Jul 22, 2018  
2015-2016 Graduate Catalog 
2015-2016 Graduate Catalog

Clinical Psychology, PhD

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The program, which adheres strongly to a scientist-practitioner model, prepares students to engage in both scientific research and clinical practice, through a consistent, dual emphasis on research and clinical training. The program requires a minimum of five years of full-time study, consisting of required and elective academic coursework; a minimum of two years of part-time practica in the second and third years of graduate training; an empirical master’s thesis; a qualifying examination; an empirical doctoral dissertation; teaching experience; and completion of a one-year, full-time, American Psychological Association (APA)-accredited internship.

Degree Requirements

Required core and practicum courses are as follows:

Required Practicum Courses and Training

Practicum Seminars I, II, III, and IV are led by core clinical faculty members and accompany the second- and third-year practica.

Required APA-Accredited Internship

Master's Thesis and Dissertation Research Credits

Students must also enroll for master’s thesis and dissertation research credits.

Fourth-Year Teaching Requirement

Unless a student petitions to waive the teaching requirement, each student must take a required teaching seminar in the fourth year of study, while concurrently teaching his or her own courses.

Required Elective Distribution Courses

In addition to the core courses, research credits, teaching seminar, and practicum experiences, students must complete four total elective courses, one in each of four categories. The electives offered are listed below. Most electives are offered every two or three years.

Students may also enroll in additional nonrequired courses offered through other UMass Boston departments (e.g., language courses, psychotherapy courses, statistics courses, etc.) that may enhance their professional development.

Admission Requirements

Please refer to Admissions Requirements for all programs on the university website.

Highly qualified applicants who have a demonstrated commitment to a career serving the needs of minority and urban populations will be given priority. In keeping with the mission of the university and the particular emphases in the program, individuals from diverse racial, ethnic, and minority backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply.

Application deadlines and information

Students are admitted to the Clinical Psychology Program to work toward the PhD degree only; the program does not offer a terminal master’s degree. Applications are due in the Graduate Admissions Office by December 1 for enrollment the following September. There are no spring semester admissions in the Clinical Psychology Program. The program expects to admit eight to ten students each year.

Interview policy

The Clinical Psychology Program receives approximately 350 applications a year. From this applicant pool, we undertake an extensive review of applications and invite approximately 40 finalists for a day-long campus visit and interviews.

The Admissions Committee schedules interviews for all finalists once all applications have been reviewed. Interviews are an important part of the application process. Interviews are usually held in February, and applicants are notified of an invitation to interview in late January or early February.

Mentor selection

An important criterion for admission to the clinical psychology program is the fit between student research interests and the research interests of the program’s faculty. We require each applicant to list up to three faculty research mentors, based on shared research and clinical interests. The research mentor works closely with the student, helping to plan course work and select practicum opportunities as well as guiding the student’s research training.


In addition to completing the application, students must also meet the following requirements:

  • A minimum of 6 courses in psychology, or a closely related social science field, including a course in statistics.
  • Scores on the general aptitude (verbal, quantitative, and analytic) and advanced psychology sections of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) are required. The only code you will need to have ETS send us your scores is 3924.

Supplemental Material

Applicants should also submit the following materials in addition to the materials required by the university. Applications will not be reviewed if incomplete.

Personal Statement (upload in place of Graduate Admissions Statement of Purpose)

Please provide an essay of about 1,000 words. The primary purpose of this essay is to introduce yourself, your passions, your interests, and your career objectives. In addition, the essay should:

  • Describe your personal, academic, and professional experiences and strengths that have prepared you for the challenges of graduate school and a career in clinical psychology.
  • Describe your interest in clinical psychology and how the UMass Boston Clinical Psychology Program, specifically, will contribute to advancing your academic, career, and personal goals.
  • Describe the research that you are interested in pursuing as a graduate student in the Clinical Psychology Program at UMass Boston.

The following supplemental information should be one continuous document. Please do not split items or lists across pages. Upload these with your resume, all in a single document.

  • A list of up to three faculty members with whom you would like to work and a sentence or two describing your interest and match for each faculty member listed. Visit our faculty mentors page for an updated list of faculty mentors and their interests.
  • A two to three sentence summary of your research and clinical interests.
  • A list of all undergraduate courses you took in the last 60 semester hours (i.e., the last half, or last two full-time equivalent years) of your bachelor’s degree. Include grades for each course and compute a grade point average.
  • A list of all undergraduate psychology courses you have taken at any time, the institutions at which you took them, and the grades you received for each course. Please also compute a grade point average for these psychology courses (and only these courses).
  • A list of all graduate psychology courses you have taken at any time, the institutions at which you took them, and the grades you received for each course. Please also compute a grade point average for these graduate psychology courses (and only these courses).
  • A list of all special honors or awards you have received for academic achievement and explain why they were awarded.
  • Any notes or comments to the committee to expand or explain any aspect of your application that needs clarification.

All supplemental information should be uploaded online or mailed to Graduate Admissions, University of Massachusetts Boston, 100 Morrissey Blvd, Boston, MA 02125.

The PsychData Website

To help the Clinical PhD Program get started with and track the progress of your admissions folder, please go to the following website: https://www.psychdata.com/s.asp?SID=145880 and fill in the short questionnaire:

  • Your name
  • A list of up to three faculty members with whom you would like to work
  • GPA - Undergraduate Only
  • GRE scores


Traditionally, we have been able to waive tuition and provide a stipend for students through at least the first four years.



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