M.A. in Forensic Psychology in Chicago

Program Description

A master’s degree in forensic psychology can open the door to a variety of professional opportunities that apply the art and science of psychology to the understanding and functioning of legal and related fields, including such areas as evaluating criminal minds and detecting criminal actions.

The forensic psychology graduate program is the only one of its kind in Chicago. Students learn from experienced faculty through a practitioner-focused curriculum and obtain the skills needed to effectively use psychology in legal and public policy arenas in an ethical, academically informed, and research-based manner. 

Students pursuing the forensic psychology master's degree may tailor their coursework to meet particular educational and professional goals and may choose from forensic psychology concentrations in child protection, sex offenders, or corrections. This forensic program prepares licensure track students to sit for the professional counselor licensure exams in Illinois (LPC and LCPC).

Chicago Campus students gain hands-on experience at The Chicago School's Forensic Center, which provides high-quality forensic psychological services and programming (such as evidence-based interventions, policy advocacy, and program development) to improve the health and well-being of individuals within diverse communities. Through a range of community partnerships, the center gives students powerful service-learning opportunities that prepare them to be competent and civically engaged forensic mental health practitioners. 

Practicum/internship placement rates typically are 100% for students enrolled in the program's licensure track. The Chicago School offers students a wide range of applied forensic psychology learning experiences rarely available at other schools—such as providing expert witness testimony in front of practicing judges and attorneys during a realistic mock trial experience, participating in a hostage negotiation simulation, or providing Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) to families involved with the juvenile court system.

Learn more about the licensure track to this program, offered at the Chicago Campus:

Professional Counselor Licensure Track


Forensic Psychology


Child Protection
Sex Offenders


Licensure track qualifies students to sit for professional counselor licensure in Illinois (LPC and LCPC)

Total Credits


Fieldwork Requirements

Licensure Track: 700 hours over 9-12 months

Program Time to Completion

2 years full time, 4 years part time
  • Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution
  • A course in Psychology, with a grade earned of C or better
  • A course in Statistics, with a grade earned of C or better
  • A course in Research Methods, with a grade earned of C or better
  • N/A
Admission Requirements

GRE Requirements

Sample Courses

Forensic Mediation and Dispute Resolution
Focuses on emerging issues in mediation and mediation techniques for managing conflict. Dispute resolution techniques are also a strong focus of this course.

Hostage Negotiations
Examines strategies for negotiating a critical incident, understanding and managing the critical incident, and communication techniques, as well as understanding perpetrators, stress and stress management, and the Stockholm syndrome within a hostage situation. In addition, students gain an understanding of crisis negotiation, debriefing, hostage-taker demands, and the effects of time on a situation.

Evaluation and Treatment of the Juvenile Offender
Addresses the classification, assessment, and treatment of the juvenile offender. Various factors contributing to juvenile delinquency and empirically-based treatment approaches are discussed. Legal and institutional responses to juvenile crime are analyzed, and the role of the forensic clinician in the juvenile justice system is discussed utilizing case material. Case lectures and discussions, case examples, and video presentations are used to illustrate key concepts.

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