Admission process

This program begins in Autumn Quarter and admits students once a year, with about 15 percent of those who apply offered admission annually.

  • Application deadline: December 15.
  • Preliminary screening: The admissions committee of the Department of Clinical Psychology (CPY) will conduct a preliminary screening process of all applications.
  • Personal interviews: Finalists will be invited to visit campus for personal interviews in late February or early March.
  • Program section: Admission to the doctoral program depends upon recommendation by the CPY faculty and approval from the chair of the department.

Admission requirements

  • Application ($75 processing fee).
  • Bachelor’s degree with 3.0 GPA minimum
    • An undergraduate major in psychology is preferable. At a minimum, psychology courses should include statistics, as well as at least five other courses from among the following: abnormal, developmental, experimental, physiological, social, learning, motivation, personality, cognitive, tests and measurements.
    • If your bachelor’s degree is not in psychology, you may wish to take the Psychology Subject Test of the GRE to demonstrate adequate knowledge of general psychology.
  • Graduate Record Exam (GRE).
    • A score of 1100 or better is preferred for the combined verbal and quantitative sections of the older GRE test. A score of 300 or better on the new GRE test is preferred. To see average scores for students admitted to the program visit our admission statistics page.
    • The test must have been administered within five years of the deadline date for application to the program.
    • The Psychology Subject Test of the GRE (PGRE) is not required, but may be advantageous for applicants without a bachelor’s degree in psychology.
    • SPU’s GRE institution code is 4694.
  • Three references (from a current/former professor or instructor).
    • You may substitute one professional reference for one academic reference.
    • References can be submitted electronically through your online application.
    • Alternatively, sealed letters may be sent to the Graduate Admissions Office; paper references should be written on academic or professional letterhead.
  • Personal statement, three to four pages and typed.
    • Address your career objectives, your rationale for seeking a degree in clinical psychology, and why you choose to attend SPU.
    • Mention your professional and personal strengths as they apply to clinical psychology, related work experiences, research interests, personal values, religious ideals, and other information you deem appropriate.
    • Look at our clinical psychology faculty and mention one or two faculty members with whom you would like to work and who would best match your research interests.

International students

Applicants for whom English is not their first language:

  • You must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). The TOEFL may be waived for student applicants who have earned a baccalaureate degree at a regionally accredited college or university in the United States.
  • You must obtain a minimum score of 600 on the paper-based test or 250 on the computer-based test.

Applicants who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents:

  • You must submit a completed Declaration of International Student Finances form and a current bank statement, in order to issue paperwork for an I-20 immigration form.
  • The documentation must be included with your application.

Transfer of credit

Any transfer of credit is done by petition process after formal admission to the program, during the first quarter of your graduate study at SPU. You must submit previous coursework syllabi with the petition for faculty to consider in granting the transfer of credit.

Orlando Sanchez

Orlando Sánchez Montes’ Story

“While neither of my parents received a formal education, throughout my childhood they both emphasized the importance of learning and education.”

Clinical Psychology Accreditation

SPU’s Clinical Psychology doctoral program has been granted accreditation until October 2020 by the American Psychological Association.

Schedule: Clinical Psychology

From “History and Systems of Psychology” to “Personhood: Foundations” to “Faith and Psychological Science,” see the current Clinical Psychology courses.