Popular Accredited Child Psychology Programs in North Carolina [Updated for 2024]

Last Updated: June 25, 2024

Working as a child psychologist offers you the chance to have a significant, positive impact on the lives of young people. Studying child psychology in North Carolina also has its benefits for you.

Whether you specialize in working with special needs children, kids that have suffered trauma, or take a more generalist approach and work with a variety of children, this job has the potential to be highly impactful for your clients and highly satisfying for you as well.

There are many top-ranked psychology schools in North Carolina that offer a variety of child psychology-related programs. Whether you want to get a master’s degree or a doctorate, North Carolina schools have the curricula to help you become a licensed child psychologist in NC.

Child Psychology Masters and PhD Programs in North Carolina

Listed below are some of the popular schools offering child psychology programs in North Carolina:

  • The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Methodist University
  • Western Carolina University
  • Capella University
  • The University of North Carolina at Greensboro
  • Grand Canyon University
  • North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is one of the most well-respected colleges in the nation. It ranks 20th among U.S. universities and 29th among global universities. What’s more, UNC Chapel Hill ranks 39th in the world among 1,750 research universities.

UNC Chapel Hill is a large school with more than 30,000 students, of which more than 11,000 are graduate students. The school offers nearly 100 undergraduate majors, more than 100 master’s programs, and 65 doctoral programs, including the one in developmental psychology discussed below.

Whether you study on campus or online, you will learn in a rich and rigorous academic environment with highly-qualified faculty, diverse classmates, and opportunities to advance your learning outside the classroom.

Child Psychology Program Information

The Developmental Psychology program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience. This blended program focuses on essential psychological principles as well as the physiological underpinnings of human behavior.

More specifically, this program explores topics related to children’s education, family lives, and culture. Likewise, you will have the opportunity to learn about health and development-related issues for infants, children, and adolescents. The goal of doing so is to be equipped with skills that enable you to make positive changes in the lives of children.

This is a Ph.D. program that takes about four years to complete. The first two years focus on core seminars in Developmental Research, Cognitive Development, and Advanced Statistics, to name a few. Subsequent years focus on elective seminars, conducting research, and preparing for a comprehensive doctoral examination.

Western Carolina University (WCU)

Western Carolina University (WCU) sits in a beautiful location in Cullowhee, North Carolina, close to the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Great Smoky Mountains. This area is ripe with recreational opportunities you can enjoy when you’re not working on your studies.

WCU is primarily an undergraduate college, with about 10,000 of its 11,000 students studying at the bachelor’s degree level. However, the University offers about three dozen graduate and doctoral degree programs in fields ranging from psychology to chemistry to nursing.

Your studies at WCU can be affordable, too. The University strives to maintain the lowest costs possible. Furthermore, 83 percent of students receive some type of financial aid to offset the cost of their education.

Child Psychology Program Information

If you are interested in working with children in a school setting, the Specialist in School Psychology (SSP) master’s program from Western Carolina University might be a good fit. This three-year program is approved by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) and boasts a 100 percent employment rate for its graduates.

During your three years in the program, you will complete 71 credit hours of coursework. This includes courses in:

  • Psychological Assessment
  • School-Based Mental and Behavioral Health
  • Academic Interventions & Settings
  • Advanced Professional Issues
  • Cognitive Behavioral Interventions

Moreover, you are required to complete a practicum, an internship, and a master’s thesis prior to graduation. Since this program has greater requirements for graduation, you will earn both a Master of Arts and the SSP. The SSP is a terminal designation in this field.

Upon successfully finishing the program and passing the Praxis II exam, you will be recommended for school psychologist licensure in North Carolina.

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro is part of the larger University of North Carolina System. The System includes 17 universities throughout the state, with Greensboro serving as the college for the middle portion of the Tar Heel State.

UNC Greensboro offers hundreds of degree programs for undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral students. This includes programs at each level for students interested in psychology and, more specifically, in working with children.

No matter what degree you pursue, UNC Greensboro ensures your academic pursuits are learner-centered and based on research. This combination of classroom learning and hands-on learning prepares you well for advanced studies in psychology and competent practice as a psychology professional.

Child Psychology Program Information

The doctoral program in Developmental Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro is built on a commitment to individualized attention. Since the program has few students, class sizes are small, which enables more one-on-one attention from your professors.

Likewise, the UNC Greensboro program gives you the opportunity to tailor the curriculum and your research requirements to your specific area of interest. So, with a specialty in developmental psychology, you will take part in seminars with developmental psychology professors who also help guide your research in this field.

The training you get in this program prepares you for both academic and non-academic positions. This flexibility helps ensure you’re ready to enter the world of work upon graduation – in whatever application of developmental psychology you wish.

This is a 71-credit Ph.D. program that requires a written and oral examination in addition to a dissertation defense before the degree is conferred.

North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University

North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, or North Carolina A&T as it’s commonly known, is a large public doctoral-level university. The school boasts a large undergraduate population with more than 11,000 students. However, the school also has around 1,700 students at the graduate level.

The graduate school offers more than two dozen programs, including the one in child development discussed below. But, if you need to finish your bachelor’s degree first, North Carolina A&T has you covered with 54 bachelor’s degrees and 29 undergraduate minors.

You can complete your studies on campus in Greensboro, or, depending on the program, you can also take courses online. In some cases, you can even complete your degree online.

Child Psychology Program Information

The Child Development programs at North Carolina A&T offer you the ability to learn about child psychology while also gaining valuable skills for a career in education.

For example, you can choose from two different Bachelor of Science programs in child development that lead to licensure as a child care provider or educator in North Carolina. These programs enable you to get critical experience working with children and families, which is often required for advanced studies in a master’s child psychology program.

North Carolina A&T also offers a Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) in child development that prepares you for advancing your career in education.

You will learn about language acquisition, social development, and special education considerations for developing children. You will also learn about education administration in preparation for potentially becoming an administrator in an early childhood education setting.

Requirements to Become a Child Psychologist in North Carolina

You must follow a detailed set of procedures to become a practicing psychologist in North Carolina. These procedures (outlined below) are determined by North Carolina Statute and governed by the North Carolina Psychology Board.

In North Carolina, you must submit the following materials to the Psychology Board within 30 days of beginning psychology practice or offering to practice psychology:

  • Proof of doctoral degree completion
  • Supervised experience verification
  • An application for licensure
  • Three professional references
  • A supervision contract form
  • A $100 application fee
  • A $38 background check fee
  • A fingerprint card
  • An Authority for Release of Information form

Upon receipt of these items from you, the North Carolina Psychology Board will process the materials and contact you if additional items are needed. If you are required to submit additional paperwork, you have up to 90 days to do so.

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