Top 10 Online PhD in Organizational Psychology Programs 2024

organizational psychology

Author: Brenda Rufener / Reviewed by: Melissa Anderson / First covered: May 2019 / Updates: 2

In this article, we profile the top 10 online PhD in organizational psychology degree programs.

Key Takeaways:

Featured Programs

  • Liberty University and Touro University Worldwide are our top online PhD in Organizational Psychology programs.
  • Online PhD in Organizational Psychology programs offer flexibility for working professionals with affordable tuition options below $41,000.

Organizational psychologists use their extensive knowledge of human behavior to solve workplace and industry problems. Careers as industrial or organizational psychologists require, at the very least, a master’s degree. To set yourself apart from competition in this unique field, a doctorate helps. Many accredited and top-ranked colleges and universities now offer online PhD in organizational psychology programs. Online learning allows students to gain valuable work experience while earning a doctoral degree.

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Top 10 Online PhD in Organizational Psychology Methodology

We looked at 48 colleges and universities listed by the National Center for Educational Statistics (NCES) College Navigator that offered online PhD in organizational psychology or closely related programs. To narrow our original pool of schools, we applied the following criteria: Regional or national accreditation, institution rankings from at least one major publication like U.S. News and World Report, and graduate tuition and fees listed at $41,000 or lower. We then ranked the top 10 online PhD in organizational psychology programs according to raw affordability.

Below is our list of the top 10 online PhD in organizational psychology programs.

#10 – Alliant International University

Online PsyD in Organizational Development

San Diego, California


Graduate Tuition: $19,484

Alliant International University offers an online PhD in organizational psychology designed for working professionals. This program offers a combination of online coursework, once-a-month weekend classes, and a completely flexible schedule for individuals who require convenience while earning their doctorate degree. Furthermore, the program provides all the skills needed to effectively work in areas of organizational development. Courses include:

  • cultural diversity in organizations
  • globalization and international organizational development
  • leadership in organizations
  • organizational change
  • development organizational consulting skill development

The school is ranked by major publications.


  • Flexible scheduling
  • Nationally ranked online graduate programs


  • Low graduation rate
  • Limited tech support

#9 – The Chicago School of Professional Psychology

Online PhD in Business Psychology

Chicago, Illinois


Graduate Tuition/Fees: $23,454

The Chicago School of Professional Psychology offers an online organizational psychology doctorate degree in business psychology. The full-time program can be completed online and takes just three years post master’s or five years post-baccalaureate. Courses cover topics like:

  • adult development and work
  • systems theory
  • virtual and global leadership

Admission to the program requires applicants to submit undergraduate transcripts showcasing a GPA of 3.0 or better, official GRE scores, and three letters of recommendation from academic professors or professional experience supervisors. In addition, applicants must also have earned a bachelor’s or master’s from a regionally accredited college or university. This school is fully accredited.


  • Nationally ranked psychology program


  • No part-time option
  • Less affordable

#8 – Nova Southeastern University

Online PhD in Occupational Therapy

Fort Lauderdale, Florida


Graduate Tuition: $22,062

Nova Southeastern University offers a doctoral degree designed for individuals interested in PhD in organizational psychology online programs. This uniquely designed PhD program leads to a doctorate in occupational therapy, focusing on the individual within an organization rather than the organization itself. The program is primarily offered online, though some scheduled on-campus sessions may be required. Some of the courses include applying measurement theory to evaluation, contextual aspects of occupational performance, and theory development for models of practice. Admission to the program requires a master’s degree with a 3.5 GPA. In addition to the graduate degree, applicants must also submit letters of recommendation and official transcripts. Nova is ranked by U.S. News and World Report. In fact, the publication ranks the school #227 in the best national universities.


  • More diverse
  • Smaller class sizes
  • Nationally ranked university


  • Less affordable
  • Some on-campus components

#7 – Lesley University

Cambridge, Massachusetts

Online PhD in Counseling & Psychology – Transformative Leadership


Graduate Tuition: $18,900

One of the top online organizational psychology doctorate degree programs on our list is the online PhD in counseling and psychology at Lesley University. This 48-credit program is for licensed professionals, school counselors, and mental health advocates who want to pursue leadership roles within the field of psychology. Courses are delivered online, though the cohort of PhD candidates meets one weekend per month. Courses include:

  • qualitative and quantitative methods
  • research in schools and communities
  • transformative leadership

The program requires applicants have a master’s degree from an accredited college or university to apply. U.S. News and World Report ranks Lesley #342 in the best national universities. Also, several graduate programs have earned top rankings.


  • Nationally ranked university
  • Small class sizes


  • Lesser-known psychology program

#6 – California Southern University

Online PsyD

Irvine, California


Graduate Tuition: $11,786

California Southern University’s online organizational psychology doctorate degree programs include the online Doctor of Psychology (PsyD). This program differs from typical PhDs in that the academic research is clinically focused. A series of core courses are offered online, along with electives. These elective courses can be taken in areas of interest, such as organizational psychology. In fact, courses include:

  • ethical and professional issues
  • interpersonal conflict in the workplace
  • organizational psychology
  • the psychology of the mind

A comprehensive exam is also required during the culmination of the degree. The application process includes submitting official transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate coursework and writing a personal statement.


  • Affordability
  • Elective-rich curriculum


  • Lesser-known psychology program

#5 – National University

Online PhD in Industrial Organizational Psychology

San Diego, California


Graduate Tuition: $15,912

National University offers online organizational psychology doctorate programs, including the online PhD-Psy in Industrial-Organizational Psychology. The program does not lead to licensure but is designed for working professionals seeking advancement in leadership and management roles within organizations. A total of 20 courses are required. Also, 60 credits make up the program, which can be completed in just 48 months. Students take courses that cover topics in the dynamics of leadership and management, small group theory and team processes, and structure and procedures of organizational development. U.S. News and World Report ranks the school among the top national universities. Also, several online graduate programs have received top 200 and top 300 rankings.


  • Top regional university
  • Accelerated format
  • Smaller class sizes
  • More diverse


  • More competitive
  • Low graduation rate

#4 – Regent University

Online PhD in Organizational Leadership

Virginia Beach, Virginia


Graduate Tuition/Fees: $16,028

Regent University’s online PhD in organizational psychology and leadership program emphasizes the practical components of organizational success. The ACBSP-Accredited online PhD is a research-based terminal degree taught by university professors. Also, the program adheres to the Christian worldview of Regent’s mission. Online courses include:

  • contemporary perspectives in organizational leadership theory
  • information research and resources
  • organizational culture and climate
  • organizational spirituality
  • organizational theory and design

The program consists of 60 credits. Admission requirements include a completed bachelor’s and master’s degree. In addition to the required degrees, unofficial college transcripts and a completed application must be submitted. U.S. News and World Report rank Regent #369 in the best national universities.


  • Nationally ranked psychology programs
  • 24/7 tech support


  • Less prestigious university

#3 – Grand Canyon University

Phoenix, Arizona

Online PhD in Psychology – Industrial and Organizational Psychology

Graduate Tuition: $10,655


Grand Canyon University’s PhD in organizational psychology online program is highly affordable and accredited. Graduates gain an understanding of how relationships within the workplace form and function. The program consists of 60 credits and includes courses like:

  • ethical issues in psychology
  • formalizing the research prospectus
  • principles of industrial and organizational psychology
  • statistics
  • testing and assessment in the workplace

Classes are delivered online and run eight weeks in length. Admission is based on unweighted GPAs and GRE or GMAT scores. GCU is recognized by major publications.


  • More diverse


  • Larger class sizes
  • Test scores required

#2 – Touro University Worldwide

Online PsyD in Human and Organizational Psychology

Los Alamitos, California


Graduate Tuition/Fees: $9,000

Touro University Worldwide offers a 100% online PhD in organizational psychology program with no residency requirement. The program is open to professionals wanting to improve their skills and knowledge through evidence-based research and study. Admission to the PsyD program requires applicants hold a master’s degree from an accredited college or university. GPA requirements are also stipulated. In fact, applicants need at least a 3.4 GPA for admission consideration. In addition to GPA and degree requirements, official transcripts, letters of recommendation, and entrance essays must be submitted. Once admitted, students take a series of courses in theory, research, and practice. Upon completion of the courses, a proposal, dissertation, and defense are prepared. Touro is an accredited institution that has earned national recognition.


  • No residency
  • Nationally ranked university


  • Less diverse
  • Lesser known psychology program

#1 – Liberty University

Online PhD in Psychology – Industrial Organization Psychology

Lynchburg, Virginia


Graduate Tuition: $7,893

The most affordable online PhD in organizational psychology program on our list is offered by Liberty University. This 60-credit program consists of 100% online coursework and takes three years to complete. Degree candidates earn a PhD in psychology with a specialization in industrial-organizational psychology (also referred to as I/O psychology). Admission to the program requires a regionally or nationally accredited master’s degree with a 3.0 GPA. In addition to the graduate degree, other requirements include two recommender contacts, official college transcripts, and a statement of purpose (1,000-1,500 words).


  • Affordability
  • Fully online


  • Less diverse


Frequently Asked Questions

What can I do with an online PhD organizational psychology?

Organizational psychologists, sometimes referred to as industrial or industrial-organizational psychologists, analyze and assist human behavior and interaction within an organization. These uniquely skilled psychologists work with small teams to test an organization’s programs, analyze policies, and improve overall human interaction.

With an online PhD in organizational psychology, you will be skilled in the required expertise to help an organization succeed in human interaction. Common tasks of organizational psychologists include drafting policies and procedures, participating in the hiring and training procedures of new employees, and working with managers to improve human interaction within the workplace.

Online PhD in organizational psychology programs offer convenience for working professionals. Interactive online learning provides flexibility that is atypical of face-to-face interaction. With online classes, students do not meet at designated times. The work-life or education balance is easier to maintain with online classes. Also, students with other commitments outside of school, such as child or family care, often benefit from online programs.

Due to the flexibility that online PhD in organizational psychology programs offer, students maintain valuable work experience while attending school. Upon graduation, job applicants with both work experience and a PhD will be viewed as more competitive than PhD students without experience.

How do I choose an online PhD in organizational psychology program?

When searching which online PhD in organizational psychology programs to apply to, careful consideration of both the school and program is necessary. The single most important factor applicants should consider is accreditation status. Colleges and universities within the United States receive accreditation from governing bodies and agencies recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Extensive vetting and review of the institution’s standards and program curriculum are involved in the accreditation process.

Accreditation status of a college or university impacts the ability to transfer credits, as well as student eligibility to receive financial aid. Also, when applying to jobs, some employers consider the candidate’s degree accreditation. If a job candidate did not receive a doctoral degree from an accredited institution, the applicant may be passed over in lieu of a more qualified candidate with an accredited PhD.

In addition to a school’s regional or national accreditation status, other factors to consider are rankings. Top institutions receive national and regional rankings with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. Every year, U.S. News publishes institution rankings based on a variety of criteria. Employers value these rankings and take note of top tier schools and programs. It is important to consider the rankings of the school and program you wish to attend.

What is my earnings potential with an online PhD organizational psychology?

The global compensation research company, PayScale, reports the average annual salary for individuals with a PhD in organizational psychology is $122,000. The average organizational psychologist salary is $90,000, also reported by PayScale.

Organizational psychologists work with companies and organizations to test competencies, plan strategies, and perform psychological tests to improve human behavior in the workplace. Experienced organizational psychologists are valuable to company performance and workplace morale. Interestingly, experience pays according to PayScale. The more experience an organizational psychologist brings to the workplace, the higher the earnings potential.

PayScale reports a positive trend for pay by experience. Entry-level industrial-organizational psychologists with less than five years of experience should expect to earn an average total compensation of close to $83,000. The compensation total includes bonuses, overtime, and tips. For individuals working as organizational psychologists with five to ten years of experience, the average compensation is $119,000. This number also includes bonuses, overtime pay, and tips. Experienced organizational psychologists with ten to twenty years of experience earn an average total compensation of $124,000.

The bottom line is that the more experience you have after earning an online PhD in organizational psychology, the more money you will likely make.

What is the job outlook for individuals with an online PhD in organizational psychology?

The United States Department of Labor – Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports employment of industrial and organizational psychologists is projected to grow six percent through 2032. This steady growth is about as fast as all psychologist occupations and slightly higher than the average growth rate for all other occupations.

As organizations lean on the expertise of industrial and organizational psychologists to help hire, train, and retain employees, improve workplace morale, and increase organizational productivity, these highly skilled psychologists will be in demand. However, the more education a job candidate has the more qualified they will appear to potential employers.

Job candidates with a doctoral degree (or an online PhD in organizational psychology) and postdoctoral work experience should expect the best employment opportunities. Job candidates will face competition. Due to the large number of qualified applicants, job vacancies will receive large numbers of applications. To help set yourself apart from competition, a doctoral degree with research experience or on-the-job training will be beneficial.

In addition to an online PhD in organizational psychology, job candidates with extensive training in quantitative research methods will have a competitive edge. PhD programs with dissertation requirements will offer extensive training in research methods. Also, by completing a dissertation and thesis, you will acquire valuable research experience.

How do I get into an online PhD organizational psychology program?

The admissions requirements for online PhD in organizational psychology programs vary by school. Most of the doctoral degree programs on our list require applicants to have earned a master’s degree from an accredited college or university in organizational psychology or a closely related discipline. In some cases, students may not be required to hold a master’s degree but are required to hold a bachelor’s degree. In these instances, a regionally accredited bachelor’s degree is required.

In addition to degree requirements, GPA stipulations must be met. Top-ranked institutions and programs require satisfactory grade point averages on all undergraduate and/or graduate work of 3.4 or better. The majority of schools and programs listed above require a minimum GPA of 3.0.

GRE scores are not always required. Depending on the program, GRE scores may be needed, though some schools state that GRE scores are optional. Top-tier schools and highly ranked programs will ask for GRE scores from tests taken within the last five years.

In addition to test scores and degrees, standard requirements along with a completed application include letters of recommendation (professional or academic), writing samples, a statement of purpose or letter of goals, and official transcripts. Usually, there is a required fee for the submission of the online application.


  • Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Outlook Handbook
  • National Center for Education Statistics: College Navigator
  • U.S. News & World Report: Best Colleges

This concludes our list of the top 10 online PhD organizational psychology programs.