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Pepperdine University Online Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology (LPC or LMFT prep)

Pepperdine University Graduate School of Education and Psychology (GSEP) offers a fully online Master of Arts (MA) in Clinical Psychology. Also called OnlinePsychology@Pepperdine, this program prepares students for licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) or a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT).

Those pursuing LPC licensure prepare to diagnose and treat emotional, mental, and addictive disorders. They will be trained to work with individuals, families, and groups with mental health issues such as depression, psychological disorders, abuse, grief, substance abuse, fear, guilt, and anger. Key skills include listening, identifying problematic behavior patterns, developing effective behavioral changes and solutions, and replacing dysfunctional behaviors with functional alternatives.

Those pursuing LMFT licensure focus on issues from marriage difficulties, dysfunctional family dynamics, and parent-child relationships. LMFTs are also able to treat emotional, mental, and addictive disorders. Issues addressed may include substance abuse, anxiety, depression, dysfunctional family patterns, and relationship trauma.

Key skills include being an impartial listener to create safety during counseling, identifying dysfunctional relationships and behavior patterns, observing how couples and families interact with one another, creating effective and practical resolutions to problems, and encouraging healthy alternatives to dysfunctional behaviors.

To become an LPC or LMFT, students complete their MA in Clinical Psychology, fulfill the required fieldwork hours according to each state’s licensing board for their chosen licensure route, and pursue state licensure. Licensure requirements vary by state, and students should verify all state requirements before beginning the Clinical Psychology master’s program.

Clinical psychology courses are fully online, with no campus visits required. Students complete four local practicum experiences to gain hands-on experience in clinical psychology settings. Residents of California must complete 225 hours directly with clients to pursue LMFT licensure and 280 direct contact hours to pursue LPC licensure. All non-residents of California must complete a total of 700 hours, including the specified LMFT and LPC hours.

The program comprises 62 to 68 credits and can be completed in two to three years. It is offered both part-time and full-time and begins in the winter, spring, summer, and fall. The Pepperdine calendar includes four, 11-week sessions per year.

Applicants must hold a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution and submit an application and fee, official transcripts, two letters of recommendation, and a statement of purpose. Recent college graduates should have at least one academic recommendation, and those who graduated three years or more prior should submit professional recommendations. The GRE is not required.

The MA in Clinical Psychology is delivered via weekly, live online sessions through which students develop relationships with peers and faculty and learn in real-time. Students complete coursework in conjunction with the live class sessions to prepare for class discussions. Pepperdine’s Courses learning management system (LMS) delivers live classes over HD video with break-out rooms, screen-sharing, document sharing, polls, live chat, and synchronized annotation.

Additionally, Pepperdine offers WeWork Global Access membership to all students, providing convenient spaces to work and study worldwide. Online students can take advantage of student services, including student success advisors, admissions counseling, career counseling, writing services, library services, and technology support. Note that students from Alaska, Arizona, California, Washington DC, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia are eligible to participate in the Pepperdine online MA in Clinical Counseling.

MA in Clinical Psychology courses include two foundation courses that may be waived if taken previously. These are Psychopathology and Behavioral Principles and Theories of Learning. Students will choose electives that align with their career goals, and clinical practicums will be tailored to LPC or LMFT experiences.

Core courses may include Theories of Counseling and Psychotherapy; Diagnosis and Treatment of Mental Health Disorders; Interpersonal Skills and Group Therapy; Multicultural Counseling; Individual, Couple, and Family Development: A Lifestyle Approach; Individual and Family Treatment of Substance Abuse; Research and Evaluation Methods for Mental Health Professionals; Techniques of Counseling and Psychotherapy; Psychopharmacology for Mental Health Professionals; Clinical Interventions with Children and Adolescents; Ethics and Law for Mental Health Professionals; Behavioral Principles and Theories of Learning; Preparation for Practicum; Assessment of Individuals, Couples, and Families; Human Sexuality and Intimacy; Couple and Family Therapy I-II; Clinical Practicum I-IV; Trauma and Diverse Populations; Mental Health Systems, Practice, and Advocacy; and Career Development Theory and Techniques.

Pepperdine University is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges—Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC). The MA in Clinical Psychology program is accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA).

Pepperdine University

Programs: Online MA - Clinical Psychology (LPC or LMFT Prep)
Accreditation: Western Association of Schools and Colleges—Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC); American Psychological Association (APA)

Online MA - Clinical Psychology (LPC or LMFT Prep)

Program Highlights
  • Students can choose to pursue licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) or Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT)
  • LPCs work with individuals, families and groups to address mental health issues while LMFTs focus on marriage and family dynamics and dysfunctional family patterns
  • Four local clinical practicums are required under the supervision of a licensed therapist or counselor
Program Overview
Program Structure: Online instruction with no campus visits required; four local field placements are required
Example Courses: Diagnosis and Treatment of Mental Health Disorders; Assessment of Individuals, Interpersonal Skills and Group Therapy, Assessment of Individuals, Couples, and Families
Instruction Methods: Weekly, face-to-face courses are delivered through HD video and include break-out rooms, live chat, polls, and synchronized annotation
Degree Requirements
Credits Required: 62 to 68 credits needed to graduate
Campus Visits Required: 0
Program Options
Program Start Dates: Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall admission
Curriculum Options: Full-time or Part-time
Length of Program: Program can be completed in 2 to 3 years
Admission Requirements and Tuition Costs
GPA Requirements: No minimum GPA specified
Testing Requirements: No GRE required
Work Experience: Not required for admission
Tuition Costs: ~$109,740 to ~$120,360 + fees
Cost per Credit Hour: $1,770.00

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