Admission Requirements


Students admitted with a bachelor's degree will be required to meet the following admission criteria:

  1. Successful completion of the baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution.
  2. Submission of scores on the Verbal and Quantitative sections of the Graduate Record Examination is optional.
  3. Submission of scores on the Psychology Subject Test of the Graduate Record Examination is optional.
  4. A cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or better in the following psychology courses, which must be completed prior to admission:
    • Human Development
    • Elementary Statistics
    • Experimental Design or Research Methods
    • History and Systems of Psychology.   Please note that we offer an asynchronous online course (undergraduate level) in the History of Applied Psychology each August for those incoming students who still need to meet this admissions requirement.
    • While it is strongly recommended that a candidate completes a course in Neuropsychology or Physiological Psychology, it is not required.
  5. Three letters of recommendation
  6. A personal statement
  7. Attendance at a by-invitation information session prior to the interviews
  8. Personal interviews with faculty and a current doctoral student


Students admitted at the advanced level, already possess a master's degree in school psychology and are certified.  These candidates are required to meet the following admission criteria:

  1. Successful completion of a master's, specialist, or professional diploma, in school psychology, from an accredited institution.
  2. Submission of scores on the Verbal and Quantitative sections of the Graduate Record Examination is optional.
  3. Submission of scores on the Psychology Subject Test of the Graduate Record Examination is optional.
  4. Three letters of recommendation
  5. A personal statement
  6. Attendance at a by-invitation information session prior to the interviews
  7. Personal interviews with faculty and a current doctoral student

Approximately 100-130 applications are reviewed annually, from which 10-12 candidates are chosen. This year's incoming class came from universities across the country and had a mean undergraduate GPA of 3.72.  A core value of our program is to actively promote diversity, inclusion, and broad understanding.  Consequently, we strive to have students with diverse experiences and world views, and in particular, bring forth the experiences of historically under-represented groups.

Qualified individuals whose applications are completed by January 15 are interviewed by a faculty member and a currently enrolled doctoral candidate. The interview allows the applicant to obtain a realistic view of the required academic and professional work and the program's costs.

The median time to complete the program is 4.2 years and the mean is 4.5 years, including the oral defense of the student's doctoral dissertation. Over the last seven years, 79.5% of our students completed the program in less than five years; 19.5% in less than six years; and the balance of 1.2% completed the program in less than seven years.  We carefully select motivated and capable students and, as such, our graduation rate over the past 7 years, is 95%. Attrition statistics can be found in the FAQ section.

Selection of Students

Students who are considered for interview and possible admission to the program must have the required academic background and test scores as detailed in the admission requirements in our program brochure: Doctor of Psychology Program in School-Community Psychology and on our program website: PsyD Program in School-Community Psychology under the heading of Admission Requirements. Applicants must have at least a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution and have taken courses in human development, statistics, and experimental design or research methods, all of which have been completed with a grade of B or better. Three letters of recommendation and a personal statement are also required. We are looking for students who have a strong commitment to the betterment of the emotional and behavioral needs of children. This commitment most often encompasses a concern for that child's family and the community.

Applicants meeting the above requirements are contacted by phone and invited for an individual interview. The interview is with program faculty and program doctoral students. There is also a doctoral student-run information session on the day of the interviews. When an applicant shows interest in the research of a given faculty member, we attempt to pair that student with the faculty member for the interview. Once the interviews have been completed, each faculty member ranks the applicants and a meeting takes place to obtain a consensus on who should be admitted. Students showing strong academic backgrounds, self-discipline, and a commitment to children, families, and the community are contacted by the faculty member who interviewed them and are invited into the program.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the PsyD Program in School-Community Psychology APA accredited?
Yes, it is fully accredited by APA as a PsyD doctoral program in school psychology. Should you have any questions please call the APA Commission on Accreditation at 202-336-5979. You may also write to Susan Zlotlow, PhD, Director, Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation, 750 First Street, NE, Washington, D.C., 20002-4242
What is the application deadline for the PsyD Program in School-Community Psychology?
All materials must be in the admission office by January 15 in order to be reviewed.
What is the difference between the PsyD and PhD programs in psychology?
While there is a great deal of overlap between the programs, the PsyD's training emphasis is on the practice of psychology and the PhD emphasizes research.
Will I receive transfer credits?
Transfer credits are given for courses that are equivalent to those in the PsyD program. Courses considered for transfer can be no more dated than 10 years. Time to complete the program is unaffected by transfer credits.
Will I be notified by the Graduate Admission office when all my materials have been received?
The Graduate Admission office does try to notify all applicants by mail of their files' status, but it is the responsibility of the applicant to make sure that the materials have been received. We are not responsible for incomplete applications or materials which have not arrived by the application deadline. You may call the Graduate Admission office to check on the status of your file if you have not received a letter. Do not wait for the application deadline to be near to assess the status of your application!
Graduate Admission office: 1-866-GRAD-HOF (472-3463).
How many openings are in a given class of students and how many apply?
We typically receive about 100 applicants per year and enroll a class of 10-12 students.
Is it possible to take courses on a non-matriculated basis?
No. We offer a comprehensive program of professional study that is only open to full-time, matriculated students.
May I enroll in your program for only a master's degree?
A terminal master's degree is not offered in the PsyD program. One acquires an MS degree along the way to a doctorate.
Is financial assistance available?
Financial assistance is available to graduate students in several formats, including scholarships, fellowships, assistantships, awards, etc. After you have been accepted and have sent in a deposit, you can write a letter to the director of the program requesting an assistantship. Virtually all full-time students receive assistantships. The assistantships are normally awarded for two years. See the section of our website on financial aid for greater detail.
What is the nature of the internships?
For full-time students, the internships are extended and diversified. They are extended in that they take place over a two-year period and are the equivalent of a one-year, six-day-per-week placement. They are diversified in that they take place in schools in the third year and in community settings in the fourth year. Part-time students who have a master's degree in school psychology typically do one full year of internship in a community setting in the fourth year. None of the internships are APA-accredited. All students receive internship placements.
Do all applicants get interviewed?
No. There is a screening process of all applications. Students who meet qualifications and requirements are then invited to interview on interview day.
What is the interview process like?
The interview process is in three steps, all in one day:
  1. A student-run group information session
  2. Student interview
  3. Faculty Interview