Best Colleges in Tennessee For Psychology

In the state of Tennessee, aspiring psychologists have the opportunity to pursue their academic and professional goals at several esteemed institutions. Renowned for their commitment to excellence in education and research, the best colleges in Tennessee for psychology offer diverse programs designed to cultivate a deep understanding of the human mind and behavior. 

From cutting-edge research facilities to experienced faculty members, these institutions provide a supportive environment for students to explore the multifaceted field of psychology. In this rich academic landscape, individuals can embark on a transformative journey, acquiring the knowledge and skills necessary to make meaningful contributions to the evolving field of psychology.

Best Colleges in Tennessee For Psychology

Below are some of the top universities to Study Psychology in Tennessee;

1. Vanderbilt University (Nashville, TN)

Vanderbilt University’s Psychology Department provides a diverse array of opportunities for students. Undergraduates can opt for a major or minor in psychology, participate in research through an honors program, and engage in various research initiatives, contributing to a well-rounded educational experience. The department offers a Ph.D. program for graduate students encompassing core areas like Clinical Science, Cognition and Cognitive Neuroscience, Developmental Science, Neuroscience, and Quantitative Methods. 

Additionally, master’s programs in Child Studies, Quantitative Methods, and Cognitive Psychology in Context accommodate diverse academic and research interests, ensuring flexibility in students’ educational trajectories. The American Psychological Association accredited the school, and the programs offered include undergraduate, graduate, and professional tracks. The cost per credit is $2,199 for undergraduate and $2,281 for graduate programs.

2. University of Tennessee (Chattanooga, TN)

Undoubtedly among Tennessee’s leading institutions for psychology, the University of Tennessee’s Psychology Department provides a wide array of undergraduate and graduate programs. Undergraduates can choose between a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a Bachelor of Science in Neuroscience, offering flexibility for exploring various psychology facets.

The psychology department caters to graduate students with Clinical Psychology and Counseling Psychology programs and specialized master’s and doctoral training options in Cognitive and developmental Science, Neuroscience and Behavior, and Social Psychology. The American Psychological Association accredited it; the university offers undergraduate and graduate programs, with annual costs of $13,244 for undergraduates and $13,380 for graduate students.

3. University of Memphis (Memphis, TN)

The Psychology Department at the University of Memphis offers a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, designed to expand students’ knowledge across various disciplines, enhance communication and analytical skills, and prepare them for responsible community roles. Graduate students can choose from five programs, including Doctoral Programs in Clinical Psychology, Experimental Psychology, and School Psychology, as well as Master’s Degree Programs in General Psychology and School Psychology. 

These programs emphasize early research involvement and mentorship opportunities. Additionally, the University of Memphis provides online psychology courses. Accredited by the American Psychological Association, the university offers undergraduate and graduate programs, costing $431 per credit for undergraduates and $623 per credit for graduate students.

4. East Tennessee State University (Johnson City, TN)

The Department of Psychology at East Tennessee State University presents a range of program options. Doctoral candidates can go for a Ph.D. in Clinical and Experimental Psychology, focusing in clinical services for health improvement. For undergraduates, there’s flexibility in choosing programs like General Psychology, Child Psychology, Clinical Psychology, and Health Professions. 

The school provides versatility to suit diverse career aspirations, equipping students with critical thinking skills and a profound understanding of human behavior. Accredited by the American Psychological Association, the university offers undergraduate and graduate programs, with annual costs starting from $27,437 for undergraduates and $24,261 for graduate students.

5. The University of the South (Sewanee, TN)

Sewanee: The University of the South fosters student involvement in psychology, both in and out of the classroom, focusing on Psychology for the Public Good. The faculty strives to impart a robust understanding of psychological principles and diverse research methods, urging students to contemplate the positive societal impacts of psychology. 

This approach prompts exploration of psychology’s broader implications on individuals’ lives. It encourages students to contribute to creating a more just and equitable world. Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, the university offers undergraduate programs at an annual cost of $50,874.

Why Should You Study Psychology in Tennessee

The state is home to several reputable institutions with strong psychology departments, providing students access to quality education and research opportunities. Tennessee’s top psychology schools offer a range of undergraduate and graduate programs, allowing students to tailor their education to their specific interests and career goals. Moreover, studying psychology in Tennessee provides a rich cultural experience. 

The state’s diverse communities and historical significance offer a unique backdrop for understanding human behavior and societal dynamics. Students can gain practical insights into applying psychological principles in real-world settings through fieldwork, internships, or community engagement. Tennessee’s commitment to healthcare and research is reflected in its psychology programs, allowing students to contribute to advancements in the field. 

Additionally, Tennessee’s psychology departments’ supportive faculty and mentorship opportunities foster a conducive learning environment. Beyond academics, the state’s welcoming atmosphere and various recreational and cultural activities contribute to a well-rounded college experience, making it an appealing destination for those pursuing a degree in psychology.

Psychology Program Length in Tennessee

In Tennessee, the duration of psychology programs offered by the top psychology schools varies according to the educational level. A bachelor’s degree in psychology typically spans four years, serving as the foundational step. Subsequently, a master’s degree requires an additional 2 to 3 years, offering specialized knowledge and potentially incorporating research or clinical training.

For those aspiring to attain a doctoral degree such as a Ph.D. or Psy.D., the timeline is more extensive, ranging from 4 to 7 years. Doctoral programs encompass coursework, research, and supervised practical experience. After completing the doctoral program, you can apply for your license. However, additional supervised experience may be required before obtaining full licensure.

The timing of the licensing or certification exam can vary based on preparedness and the licensing board’s requirements. Some individuals may take the EPPP shortly after completing their doctoral program. In contrast, others may opt to accumulate more experience before attempting the exam.


Tennessee’s top psychology colleges, including Vanderbilt University, the University of Tennessee, and Sewanee – The University of the South, collectively offer a diverse and enriching educational experience. With a commitment to academic excellence, research opportunities, and societal impact, these institutions prepare students for meaningful contributions to psychology. 

Tennessee’s unique cultural backdrop and the welcoming environment of its colleges contribute to a holistic learning journey, making it a compelling choice for those seeking a comprehensive and impactful psychology education.

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