Accredited Forensic Psychology Programs and Schools in Mississippi [2024 Guide]

Last Updated: May 26, 2024

Forensic psychology is an interesting field to study because it’s interdisciplinary. You will explore topics in psychology, criminal justice, and victimology. You will also learn about the court system, social science, and how to conduct research.

The methods by which you learn these and other critical principles in forensic psychology are also quite varied. You can get your forensic psychology degree in person or online. You can concentrate your studies in forensic science, psychology, or law (or a combination thereof). These opportunities are available to you throughout Mississippi, too.

Though there aren’t many Mississippi-based forensic psychology programs, there are a lot of different online options you might consider as a student in the Magnolia State. Below are just four of the many popular options you might consider.

Forensic Psychology Schools in Mississippi

Listed below are some of the popular schools offering forensic psychology programs in Mississippi:

  • University of Southern Mississippi
  • Grand Canyon University
  • Capella University
  • Liberty University
  • University of North Dakota
  • Southern New Hampshire University

University of Southern Mississippi

The University of Southern Mississippi was founded in 1910 as a normal school for teacher preparation. The school continued as a teacher’s college until 1940 when the program offerings expanded to include graduate degrees in numerous fields. Today, USM is a Carnegie R1 research institution and is one of the leading research universities in the nation.

Whether you study at the main Hattiesburg campus or at the Gulf Park Campus, you will enjoy a learning experience that challenges you to achieve more. With around 10,000 undergraduate students, USM is a mid-sized school that provides a wide range of courses and programs, including 30 study-abroad opportunities around the world.

Forensic Psychology Program Information

USM offers a number of forensics degrees that, when paired with studies in psychology, give you a well-rounded education in both forensics and psychology. You can choose from Bachelor of Science degrees in Anthropology, Biological Sciences, Chemistry and Biochemistry, or Criminal Justice.

Each of these programs is available at USM’s Hattiesburg campus. In each case, you must complete 124 credit hours to graduate. This includes forensics-related courses like:

  • The Science of Forensic Science
  • Crime Scene Documentation
  • Forensic Analysis
  • Survey of Forensic Toxicology
  • Criminal Investigation

USM encourages forensics students to participate in an optional internship experience. These experiences are invaluable for getting relevant on-the-job experience while being supervised and mentored by an expert in this field. This program also offers the opportunity to travel to Washington, D.C., to tour federal agencies related to forensic science and criminal justice.

USM’s undergraduate application is available online. As a first-year applicant, you must submit official high school transcripts, ACT or SAT scores, and documentation of vaccinations.

Grand Canyon University

Established in 1940, Grand Canyon University began as a small religious-affiliated school with just 100 students. Over time, the university’s faith-based practices have remained, but the school has undergone massive changes. This includes expanding its student body to more than 80,000 students, 60,000 of which study online.

As a result of its growth in student numbers, GCU’s campus has greatly expanded. The Phoenix campus has state-of-the-art facilities and technology that make it one of the best college campuses in the nation.

GCU has also expanded its online campus to offer hundreds of courses and dozens of degrees to students around the nation and the world. Whether you study on campus or online, millions of dollars in scholarships are available to help you offset the cost of your education.

Forensic Psychology Program Information

Grand Canyon’s Master of Science in Forensic Psychology is an online program that requires about two years of full-time study to complete. During that time, you will take 36 credits of advanced coursework, including courses in:

  • Psychopathology of Crime
  • Social and Cultural Psychology
  • Psychology and the Legal System
  • Contemporary and Ethical Issues in Psychology
  • Offender Rehabilitation and Reintegration

Additionally, this program requires you to complete a professional capstone experience during your final semester in the program. This experience allows you to learn about the different applications of forensic psychology and career options to consider after graduation. The capstone also requires that you conduct original research on a forensic psychology topic of your choice.

One of the benefits of studying at GCU is that the application process is extremely simple. Just complete the application for admission and provide official transcripts from the colleges you have attended thus far. After that, a dedicated counselor will help you complete the rest of your application.

Liberty University

Like Grand Canyon University, Liberty University had humble beginnings as a private, religiously-affiliated school. In this case, Liberty got its start in Lynchburg, Virginia, as a Baptist school with a handful of students. But, also like Grand Canyon, Liberty has experienced extensive growth over the years. The school has more than 130,000 students, the vast majority of which study entirely online.

Since Liberty is such a large school, you get to reap the advantages that smaller schools simply cannot provide. For example, Liberty offers more than 700 different majors and programs. Of these, more than 450 are available online. Despite the school’s large size, your online studies occur in a small class environment – about 17 students for every faculty member.

Forensic Psychology Program Information

Liberty’s Master of Science in Criminal Justice with a concentration in Forensic Psychology is an online program with no campus visits or field experiences required. Not only that, but the program requires just 36 credits to complete, which can be finished in as little as 1.5 years of full-time study.

Another advantage of this program is that you take one course at a time. Each class lasts eight weeks, so your studies are accelerated. However, with just one class to worry about at a time, you can more thoroughly concentrate on mastering the material, even though the pace of the class is advanced.

Some of the classes you will take include:

  • Crisis Intervention in Law Enforcement
  • Rehabilitation and Reintegration of Offenders
  • Leadership, Ethics, and Policing
  • Topics and Trends in Criminal Justice
  • Fundamentals of Forensic Psychology

Since this is a criminal justice and forensic psychology program, the courses you take are highly interdisciplinary. You will also learn about testifying in court, child custody issues, and issues related to determining a defendant’s competency to stand trial.

You can apply to Liberty University online at any time. You must have a bachelor’s degree to be eligible for enrollment in this program. Likewise, you must submit official college transcripts indicating that you graduated with an undergraduate degree.

University of North Dakota

The University of North Dakota was founded in 1883 before North Dakota was even a state. Its location in Grand Forks on a 521-acre campus in the far eastern part of the state means that it’s closer to Minnesota and parts of Manitoba and South Dakota than it is to the western reaches of the state. But, with a large online campus, UND reaches students around the world with high-quality online courses and degree programs.

With fewer than 14,000 students, UND is a mid-sized university with small class sizes. Yet, the school offers more than 250 degree programs, many of which are offered online. These programs have been developed over the years with the input of expert educators. It’s one of the benefits of studying at North Dakota’s oldest and largest university!

Forensic Psychology Program Information

The University of North Dakota’s Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology is ranked as the top online program of its kind in the nation. So, while UND is a long way from Mississippi, the reputation of this program makes it worthy of your consideration as an online student studying from afar.

The program requires 30 credits, which takes about two years of full-time studies. No on-campus visits are required, so you can complete your degree without ever having to visit Grand Forks. During your time in the program, you’ll take classes like:

  • Eyewitness Testimony and Memory
  • Diversity Psychology
  • Psychology and Law
  • Advanced Social Psychology
  • Behavior Pathology

Each class in the curriculum is delivered asynchronously, which means there are no set class meeting times. This gives you the advantage of studying around your busy work and life schedule. But just because you can learn independently doesn’t mean you are alone in the process. UND offers tutoring, library services, academic advising, and many other programs to help you stay on track.

You can apply to the UND graduate school here. Eligible students must have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university. Your degree must be in psychology or a related behavioral or social science field like sociology, social work, or criminal justice. You must also have a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or above or 3.5 or above if you’ve taken graduate courses.

When applying, you must provide the following:

  • A curriculum vitae
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Evidence of English language proficiency

Forensic Psychology Work Opportunities in Mississippi

As noted earlier, forensic psychology is a highly interdisciplinary field. As such, the work opportunities you have in Mississippi are highly varied.

A popular option after becoming a forensic psychologist in Mississippi is to work for local, state, or federal law enforcement agencies. In this context, you might have any number of job duties, from criminal profiling to training law enforcement officers to respond appropriately to suspects with mental health conditions. Likewise, you might serve as an expert witness in criminal court.

Another common career for forensic psychologists in Mississippi is to work for an attorney – either in state attorney’s offices or for private attorneys. In this setting, you might provide psychological evaluations of defendants, provide expert testimony in court, or prepare witnesses for trial. Additionally, forensic psychologists often help develop a process for selecting jury members for criminal trials.

Other work settings for forensic psychologists include hospitals, community organizations, and the military. Some forensic psychologists also work for themselves in private practice. Typically, forensic psychologists in private practice provide direct services to clients (e.g., forensic counseling services to victims of trauma). In many cases, private practice also involves contractual work with law enforcement, attorneys, and other criminal justice organizations.

The specific work opportunities you have depend largely on your training, though. You will qualify for entry-level positions if you complete one of the bachelor’s degrees outlined earlier. However, with a master’s degree or higher, your work opportunities will be greatly expanded.

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