Degree Requirements

The Department of Psychology offers a Doctor of Philosophy degree. Students are not accepted for a terminal master’s degree, but doctoral students often complete a Master of Science degree as they progress toward the doctorate.

The Graduate Handbook summarizes the department requirements for completion of the Ph.D. and M.S. degree. In addition to these requirements, each area of specialization has its own requirements for students, which are outlined in that area’s section of the website (see links at top of page). The University Graduate School also has requirements for student registration, coursework, annual progress, theses and dissertations, etc. Students are responsible for familiarizing themselves with all of these requirements.

The current regulations governing student progress through the Department of Psychology graduate program are posted below. Students who entered the program under the regulations of a prior Handbook may choose to follow the requirements in place when they started the program or the current regulations. After reading these regulations carefully, if you have any questions, please contact the Graduate Coordinator or Graduate Program Assistant.

Current Graduate Regulations

Program Overview (see Handbook for detail).

  • The doctorate requires completion of 90 credits typically in a 5 year period.
  • Graduate students must maintain continuous enrollment (registration for two of every three semesters), though students may request a one year leave of absence, if needed, for personal reasons.
  • All graduate students are required to conduct research throughout their graduate careers.

Students get in-depth training through research and coursework in their area of specialization. Students are required to achieve breadth in psychological theory and research by attending a first year Seminar in Psychological Science and by completing a minimum of 9 credits outside of their area of specialization. Students complete a written and oral defense of their research for both the M.S. and the Ph.D. In addition, written and oral comprehensive examinations are required for admission to candidacy for the Ph.D.

Archived Handbooks