowledge and a demonstrated interest in human behaviour, personality, interpersonal relationships, learning and motivation. As a psychology major, you're advantaged in competing for jobs such as welfare officer, youth worker, support worker and employment officer.
Psychologists commonly find roles in fields such as (i) counselling (ii) education, training and development (iii) human resources management (iv) consulting and (v) marketing.
Generally, to maximise your value in the job market, it's advisable to combine psychology studies with complementary subjects. Good options include business, communication and media studies, and social work.
Online Bachelor Degrees with a Psychology Major
Deakin Psychology Degrees
Deakin University provides different paths for studying psychology at an undergraduate level. You can choose Psychology as a major in the Bachelor of Arts program, and go on to do an honours (4th) year if your grades are good. Psychological Science and Psychology for Professional Development are available as majors in the Bachelor of Health Sciences program. There's also a Bachelor of Psychology degree where you specialise in either Child and Family, Forensic, Health, or Organisational.
The University of Southern Queensland offers a 3-year online psychology degree (and a 1-year honours degree for graduates with good grades). The Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Psychology is designed for students who want to combine psychology with other disciplines (and can be taken as part of a double major). As well as traditional psychology units, you can study topics such as law, human physiology, sports psychology and human resource management.
ECU Bachelor of Arts (Psychology)
Edith Cowan University in Perth, Western Australia allows online learners to study psychology as part of a Bachelor of Arts degree. The 3-year program is available fully online while an honours year can be completed by mixed-mode study. The course is designed for students interested in vocational areas such as children studies, youth work, human services and justice. Psychology is also offered as a major for science students.
Campus Bases for Distance Courses
Some distance education programs require students to attend residential sessions on campus occasionally. Facilities to support online psychology studies are located here:
Monash Online Graduate Diploma in Psychology
Monash Online offers a convenient study option if you have a uni degree and want to obtain the equivalent of a 3-year bachelor degree in psychology. The Graduate Diploma in Psychology course is 100% online and accredited by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council. You complete 1 unit at a time, with each unit taking 6 weeks. The 10-unit program can be completed in just over 1.5 years of part-time study.
Advanced Postgraduate Study
Advanced postgraduate study is ideal for psychology graduates who want to do psychology research, gain professional accreditation, or become a clinical psychologist.
Studying externally is especially convenient if you have work or family commitments. Without the burden of having to show up to classes on campus, you can prepare yourself for roles such as the following.
Registered psychologists can legitimately call themselves psychologists and are able to work across many fields. On the academic side, you can qualify by completing a 4-year psychology degree (honours degree), or a bachelor degree plus an advanced diploma. This gives provisional qualification. To be registered, you also need to complete 2 years of supervised experience (internship program) or a 2-year professional masters degree (study and work placements combined).
Psychology researchers look at areas such as: addiction, ageing, anxiety, autism, body image, childhood and adolescence, chronic illness, criminology, depression, disability, eating disorders, obesity, offender reintegration, policing, substance abuse, workplace well-being, and quality of life. There is no prescribed level of study but advanced courses, such as a Masters, are highly advantageous.
To practise clinical psychology, you generally need to a complete a Masters degree or PhD in the subject. This involves significant clinical training, which cannot be done online. Clinical psychologists often work in public or private hospitals, mental health clinics, private practice or academic settings. Speciality areas include child mental health, adult mental health, learning disabilities, emotional disturbances, substance abuse, geriatrics and health psychology.
Monash Online Graduate Diploma of Psychology Advanced
Monash University offers a 100% online psychology degree which is equivalent to an honours (4th year) course. The Graduate Diploma of Psychology Advanced is suitable for students with a bachelor degree or graduate diploma in psychology (and solid grades). The program consists of 8 units (1.4 years of part-time study). Upon graduating, you can register as a Provisional Psychologist. To be a Registered Psychologist, you may then do a 2-year internship (via the Psychology Board of Australia). Each student collaborates with their supervisor using a Psychology Research Portal.
CSU postgraduate courses
Charles Sturt University offers distance learning postgraduate courses in psychology. You study online most of the time but, for some subjects, may need to attend occasional residential schools in Bathurst. The Postgraduate Diploma of Psychology (2-years part time) is equivalent to an honours degree (which is required for professional accreditation). CSU also offers a masters degree (4-years part time), which is for registered psychologists wanting to be Clinical Psychologists.
UNE Clinical Psychology
UNE’s clinical programs – MPsych(Clin) and PhD(ClinPsych) – prepare students to fill the unmet need for clinical psychologists in Australia (especially rural areas). In the 1st year, students receive extensive training in assessment and evidence-based treatments; then, under supervision, provide assessment and intervention to clients with disorders.
Students completing the MPsych(Clin) full-time need to be committed to being in Armidale for up to 3 days per week during their first year. In 2nd year, students attend brief intensive schools. The programs are structured so that the components of clinical training requiring physical attendance (most coursework and the initial clinical placement) are packaged together at the beginning.