Master of Science in Behavioral Psychology (MS)


Program Description

Pepperdine University GSEP does not offer full scholarships. You can read more about the available opportunities for new students here. Pepperdine University GSEP also offers graduate assistance, teaching assistance, and research assistance opportunities. GSEP does not provide tuition reimbursements.

Real-world training for careers in Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)

Our new Master of Science in Behavioral Psychology program is designed to prepare students for careers in applied behavior analysis (ABA). Students will become highly competent practitioners in this high-growth field, gaining the knowledge and experience necessary to treat children and adults with autism spectrum disorders. Graduates obtain the academic preparation required for becoming a board certified behavior analyst (BCBA) through the Behavior Analyst Certification Board.

Program Overview

In addition to the rigorous theoretical study, we incorporate three semesters of practicum. This provides students with the opportunity to begin accruing the experience hours necessary for certification. Students currently working in ABA settings can begin supervised fieldwork with a BCBA in their work settings and accrue hours in their first semester in the program. Students who are just entering this field will receive assistance in finding fieldwork placements once they have completed their first semester of foundational coursework.

Program Benefits

  • A traditional classroom format, which primarily meets in the evening in order to best serve the working professional
  • Small class sizes that provide for faculty mentorship, close peer interaction, and optimal intellectual and professional growth
  • A supportive learning environment and faculty who have exemplary academic achievements and professional expertise
  • A scholar-practitioner model which integrates theory and best practices
  • An accessible graduate campus in West Los Angeles located just off the 405 freeway

Key Facts

  • Program Length / Units: 1.5-2 years / 36 units
  • Unit Cost: $1,225
  • Start Terms: Fall, Spring, Summer
  • Campus Location: West Los Angeles (Please note that your campus of choice cannot be guaranteed. Campus offerings are contingent upon availability and subject to change.)

Application Deadlines

  • Fall Term 2018 Final Deadline: August 6, 2018, 11:59 PM PST

Note: Admissions for this program are rolling. Applications received after the deadline are reviewed and students are accepted on a space-available basis.

  • Spring classes begin in January.
  • Fall classes begin in September.

Admission Requirements

In an effort to process your application quickly, we only accept electronic application materials.

To apply for this program, please submit:

  • Your application for admission with a nonrefundable processing fee.
  • Official student transcripts from the accredited colleges or universities that awarded your baccalaureate degree via one of the following approved companies:
    • National Student Clearinghouse
    • Parchment
    • Applicants who are pursuing their bachelors at the time of application should submit an in-progress (current) transcript and will be required to submit a final transcript showing the degree posted after completion of their undergraduate program. Please request all transcripts to be sent to
  • Two professional recommendations from individuals familiar with your academic and professional competencies using our Recommendation Form. Recommendations should attest to your competencies, character, and potential and/or ability as a mental health professional. Your recommenders should email the completed forms to
  • A 2-5 page Statement of Purpose describing your previous training and experience, current interests, future professional goals, and reasons for applying to the program, emailed to
  • (Optional) If your baccalaureate or master's degree GPA is lower than 3.0 or you're seeking an exception to our TOEFL test requirement, please fill out our Exception Request Form and email it to

If you have a Master of Arts in Psychology or a Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology with an Emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy, you may be able to transfer 12 units of the core foundation courses. However, these courses must have been taken within the last seven years and must be from a regionally-accredited institution. The final decision of the transfer units will be made by the program director.

Last updated Nov 2019

About the School

The Pepperdine University Graduate School of Education and Psychology is part of a pioneering tradition. We value academic excellence, innovative leadership and work that serves the greater good.

The Pepperdine University Graduate School of Education and Psychology is part of a pioneering tradition. We value academic excellence, innovative leadership and work that serves the greater good. Read less
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