Admissions Overview


Dr. Riggio

The Department of Psychology offers: 

Unsure of which program is the best fit for you?

You can read this handy guide put together by one of our faculty, Dr. Heidi Riggio. It gives you a brief overview of the different degree programs offered at the master's or doctoral level (Note: The Psychology Department at Cal State LA does not offer doctoral degrees). On that page, you will also find some useful links to psychological organizations like APA, APS, and WPA to help you do some further research.

Prerequisite Program for Non-Psychology Majors

Students who do not have a bachelor's degree in Psychology are also encouraged to submit the University application and required materials. In such instances, admission may be granted on a conditional basis. Students admitted conditionally will be required to complete 31-36 units of Psychology coursework with a GPA of 3.0 or higher before beginning the Master's program. Whenever possible, credit will be given for equivalent coursework taken elsewhere. Click here for a list of Prerequisite Coursework.

Please note: coursework taken at a community college does not apply to upper-division psychology requirements.


Have questions? No worries, we are here to help! You can click on our Frequently Asked Questions page for a list of the most common questions we get asked. If your question isn't listed, check below for our contact information.

For More Information

For other questions or for clarification on any aspect of the application process, please email the Graduate Assistant, Andrea Hernandez

You may also contact the Faculty Director of each respective program:

Forensic Psychology - Dr. Mitchell Eisen via e-mail at [email protected]

Master of Arts - Dr. Karen Wu via e-mail at [email protected]

Admission to the Master's Programs in Psychology

Acceptance into the department's graduate programs involves an electronic application via Cal State Apply:

  • The following should be completed before February 15, 2025:
    • Go to the Cal State Apply application website: 
    • Submit your application by uploading the following documents using the ‘Documents’ tab:
      • Statement of purpose – 400 to 500 words (maximum of two pages, double-spaced) indicating your reasons for wishing to pursue a research-oriented program, your particular areas of interest, and any experience relevant to your goals and interests. Indicate which faculty members you would like to serve as your mentor and explain your interest in working with them (note that this does not guarantee working with this faculty member). See the list at the bottom of this page for faculty accepting students in Fall 2025.
      • Unofficial transcripts – Unofficial transcripts from all colleges/universities attended.
    • List your references using the ‘Recommendations’ tab:
    • List the names of three (3) people who have agreed to write letters of recommendation for you. At least two of these letters must come from academic sources (faculty members or others) who are familiar with your academic capabilities. Your application will not be reviewed until all three letters are received, so ensure that you request your recommendation letters well in time for the application deadline or earlier.
  • After submitting this application, you will be required to submit the following:
    • Official transcripts – Submit official academic records/transcripts and other requested information to the Admissions Office.  For information on submitting documents, please click here.
    • International applicants – Submit official TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE test scores, if you do not possess a Bachelor’s (or advanced) degree from a postsecondary college/university where English is the only language of instruction.

Deadlines and Applications

Applicants must submit a Cal State Apply application by the deadlines below to be considered for Fall 2025 admission.

► Masters of Science in Forensic Psychology

Cal State Apply Deadline: February 15, 2025, |  Cal State Apply Application

► Masters of Arts in Psychology

Cal State Apply Deadline: February 15, 2025, |   Cal State Apply Application

Faculty accepting students for Fall 2025

Faculty Status
Dr. Corinne Bower Yes
Dr. Mitch Eisen Email faculty to inquire
Dr. Joel Ellwanger No
Dr. Gaithri Fernando Email faculty to inquire
Dr. Steven Frenda Yes
Dr. Senqi Hu Email faculty to inquire
Dr. Matthew Jackson Email faculty to inquire
Dr. Robert Kennison Email faculty to inquire
Dr. Eric Kohatsu  Email faculty to inquire
Dr. Briggitte Matthies Email faculty to inquire
Dr. Alma Olaguez Yes
Dr. Pamela Regan Yes
Dr. Heidi Riggio Email faculty to inquire
Dr. Dana Saifan Yes
Dr. Henry Schlinger Email faculty to inquire
Dr. Ji Son Yes
Dr. Douglas Stenstrom No
Dr. Yvette Szabo Yes
Dr. Karen Wu Email faculty to inquire