May 18, 2024  
University Catalog 2021-2022 
University Catalog 2021-2022 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Psychology, Individualized Concentration, MA

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MA in Psychology: Individualized
AU Los Angeles
Credits for Degree: 60 quarter credits
Standard Mode of Instruction: Classroom
Standard time to completion: 30 months

Program Overview

The MPIC concentration is an individually designed, 60-unit, five-quarter MA degree in Psychology with an emphasis in the student’s area of developing professional interest within psychology (such as organizational psychology, health psychology, spiritual psychology, career counseling or psychology and the arts). Important Note: At present, this degree is only available to students who were previously enrolled in a degree program within the Graduate Psychology Program. New students who are interested in a non-clinical degree should review the Master of Arts in Psychological Studies degree.

Mission of the Master of Arts in Psychology with Individualized Concentration

The MA in Psychology with Individualized Concentration:

  • Provides students with the opportunity to design an individualized program reflecting their personal interests, ideals, values and career paths.
  • Allows students to design a specialized program that can both act as a foundation for doctoral study and include courses that can possibly transfer into doctoral programs outside of Antioch University. Note: Antioch University does not guarantee that courses will be transferred into outside doctoral programs. Students hoping to transfer courses should: (a) request letter grades from the instructor of these courses for ANY and ALL courses that they are hoping to transfer; (b) consult with the academic affairs department of the doctoral program to which they hope to transfer.
  • Fosters creativity and innovation in psychology and society.

Current Tuition and Fees

University Tuition and Fees  

MPIC Degree Requirements

Students interested in the MPIC should contact the MAP Program Office to discuss the specifics of their program.

Breadth Requirement (9 units)

Students take 9 units of AULA classes (from the MA Psychology curricula), selected with the help of the students’ advisor, to provide additional core work relevant to the individual program. If an undergraduate course is taken, graduate level work is substituted for the undergraduate assignments in consultation with the course instructor and the advisor.

Area of Concentration (10-16 units)

This represents the specialization in the degree, designed by the student working with the student’s advisor. Units may consist of AULA courses, independent studies, and/or courses at other institutions (with a 9-quarter-unit limit on transfer credit from other schools).

Masters Document (4-12 units)

A thesis, project or supervised practicum relevant to the area of specialization, carried out over one or a series of quarters of study, as PSY-5990: Master’s Document .

Elective Units (4-12 units)

Total Units in Degree 60 units

(Minimum completion time: 5 quarters Residency. Students transferring into MPIC relatively late in their program may have to extend their residency beyond the usual five quarters in order to meet all the MPIC requirements.)

The MPIC Master’s Document

The MPIC Program includes the preparation of a Masters Document (PSY 5990 ). The MPIC Masters Document may take a number of forms, including:

  • a Masters Thesis (an academic thesis on a topic in the field);
  • an Annotated Bibliography of a topic in psychology;
  • a Project (an applied project with extensive documentation of learning).

Expectations for the scope and length of the Masters Document vary in accordance with the number of units of credit undertaken. No more than 6 units of Master’s Document work may be undertaken in a single quarter.

Credit for the Masters Document cannot be earned until both Form J (Degree Plan) and Form K (Permission to Register for PSY-5990: Master’s Document ) have been filed with the Registrar. Each quarter, the Advisor must approve a student’s registration for PSY 5990  units.

Forms of the Master’s Document

  1. Thesis as Master’s Document

    Some doctoral programs might be interested in seeing that a student has completed a master’s thesis when considering the student for admission. If the MPIC student chooses to write a traditional Masters Thesis, the student should state a problem or question of a theoretical or empirical nature related to the learning that has occurred in the student’s program of study and devises a way to investigate it. The thesis topic is usually chosen to further the student’s professional or career interests. The final thesis includes a review of relevant literature, followed by the student’s original work or theorizing on the problem of choice. Theses may be theoretical, or may involve carrying out original, empirical research. Expectations for the scope and length of a Masters Thesis vary in accordance with the number of units of credit undertaken.
  2. Annotated Bibliography

    An annotated bibliography gives an account of the research that has been done on a given topic. Like any bibliography, an annotated bibliography is a list of research sources. In addition to bibliographic data, an annotated bibliography provides a concise summary of each source and some assessment of its value or relevance. Annotated bibliographies are typically organized alphabetically. In some cases they may be organized chronologically, especially if the goal of the bibliography is to trace the history of a particular area of study or issue.
    An annotated bibliography might have different purposes:
    • Provide a literature review on a particular subject
    • Help to formulate a thesis on a subject
    • Demonstrate the research you have performed on a particular subject
    • Provide examples of major sources of information available on a topic
    • Describe items that other researchers may find of interest on a topic
  3. Project as Master’s Document

    If an MPIC student chooses to complete a Project for the Masters Document, the student demonstrates the use of professional psychological knowledge and skills, as a practitioner, writer, program developer, manager and/or consultant in some area related to the practice of psychology. The final product is an integrative, written description of the student’s activities with reference to relevant theory and research in the field. The Project may further the student’s work or career interests. Recent students’ projects have included:
    • preparing the first draft of a psychology-related book for the general public;
    • developing and presenting a workshop in the community;
    • planning, implementing, and evaluating diversity training and consultation for a non-profit organization.

Advisement in the MPIC Program

On entering the MPIC, the student is assigned to an academic advisor affiliated with the MPIC program.

Individualized Concentrations

Students opting for the Individualized Concentration collaborate with a faculty mentor to identify courses within the MA Psychology Program, other programs at AULA, or other institutions that contribute to their concentration. Concentration coursework should be thematically linked. For example, a student might design a “Gender and Sexuality Studies” concentration that might include courses such as Human Sexuality, LGBT History and Systems, and elective courses on women, transgender issues, etc. It is important to note that students will be required to name their concentration (limited to 30 characters) and the concentration name cannot reflect an already existing program. Concentrations are 10-16 units of coursework.

Applied Community Psychology Specialization (17 units)

Students may opt to complete the Applied Community Psychology Specialization (ACP) as their concentration. It is important for students to declare the ACP specialization in order to have access to specialization resources (priority enrollment in ACP courses, professional development activities, etc.).

Transferring from the MAP to the MPIC

Changing from the MA in Clinical Psychology into the Individualized Concentration requires formal admission to the MPIC. The current MAP student interested in MPIC should schedule a personal interview with the MPIC Director. The MPIC Director will meet with the student in-person to explore the student’s planned focus for the degree, as well as the student’s demonstrated capacity to pursue academic work independently. If the MPIC Director gives permission for the change, perhaps in consultation with other MAP Faculty members, and it is agreed that the student is not interested in BBS licensure, the student should obtain:

  • Form J: Degree Plan for MPIC and Dual Concentration (students who are not transferring into MPIC don’t need to complete this form until later)
  • Form K: Permission to Register for PSY-5990: Master’s Document 

The student should have either the MPIC Director or the student’s MPIC project advisor sign these forms , and files the form with the Registrar. As is noted above, students entering the MPIC relatively late in their program may have to extend their residency beyond the usual five quarters in order to meet all the MPIC requirements.

Courses Taken at Other Institutions Concurrently with MPIC enrollment

The MPIC student may wish to take one or more graduate courses at other accredited institutions, as part of the Area of Concentration. Courses taken at other institutions must be approved in advance by being listed on the student’s completed Form J. Such courses may be included by transfer or as all or part of an independent study. Students should consult with the Advisor and Office of the Registrar to determine the best plan for their individual situation.

If the coursework is to be used as all or part of an independent study, the student registers for the learning activity and completes a Form A built around instruction at the other institution. The evaluator can be either the faculty member at the other school or a qualified AULA faculty member. The student lists the learning activity as an appropriately titled PSY 5960  for the student’s AULA registration and is evaluated on an AULA Graduate Student Learning Evaluation.

Students are free to devise a plan that includes whatever status is appropriate with the other institution (e.g., registering and paying at that institution for credit, paying as an auditor, etc.).

Thesis Completion

If the student fails to meet the Masters Document deadlines, and/or fails to provide the Office of the Registrar with two copies of the completed work with the approved PSY 5990  Graduate Learning Evaluation by the stated deadline, the student must re-enroll for the following quarter on Thesis Completion Status.

The Master of Arts in Psychology - Individualized Concentration (MPIC) degree does not fulfill educational requirements for master’s-level licensure as an MFT or as an LPCC in California. However, some MPIC students design programs with an individualized clinical or counseling emphasis (e.g. if they wish to acquire limited clinical experience en route to a different career goal). Since the MPIC degree does not meet requirements for licensure in California, it is the appropriate choice for a student seeking a nonclinical MA in Psychology for personal and professional development and/or academic preparation for doctoral study.

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