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Best universities for psychology degrees in the US 2022

Explore the best universities the US for psychology degrees using data from the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2022

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September 23 2021
best universities in the US for psychology degrees


Top 10 universities in the US for psychology degrees

Scroll down for the full list of best universities for psychology in the US

US Psychology Rank 2022 WUR Psychology Rank 2022 University State
1 2 Stanford University California
2 3 Princeton University New Jersey
3 4 Harvard University Massachusetts
4 5 University of California, Berkeley California
5 7 The University of Chicago Illinois
6 8 Yale University Connecticut
7 9 University of Pennsylvania Pennsylvania
8 10 University of Michigan-Ann Arbor Michigan
9 11 University of California, Los Angeles California
10 =13 New York University New York

The US higher education system offers flexible course options and most undergraduates can study a range of subjects before declaring their specialisation or major at the end of their second year.

Psychology is a popular major or minor choice for students in the US. Students can study a range of topics, including cognitive psychology, social behaviours and abnormal psychology. Students often get the chance to be involved in research projects with academics at their institutions.

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Postgraduate options are varied and usually requite students to undertake a large independent research project. 

Below are the best universities in the US for psychology degrees. 

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5. The University of Chicago

- Psychology is one of the most popular majors at The University of Chicago.
-  Students can choose from five major areas: biological psychology, cognitive psychology, developmental psychology, social psychology, and sensation and perception. 

Undergraduate programmes combine taught courses and research opportunities.

The doctoral programme typically covers eight subject areas as well as a trial research project. 

Students can also participate in “Psi Chi”, the local unit of the National Honor Society in Psychology. Members can attend events such as Lab Night, where researchers describe their latest projects.

4. University of California, Berkeley

- The University of California, Berkeley’s department of psychology was established as a stand-alone department in 1921, having previously been part of the department of philosophy.
- UC Berkeley offers undergraduate and graduate degree programmes in psychology, focusing on six areas: behavioural neuroscience; cognition; development; clinical science; cognitive neuroscience and social-personality psychology.

Undergraduates can study either a major or a minor in psychology. There is a wide range of co-curricular activities for undergraduates, such as research, internships and field study.

The UC Berkeley Psychology Clinic has served the public of the Bay Area for more than 50 years and provides training to psychology students to help them prepare for their professional future.

What can you do with a psychology degree?

3. Harvard University

- Psychology is one of the most popular courses among Harvard University undergraduates, and the subject can be studied alongside a range of other disciplines.
- The undergraduate major in psychology at Harvard offers courses from introductory level to more advanced as students progress through their degree. 

Students are given flexibility in their learning through a number of tracks, such as the general cognitive neuroscience and evolutionary psychology track or the cognitive science track.

The graduate programme in psychology at Harvard covers four major research areas: cognition, brain and behaviour; developmental psychology; social psychology and clinical science. 

2. Princeton University

Princeton University is a member of the Ivy League and its psychology department, was established more than a century ago.
- Princeton undergraduates can study the psychology major as part of the Bachelor of Arts programme.

As well as learning about the psychology of language, movement and social interaction, students will learn basic statistical methods. They will also undertake courses in neuroscience.

At the graduate level, students can undertake the Doctor of Philosophy with psychology as their specialism.

The department is closely affiliated with the Center for the Study of Brain, Mind and Behaviour (CSBMB), which conducts research on the neural underpinnings of psychological function. The CSBMB houses facilities for the study of brain function, including a research-dedicated, high-field fMRI scanner, an EEG laboratory, an eye-tracking laboratory and high-performance computing facilities for data analysis and computational modelling.

1. Stanford University

- Located in the heart of Silicon Valley, Stanford University was founded in 1885 by Jane and Leland Stanford.
- The psychology department was one of the first to be established at the institution. 

Psychology courses at Stanford are split into five major areas: affective science, neuroscience, cognitive psychology, developmental psychology and social psychology. Students can choose courses from any of these departments.

Undergraduates can take the psychology major or minor programme as part of a Bachelor of Arts degree. They will study a range of topics, including abnormal psychology, cultural psychology and clinical psychology. Undergraduates also have the opportunity to conduct independent research for course credit. 

Graduate courses are available through Stanford’s extended doctorate in psychology programme, where no master’s degree is required. 

Among the department’s famous work is the Stanford prison experiment of the 1970s, which investigated the effects of perceived power on people’s conduct. The Stanford marshmallow experiment looked at delayed gratification in children and was completed in the same decade.

Top universities in the US for psychology degrees 2022

Click each institution to view its full World University Rankings 2022 results 

US Psychology Rank 2022 WUR Psychology Rank 2022 University State
1 2 Stanford University California
2 3 Princeton University New Jersey
3 4 Harvard University Massachusetts
4 5 University of California, Berkeley California
5 7 The University of Chicago Illinois
6 8 Yale University Connecticut
7 9 University of Pennsylvania Pennsylvania
8 10 University of Michigan-Ann Arbor Michigan
9 11 University of California, Los Angeles California
10 =13 New York University New York
11 15 Northwestern University Illinois
12 16 Columbia University New York
13 20 Cornell University New York
14 21 Duke University North Carolina 
=15 =22 Carnegie Mellon University Pennsylvania
=15 =22 University of Wisconsin-Madison Wisconsin
17 =25 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Illinois
18 28 Johns Hopkins University Maryland
19 30 University of Texas at Austin Texas
20 31 University of Washington Washington
21 32 University of California, San Diego California
22 33 University of California, Irvine California
23 34 University of California, Davis California
24 =36 University of Virginia (Main campus) Virginia
25 38 University of Minnesota Minnesota
26 =39 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill North Carolina 
27 =39 Ohio State University (Main campus) Ohio
28 42 Vanderbilt University Tennessee
29 48 University of Rochester New York
30 51 Boston University Massachusetts
31 52 Arizona State University (Tempe) Arizona
32 =53 Penn State (Main campus) Pennsylvania
33 55 Michigan State University Michigan
34 =59 Indiana University Indiana
35 =67 Brown University Rhode Island
36 69 Washington University in St Louis Missouri
37 72 Dartmouth College New Hampshire 
38 75 University of Southern California California
39 =78 University of California, Santa Barbara California
40 80 Emory University Georgia 
41 81 University of Maryland, College Park Maryland
42 90 Georgia Institute of Technology Georgia 
43 92 University of Colorado Boulder Colorado
=44 101–125 University of Connecticut Connecticut
=44 101–125 University of Oregon Oregon
=44 101–125 University of Pittsburgh-Pittsburgh campus Pennsylvania
=44 101–125 Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey New Jersey
=48 126–150 University of Arizona Arizona
=48 126–150 University of California, Santa Cruz California
=48 126–150 Florida State University Florida
=48 126–150 University of Illinois at Chicago Illinois
=48 126–150 Stony Brook University New York
=54 151–175 University of Florida Florida
=54 151–175 George Mason University Virginia
=54 151–175 University of Georgia Georgia 
=54 151–175 University of Iowa Iowa
=54 151–175 University of Miami Florida
=54 151–175 Mizzou - University of Missouri Missouri
=54 151–175 The New School New York
=54 151–175 University of Notre Dame Indiana
=54 151–175 Temple University Pennsylvania
=62 176–200 University of California, Riverside California
=62 176–200 University of Delaware Delaware 
=62 176–200 Iowa State University Iowa
=62 176–200 University of Massachusetts Massachusetts
=62 176–200 Northeastern University Illinois
=67 201–250 Baylor University Texas
=67 201–250 Boston College Massachusetts
=67 201–250 University at Buffalo New York
=67 201–250 University of California, Merced California
=67 201–250 University of Central Florida Florida
=67 201–250 University of Denver Colorado
=67 201–250 Drexel University Pennsylvania
=67 201–250 University of Kansas Kansas
=67 201–250 Lehigh University Pennsylvania
=67 201–250 North Carolina State University North Carolina 
=67 201–250 Rice University Texas
=67 201–250 University of Utah Utah
=79 251–300 Clark University Massachusetts
=79 251–300 Florida International University Florida
=79 251–300 George Washington University Washington
=79 251–300 Illinois Institute of Technology Illinois
=79 251–300 University of North Carolina at Greensboro North Carolina 
=79 251–300 University of Toledo Ohio
=79 251–300 Tufts University Massachusetts
=79 251–300 Tulane University Louisiana
=79 251–300 Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University Virginia
=88 301–400 Auburn University Alabama
=88 301–400 Bowling Green State University Ohio
=88 301–400 Brandeis University Massachusetts
=88 301–400 Case Western Reserve University Ohio
=88 301–400 Chapman University California
=88 301–400 Clemson University South Carolina
=88 301–400 Colorado State University, Fort Collins Colorado
=88 301–400 University of Houston Texas
=88 301–400 University of Kentucky Kentucky 
=88 301–400 University of Memphis Tennessee
=88 301–400 University of Nebraska-Lincoln Nebraska
=88 301–400 Rowan University New Jersey
=88 301–400 SUNY University at Albany New York
=88 301–400 San Diego State University California
=88 301–400 University of South Florida Florida
=88 301–400 Texas A&M University Texas
=88 301–400 University of Texas at Dallas Texas
=88 301–400 University of Texas at El Paso Texas
=88 301–400 Wake Forest University North Carolina 
=88 301–400 Washington State University Washington
=88 301–400 William & Mary Virginia
=88 301–400 The University of Alabama Alabama
=88 301–400 University of Colorado Denver/Anschutz Medical Campus Colorado
=88 301–400 University of Hawai’i at Mānoa Hawai'i
=88 301–400 Hofstra University New York
=88 301–400 University of Missouri-St Louis Missouri
=88 301–400 University of Nevada, Las Vegas Nevada
=88 301–400 Old Dominion University Virginia
=88 301–400 Portland State University Ohio
=88 301–400 University of Rhode Island Rhode Island
=88 301–400 Saint Louis University Missouri
=88 301–400 San Jose State University California
=88 301–400 University of South Carolina-Columbia South Carolina
=88 301–400 Syracuse University New York
=88 301–400 University of Texas at Arlington Texas
=88 301–400 Texas Tech University Texas
=88 301–400 Wayne State University Michigan
=125 401–500 University of Arkansas Arkansas
=125 401–500 University of Colorado Colorado Springs Colorado
=125 401–500 Florida Atlantic University Florida
=125 401–500 Florida Institute of Technology Florida
=125 401–500 Georgia State University Georgia 
=125 401–500 Kansas State University Kansas
=125 401–500 Kent State University Ohio
=125 401–500 Louisiana State University Louisiana
=125 401–500 Marquette University Wisconsin
=125 401–500 University of Maryland, Baltimore County Maryland
=125 401–500 Montana State University Montana
=125 401–500 New Mexico State University (Main campus) New Mexico
=125 401–500 Northern Illinois University Illinois
=125 401–500 Oakland University Michigan
=125 401–500 Ohio University (Main campus) Ohio
=125 401–500 Oklahoma State University Oklahoma
=125 401–500 SUNY Binghamton University New York
=125 401–500 The University of Texas at San Antonio Texas
=125 401–500 Texas State University Texas
=125 401–500 Western Michigan University Michigan
=125 401–500 University of Wisconsin Milwaukee Wisconsin
=146 501+ American University Washington
=146 501+ Georgia Southern University Georgia 
=146 501+ Mississippi State University Mississippi
=146 501+ University of North Carolina at Charlotte North Carolina 
=146 501+ University of North Carolina  Wilmington North Carolina 
=146 501+ Northern Arizona University Arizona
=146 501+ Nova Southeastern University Florida
=146 501+ University of South Dakota South Dakota
=146 501+ The University of Tennessee-Knoxville Tennessee
=146 501+ University of Texas Rio Grande Valley Texas
=146 501+ Western Kentucky University Kentucky 
=146 501+ University of Wyoming Wyoming 

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