Frequently Asked Questions about the Department of Psychology Graduate Program

What are the steps in your admission process?

All applications are due by December 1. Invitations to interview will be sent out by the end of January. All applicants will be notified as to whether or not they are invited for an interview. The interview is a required portion of the admissions process, and it is highly recommended that you make every effort to attend in person as it will help our selection committee gain a better sense of your strengths and abilities and also helps you to gain a better understanding of our program and university. At this time you will be able to meet with faculty and current students.

After all interviews have been conducted, admission decisions will be sent out in March. Acceptances are due April 15, per the APA standard. All incoming students will enter in the fall semester.

What are the minimum requirements to apply?

The minimum requirements for eligibility are at least a 3.0 GPA and 290 cumulative GRE score. To see previous cohorts' average scores, see our Full Disclosure Data. Additionally, an applicant must have a psychology undergraduate degree or minimum of 18 psychology credits (including at least one course each in abnormal psychology and research/statistics).

Application requirements and explanations:

 

Do I need to take the GRE Psychology Subject Test?

The subject test is not required, but it is recommended for students who have a non-psychology degree, or who wish to demonstrate expertise in the subject to offset a lower GPA.

Who should I ask to write my letters of recommendation?

Faculty and supervisors of research or clinical work are great choices. A letter writer should be someone who knows you well and who can speak to your academic ability, work ethic, reliability, and experiences relevant to clinical psychology. We discourage letters from family friends, coaches, or others who cannot comment on abilities that are important in terms of becoming a clinical psychologist.

What should I write about in my goal statement?

The goal statement should be two to three pages, double-spaced. Include information about your primary clinical interests, clinical experience, primary research interests, and research experience. You may also address a specific weakness in your application, highlight unique aspects of your background, and discuss your future goals. The goal statement is an open-ended opportunity for the admissions committee to get to know you.

As an international applicant, what additional materials do I need to submit?

These requirements are outlined here: Admissions requirements for international graduate students. Please note the list of countries from which students are exempt from submitting TOEFL scores.

Have you received all of my application materials? Is anything missing?

Applications are processed through IUP's graduate admissions office. For questions concerning your application, contact them at 724-357-2222.

Before contacting the admissions office, please first check the status of your own application through the online portal. Please note that the admissions office is often processing a high volume of materials, and so your application materials may have been received but not yet processed and therefore not yet showing up as complete through the online portal.

I am confused; am I applying to the Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program or to the Graduate School?

Technically, you are applying to the Graduate School. They will accept or reject you. If accepted, they will send your application to the doctoral program for a recommendation. So, any questions regarding the application process are best directed to graduate admissions. Questions about program-specific requirements or program information are best directed to PsyD office (724-357-4519) or the program director (laknight@iup.edu, 724-357-4526).

Do I need to have a master's degree to apply to your program?

No, you can apply with a bachelor's degree. We accept students who have obtained a bachelor's or a master's. Our students earn a master's degree in clinical psychology en route to the doctorate. The requirements for the master's degree are typically satisfied after the second year in the program. However, students cannot enroll in the program for only the master's degree; the master's is not a standalone program.

I have a master's degree from another institution; how many of the courses from that program can I transfer in to your program?

It depends on the nature of the course and program. You can petition to have courses transfer in. Each course will be evaluated by faculty to determine if it is comparable to ours in terms of breadth, depth, and academic rigor. While the Graduate School allows a maximum of 33 outside credits to transfer into our program, rarely will a student transfer in more than 12 credits so, at most, you may save a year off the program. Requests for transfer credits are reviewed after admittance.

What will the program cost? Will I receive funding? Is funding competitive?

Current program costs can be found here: Student Admissions, Outcomes, and Other Data. Our program works to provide some level of funding for all of our students, primarily through graduate assistantships. Precedent has shown that, despite tight state funds, we have been able to provide all of our students with some level of funding. In the case that there are not sufficient assistantships for all students to have one for all semesters, we assign them on a lottery basis to foster collaboration rather than competition among students. Returning students compete for assistantships across campus in an effort to leave the department assistantships open for first-year students. The most common assistantship requires 10 hours/week of work responsibility, in exchange for 50 percent tuition remission and a small stipend. Students apply for assistantships after admittance.

More information about assistantships can be found here: Assistantships and Scholarships.

Can I do the program part-time in order to keep my current job? Can I do the program full-time while keeping my current job?

This is a full-time, year-round, residential program. You cannot complete the program remotely. You cannot do the program on a part-time basis. Classes generally take place during the day, with occasional evening responsibilities. Students have assistantship and practicum responsibilities outside of their coursework that make an outside job difficult, if not impossible.

How many students are admitted into the program?

The number of admission offers varies from year to year depending on the applicant pool, but we look to enroll approximately 15 new students each year.

Is this a mentor program?

No, unlike traditional PhD programs where you are largely admitted by an individual faculty member with whom you will then work, our program admits the best students who apply, who are then free to work with any faculty member. This allows students to change who they work with if their interests change while in the program.

Should I visit campus or meet with someone prior to applying?

During our program interview days in February, applicants will meet as a group with the Director of Clinical Training and one-on-one with three additional faculty members. Applicants will also have lunch with current students and faculty members, a tour of our facilities, and an invitation to an off-campus dinner with current students.

Demands on faculty do not allow for individual meetings with applicants prior to the interview days. Should you have questions about our program during the application process, you are welcome to contact the program office at 724-357-4519 or the program director at 724-357-4526 or laknight@iup.edu for more information.