A bachelor’s degree in forensic psychology is a stepping stone to a promising career. Students are prepared for a variety of jobs like forensic psychologists, law enforcement officers, clinical counselors, and criminal justice professionals, among others. Students learn how to study criminals and criminal behavior, which they can apply in a number of areas. A bachelor’s degree in forensic psychology could be a major or minor, at times offered as a concentration of psychology or as a part of the criminal justice degree. Choosing an accredited forensic psychology degree program is important.
A bachelor in forensic psychology program encompasses disciplines like the law, criminal justice system along with psychology, which forms the major part of the curricula. You learn to study subjects and situations from all three perspectives so that they can contribute to crime-solving efforts. Forensic psychology professionals help in various civil, family, and criminal investigations and also provide expert testimony in court. Though students typically have to complete a master’s degree to grow in their careers, a bachelor’s program is a good place to start and get a feel of the profession.
Are you interested in learning more about the career potential for a degree holder in forensic psychology? Check out our article on the Highest Paying Criminal Justice Careers.
Types of degrees covered in this ranking include the following:
- Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, Forensic Psychology
- Bachelor’s in Forensic Science
- Bachelor of Arts in Forensic Psychology
- BS or BA in Psychology
- B.A.in Psychological Science
- BA. or B.S. in Psychology-Forensic Psychology
- B.A. in Criminal Justice
- Net Price Below $10,000: 4 points
- Net Price Below $15,000: 3 points
- Net Price Below $18,000: 2 points
- Net Price Below $20,000: 1 point
Student to Faculty Ratio
- Less than 20:1: 1 point
- Less than 15: 1: 2 points
- Less than 10: 1: 3 points
Return on Investment (ROI) According to Payscale.com
- Top 500: 1 point
- Top 300: 2 points
- Top 150: 3 points
Flexibility of the Program (asynchronous course delivery, hybrid options, part-time/full-time schedule, etc. ) – 1 point per item
Online Student Support Network (faculty mentors/advisors, etc.)— 1 point per item
Concentrations/Specializations – 1 point per item (5-pt cap)
Accreditation (School-Wide and Program-Specific) – 1 point per item
“Wow” Factor – 1 point
#25 University of New Haven
West Haven, Connecticut
B.A. in Psychology, Forensic Psychology
The University of New Haven offers a bachelor of psychology program with a forensic psychology concentration. It focuses on the best practices and new developments from the cross-disciplinary point of view. The courses cover a broad spectrum of forensic psychology topics, including:
- mental health law
- experimental research
- investigative psychology
- clinical services
The 63-credit program offers students an enhanced experience that helps them to start their career in different criminal justice and mental health settings. The program prepares the students for both graduate school placements and future careers. Housed in the Department of Psychology in the College of Arts and Sciences, the program includes faculty members and courses from the Henry C. Lee College of Criminal Justice and Forensic Sciences.
Average tuition per year: $60,038
#24 Syracuse University
Syracuse, New York
Forensic Science, BA
The Forensic Science BA at Syracuse University is an integrated major. It focuses on the application of different scientific techniques and methods for law and criminal justice careers. The program aims to offer broad exposure to the forensic science field while increasing employability in various areas related to the field. The interdisciplinary approach provides knowledge and skills that students need to succeed in their careers. A key focus of the program is practical and hands-on learning to prepare students for intensive research and practical applications. Paired with subjects like biology, chemistry, or biochemistry, this program offers a solid foundation for various forensic applications.
Average tuition per year: $52,210
#23 Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
Daytona Beach, Florida
Bachelor of Science in Forensic Psychology
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University offers a Bachelor of Science in Forensic Psychology degree program. It is a combination of interests in human behavior and the legal system. This 122-123 credit program focuses on:
- understanding cognitive and behavioral sciences
- the impact of our culture and society on our behavior
- the tools required to evaluate these.
The program helps students with hands-on activities and small classes. Graduates can start their careers in psychology and other related fields including:
- law enforcement
- court systems
- government security agencies.
- Average tuition per year: $48,576
#22 Seattle University
Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice: Forensic Psychology
Seattle University offers a Criminal Justice Bachelor of Arts degree, which prepares students for careers in law enforcement and related areas. The spans science and social science disciplines. This gives students a deep understanding of the facets that are involved with the societal responses and crime. The studies in empirical and conceptual knowledge foster action and reflection. This will prepare graduates to become leaders in the field of criminal justice. Courses include:
- Introduction to Criminal Justice
- Criminal Justice Research Methods
- Criminal Justice Statistics
- Criminal Law
- Forensic Psychology
- Criminal Profiling
- The Psychopath.
Average tuition per year: $45,765
#21 Florida Tech
Forensic Psychology, B.A.
Florida Tech offers the Forensic Psychology, B.A. program. It’s for students who wish to be trained in psychological research and theory and their applications in criminal justice and related areas. In this 120 credit program, students get a complete understanding of human behavior, including criminality. They will also learn vital skills in research, writing, and data analysis. The program also offers students close interaction with the faculty members and small classes. Students benefit from the faculty-led research programs and different types of internship options. There are also applied science projects partnering with the FBI and other leading agencies. The program is ideal for students who want to start their careers as:
- crime scene analysts
- leaders in criminal justice
- law enforcement officers.
crime scene analysts, leaders in criminal justice, or law enforcement officers.
Average tuition per year: $42,470
#20 Northwest Christian University
Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology
Northwest Christian University offers a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, which teaches students the essence of being human. They learn how humans learn and process information, relate to others, and develop as a personality. The program also explains how the psychological functioning of the human being is influenced by the social world (where we belong to) and biology. The main aim of this 124 credit hours program is to prepare the participants for careers in the fields of counseling, mental health, and social and community services. Besides, this course is also great for students who want to opt for some people-oriented jobs such as business, human resources, marketing, sales, and ministry. The program prepares students for licensure or credentials for Forensic psychology as well as for graduate programs.
Average tuition per year: $41,110
#19 California Baptist University
Bachelor’s Degree in Forensic Psychology
California Baptist University offers a bachelor’s degree in psychology with a forensic psychology concentration. The program explores the human psyche, relationships, experiences, and behaviors. It does this by combining research, theory, and hands-on training. Professors blend their Christian knowledge and practical experience to teach students the connections between psychology and biblical truth. The 62-credit program includes courses like:
- Foundational Skills in Behavioral science
- Epistemology and Worldview
- Statistics and Research Methodology
- History and Systems of Psychology
- Life Span Development
- Theories of Personality
- Cognitive Psychology
The Forensic Psychology concentration includes courses like:
- Developmental Psychology: Adolescence and Adulthood
- Introduction to Forensic Psychology
- Psychopathic Mind
- Social Psychology.
Average tuition per year:$46,520
#18 Walla Walla University
College Place, Washington
Forensic Psychology Major (Bachelor of Science)
The Forensic Psychology Major (BS) at Walla Walla University aims to help students to develop a strong foundation in forensic science as related to psychology. Hands-on learning opportunities offer them the knowledge to launch successful careers. In this 63-credit program, students are taught through easy and personalized access to the staff and faculty members and small classes. Some of the courses include:
- Developmental Psychology
- Introduction to Forensic Psychology
- Advanced Forensic Psychology
- Social Psychology
- Theories of Personality
The community service opportunities, education and psychology clubs, and psychology honor society Psi Chi make it a great experience for students.
Average tuition per year: $39,495
#17 Maryville University
St. Louis, Missouri
Bachelor’s in Forensic Psychology/Criminal Justice
The Bachelor’s in Forensic Psychology/Criminal Justice program at Maryville University prepares the students for careers in the fields of human, community, and social services as advocates or victim assistance workers. The program prepares graduates to go on to offer counsel and therapy to people who are convicted of crimes. They offer expert testimonies in the courts, and decide proficiency to stand trials. Students can get the hands-on experience of working in the profession by completing practicum or internship of 150 hours in the community, usually in the St. Louis area.
Average tuition per year: $38,558
#16 Bay Path University
BA in Psychology: Forensic Psychology
Bay Path University offers a BA in Psychology: Forensic Psychology that prepares graduates to embark on careers in criminal justice and social work. It is a good fit for students who want to apply the insights and principles of psychology in fields like:
- criminal justice
- mental health
- legal systems.
Among other areas, the 36-credit program teaches students:
- what motivates criminal behavior
- how incarceration affects families
- relationship between mental illness and committing a crime
Students also learn about what makes the issues of female offenders different from male offenders. After completing this program, graduates will be able to work in settings like:
- male and female correctional facilities
- domestic violence programs
- court systems
- re-entry programs.
Average tuition per year: $35,781
#15 Marymount University
Marymount University offers a specialized Psychology (BA) program that provides students with the knowledge of various topics in psychology like parent-child relationships, language development, neurological disorders, stereotyping, psychopathology, etc. The 68-credit program includes a module in forensic psychology. The learner-centered program helps to emphasize the skills of the participants like scientific reasoning, critical thinking, and written/oral communications, and all of these things have high demand in graduate programs or employment. After completing this program, students go on to work in a variety of fields spanning athletic coaching/training, media relations/advertising, nonprofit/government/market research, career counseling, social services/case management, administration/health care/public health education, etc.
Average tuition per year:$32,100
#14 St. Ambrose University
BS or BA in Psychology
St. Ambrose University offers a BS or BA in Psychology program that is divided into two sections, forensic psychology, and behavioral neuropsychology. In the former program, students have to study the relationship between the criminal justice system and the science of psychology. And the latter program includes the biological basis of thought and behavior. The individual focus on students, the challenging and encompassing discussions help students broaden their perspectives. The 30-credits program teaches them to dive into the emotion and behavior of human beings using the knowledge and skills they gain from the program along with compassion, to honor the perspectives, and identify the strengths of people.
Average tuition per year: $31,532
#13 Southern New Hampshire University
Manchester, New Hampshire
B.A. Psychology, Forensic Psychology
Southern New Hampshire University offers a Bachelor of Arts in psychology with a concentration in forensic psychology. The program prepares students to develop careers in the fields of criminal justice that include investigative research, psychological assessment, and crime analytics. In this course, specific concentration is offered to areas like forensic psychology, adolescent/child development, and mental health. Besides, this 120 credits program course also challenges the participants to apply their psychological knowledge, research skills, and critical thinking abilities for different types of issues. Therefore, the curriculum of this course is ideal for the students who want to become forensic psychologists later in their life.
Average tuition per year: $30,756
#12 Daemen College
Amherst, New York
Psychology, B.A. or B.S.
Daemen College offers Psychology, B.A., or B.S. program that gives students a clear understanding of the science behind different types of human behavior. They gain knowledge of the tools to research the human mind and the skills that are required to communicate with patients effectively. The 120 credits program allows students to choose electives so that they can tailor their degree per their interests and career goals. Forensic psychology falls among the clinical and applied areas of focus. Students go on to work in a wide range of careers in different fields of psychology and the related regions, along with options in research, teaching, and opportunities in the business world.
Average tuition per year: $29,430
#11 Tiffin University
Bachelor’s Degree in Forensic Psychology
The Bachelor’s Degree in Forensic Psychology offered by Tiffin University is a perfect blend of the coursework in criminal justice and psychology. This program is designed for students who prefer to explore the relationship between the criminal justice system and psychology. In this 33-credit program, students learn about victimology, the ways to treat offenders, counseling, crisis intervention, personality assessment, psychopathology, along with research methods. Besides, here, the participants would study the use of psychological principles for problem resolution in the criminal justice administration like police stress, jury selection, and designing rehabilitation programs. After completing this course, the students can start their careers in a research setting or clinical setting.
Average tuition per year: $25,710
#10 Madonna University
Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science
Madonna University offers a Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science, which focuses on instilling intellectual inquiry, humanistic values, the commitment to serve others. Students, and the respect for diversity while focusing on the career development of participants. The 38-credit program is taught by industry experts who help students to master the techniques of forensic science so that they can be prepared for successful careers in this field. As forensic science includes different types of specialties and sub-disciplines, this coursework explores different techniques at the trial level. It is the only undergraduate program in Michigan to be accredited by the Forensic Science Education Programs Accreditation Commission (FEPAC).
Average tuition per year: $23,100
#9 Faulkner University
Bachelor of Science in Forensic Psychology
The Bachelor of Science in Forensic Psychology program offered by Faulkner University incorporates different types of research-based methods, skills, and theories for psychology and counseling. The 121-credit program helps students recognize the interconnections between career, academic, social, spiritual, and family life. The main goal of this course is to help the students understand the emotional, physical, personal, and social influences on the behavior and thought of humans and animals. Besides, this program helps the participants to learn more about themselves. And this way, it prepares the students for joining the graduate school or for having dynamic careers at the undergraduate level, who don’t want to pursue licensure or graduate work.
Average tuition per year: $22310
#8 Florida National University
Psychology (PSY), Bachelor of Science Degree (BS)
Florida National University offers Psychology (PSY), a Bachelor of Science Degree program that prepares the students for both advanced professional education as well as entry-level positions in Psychology. Student needs a minimum of 120 credits for graduation. The curriculum exposes them to the various aspects of the human mind and offers a solid knowledge in varied psychological domains. They learn to incorporate and apply the necessary expertise to meet their career goals. They have the option to tailor their degree per their career goals and subject interests. One of the specialized areas is forensic psychology, which gives them foundational knowledge to pursue further education in the field.
Average tuition per year: $13,688
#7 Castleton University
B.A. in Psychological Science
Castleton University offers a B.A. in Psychological Science, which prepares students to research and explore the infinite realm of scientific thought. The program is designed for students who want to combine the study of psychology along with some other academic discipline. The 32 credits program offers the students the necessary knowledge of psychology so that they can use that knowledge later to build up a career in the field of psychology or some other areas. After completing this program, the students would be able to speak and write in the discourse of authority effectively. They will also be able to read, identify with, and critique both the contemporary and classic research literature.
Average tuition per year: $11,304
#6 National Louis University
B.A. in Criminal Justice
The Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice course offered by National Louis University includes majors in Forensic Social Justice or Criminal Justice Administration. The program prepares the students to work in the fields that address the consequences of criminality on society, communities, and individuals. This way, this 45 credits course equips the graduate students to serve in the fields of court or correction systems, law enforcement systems, or related private companies. Students understand and learn to apply theories regarding the impact of criminal behavior on society, how crimes are committed, and how to address and combat crime in communities. They learn about the function and role of the correction system, including the rehabilitation of the offenders. The program also looks at the methods in criminal analysis and investigation, the ways how the criminal justice agencies operate, deliver the services and get funds, etc.
Average tuition per year: $10,260
#5 Buffalo State University
Buffalo, New York
Buffalo State offers a B.A. in Psychology B.A., where the students receive a comprehensive and broad knowledge in psychological science. The 120-credit curriculum approach is both empirical and theoretical at different levels. This psychology degree program offers broad content areas that include perception, learning, aging and lifespan development, organizational/industrial psychology, animal behavior, abnormal and normal behavior, and social processes. Among the specialized areas of application, students also learn about forensic psychology and how it applies to law enforcement work. The program helps students gain foundational knowledge to pursue further education or begin to gain experience in the field with entry-level jobs.
Average tuition per year: $10,099
#4 University of North Dakota
Grand Forks, North Dakota
BA. or B.S. in Psychology- Forensic Psychology (Certificate)
The University of North Dakota offers a B.A. or B.S. in Psychology, which explores the intricacies of the human mind and prepares students for successful careers in mental health and related areas. In addition to 120 hour degree programs, UND offers an undergraduate certificate in forensic psychology. With this program, students will receive an overview of applied psychology and gain the necessary skills, knowledge, and competencies related to the criminal and civil justice systems. They also gain insight into different psychological theories and concepts, get a clear understanding of the legal systems, and learn about the statistical, analytical, and evaluation skills. They also gain practical, hands-on experience within the core classes that prepares them well for real-life practice and patient care.
Average tuition per year:$9,736.08
#3 Eastern Kentucky University
Psychology, B.S.(Forensic Psychology Concentration)
Eastern Kentucky University offers a Psychology, B.S. program for students who want to pursue careers in the field of social or mental health services. It is also a good fit for students who love critical thinking and creative problem-solving. This is a broad co-op program that offers the students clinical practicum opportunities. Led by expert instructors, this 120 credits program provides the students the scope to collaborate with the faculty members on the research projects on different projects. The flexible curriculum of this course allows the participants to concentrate on specialized interests while obtaining a solid base in the field of Psychology. Some of the courses include Physiological Psychology, Sensation, and Perception, Cognitive Psychology, Social/Personality, Abnormal Psychology, Introduction to Behavior Therapy, and Clinical Psychology, among others.
Average tuition per year: $9,266
#2 University of Southern Indiana
Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology
The bachelor’s in psychology program offered by the University of Southern Indiana emphasizes practical skills and hands-on learning that prepares students to become practitioners of psychology. The school provides both accessible faculty and small classes with the interactions among the instructors and students. Undergrads study psychology as part of a tight-knit and supportive community that blends classroom theory with real-world experience. Students need to complete two internships as part of the psychology major, which help them to gain the knowledge of the real-world in the service agency, workplace, research lab, or some other professional setting that is related to psychology. The 59-credit hour psychology degree program fosters different marketable skills that the employees often seek out.
Average tuition per year: $8,346
#1 Fort Hays State University
BA/BS in Psychology
The BA/BS course in Psychology offered by the Fort Hays State University is one of the most versatile and flexible undergrad programs in the field. Students who wish to pursue graduate studies are recommended to opt for the BS degree or choose the BA one per their preferences. There are some minor differences between these two routes. In the 124-credit hours Bachelor of Arts in the Psychology program, students need to complete the 20-hour sequence of out-of-department courses approved by the faculty of Psychology along with the foreign language course of 10 hours. In the 124-credit hours Bachelor of Science in Psychology program, students have to complete 20 hours of course work in Mathematics and Natural Science. With elective options like forensic psychology, students can tailor their degree and pursue a focused education towards their future career.
Average tuition per year: $5,274
What is forensic psychology?
Forensic psychology is a specialized field within the discipline of psychology that focuses on the application of psychological principles to the legal and judicial systems. It combines the areas of criminal justice with psychology to judge the competency of a defendant to stand trial
Forensic psychologists work on both civil and criminal cases and often serve as expert witnesses during court proceedings. The courseware typically includes psychological and clinical assessment of individuals and evidence, report writing, interviewing, and communication skills. The practice of forensic psychology involves research studies, investigations, evaluations, expert witness courtroom testimony, consultation, along with the design and implementation of treatment programs.
Most forensic psychologists are required to hold a license in their state, especially those who work in clinical practice. They typically have a master’s degree in forensic psychology or even a doctoral degree to practice, but an undergrad program gets them started in the field. Students get the opportunity to start with entry-level jobs and gain hands-on experience while they prepare for advanced study. Bachelor’s programs in forensic psychology to prepare students for a range of careers spanning areas like corrections, counseling, law enforcement, and social work.
What can you do with a bachelor’s degree in forensic psychology?
The most popular forensic psychology careers include:
- Victims’ Advocate – Works victims of crimes closely and guides them through the intricacies of the legal system. It involves shielding the victim from further trauma, educating victims on their legal rights, among other duties.
- Court Liaison Officer – Act as a liaison between the local police department and the criminal courts.
- Law Enforcement Officer – Bachelor’s degree holders forensic psychology are prepped to take on law enforcement exams and find their coursework to be a boon during the application and initial training process.
- Probation Officer – Work with offenders recently been released from prison and follow all steps to rehabilitate them.
- Jury Consultant – Work with legal teams to identify and select desirable jurors for any case by using their knowledge of criminal justice as well as human behavior.
- Research Assistant – Forensic psychology often chooses to assist licensed psychologists in research in the legal field.
- Expert Witness – Forensic psychologists are not just involved in cases but often provide testimony during court proceedings as well.
- Forensic psychologists – Counsel offenders in a jail setting, as a way to help them cope with the stress of incarceration, as well as treating any underlying mental health issues.
- Education – With advanced education, forensic psychologists go onto teach in a university or college setting.
- Consultant – Work as a consultant for FBI and other law enforcement agencies, help profile criminals, and evaluate offenders in particular cases.
What is the career outlook for bachelor’s degree holders in forensic psychology?
The career prospects for psychology graduates are promising. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects an 11% job growth for psychologists in specialties, including forensics by 2026. Ziprecruiter states that the average annual salaries for forensic psychology degree holders are $104,897 per year.
What are the general requirements for a bachelor’s degree in Forensic Psychology?
High school diploma from an accredited school or GED. GPA of 3.0, which is adjustable per each schools’ requirements.
What do students need to send?
- Standardized test scores
- Letters of recommendations
- Supplemental essays
Typically, a full-time degree requires 120 credits for completion and takes about four years to complete. Some schools allow part-time options for working professionals as well as 100% online programs.