Best Online Behavioral Psychology Programs

Explore the best online behavioral psychology degree programs, what you'll learn, and how much money you can make in the profession.
By
portrait of Evan Thompson
Evan Thompson
Read Full Bio

Writer

Evan Thompson is an education and careers writer with BestColleges. He was previously a journalist with bylines in the Seattle Times, Tacoma News Tribune, and Everett Herald. His beats have included education, sports, business, outdoors, and lifestyl...
Updated on January 2, 2024
Edited by
portrait of Margaret Weinhold
Margaret Weinhold
Read Full Bio

Editor & Writer

Margaret Weinhold is an associate editor for BestColleges, where she focuses on core content. She is passionate about increasing visibility and accessibility around higher education. Margaret holds a BA in English from the University of Virginia....
Reviewed by
portrait of Megan Pietrucha, Psy.D.
Megan Pietrucha, Psy.D.
Read Full Bio

Reviewer & Writer

Megan Pietrucha, Psy.D., is a licensed clinical and sport psychologist in private practice. She has also served as the training director for an APA-accredited internship program and taught undergraduate and graduate courses in psychology. She special...
Learn more about our editorial process

www.bestcolleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Turn Your Dreams Into Reality

Take our quiz and we'll do the homework for you! Compare your school matches and apply to your top choice today.


  • Behavioral psychology is the study of human actions, habits, and motivations.
  • A behavioral psychology degree is interdisciplinary and provides broad expertise.
  • With a degree in behavioral psychology, you can work in counseling, social services, and marketing.
  • Data shows behavioral psychologists make higher-than-average salaries.

Do you enjoy watching true crime shows? And have you ever wondered why people do what they do, the way they do?

Well, maybe you should consider pursuing a bachelor's in behavioral psychology. You'll get the training and credentials to launch a career in counseling, therapy, social work, or marketing, where you'll get to analyze people every day — and get paid for it.

Is an Online Degree in Behavioral Psychology Worth It?

Yes. Especially when you consider your return on investment. You'll gain broad experience, have plenty of career options, and earn higher-than-average salaries.

Plus, online degrees also come with many benefits. You can work while you learn, enjoy a better school-work-life balance, and study wherever you feel comfortable.

  • Behavioral psychology is interdisciplinary: Behavioral psychology uses multiple viewpoints to understand our actions, habits, and motivations. You can leverage what you learn in relevant subjects like sociology, neuroscience, and anthropology to qualify for various careers.
  • You have lots of specialization options: Behavioral psychology branches off into many areas. You can follow your interests and choose a specialization that fits. Specialization examples include clinical psychology, school psychology, and forensic psychology.
  • Behavioral psychologists earn solid pay: Many of the salaries for behavioral psychologists are much higher than the average for all jobs. You might have an easier time paying off what you put into your education and better lifetime earning potential.

Bachelor's in Behavioral Psychology Programs to Consider

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

What Can You Do With a Bachelor's in Behavioral Psychology?

Many jobs need someone with a bachelor's in behavioral psychology. You can work in human services, such as social work, counseling, and community service. Or you can use your insights in market research or human resources.

Popular Behavioral Psychology Jobs
Job Median Annual Salary (May 2021)
Addiction Counselor $48,520
Probation Officer and Correctional Treatment $60,250
Market Research Analyst $63,920
Social Worker $50,390
Social and Community Service Manager $74,000
Source: BLS

Read More:

Best Online Bachelor's in Behavioral Psychology Programs

Rankings compiled by the BestColleges Ranking Team

How We Rank Schools

At BestColleges, we believe a college education is one of the most important investments you can make. We want to help you navigate the college selection process by offering transparent, inclusive, and relevant school rankings.

Our rankings are grounded in a few guiding principles and use the latest statistical data available from trusted sources. Read our ranking methodology. We hope our approach helps you find the school that is best for you.

We use trusted sources like Peterson's Data and the National Center for Education Statistics to inform the data for these schools. BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site. from our partners appear among these rankings and are indicated as such.

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

  • Browse programs
  • Discover matches
  • Request info
#1 Best Online Behavioral Psychology Programs

Ball State University

  • Muncie, IN
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

100% Online | Self-Paced Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $326 (if under 12 credits) or $4,217 flat rate
Out of State | $1085 (if under 12 credits) or $12,959 flat rate

Credits to Graduate
120

Program Information
Degree Completion Program | No
Program Accreditation | Higher Learning Commission

Ball State University offers a degree in applied behavior analysis that also features an emphasis in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). With a degree in behavioral psychology at Ball State, you can help children and adults target behaviors, prepare for the workforce, and solve social problems. 

If you already possess a bachelor's degree, you can choose to earn a 15-credit online behavioral studies certificate.

It's recommended that you earn the Indiana Academic Honors Diploma or the out-of-state equivalent for admission. ACT and SAT scores are optional.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$9,482
Out-of-state
$26,470
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$9,328
Out-of-state
$25,542
Retention Rate
80%
Acceptance Rate
87%
Students Enrolled
21,597
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
90% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission
#2 Best Online Behavioral Psychology Programs

Purdue University Global

  • West Lafayette, IN
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

100% Online | Self-Paced Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $371
Out of State | $371

Credits to Graduate
180

Program Information
Degree Completion Program | No
Program Accreditation | Higher Learning Commission

Purdue University Global offers a behavioral psychology degree online with its bachelor of science degree in applied behavior analysis. This behavioral psychology program's coursework helps you prepare for careers working with children and adults with mental and behavioral health challenges.

In addition to your coursework, you can complete an optional internship in order to gain hands-on experience. You must have a high school diploma or GED. An entrance examination may be required before starting this academic program.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$10,080
Out-of-state
$13,356
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$8,766
Out-of-state
$9,740
Retention Rate
33%
Acceptance Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
43,927
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
100% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission
#3 Best Online Behavioral Psychology Programs

Central Methodist University

  • Fayette, MO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Online | Scheduled Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $260
Out of State | $260

Credits to Graduate
120

Program Information
Degree Completion Program | Yes
Program Accreditation | Higher Learning Commission

Central Methodist University's applied behavior analysis program prepares you for a career working with autistic children and children with developmental delays or behavioral challenges. This program's coursework teaches you how to conduct behavioral assessments and administer and evaluate behavior-analytic interventions. 

You must have a 2.75 minimum overall GPA, plus an associate degree in a closely related field or have completed 60 hours of prerequisite coursework.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$5,950
Out-of-state
$5,950
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$6,075
Out-of-state
$6,075
Retention Rate
67%
Acceptance Rate
100%
Students Enrolled
3,429
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
59% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

How Much Does a Bachelor's in Behavioral Psychology Cost?

Average Annual Cost of a Bachelor's Degree

Psychology

$13,362

All Bachelor's Degrees

$14,544

Source: National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)

A bachelor's in psychology costs an average of $13,362 per year, according to NCES. That's slightly less than the average cost for all other bachelor's degrees at $14,544.

Still, not everyone can afford tuition or want to use loans to pay for school. Psychology scholarships can make your degree more affordable and worth it in the long run.

Read More: How Much Does an Online College Cost?

How Long Does a Bachelor's Degree in Behavioral Psychology Take?

Most programs require students to complete 120 credits across four years. However, you may earn a bachelor's degree online faster through an accelerated program.

Average Length of Time

4 years

Required Course Credits*

120 credits
*Varies depending on your school/program

Everything Else You Need to Know About a Bachelor's in Behavioral Psychology

In this program, you'll explore the effects of human behavior, choose focus areas, and apply what you learn in real-world situations. A bachelor's in behavioral psychology will give you the tools to solve problems and the training to take on many human service roles.

Behavioral Psychology Concentrations

  • Addiction: Millions of people live with addictions to alcohol, opioids, and gambling. You'll learn the science behind addiction and how to help people understand and manage their harmful behaviors.
  • Childhood Development: Children change as they grow and mature. Childhood development looks into the differences in behavior, reasoning, and motivations. You'll gain the tools needed to work with children and their families in various settings.
  • Criminal Justice: Criminal or violent behavior is easier understood with psychology. Concentrating on criminal justice means you'll focus on criminal behavior and what motivates people to commit the crimes they do.

Beyond the Bachelor's Degree

Many of the best master's programs in behavioral psychology require applicants to hold a related bachelor's degree for admission. Other graduate degree options may include a master's in counseling or social work.

And you may choose to take an interdisciplinary approach to your postgraduate education by pursuing other degrees, such as an MBA.

You can build off your behavioral psychology training in each of these programs. And some degrees may even provide pathways to behavioral specializations.

Professional Behavioral Psychology Organizations

Certifications and Licenses a Bachelor's in Behavioral Psychology Prepares For

Case Manager

Chevron Down

A bachelor's degree in behavioral psychology prepares you to earn a certification in case management. These managers often work in the same capacity as social workers, helping clients get access to the programs and help they need.

Psychiatric Technician

Chevron Down

These professionals often work in mental health facilities and assist doctors and nurses in caring for patients with a range of psychological issues and mood disorders.

Behavior Counselor

Chevron Down

Those with a bachelor's degree can often earn certification or licensure to work in certain roles as counselors with patients and clients who may suffer with addiction or behavioral disorders.

Sexuality Counselor

Chevron Down

Some states allow those with a bachelor's degree to obtain a certification in sex therapy, allowing them to work with clients who may need help with overcoming issues with their sexuality and sexual health.

Social Work License

Chevron Down

With a bachelor's degree, some states award individuals licensure to work in certain entry-level social work roles, including case management and other administrative-based positions.

Professional Organizations in Behavioral Psychology

While earning your behavioral psychology degree, you might find that joining a few professional organizations enhances your experience and provides valuable resources and opportunities. The organizations listed below serve students and professionals in all kinds of psychological fields, including behavioral psychology. They offer access to annual conferences; networking opportunities; members-only job boards; and special publications and journals.

Frequently Asked Questions About a Bachelor's in Behavioral Psychology

What is behavioral psychology?

Behavioral psychology is the study of the connection between our minds and our behavior. It looks into our thoughts, emotions, and actions and what influences them. Behavioral psychology is useful in many ways, including the treatment of mental health conditions, therapy, and understanding criminal behavior.

Why should you get a degree in behavioral psychology online?

Online classes can allow you to keep a full-time job while pursuing your degree. You'll have more freedom to learn wherever and whenever you want. And you're more likely to find a healthy work-life-school balance. Plus, most students would rather enroll online than return to a traditional classroom.

What are the highest-paying jobs you can get with a bachelor's in behavioral psychology?

The highest-paying jobs for graduates with a bachelor's in behavioral psychology are usually managerial positions in fields like community service management. According to the BLS, social and community service managers earned a median annual wage of $74,000 in May 2021.

These workers make about $28,000 more than the median annual wage of $45,760 for all occupations. The top 10% of earners in this profession made more than $118,650 per year as of May 2021, though they may have extra education, experience, or further training.

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Compare Your School Options

View the most relevant schools for your interests and compare them by tuition, programs, acceptance rate, and other factors important to finding your college home.