View of Fraser Hall's North end. Landscaping in foreground.

Psychology Graduate Program

Program Overview

We offer a single doctoral degree which may be earned in one of the following programs: Clinical Psychology, Social Psychology, or Brain, Behavior, and Quantitative Science. All of our programs boast distinguished and award-winning faculty, notable research publications, and a deep foundation in the historical progress of psychological advances. You can read more about our faculty's research interests and publications on our Faculty page.

Fall 2023 Application Is now CLOSED

Thank you for your interest in applying to our program. The Fall 2023 deadline has now passed. Applications will open again in August 2023 for Fall 2024 admission.

The Psychology Graduate program offers a single MA/Ph.D. program. Students admitted to one of our programs enter with the expectation of continuing graduate study through the Ph.D. as the department does not offer a terminal Master's degree.

A separate clinical child psychology training program has been developed for doctoral students in an interdepartmental program with the Department of Applied Behavioral Science. Those interested in applying to the Clinical Child Graduate program please contact Lauren Bias, Clinical Child graduate administrative associate, at lbias@ku.edu.  

Application Deadline

Fall 2023 Application is now open! Access our application.

The application deadline for the Fall 2023 admission is December 1, 2022.

Required Materials

  • A current C.V. (Curriculum Vitae) or resume
  • A Statement of Purpose
  • Name and email addresses for 3 references, preferably from those who have worked with you and know your research interests and abilities (please use KU's online letter of recommendation system when you apply)
  • List of psychology courses taken and grades received
Transcripts & English Proficiency
  • Transcripts from all institutions from which a degree was obtained, or any institutions attended post-bachelors. Copies of official transcripts that you have opened may be uploaded to the application online and used for admissions consideration. If you are admitted, sealed, or official electronic transcripts showing degree conferral, if applicable, must be provided by the end of your first semester at KU. Send official, sealed transcripts to:

KU Visitor Center

1502 Iowa St.

Lawrence, KS 66045

graduateadm@ku.edu

  • Non-native English speakers must demonstrate proof of English proficiency before gaining admission to a graduate program. More information can be found on KU's Graduate Studies English Proficiency Requirements for Graduate Admissions policy page. Please send TOEFL and IELTS scores to KU Instition Code 6871.

Each program has a unique set of requirements. To learn more, please refer to the Degree Requirements in the Academic Catalog for specifics. 

We often admit students who have completed a masters degree in another program. Students who are admitted with MA or MS degrees in psychology (or closely related fields) may be credited with a maximum of 30 hours toward our Ph.D. degree. The number of hours that actually count toward our requirements depends on how well the students' MA program courses map onto our program requirements. Students who wish to have previously taken courses apply toward one or more of our program requirements meet with and provide our current course instructor(s) with syllabi from the previous coursework. If the instructors judge the previous coursework to be substantially equivalent to our own, the required course is waived.

If a student's MA or MS degree program included an empirical thesis, that thesis may be accepted as satisfying our program's empirical thesis requirement, pending the outcome of a review to determine if the thesis is comparable to those produced within our program. At their earliest convenience, such students provide the program director with a copy of their thesis. The program director then asks one or two faculty members to evaluate the thesis for comparability to those produced by members of our program. If a thesis is accepted as satisfying our requirement, it does not count against the maximum of 30 hours that may be credited. Masters students whose MA or MS programs do not include an empirical thesis (or whose empirical theses are judged not comparable to those from KU) are required to conduct an empirical thesis as part of our Ph.D. program..

Students admitted to the Psychology Graduate Program are eligible for a variety of opportunities for financial support. These include:

  • Graduate Teaching Assistantships (GTA) & Graduate Research Assistantships (GRA)

    • GTA appointments are most common in the department. Students are responsible for instructing classes and grading student coursework.
    • GRA appointments are available to students whose advisors are actively conducting research with grant support. These are provided at the advisor's and department's discretion.
  • University Fellowships
    • University Graduate Fellowships (UGF)
    • Dean's Doctoral Fellowships (DDF)
    • Chancellor's Doctoral Fellowships (CDF)
  • Outside Fellowships
    • Students are welcome to bring outside funding to study in our program. Visit our Resources page for potential sources for outside funding.

If you are interested in being considered for one or more of these opportunities, please indicate this on your application.

Use KU's Tuition & Fee Tool to help calculate cost of attendance.*

*Admitted students who are offered funding may be eligible for a tuition waiver. Please contact the Graduate Program Coordinator for more information

Health Psychology Certificate

The Graduate Certificate Program in Health Psychology is designed to provide exposure to theoretical and empirical research in Health Psychology that will augment a student’s primary course of study and provide certification of the completion of the program on a graduate transcript. The Health Psychology Certificate Program is associated with the Clinical Psychology Graduate Program and the Major Area of Study in Clinical Health Psychology within that Program.

Non-Degree Seeking

If you completed a Bachelor’s degree with a demonstrated academic competence in psychology or a related discipline and wish to take an upcoming graduate-level course in the Department of Psychology, you may apply as a non-degree seeking (NDS) student. Please note undergraduate prerequisite course completion is typically necessary to succeed in graduate-level coursework. If you intend to enroll in coursework via NDS status for non-graduate study pursuits and personal interests, please specify what courses you would like to complete in the department in the personal statement. Not all courses in our department are open to NDS students; please contact our graduate academic advisor before applying to receive a list of courses closed to NDS students.

Non-Degree Seeking

Course Selection

Students admitted to the NDS program are encouraged to contact the Director of Graduate Studies to discuss course selection. Please be aware that the department does not allow NDS students to enroll in the following courses:

  • PSYC 835: Clinical Practicum IV: Health
  • PSYC 836: Clinical Practicum V: Health
  • PSYC 850: Assessment I: Foundations of Psychological Assessment
  • PSYC 855: Assessment II: Integrative Psychological Assessment
  • PSYC 898: Proseminar: Professional Issues in Clinical and Health Psychology
  • PSYC 899: The Thesis
  • PSYC 946: Theories and Methods of Psychotherapy
  • PSYC 951: Clinical Supervision Practicum
  • PSYC 964: Clinical Practicum I
  • PSYC 965: Clinical Practicum II
  • PSYC 966: Clinical Practicum III
  • PSYC 968: Research Methods in Clinical Psychology
  • PSYC 969: Clinical Practicum IV
  • PSYC 970: Clinical Practicum V
  • PSYC 974: Clinical Psychology Internship
  • PSYC 977: Specialized Clinical Practicum
  • PSYC 999: The Dissertation

If you intend to use completed NDS coursework to strengthen your profile for graduate study, please contact the Director of Graduate Studies to determine your options. Completion of NDS coursework to fulfill prerequisites will not guarantee admission to the KU graduate program in psychology. However, students who have studied psychology and/or gained appropriate experience via self-study and who lack fulfillment of academic area prerequisites may consider applying to the department as NDS students to make up any gaps in academic study.

Application Deadlines:

  • Applications are accepted on a rolling-basis.

Application Materials:

  • A brief Personal Statement indicating your academic preparedness and personal or professional motivation for taking coursework in the Department of Psychology
  • Transcripts from all institutions from which a degree was obtained, or any institutions attended post-bachelors. A GPA of 3.0 or higher in undergraduate work is required for admission. Copies of official transcripts that you have opened may be uploaded to the application online and used for admissions consideration. If you are admitted, sealed, or official electronic transcripts showing degree conferral, if applicable, must be provided by the end of your first semester at KU. Send official, sealed transcripts to:

KU Visitor Center

1502 Iowa St.

Lawrence, KS 66045

graduateadm@ku.edu

  • Applicants who indicate English is not their native language: Proof of English proficiency, as required by the Office of Graduate Studies. Please send TOEFL and IELTS scores to KU Instition Code 6871.

For More Information Contact:

Dr. Monica Biernat
  • Dr. Biernat is recruiting a graduate student for admission in the Fall 2023 semester
  • University Distinguished Professor
  • Program Director, Social Psychology
  • Director of Graduate Studies