WGU Launches Online Undergrad Degree in Psychology

WGU’s Leavitt School of Health offers comprehensive industry-aligned degree in psychology to serve evolving workforce demands

SALT LAKE CITY, June 14, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Western Governors University’s (WGU) Michael O. Leavitt School of Health (LSH) recently launched an undergraduate degree program in psychology. The all-online program is backed with research and experiential learning, and trains students in evidence-based strategies that address various psychosocial issues.

“We’ve launched the Bachelor of Science in Psychology degree to educate students in multiple areas of the field and build a strong foundation that promotes further learning in the discipline of their choice, like mental health counseling, marriage and family therapy, forensic psychology, organizational psychology, and more,” said LSH Senior Vice President and Executive Dean, Keith Smith. “The study of psychology is not contained simply to the field; what you learn in this program applies to an understanding of human behaviors in all aspects of life. As the stigma around mental health is slowly diminishing from our society, we see an increase in the number of people approaching qualified counselors and mental health professionals for consultations. This is the reason why so many positions for psychologists are opening across several industries.”

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows the number of positions for substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors is projected to increase 18 percent from 2022 to 2032, much faster than the average for all occupations. The report further states the profession is projected to average 42,000 openings annually over the decade.

WGU’s psychology program adds more competent professionals to the pipeline and provides access to individuals from diverse, nontraditional backgrounds. The program provides insight into cognitive human behaviors and establishes a versatile foundation of knowledge that spans across a multitude of industries. Rooted in expanding overall knowledge in the field, the broad scope of the program encompasses a wide range of courses, including health equity, consumer behavior, developmental psychology, psychopathology, neuropsychology, industrial psychology, theories of personality, mental health, and substance abuse and addiction.

Post the completion of this program, students can pursue jobs in several disciplines including healthcare, research, academia, criminal justice, marketing, sales, human resources, and social work. Students interested to join the healthcare industry can opt for careers in direct patient care and, under the supervision of a credentialed professional or physician, work with patients and clients to address addictions, anxiety, stress, and other mental and psychosocial issues in a wide array of settings, like private clinics, hospitals, schools, corporate organizations, and so on.

“WGU’s B.S. in Psychology is a comprehensive program designed to equip learners for diverse career paths, including management, sales, human resources, social and community services, and behavioral and mental health. The coursework intersects numerous aspects of human nature from early development to the aging adult and all stages in between,” said LSH Department Chair, Jessica Fisher. “We ensure that each learner has a personalized learning experience with multiple levels of support, including from dedicated mentors and instruction faculty. The dynamic program aims to add more psychology literates to the field that ultimately impacts all human life.”

The 34-course (or 106-competency unit) multidisciplinary program prepares students with industry-standard theories and practices. It promotes the development of skills pertaining to communication, scientific and critical inquiry, advocacy, professionalism, cultural awareness and ethical conduct, self-regulation, and self-reflection. The program culminates with a capstone project that includes creating an evidence-based strategy to address a real-world psychosocial issue. This project not only enhances the student’s understanding of the subject, but also enriches the field of psychology. Click to learn more about the program specifics.

About Michael O. Leavitt School of Health (LSH): The school, named in honor of the former governor of Utah and former U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, was established in 2006 with the mission to make a difference in the fields of healthcare, nursing, and higher education through competency-based education. According to the Utah Foundation Research Brief, LSH represents more than 170,000 jobs in the healthcare industry and the school produced a whopping 17 percent of the nation’s registered nurses earning a Bachelor of Science in Nursing in 2021. With more than 100,000 graduates and over 115,000 degrees already conferred by LSH, the school presently serves nearly 25,000 students nationwide. Learn more at Leavitt School of Health (wgu.edu).

About Western Governors University (WGU): A nonprofit, online university established in 1997 by 19 U.S. governors with a mission to expand access to high-quality, affordable higher education, WGU now serves more than 175,000 students nationwide and has awarded more than 365,000 degrees to nearly 328,000 graduates in all 50 states. Driving innovation as the nation’s leading competency-based university, WGU has been recognized by the White House, state leaders, employers, and students as a model that works in postsecondary education. In less than 30 years, the university has become a leading influence in changing the lives of individuals and families, and preparing the workforce needed in today’s rapidly evolving economy. WGU is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, has been named one of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies, and has been featured on NPR, NBC Nightly News and CNN and in The New York Times. Learn more at wgu.edu and wgu.edu/impact.


CONTACT: Anchal Nayyar
Western Governors University