Industrial/Organizational Psychology

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Program Overview

The Master of Arts in Industrial/Organizational Psychology offers a solid education in the theories, philosophies, and practices of this dynamic and growing field. Faculty challenge students intellectually and offer individual guidance that provides a strong foundation on which to build a successful career.

The MA in Industrial/Organizational Psychology is designed to educate students to apply psychological principles and techniques in the work environment that increase individual and organizational productivity. For candidates in this program, Fairfield's Northeast location in a region with many nonprofit and for-profit corporate organizations provides a wide range of opportunities for fieldwork, such as employee recruitment and selection, performance management/appraisal, training and development, motivations and job satisfaction, organization development, job analysis, and research and program evaluation.

Fairfield also offers a five-year BA/MA program in Industrial/Organizational Psychology. Student interested in pursing this program should contact Margaret McClure, PhD, Chair of the Psychology Department, during their sophomore or junior year to allow enough time to take pre-requisite courses which may only be offered once a year. Pre-requisites need to be completed before application for admission. Students should apply for admission online no later than April 1 of their senior year.

Message From The Chair


Dear Prospective Student,

Having a sound understanding of psychological principles enhances our work in all settings. Whether we are working with children or adults, research participants, or employees and managers, our understanding of human behavior can enhance our effectiveness.

Fairfield University’s Master of Arts in Industrial/Organizational Psychology is designed to provide you with that sound understanding of psychological principles. Upon admission, you are assigned an advisor with whom you will discuss your career interests, plan your program, and work closely throughout your course of study. Our faculty are excellent teachers who love to teach and who combine their academic endeavors with practical work in the community.

Our program has a foundation in science, the ethical principles of psychologists, and the ideals of a traditional Jesuit education. Our academically rigorous programs will challenge and excite you intellectually and personally. The people you meet in your classes will come from diverse backgrounds and will be sharing your path to a new or enhanced career.

Please feel free to explore this program site further, and if you have any questions or would like to schedule a time to meet with me for further discussion, just send me an e-mail at

Margaret McNamara McClure, PhD
Chair, Department of Psychology
Associate Professor of Psychology

Information Session

Join us at an upcoming Graduate Information Session where we can answer your program questions one-on-one, give you an opportunity to meet our faculty, and introduce you to the Fairfield University community and experience.

Career & Professional Opportunities

Fairfield's Master of Arts in I/O Psychology provides:

  • Knowledge to enhance work in community agencies
  • Knowledge and skills for professional work in corporate organizations
  • Foundational knowledge and skills in psychology

Graduates of Fairfield's I/O Psychology programs are much in demand, finding advantageous fieldwork placements and meaningful employment with some of the country's top organizations:

  • Bayer Corporation
  • Cendant Mobility
  • Cendant International
  • Deloitte
  • IBM
  • Jones Retail Corporation
  • MasterCard Worldwide
  • Merrill Lynch
  • Oxford Health Plans
  • Pepperidge Farm
  • Sara Lee Corporation
  • Shell Oil Company
  • The College Board
  • Toyota Financial
  • U.S. Department of Justice
  • U.S. Surgical

Our Industrial-Organizational-Personnel program benefits from the wisdom and guidance of a dedicated Alumni Advisory Board made up of graduates who enjoy contributing to the University’s continuing excellence. Current members include:

Paul M. Connolly, PhD
Performance Programs, Inc.
P.O. Box 630
Old Saybrook. CT 06475

Ben Knecht
Senior Sales Operations Analyst
Sirius Decisions
187 Danbury Road
Wilton, CT 06897

Susan O'Connor, MA
Excecutive Recruiter
Charter Communications
400 Atlantic Avenue
Stamford, CT 06901

Caroline Swanson
Training and Performance Management
NERA Economic Consulting
360 Hamilton Avenue #10
White Plains, New York

Steve Winkel, PRC, MA
Vice President
People and Culture
Inspira Marketing Group
50 Washington Street
Norwalk, CT 06854

Learn more about how the University's Office of Career Planning can support your post-graduate goals, and how Fairfield's tight-knit alumni network can build career and mentoring opportunities that last a lifetime.

Course Offerings

MA in Industrial/Organizational Psychology (39 credits)

Core (required):

  • PY 406 Organizational Development
  • PY 420 Introduction to Industrial/Organizational Psychology
  • PY 433 Behavioral Statistics
  • PY 435 Psychology of Personality
  • PY 471 Effective Interviewing
  • PY 475 Program Evaluation
  • PY 480 Consulting Theory and Practice
  • PY 485 Performance Coaching
  • PY 501 Fundamentals of Survey Design
  • PY 545 Designing Development and Training Programs
  • PY 571 Research in Psychology
  • PY 578 Field Work in Applied Psychology
  • PY 98 Comprehensive Examination in Applied Psychology (non-credit course)

One of the following courses is required:

  • MG 500 Leadership
  • MG 503 Legal and Ethical Environment of Business
  • MG 540 Cross-Cultural Management
  • MG 400 Organizational Behavior

The Five-Year Bachelor's/Master's Degree Program in Industrial/Organizational Psychology

Course of Study

To be eligible for admission, students need to have an overall GPA of 3.0 in their undergraduate courses. They also must earn grades of at least B+ in three courses taken while they are undergraduates:

  • PY 201 Statistics for the Live Sciences
  • PY 202 Research Methods
  • PY 420 Introduction to Industrial/Organizational Psychology taken in the Fall of the senior year. (For psychology majors, PY 420 may be used as a psychology elective towards the undergraduate degree, if PY 132 has not been taken already.)

Course Sequence for the Five-Year Program

Graduate Courses (30 credits)

Summer Semester

  • PY 501 Fundamentals of Survey Design
  • PY 475 Program Evaluation
  • MG 503 Legal & Ethical Environment of Business

Fall Semester

  • PY 406 Organizational Development
  • PY 435 Psychology of Personality
  • PY 471 Effective Interviewing
  • PY 545 Designing Training and Development Programs

Spring Semester

  • PY 480 Consulting Theory and Practice
  • PY 485 Performance Coaching
  • PY 578 Field Work in Applied Psychology
  • PY 90 Comprehensive Exam in Applied Psychology


Admission Requirements

Applicants for the MA in IO Psychology must hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college or university (or the international equivalent) and give promise of meeting the standards set by the University.

Formal Admission Process

Students seeking admission must submit:

  • A completed online application
  • A non-refundable $60 application fee paid by credit card
  • A professional resume: Applicants are required to submit a current resume that includes employment and education history (submit online)
  • A personal statement: Students should describe why they want to undertake graduate studies in IO Psychology (submit online).
  • Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended demonstrating a cumulative GPA of at least 2.67 (or receive a GPA waiver from the department, available on a case by case basis). You must hold a bachelor's degree with an approved subject major or interdisciplinary major. All foreign transcripts must be evaluated by an approved evaluating service.
  • Two recommendation forms and letters, one of which must be, preferably, from a current employer or supervisor. The recommendations are completed online. At the time of application, you will need to provide your two recommenders’ names and e-mail addresses.
  • Participation in an Admission interview

Students from Non-English Speaking Countries

Students from non-English speaking countries are required to submit a Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score report. A TOEFL composite score of 550 for the paper test, 213 for the computer-based, or 84 on the Internet-based test (iBT) with a minimum score of 21 in reading and 23 in writing is strongly recommended for admission. Fairfield's ETS code is 3390.

All application materials for formal admission should be sent to:

Office of Graduate Admission
1073 North Benson Road
Fairfield, CT 06824-5195
Phone: (203) 254-4184
Fax: (203) 254-4073

How to Apply

For detailed admission requirements, please refer to the links below:

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

Financial Aid

To be considered for financial aid, Fairfield University requires students to complete a FAFSA form. For further information, visit the Office of Financial Aid.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the application requirements?

The Office of Graduate Admissions is available to explain the application requirements and to help you get your application together. You may contact them by submitting a request for information or by phoning (203) 254-4184 or toll-free (888) 488-6840.

Do I need to take the GREs?

No, the GREs are not required.

How much does it cost?

Visit our graduate program tuition and fees page for details.

Do I have to be a full-time student?

No. While some of our students attend full-time, most of our students are working professionals who attend our program part-time.

When are courses offered?

Most of our courses are offered in the evening and a few are offered on the weekends. Weekday courses generally meet once a week for two hours. Weekend courses tend to be full day courses that meet for four or five weekends or weekend days over the semester.

What is the average class size?

We keep our classes small. On average, our maximum class size is 20, but class sizes range from 10 to 25.

Do I need to have earned an undergraduate degree in psychology to be eligible for admission?

An undergraduate degree in psychology is not required. Our students come from a variety of undergraduate backgrounds, which adds to the richness of our class interactions.

How long does it take to complete the degree?

Students who attend full-time take 9 credits each Fall and Spring semester and up to 6 credits in the summer sessions. For full-time students who start in the Fall semester, the program can be completed in about two years. For students who attend part-time, the time will vary based on how many courses are taken at a time.

Students are required, however, to complete their degree within six years after they begin their first course.

What financial aid is available?

The Office of Financial Aid can best answer that question for you. You may reach them by calling (203) 254-4125 or sending and e-mail. You can also visit the financial aid website.

We also offer graduate assistantships that provide tuition credit for work. Please see the information noted on the website regarding available positions.

Contact Us

For more information about Fairfield University's graduate programs, please contact:

Office of Graduate Admission
Fairfield University
1073 North Benson Road
Fairfield, CT 06824

Phone: (203) 254-4184


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