Fielding Graduate University

A private graduate-level institution in Santa Barbara, California is known as Fielding Graduate University (previously Fielding Graduate Institute and The Fielding Institute). It primarily uses distance education programs to offer postgraduate and doctoral studies in organizational studies, psychology, and education.

Hallock Hoffman, Renata Tesch, and Frederic M. Hudson founded Fielding Graduate University in 1974.

They created Fielding as a graduate program for professionals in the middle of their careers who weren’t being catered to by conventional universities.

Fielding Graduate University information

An accredited nonprofit pioneer in blended graduate education, Fielding Graduate University combines in-person and online instruction. Professionals who live and work anywhere in the world can choose from a variety of high-quality degrees and courses in our curriculum. Within the fields of clinical psychology, media psychology, human and organizational development, and educational leadership and change, Fielding’s faculty members represent a diversity of scholarship and practice. Faculty members help self-directed students use their skills to become strong, socially responsible leaders in their communities, workplaces, and society, upholding Fielding’s reputation for high-quality programs. Fielding was established in 1974 and has its headquarters in Santa Barbara, California. The research and professional practice of our students, faculty, and alumni demonstrate the fundamental principles of transformational learning and social justice. Our ability to serve a diverse student body in specialized fields is made possible by the Fielding learning model, which sets us apart from the majority of other universities. One hundred percent of our master’s and advanced professional development programs are available online. Members of the Fielding faculty hold distinguished academic positions as well as professional experience in the various academic disciplines represented in the three schools. They exhibit fervent support for their students and dedication to the best possible learning outcomes. A large portion of the faculty-student interaction is one-on-one, which is reminiscent of the traditional tutorial model. Faculty and students collaborate on academic projects. They respect the prior learning of the students as well as their academic, social, and professional objectives. The outcome is a collaborative learning process that inspires original ideas and wise practice.


Graduate programs are available at the university for working adults seeking masters and doctoral degrees. The School of Leadership Studies and the School of Psychology, it offers degree and certificate programs. Online learning, one-on-one mentoring and evaluation between faculty and students, and in-person events of various kinds held in numerous locations all year long are all included in the programs. Clinical psychology, media psychology, educational leadership, organizational leadership, and human development are among the professions targeted in the private, nonprofit, and public sectors. The first college to provide a Ph.D. program in media psychology was Fielding.

A student learning plan, contract-based learning, competency-based assessment, peer feedback between students, project and portfolio reviews, and a final thesis or dissertation are all included in Fielding’s learning model.

The school’s “distributed learning model” combines “in-person” and “remote” participation, according to the website. As of 2018, its School of Psychology offers a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology that can be obtained in five or six years, and its School of Leadership offers “accelerated” Ph.D. degrees that can be obtained in as little as three years. An average Ph.D. program at Fielding takes 7.5 years to complete (mean).

The WASC Senior College and University Commission has granted the university accreditation (WSCUC).

2019 saw the restoration of its APA accreditation after a period of probation.

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