Online Psychology Degree Programs in Maine

| Staff Modified on March 23, 2022

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Psychology ranks among the most popular fields of study among students enrolled at colleges and universities in Maine. A bachelor's degree in psychology can open a pathway to several entry-level careers in the helping professions. An undergraduate degree also establishes the academic foundation for graduate study and licensure, required for more advanced, specialized careers in the field.

Before enrolling in any program, you should determine the educational and licensure qualifications needed for your intended career. If you plan to pursue an online psychology degree in Maine, this guide can help you learn more about how distance learning programs work, the types of undergraduate and graduate programs available, and licensure requirements to practice in the state.

How Do Online Psychology Degree Programs in Maine Work?

Maine's 12 accredited colleges and universities feature several online degree options that offer the same rigorous academic standards as campus-based programs. Online degree-holders enter the job market on a competitive footing with graduates of traditional programs.

Online programs generally take the same amount of time to finish as their brick-and-mortar counterparts. However, some programs feature accelerated schedules that can shorten the time needed to complete a degree, while others offer part-time enrollment, allowing students to take 1-2 classes each term. Depending on the program, distance learners can choose fully online or hybrid delivery formats. Some graduate programs may require in-person residencies. Although Maine requires a Ph.D. or Psy.D. to practice as a licensed psychologist, no schools in the state currently offer an online doctorate program in psychology.

What Courses Are Part of an Online Psychology Degree Program in Maine?

Each online psychology degree in Maine establishes its own distinctive curriculum, but many programs offer similar foundational courses and specializations. This list describes some commonly featured courses in undergraduate psychology programs.

Introduction to General Psychology

This course for students beginning their studies in psychology serves as a prerequisite to upper division courses in the major. Enrollees can examine the roots of psychology in the natural and social sciences. The course introduces degree-seekers to theories, research methods, and major subfields, including behavioral, developmental, cognitive, and neuroscientific approaches.

Abnormal Psychology

The study of abnormal psychology examines all human behavior considered atypical or in violation of social norms. This course presents the causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment of psychopathological behaviors, including dissociative, mood, and personality disorders, schizophrenia, and other types of psychosis. Students can learn the criteria used in clinical practice for the classification of mental and behavioral disorders.

Developmental Psychology

Developmental psychology explores the physiological, social, emotional, and cognitive changes that characterize human growth and development across the lifecycle. Learners can gain an understanding of the ways people mature, grow, and adapt from infancy through old age. The course examines how heredity and environment shape lifespan development, with an emphasis on the impact of race, class, culture, and gender.

Theories of Personality

Enrollees in this course can examine the basic concepts and principles of the major theories of personality to analyze the reliability, validity, and applicability of these theories for understanding personality development. The course stresses the impact of genetics and environment on the cognitive, emotional, and motivational processes that shape individual personality traits.

Industrial-Organizational Psychology I-O psychology refers to the scientific study of human behavior in organizations and the workplace. This course examines the application of psychological theories and principles to organizations, focusing on workplace productivity, efficiency, and the physical and mental well-being of employees. Topics include organizational theory, decision theory, consumer behavior, conflict resolution, and assessment.

Becoming a Psychologist in Maine

Students thinking about earning online psychology degrees in Maine should begin by learning about the required educational qualifications and licensure requirements for their intended careers. Advanced positions in psychology require a master's or doctoral degree from a program accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA), approved specialties, and strict adherence to state licensure procedures.

  • Specialize

    If you plan to become a licensed psychologist, you should investigate the specializations required to achieve your professional goals and include these courses as soon as possible. Clinical psychology ranks among the most common specializations. These professionals assess and treat clients in many different settings. School psychology focuses on the development of students in the educational system. The expanding area of industrial-organizational psychology applies psychological knowledge to increase workplace productivity.
  • Earn Your Degrees

    Maine offers several online undergraduate and graduate degrees. A bachelor's in psychology lays the groundwork for a career in psychology, preparing graduates for entry-level jobs or admission to a graduate program. You need at least a master's degree for more advanced employment in psychology and a doctorate to move into licensed clinical positions or postsecondary teaching.

    Most bachelor's programs take full-time students about eight semesters to complete. A master's and doctoral degree can require six or more years, depending on field placement, dissertation, and other degree requirements. Because Maine does not offer online psychology doctorates, distance learners must enroll in out-of-state programs where they may have to fulfill a residency requirement.

  • Obtain Licensure

    Maine's Board of Examiners of Psychologists determines testing requirements, license costs, and the number of clinical practice hours needed for specific licenses. While an online master's in psychology in Maine qualifies you for licensure in some counseling specialties, each licensed psychologist must hold a doctoral degree accredited by the APA.

    The board requires a licensed psychology candidate to complete a total of 3,000 hours of supervised professional experience, earning 1,500 hours as part of the doctoral internship, and the remaining half in a post-degree placement after finishing the doctorate. Each license applicant must pass the Maine jurisprudence and a national qualifying test, the examination for professional practice in psychology (EPPP).

Other Licenses and Certifications

Although you must hold a doctorate to practice as a licensed psychologist or licensed professional counselor in Maine, a master's can lead to other types of licenses and specialized certifications. Psychology master's programs in Maine provide the minimum educational qualifications for state licensure in mental health counseling and marriage and family therapy. A bachelor's in psychology establishes a strong academic foundation for earning an MSW degree, which is the credential needed to practice as a licensed clinical social worker in Maine.

Licensed Clinical Social Worker

In addition to earning a master's in social work accredited by the Council on Social Work Education, each LCSW must complete 3,200 hours of supervised experience and pass the American Social Work Board clinical exam.

Marriage and Family Therapist

This license requires a master's or doctoral degree in marriage and family studies or a related degree, along with 3,000 hours of post-degree supervised experience. Each candidate must pass the national exam administered by the American Marriage and Family Therapy Regulatory Board.

Licensed Professional Counselor

Each licensed professional counselor in Maine must hold at least a master's in counseling or clinical psychology from an accredited program. A candidate must complete 2,000 hours of supervised counseling experience within two years of graduating and pass the National Board for Certified Counselors examination.

Online Psychology Bachelor's Programs

Figuring out where to apply? These top, accredited schools offer a variety of online degrees. Consider one of these accredited programs, and discover their value today.

Salaries and Job Outlook for Psychologists in Maine

Although salaries for psychology careers in Maine rank below the national average, the state's low unemployment rate and low cost of living contribute to an overall strong job outlook, especially for professionals who hold specialized licenses. Maine's Center for Workforce Research and Information projects the demand for all social science-related occupations to grow by 13% through 2026, well above the national rate of growth for all occupations.

Clinical, counseling, and school psychologists in Maine earn an annual average salary of $75,620. Postsecondary psychology teachers, depending on the type of school, can expect to earn an average yearly salary of $73,000.

While psychologists earn relatively higher salaries in major metropolitan areas like Portland, the state's relatively low population density has resulted in growing demand and competitive salaries for licensed professionals in smaller cities and rural areas. The need for substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors remains high across the state, with a projected growth rate of 10% from 2016-26.

Maine at a Glance

Population: 1,338,404

Population Growth (2010-2018): 0.76%

Population Growth Rank: 45

Source: United States Census Bureau

Mean Annual SalaryProjected Job Growth (2016-26)
New Hampshire$98,410N/A
National Average$95,61010.3%

Source: BLS, Projections Central

Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologist SalaryGeneral Unemployment RateEducation and Health Services 12-Month Employment Growth
Dover - Durham$77,2102.3%2.3%

Source: BLS

Psychology Degrees and Careers in Maine -- Frequently Asked Questions

This section answers commonly asked questions about psychology and distance learning degrees. Because programs vary across the state, students planning to earn online psychology degrees in Maine should check with their intended schools for current information about curriculum requirements.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Psychologist in Maine?

After completing a bachelor's degree, which typically requires 120 credits over four years of full-time study, a student seeking employment as a licensed psychologist should spend approximately two more years to earn a master's, and five or more years after that to pursue a doctorate. Because Maine does not currently offer an online doctorate in psychology, distance learners often enroll in programs out of state that involve residency requirements.

Are Online Psychology Classes Hard?

While they offer more flexibility and convenience than a traditional in-person program, earning an online psychology degree in Maine requires just as much effort and discipline as on-campus offerings. Accredited schools develop distance learning programs based on the same rigorous curriculum and high academic standards as their campus-based offerings.

What Skills Are Needed to Be a Psychologist?

Psychology programs provide a core body of knowledge in the discipline, along with training in research and statistical analysis and focused study in specialized areas. In addition to acquiring these academic proficiencies, clinical psychologists must develop the communication skills and cultural competency needed to work effectively with diverse groups. Practitioners at all levels must balance objectivity with empathy and adhere to ethical standards.

What Schools Are Best for Psychology in Maine?

Maine's 35 accredited colleges and universities offer many online degree options at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Choosing the right program depends on your professional interests and personal needs. In addition to learning about online course delivery, available specializations, and degree requirements, make sure to look for programs accredited by the APA to ensure your degree meets the standards required for your intended career.

Is a BA or a BS in Psychology Better?

Students pursuing BAs take approximately half their degree requirements in the liberal arts, including a foreign language, while BS degrees focus more on math and natural science. The BS provides a strong academic foundation for students who have already selected careers and plan to attend psychology master's programs in Maine or elsewhere. For undergraduates unsure about their professional goals, a BA establishes the training needed for entry-level positions and graduate studies in psychology, law, social work, and education.

Accreditation for Online Psychology Programs in Maine

Whether you're pursuing a bachelor's or master's in psychology online in Maine, it's always a good idea to determine a program's accreditation status before enrolling. Accreditation is the process by which education agencies evaluate a school or program's effectiveness, and successful accreditation lets you know that a school is legitimate and worth your time.

Schools are either nationally or regionally accredited, though national accreditation is less esteemed and typically used for religious, for-profit, or vocational programs. Psychology programs are available almost exclusively through regionally accredited colleges. Beyond national or regional accreditation, individual programs themselves are typically accredited by professional organizations based around certain disciplines, like psychology or mental health counseling.

When exploring psychology programs, accreditation by several reputable organizations can let you know that a school is legitimate, including the APA, the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards, and the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs. Other accrediting organizations include the National Association of School Psychologists and the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education.

Psychology Internships and Fellowships in Maine

Graduate psychology students gain advanced experience through internships and fellowships, allowing them to build skills in a professional environment while translating their education into work. While some use the two interchangeably, fellowships are typically more advanced and almost always paid, while internships may be unpaid. If you're earning an online psychology degree in Maine, many programs allow you to perform internships within your own community.

Despite its relatively small population, Maine directs considerable resources to providing mental health care for its residents. Several private hospitals, publicly funded agencies, and university-sponsored centers provide internship and fellowship opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students. This list describes some of the placements available to psychology students in Maine, in fields like mental health counseling, crisis counseling, veteran services, and developmental disabilities.

Riverview Psychiatric Center

Riverview is a center for mental health treatment, research, and education. The hospital offers robust mental health services for patients and doctoral internship opportunities for psychology students.

Maine Behavioral Healthcare

Offering the state's most comprehensive system of mental health care for adults and children, Maine Behavioral Healthcare encompasses community outpatient centers across the state, along with inpatient care at Spring Harbor Hospital in Westbrook.


As a nationally-recognized mental health provider with multiple locations around Maine, Sweetser offers comprehensive services, including community integration, crisis counseling, and veterans services. The organization also offers training and continuing education services for mental health professionals.

Maine Rural Health Research Center

Part of the University of Southern Maine, this center was founded in 1992 to focus on underserved rural populations both in Maine and around the country. A significant part of the center's research focuses on mental health and substance abuse issues.

Center for Psychiatric Research

The Maine Medical Center Research Institute operates this research center, which focuses on the psychosocial and biological roots of behavioral dysfunction, including developmental disabilities and psychosis.

University of Maine Center on Aging

As part of the state's aging initiative, UMaine's Center of Aging performs research related to lifespan development to improve older citizens' lives.

Professional Organizations for Psychologists and Mental Health Professionals

Aspiring psychologists, even as undergraduates, should not overlook the benefits of student membership with the field's professional associations. These organizations provide useful resources for career development and current information on licensure regulations and legislation that impacts clinical practice. Distance learners, who lack opportunities for in-person professional mentoring or support, can benefit from networking events, internship and scholarship information, and career guidance.

Scholarships for Online Psychology Degree Programs in Maine

University of Maine Graduate Trustee Tuition Scholarships

Available to students enrolled in graduate programs (including psychology programs), the Graduate Trustee Scholarship awards a full year's tuition to 20 students who are nominated through their department of study.

  • Amount Offered: One year's tuition
  • Scholarship Deadline: Early February
  • Eligibility Requirements: Each applicant must have strong academic standing, at least nine credits enrollment, and a nomination from their department.
Corey/Ivey Tomorrow's Counselor Essay Competition

Offered through the American Counseling Association (ACA), this scholarship is open to all graduate students working toward mental health counseling careers.

  • Amount Offered: $1,000
  • Scholarship Deadline: December 10
  • Eligibility Requirements: Each candidate must have graduate standing in a psychology or counseling program and submit a 500-word essay on a provided topic.
Annette Urso Rickel Foundation Dissertation Award for Public Policy

This scholarship awards one student who has completed an outstanding dissertation related to mental health public policy as it affects families and children, such as school education or juvenile justice.

  • Amount Offered: $1,000
  • Scholarship Deadline: June 30
  • Eligibility Requirements: Each applicant must possess graduate status at an accredited college with completed doctoral candidacy.
American Psychological Foundation Graduate Student Scholarships

The APF awards 22 annual scholarships to graduate students based on research proposals, with nominations submitted by the students' graduate Department of Psychology.

  • Amount Offered: $2,000-$5,000
  • Scholarship Deadline: June 30
  • Eligibility Requirements: Each candidate must have graduate standing in an accredited psychology program and submit a research proposal.
Violet and Cyril Franks Scholarship

The APF awards this scholarship to graduate psychology students who have demonstrated a commitment to issues surrounding mental health stigma.

  • Amount Offered: $5,000
  • Scholarship Deadline: May 15
  • Eligibility Requirements: Each applicant must possess graduate standing and demonstrate work related to mental illness stigma.

Explore Psychology Careers

Mental Health Initiatives in Maine

Maine's Office of Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services (SAMHS) administers all mental health and substance abuse disorder services in the state. This office holds responsibility for the development, implementation, regulation, and evaluation of all programs available to Maine's 1.3 million residents. SAMHS reports a lower incidence of mental illness and higher than average access to services in Maine compared to the rest of the U.S.

In recent years, state and privately-funded agencies have developed programs to expand services across the state. In 2018, SAMHS awarded a five-year grant to Maine's Department of Education to launch Maine-AWARE (Advancing Wellness and Resiliency in Education). This collaboration between schools and health providers creates an infrastructure for mental health care for students.

In the summer of 2019, the state legislature established a working group to make recommendations for the improvement of Maine's mental health system to create a plan to allocate resources more effectively, preventing re-institutionalization, and providing preventative treatment and timely interventions.

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