Frequently Asked Questions from Prospective Students
General Questions About MA Programs:
What can I do with a general psychology MA?
How can I find out what degree is right for me?
I'm not sure I want an MA. Are there other possibilities?
My long term goal is to become a therapist or counselor. Will a Hunter MA help me?
About Hunter’s MA Program:
What graduate programs in psychology does Hunter offer?
What are the requirements for completion of the Hunter MA program?
Can I attend part-time?
Are evening classes available?
Are summer classes available?
I've never done any experimental research, so I don't know if I like it. Can I do research at Hunter?
What research do Hunter faculty perform?
Who are the faculty?
Applying and Financial Aid:
What are the requirements for admission to the Hunter MA Program?
Can I enter mid-year?
What are the deadlines?
What is the tuition for Hunter College?
What kind of financial aid is available for Psychology MA students at Hunter?
I've taken a number of courses at another institution. Will those credits transfer to Hunter?
How can I get more information about how to apply?
General Questions About MA Programs:
Q: What can I do with a general psychology MA?
A: An MA from Hunter College in psychology can help you acquire a position doing research in a wide variety of corporations and institutions. It may also help you achieve a promotion in your present employment, or allow you to assume more independence and responsibility in your current position.
For many students an MA is one path to a PhD program. The Hunter MA program gives students a solid background in psychology and provides research experience. This can be particularly helpful for candidates who are returning to school after some time away, or those who for some other reason cannot directly enter a PhD program. A Hunter MA in psychology will give you an academic foundation that will demonstrate to doctoral programs that you can succeed at the graduate level.
An MA in general psychology will NOT qualify you to practice therapy, nor will it meet the licensing requirements of NY State. You cannot call yourself a psychologist without a PhD or PsyD from a program accredited by the APA.
Q: How can I find out what degree is right for me?
A: For information about different degrees, please see our module, "Choosing the right degree: MA, PhD, PsyD, others".
Q: I'm not sure I want an MA. Are there other possibilities?
A: Yes. To explore your interests you can take 4 courses on a non-matriculated basis. All you need is a BA or BS from an accredited college or university. The Office of Admissions has the details (Office of Admissions, Hunter College of CUNY, 695 Park Avenue, Room 100 Hunter North, New York, NY, 10065). If you subsequently apply for admission to the program, the MA courses you have taken in the Hunter Psychology Department will be credited toward your degree. (Other institutions, however, may not give you credit for courses taken at Hunter.) For more information, see the Graduate Admissions website: www.hunter.cuny.edu/graduateadmissions
Q: My long term goal is to become a therapist or counselor. Will a Hunter MA help me?
A: The Hunter Psychology Department does not supervise students in performing therapy or counseling. It does offer theoretical courses on topics like psychopathology, abnormal psychology, and theories and methods of psychotherapy. Such courses provide a useful background that for students who intend to apply to a PhD program in clinical psychology or counseling, and for students who intend to apply to a Masters program in social work, counseling, or education.
About Hunter’s MA Program:
Q: What graduate programs in psychology does Hunter offer?
A: Hunter College offers a Masters of Arts program in General Psychology. Students may focus their courses, independent study, and thesis research in one of three content areas: (1) applied and evaluative psychology; (2) social, cognitive, and developmental psychology; (3) biopsychology and comparative psychology. The Department offers theoretical courses on clinical topics, but it does not offer supervision in counseling or therapy.
The psychology department does not offer a counseling program. However, the School of Education does offer mental health, rehabilitation, and school counseling programs.
All CUNY PhD programs are centrally supervised through the City University Graduate School and University Center. Please contact The Graduate Center, The City University of New York, 365 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10016-4309 (Room 6304.01, 212-817-8705) for more information on CUNY Doctoral Programs. For information about the subprogram in Biopsychology, which is housed at the Hunter College campus (although administered through the CUNY Graduate Center), please call 212-772-5621, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or see the Biopsychology website.
Q: What are the requirements for completion of the Hunter MA program?
A: Each candidate is required to complete an approved program of study of at least 30 credits (plus necessary background courses).
- The program includes four specific course requirements: Proseminar in Psychology, Statistical Methods in Psychology, Experimental Psychology, and Thesis Research.
The breadth requirement can be satisfied with various course combinations.
An MA thesis involving empirical research is required as well as a comprehensive oral examination on the thesis.
Q: Can I attend part-time?
A: Yes. Students can attend either full-time, in which case the degree is generally completed in two years, or part-time, in which case it usually takes three to four years to complete the degree.
Q: Are evening classes available?
A: Both day and evening classes are offered within the MA program.
Q: Are summer classes available?
A: No, there are no graduate summer courses, and only undergraduate summer courses. Some faculty are available, however, to supervise students' independent research, for which credit can be given in the following semester.
Q: I've never done any experimental research, so I don't know if I like it. Can I do research at Hunter?
A: Yes! Hunter College faculty are actively engaged in research on a variety of topics. By volunteering to do research in a faculty member's laboratory, or by taking an independent research course with a faculty member, you can get valuable research experience.
Q: What research do Hunter faculty perform?
A: Faculty research at Hunter includes:
Applied and evaluative psychology - topics in personality, psychopathology, theories of therapeutic methods, group dynamics, biofeedback, health and gender, stress and stress management, substance use, tests and measurements.
Social, cognitive, and developmental psychology - multicultural issues, cognitive and linguistic development, discursive social psychology, gender and cognition, attitudes, political psychology, psycholinguistics, decision-making, memory function in different populations.
Biopsychology and comparative psychology - hormonal influences on and neural control of avian and mammalian behavior, opiate effects, color vision, evolution of behavior, animal orientation and communication, cerebral specialization of function.
In addition to conducting research in their laboratories at the college, many faculty members have affiliations with other institutions, including the American Museum of Natural History, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Rehabilitation Research Institute of the International Center for the Disabled, the New York State Psychiatric Institute, the Rockefeller University, the New York University Medical Center, and the New York University Center for Neural Science.
Q: Who are the faculty?
A: For more information on Hunter College faculty members please see our module Psychology Faculty at Hunter College
Applying and Financial Aid:
Q: What are the requirements for admission to the Hunter MA Program?
A: There are 6 requirements a prospective student must fulfill for him/her to be considered for admission:
- BA / BS - A student must hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution, comparable in standard and content to a bachelor's degree from Hunter College. International students or those who have taken all or part of their undergraduate education in a country where English is not the native language are required to take the TOEFL examination, and achieve a score of 550 or better on the paper based test (PBT) or 213 on the computer based test (CBT).
GPA – There are no minimum requirements but an undergraduate average of B (3.0) is preferred. Official transcripts from all institutions are required.
GRE - The general GRE is required. The subject GRE is not required.
Recommendations - Two letters of recommendation, preferably from faculty, are required. Letters from friends, family, personal physicians, or personal therapists should not be submitted.
Statement of interests - A statement of your intellectual and research interests is necessary.
Psychology background - Twelve undergraduate credits in psychology are required, including one course in statistics and one laboratory course in experimental psychology. Students who have a high undergraduate GPA and high general GRE scores but lack a full psychology background may apply for admission. Students admitted without the psychology background requirement may be required to take preparatory statistics and experimental courses.
Q: Can I enter mid-year?
A: No. We are currently accepting Fall applications only.
Q: What are the deadlines?
A: The priority deadline for the fall semester is February 1st. The final application deadline is April 1st. Students who would like to be considered for institutional scholarships are encouraged to file by the priority deadlines.
Students who have taken undergraduate credits from a non-US institution and / or who require student / exchange visas must apply by the priority deadline.
Applications received after the priority deadline will be considered under the normal deadlines. Please contact the Admissions Office for more information, or see the Graduate Admission website: www.hunter.cuny.edu/graduateadmissions
Q: What is the tuition for Hunter College?
A: For more information on tuition, fees, and residence restrictions, please see the Hunter College Graduate Catalog, available from the Admissions office, or see the website: www.hunter.cuny.edu/bursar/tuition-fees
Q: What kind of financial aid is available for Psychology MA students at Hunter?
A: Some financial aid is available to matriculated students in the form of grants, loans, and work study. Aid from most of the major Federal programs is awarded on the basis of financial need. This is determined by the Expected Family Contribution formula, based on the amount you and your family are expected to contribute toward your education. There are sometimes research positions in faculty laboratories for highly qualified students. For more information contact the Financial Aid Office or see the website: www.hunter.cuny.edu/finaid
Q: I've taken a number of courses at another institution. Will those credits transfer to Hunter?
A: We typically accept only a few transfer credits. Transfer credits are arranged on an individual basis.
Q: How can I get more information about how to apply?
A: Please see our module "Applying to Graduate School in Psychology."