Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology
The Clinical program has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of the American Psychological Association since 1981. Our next site visit is scheduled for 2021.
Questions related to the program’s accredited status should be directed to the Commission on Accreditation:
Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation
American Psychological Association
750 1st Street, NE,
Washington, DC 20002
Phone: (202) 336-5979
Click to go to:
- Program Overview
- Statement about Diversity and Inclusiveness
- Clinical Psychology Grad School Fact Sheet
- Faculty Listing
- Student Admissions, Outcomes, and Other Data
- Graduate Psychology Education Program Training Grant (GPEP)
- Running Start
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Application Information
- CUDCP Policy Statement
- Psychology Graduate Student Handbook 2016-2017
- Clinical Psychology Graduate School Information
Clinical Admissions Update:
The Clinical Psychology Program has completed its application review. Applicants who are still under consideration have been extended an offer for an in-person interview in early February. If you are still under consideration for the clinical program, you have already received an invitation for a February interview. If you did not receive an invitation, you are no longer under consideration. Given our limited available funding, we are seeking to admit an incoming class of 5 or 6 students. We had an extremely large number of qualified applicants, with excellent credentials.
The Clinical Psychology Program at UNCG espouses the scientist-practitioner model of training. The program trains individuals to become skilled scientists and competent clinicians who use their expertise to understand, assess, treat, and prevent behavioral disorders, regardless of the setting in which they work (e.g., university psychology department, mental health center, private practice). Graduates of the doctoral program are prepared to work as independent researchers, teachers, consultants, and practitioners.
To achieve this outcome, our students are trained in the scientific method, in broad and general areas within Psychology, in the special content domain of the Clinical Psychologist, and in practical skills appropriate to the professional practice of psychology. Students are trained as clinical generalists, prepared to deal with adults and children, and with individuals, families, and groups. The program provides students with a firm grounding in a broad range of empirically validated techniques in assessment and intervention; students demonstrate competence in all of these areas prior to the receipt of the terminal PhD degree. Although conceptual analyses of clinical phenomena most commonly incorporate a broadly based behavioral perspective, other perspectives are given serious study as well. We admit students for graduate study who will continue to use their research training in academic settings or elsewhere, as graduates.
Another major emphasis of the program entails training students to be culturally competent researchers and practitioners. This training has been enhanced through the receipt of a Graduate Psychology Education Program Training grant. We recently received notice that our application for the 2013-2016 grant cycle was approved and funded. All students in the program have the opportunity to participate in this specialized didactic and experiential training to enhance cultural competence as a result of this funding.
Statement about Diversity and Inclusion
The clinical program is committed to promoting diversity and inclusiveness in research, service and practice. We define diversity broadly including race, ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation, gender, age, national origin, disability, socioeconomic status, and other attributes that contribute to one’s social identity, which we recognize as being shaped by individual historical experience. We strive to create an environment that welcomes diverse perspectives and fosters engaged conversations about how best to address multiculturalism and diversity in research and clinical work. These conversations and training are evident across our coursework and through invited speakers, workshops, and research presentations. For example, recent trainings included working with immigrant populations and culturally competent counseling with LGBTIQ+ people. Our community mental health training clinic serves a diverse population, including families across the socioeconomic spectrum and from a variety of racial, ethnic, and immigrant groups (UNCG Psychology Clinic). Our community outreach programs to Newcomer’s School and our federally-funded training (HRSA) collaborations with Cone Health System, Triad Adult and Pediatric Medicine (a federally Qualified Health Center), the Durham VA and the Program for All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) also make significant contributions to our diversity training. We have three faculty with expertise in multicultural issues to help foster student growth in these areas (Drs. Herndon, Mendez-Smith, and Stein), and specialty training in bilingual mental health provision in Spanish (Dr. Stein). We also recognize that research questions are enhanced when diversity is considered in conceptualization, design, and analyses. Students are exposed to this perspective across their coursework and in their research requirements. These experiences prepare students to work with a wide-range of populations in both their clinical work and research.
We are also committed to creating a vibrant diverse environment. We actively recruit for diversity in faculty and staff and a diverse student body; our efforts in this vein are enhanced through Provost-funded initiatives like Running Start weekend. We recognize that a diverse workforce is essential for serving the needs of our diverse state and nation.
To complement these experiences, the Diversity Club at UNCG is a student-led group devoted to celebrating diversity and raising awareness about inequalities and individual differences among all people. The club organizes several experiences and community outings each year where students, faculty and staff meet to expand their multicultural awareness.
- Intercultural Resource center
- Office of intercultural Engagement Program and Activities
- Safe Zone
- LGBTIQ+ community
The Clinical Psychology Area includes seven tenure track faculty members who maintain active research laboratories. These faculty are: Dr. Susan Phillips Keane, Professor and Director of Clinical Training; Dr. Rosemery Nelson-Gray, Professor; Dr. Julia Mendez, Associate Professor; Dr. Kari Eddington, Associate Professor; Dr. Gabriela Livas Stein, Associate Professor, Dr. Suzanne Vrshek-Schallhorn, Assistant Professor and Dr. Blair Wisco, Assistant Professor. In addition, Dr. Jason Herndon, serves as Director of the UNCG Psychology Clinic. Faculty interests and contact information is provided below. Click here for a link to the UNCG Psychology Clinic.
Please note: We are currently searching for a new faculty member in Clinical Child Psychology. Dr. Gabriela Livas Stein is serving as chair of the search committee.
The following faculty will be reviewing applications for the 2018-2019 year: Drs. Nelson-Gray, Stein, Vrshek-Schallhorn, and Wisco.
Dr. Kari Eddington is an Associate Professor and Licensed Clinical Psychologist in UNCG’s Department of Psychology. She received her Ph.D. from Indiana University and completed a clinical internship at the University of Wisconsin Department of Psychiatry. Dr. Eddington’s research has been supported by grant funding from NIMH and involves collaboration with other researchers both within and outside of UNCG. Dr. Eddington is the Director of the Depression Treatment and Research Program (DTRP) is part of the Department of Psychology at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. The DTRP is dedicated to improving the lives of people suffering from depression through innovative research and clinical services. Specifically, our research focuses on cognitive and motivational processes in depression and how different types of therapy can help people recover. You can follow her research activities by visiting her profile on ResearchGate or on Google Scholar. Clinically, Dr. Eddington provides supervision of assessment and therapy with adult clients.
Dr. Eddington is an Associate Professor in UNCG’s clinical program and is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist. She received her Bachelor’s degree from Purdue University, her Ph.D. from Indiana University, and completed a clinical internship at the University Of Wisconsin Department of Psychiatry. Before joining the Psychology Department at UNCG, she worked at Duke University engaged in psychotherapy research and providing clinical consultation for the liver transplant team. Dr. Eddington’s research has been supported by grant funding from NIMH and involves collaboration with other researchers both within and outside of UNCG. She is also author of a therapist guide and client workbook, Self-System Therapy for Depression, part of the Treatments That Work series. Dr. Eddington’s favorite pastimes include visiting national parks, running, hiking, playing tennis, and listening to her two sons play music.
Jason L. Herndon, PhD, MSPH is the Director of the Psychology Clinic at UNC Greensboro. Dr. Herndon oversees the day-to-day functioning of the psychology clinic, its budget, and clinical service delivery. He received his doctoral degree in clinical psychology with a specialization in child clinical psychology from Saint Louis University. He completed his pre-doctoral clinical internship at the University of Louisville School of Medicine and his postdoctoral fellowship at Children’s Hospital Colorado. He has broad experience working within integrated primary care settings and currently supervises student program development and evaluation projects within integrated primary care settings. He has collaborated on a variety of oral and poster presentations related to integrated primary care. Dr. Herndon is also adept with developing, implementing, and evaluating integrated primary care programs. Clinically, Dr. Herndon is a licensed psychologist and health services provider in North Carolina and provides supervision of assessment and therapy across the lifespan. He enjoys traveling with his wife, Chavanne, and looking for new hobbies.
Susan Phillips Keane, Ph.D. received her degree from Purdue University in 1983. She completed her pre-doctoral internship in Pediatric Psychology at the University of Maryland Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. Dr. Keane’s research focuses on understanding the development of internalizing and externalizing symptoms in children and adolescents, with a particular focus on the role of parents and peers in this process. She has served as co-I of the RIGHT-Track longitudinal project (PI: Susan Calkins; 1999-2015), an NIMH-funded project examining the role of self-regulation in development, which followed a large cohort of children from 2 years to 17 years. She currently serves as co-I on the RIGHT-Track Health project (PI: Laurie Wideman; 2014-19), also funded by NIMH. This grant follows the RIGHT-Track participants into early adulthood and expands the original RIGHT-Track research questions to study health outcomes, including obesity and cardiovascular risk. In addition to her research interests, Dr. Keane has been PI of the HRSA-funded Graduate Psychology Education Program (GPE) clinical training grant since 2004. The current grant cycle (2016-2019) extends the clinical training focus to serving underserved populations within a Behavioral Health/Primary care integration setting. She serves as a supervisor in the UNCG Psychology Clinic, specializing in child assessment and diagnosis and treatment of child internalizing and externalizing problems. Dr. Keane is the founder of DREAM CAMP, a summer day camp program for children on the Autism Spectrum, focusing on emotion regulation and social skill development. She is licensed as a Health-Service Provider-Psychologist (HSP-P) in NC. Since 2006, she has served as the Director of Clinical Training. Dr. Keane loves to travel with her husband, Tom, and spend time with her children and grandchildren. Click here for her CV.
Dr. Rosemery Nelson Gray received her training in the early years of the development of behavior therapy. She was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to study with Hans Eysenck at the Institute of Psychiatry in London where she learned about early classic behavior therapy techniques and an emphasis on individual differences stemming from Eysensk’s personality theory. She was awarded the Ph.D. degree in 1972 from Stony Brook University which was one of the earliest programs teaching behavior therapy in the United States. Dr. Gray was the only female member of her class at Stony Brook, and it was not surprising that there were all male faculty at the three academic institutions where she interviewed. Dr. Gray chose UNCG because of the positive attitude to diversity: three female faculty were hired simultaneously, plus several diverse graduate students were admitted over the next several years. Dr. Gray remained at UNCG for the remainder of her 45+ year career, in part due to the continued welcoming attitude to diversity. She has held numerous national offices, the most notable being the first female president of ABCT (1981-82). She served as Director of Clinical Training at UNCG from 1979-2002, including guiding the program to its initial APA accreditation in 1982. She has authored four books and about 150 peer-reviewed journal articles, and chaired over 60 dissertations. Consistent with her past training with Hans Eysenck, she has examined the role of personality variables (BIS-BAS model) in psychopathology and in typical behavior, and is currently focusing on various processes within borderline personality disorder. You can find her vita here and learn more about her current program of research here. Dr. Gray has been co-I on HRSA-funded Graduate Psychology Education Program (GPE) clinical training grant for the last three grant cycles. The current grant cycle (2016-2019) extends the clinical training focus to serving underserved populations within a Behavioral Health/Primary care integration setting. She serves as a supervisor in the UNCG Psychology Clinic, and co-directs with Dr. Keane, DREAM CAMP, a summer day camp program for children on the Autism Spectrum, focusing on emotion regulation and social skill development. She is licensed as a Health-Service Provider-Psychologist (HSP-P) in NC. For either or both professional and personal reasons, she has visited 30 different countries. Her favorite professional work is coordinating and supervising psychological services by our clinical students at Newcomers School, a local public school for newcomers and refugees. Her pastimes include activities with her husband and two sons, gardening, and sports.
Dr. Julia Mendez Smith is a Professor in the Department of Psychology at UNCG. As a clinical-community psychologist, she has expertise in understanding the mental health and wellbeing of young children. Specifically, Dr. Mendez Smith is interested in how programs and policies support child development and learning opportunities in the family, school, and community settings. She conducts research in community settings on parent engagement in diverse schools. She is also presently a co-investigator for the federally-funded National Research Center on Hispanic Children and Families, which conducts research on early care and education opportunities for Hispanics in the U.S. At UNCG, Dr. Mendez Smith has been an active contributor to community-engaged research projects and diversity and equity initiatives at the department, college, and university levels. She has worked with Guilford County Schools to develop a Parent Academy for assisting families with receiving support and information regarding their children’s academic and social development. Her teaching portfolio includes graduate level courses on Multicultural Issues, and Health and Education Disparities, clinical supervision, and an undergraduate internship course. She is interested in contributing to a campus climate at UNCG that maximizes opportunities for faculty, staff and students to engage with each other to promote learning in today’s multicultural society. Dr. Mendez Smith currently serves as the Chancellor’s Fellow for Campus Climate in the Office of the Chancellor. She enjoys mentoring graduate and undergraduate students interested in working with underserved youth in school and community settings and collaborating with faculty colleagues on diversity and inclusion initiatives. She has served as a faculty liaison to the Diversity Club in the Department of Psychology and was the inaugural Chair of the Psychology Diversity Committee.
Gabriela Livas Stein, Ph.D. received her doctoral degree in clinical psychology with a specialization in child and family psychology from UNC Chapel Hill in 2007. She completed her pre-doctoral clinical internship at University of California, San Diego/VA Consortium followed by a postdoctoral fellowship position at Duke University. Broadly, her research uses developmental psychopathology and cultural-ecological frameworks to investigate the impact of culturally relevant factors on the development of psychopathology for ethnically diverse samples. Her lab is committed to community engaged research and has active partnerships across the state (i.e., school districts, mental health clinics). Dr. Stein’s research has been funded by NIDA and PCORI. She has served as the Chair of the Latino Caucus of the Society for Research on Child Development, and currently serves on their Ethnic-Racial Issues Committee. She is currently an Associate Editor for Journal of Research on Adolescence. Clinically, Dr. Stein is licensed HSP-P in NC and provides supervision on assessment and therapeutic work with children, adolescents, and their families. She specializes in the provision of therapeutic services to Latino families, and provides training in Spanish. Dr. Stein enjoys being a mom, going on food adventures, and continuing to learn from books, family, and friends.
Dr. Suzanne Vrshek-Schallhorn completed dual undergraduate degrees in Psychology and Biology at Florida State University, followed by a PhD in Clinical Psychology at the University of Minnesota, and postdoctoral training at Northwestern University’s Department of Psychology. Dr. Vrshek-Schallhorn’s lab investigates pathways from life stress to depression. The lab uses several strategies to probe (1) who is most vulnerable to stress, and (2) the mechanisms by which stress leads to depression. Using both interview-assessed naturalistic stress and brief lab-induced stress, the lab examines vulnerability-stress interactions, including gene-environment interactions. This gene-environment interaction work focuses on genetic variants in systems for serotonin, dopamine, and the hypothalamic pituitary adrenal (HPA) axis. In addition, the lab examines how brief lab-induced stress influences cortisol reactivity, cardiovascular reactivity, affect, and cognitive performance. Dr. Vrshek-Schallhorn enjoys cooking, photography, and spending time with her family.
Blair Wisco, Ph.D. is an assistant professor and the director of the Cognitive, Psychopathology, and Emotion (CoPE) lab. She received her doctoral degree from Yale University in 2011 and completed her predoctoral internship at the Boston Consortium. Prior to starting her position at UNCG, she completed a postdoctoral fellowship in traumatic stress research at the National Center for PTSD, VA Boston Healthcare System/Boston University School of Medicine. Her research examines cognitive and emotion regulation processes in emotional disorders, with a special focus on posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). She was recognized for her research accomplishments as a 2016 “Rising Star” by the Association for Psychological Science. She is a licensed health-services provider-psychologist in the state of North Carolina and serves as a clinical supervisor in our training clinic. She has served as a Co-Investigator on UNCG’s HRSA-funded Graduate Psychology Education Program (GPEP) training grant since 2016. Dr. Wisco is a self-described “foodie” and loves cooking and trying new restaurants.
Clinical Area Contact Person: Dr. Susan Keane, (336) 256-0569, firstname.lastname@example.org
HIPAA Compliance Officer: Dr. Jason L. Herndon
Graduate Psychology Education Program Training Grant (GPEP)
For 5 funding cycles, the UNCG Clinical Program has been the recipient of a federal training grant through HRSA’s Graduate Psychology Education Training Program. Susan Keane has served as the PI of these grants since 2004. For the 2016-19 cycle, Drs. Nelson-Gray, Stein and Wisco serve as co-Investigators.
The current grant provides stipend support for graduate students seeking training in behavioral health/primary care integration; one major goal of the grant is to increase workforce capacity. Through experiential and didactic training doctoral level students learn how to provide effective, short-term clinical treatment to address behavioral health needs within integrated primary care settings. Working within an integrated care setting reduces barriers to care, especially for the most vulnerable, underserved populations. These barriers include: stigma associated with psychological impairment, access to mental health services, transportation barriers, scheduling, etc. Since at least 70% of patients served in primary care settings present with mental health concerns primary care settings need more psychologists. Experiences provided by this grant, prepare students to work effectively within a primary care setting.
Community partners offering didactic and experiential training are: Cone Center for Children’s Health, Cone Family Medicine, Cone Pediatrics, the Durham VA, Piedmont Pediatrics, Program of All Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE), and Triad Adult and Pediatric Medicine (TAP-M), a federally-qualified health center. Throughout the 3 years of the grant, 24 trainees will work in one of the above settings (8 per year).
To facilitate camaraderie among the students entering the first year cohort, and to give incoming students a jump start on their research, we developed a summer research program called “Running Start”. All incoming students are invited to come to campus sometime in May to begin their summer research experience. Students learn more details about the program and keys to success in graduate school, through a presentation co-led by Susan Keane and Gaby Livas Stein. They also attend a grant presentation led by current student grant holders and learn about grant applications through a presentation offered by the Office of Sponsored programs. One of the research librarians offers information about accessing extant databases for research questions.
In addition, each incoming student is paired with a peer research mentor, typically a senior student from the faculty mentor’s lab, who meets with the student to introduce him/her to lab data collection procedures and lab data. The peer mentor and the student, in concert with the faculty advisor, discuss ideas for a first research project. The student then works to conduct a literature review, refines the question and “meets” electronically with the mentors to further develop their idea.
While a recent addition to our program (first offered in 2015), this program has produced successful first-year projects as well as presentation submissions and presentations at national conferences. We look forward to congratulating students as they move toward publication of their findings.
1. What are the philosophy and goals of the clinical training program?
The Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology is based on the scientist-practitioner model. Consistent with this model, our overarching goal is to foster the development of students as psychologists first, and secondarily as clinical psychologists. Two broad goals guide our training: 1) To produce psychologists with demonstrated knowledge and competence in the science of psychology and the practice of clinical psychology and 2) To prepare socially responsible clinical psychologists who will contribute to the field and demonstrate ethical behavior and respect for individual and cultural differences in all aspects of their professional behavior. To reach these goals, we focus on a student’s competence in several domains: broad and general knowledge in psychology, designing and conducting research, providing evidence-based practice, engaging in responsible and ethical behavior, and knowledge of how culture impacts research questions, findings, and clinical practice. Also emphasized in our training model is the idea that a complete and thorough understanding of abnormality and psychopathology cannot be achieved in the absence of understanding the normal variations in human behavior that occur across development and in different social contexts. Thus, students in our program receive broad training in other domains of psychology, including cognitive, developmental, social, and biological areas, to familiarize themselves with normal processes. Students in our program also learn about individual and cultural diversity through their courses, their practicum training, and their interactions with students and faculty from diverse backgrounds.
2. Is the clinical program accredited by the American Psychological Association and what are the implications of accreditation?
The clinical program is accredited by the American Psychological Association. APA accreditation reflects: (a) that training in clinical psychology received at UNCG is compatible with other APA approved programs both in terms of training models and curriculum; and (b) that the institutional setting, faculty (both clinical and non-clinical), and facilities are adequate to meet and support the student’s academic needs. In terms of a student’s career development, graduation from an APA approved clinical program is often a prerequisite for certain block-time internship placements and/or job opportunities. This credential also eases the licensure process and entry into some professional organizations. This next site visit is scheduled for 2021. Questions related to the program’s accredited status should be directed to the Commission on Accreditation:
Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation
American Psychological Association
750 1st Street, NE, Washington, DC 20002
Phone: (202) 336-5979 / E-mail: email@example.com
3. What is the curriculum of the clinical program?
The Ph.D. curriculum for clinical students consists of clinical courses and seminars, courses and seminars in other areas of psychology, courses in statistics and research methods, practicum and internship training, and 24 credit hours of research including the thesis and dissertation. The program is structured so that it can be completed in five or six years, depending on the progress of the individual student, plus a required year of pre-doctoral internship. All students entering the Ph.D. Program with a BA/BS degree earn an MA degree (57 credits) as part of their PhD requirements (112 credits). Students who are accepted into the program and who hold an MA degree from another institution will have their coursework and research experiences evaluated for comparability with our program requirements by the DCT and at least 1 other faculty member. Students will not be required to complete courses that are deemed comparable. Similarly, if an empirical thesis has been completed and favorably reviewed by UNCG faculty, completion of another thesis will not be required.
During the first year, clinical students typically take courses in adult and child psychopathology, in theory and methods of psychotherapy and of behavior therapy, in graduate research methods and statistics, and courses in other core areas in psychology (e.g. biological, cognitive, developmental, social.) During the second year, clinical students typically take courses (combining theory and methodology) in personality and intellectual assessment; introductory practicum experiences in the UNCG Psychology Clinic. Ethics and another core course. The Master’s thesis should be completed during the first 2 or 2 1/2 years. During the third year, clinical students take additional courses or seminars in basic psychology and/or advanced statistics, and conduct independent doctoral research. Students complete a total of 200 client contact hours of supervised practicum training in the UNCG Psychology Clinic during their second and third years. The preliminary examination is usually completed by the fourth year. During the remaining two or three years, clinical students complete any remaining course work and seminars in clinical or in other areas of psychology, complete 350 clock hours of advanced practicum in the UNCG Psychology Clinic, complete the independent doctoral research project and a dissertation, and take a 2,000 hour block-time APA-approved internship. A list of required courses is presented below.
MA General Core Courses (10 hours)
To satisfy the requirement that students must obtain foundational knowledge in the breadth of Psychology as a science at the MA level, students must earn 10 credit hours. Nine hours are chosen from the following core courses (or their equivalents, decided in consultation with the student’s planning committee):
Physiology of Sensory and Behavioral Processes
Advanced Social Psychology
In addition to the 9 credits above;
PSY 601 Historical Perspectives on Psychology as a Science – 1 credit
Clinical Core Courses (3 hours)
Psychological Disorders in Adults
Satisfactory completion of the core courses above (with grades of B or better) satisfies the MA Comprehensive Examination.
Additional Clinical Courses (18 hours)
Theory and Methods of Psychotherapy
Theory and Methods of Personality Assessment
Theory and Methods of Behavioral Assessment and Therapy
Theory and Methods of Intellectual Assessment
Psychological Disorders in Children
Ethical Responsibilities of Clinical Psychologists
MA Research Tools Courses (17 hours)
Statistical Methods in Psychology I
Statistical Methods in Psychology II
Research Methods in Psychology
MA Clinical Practicum Training (9 hours)
Practicum in Clinical Intervention
(Taken over three semesters: 1 credit in year 1; 4 credits in fall and spring of year 2)
In addition to the MA requirements (57 credits), students must complete the following:
1 course not taken in the MA program from among the menu of courses listed:
Physiology of Sensory and Behavioral Processes
Advanced Social Psychology
PhD Seminars (12 hours)
Two advanced clinical courses (6 credits):
One of these must be PSY 745 Multicultural Psychology; the other must be a Topical Seminar in Clinical Psychology (PSY 735J)
Two advanced seminars outside the clinical area, approved in advance by the student’s doctoral committee (6 credits)
• One may be from another area in psychology (e.g. PSY 735D) or an approved course from another department or an approved advanced Stat/Research course.
• One course MUST address research design/statistical issues.
PhD Research Tools Courses (18 hours minimum)
In addition to MA requirements, students must complete the following:
PSY 751 Independent Doctoral Research – 6 credits
PSY 799 Doctoral Dissertation Research – 12-24 credits
PhD Clinical Practicum Training (22 hours)
In addition to the 9 hours of PSY 642 taken to satisfy the MA requirements, students must complete the following:
PSY 642: Practicum in Clinical Intervention – 10 credits (2 of these are concurrent with PSY 762)
PSY 762: Advanced Practicum in Clinical Psychology – 6 credits
PSY 763: Internship in Clinical Psychology – 2 credits (Taken over two semesters for clinical internship year)
This examination is scheduled in consultation with the doctoral advisory committee. It should be taken during the second semester following successful defense of the MA thesis for students continuously enrolled in the program
4. What are practicum opportunities?
Clinical practicum and internship is required of all clinical students. In the first and second years, students enroll in assessment and intervention courses that include a methodological component. In these courses, basic clinical skills (e.g., interviewing, testing, cognitive therapy, systematic desensitization) are learned. In the second year, students carry a small caseload. By the end of the third year, students complete 200 client contact hours of practicum training at the UNCG Psychology Clinic where they are supervised by clinical faculty. The client population at this facility is diverse, both in terms of presenting problems and other demographic variables. In the 4th year, students complete their advanced practicum training of 350 supervised client contact hours. The skills learned during advanced practicum are designed to augment those achieved during earlier practicum years. Advanced Practicum primarily occurs in the UNCG Psychology Clinic. Up to 100 hours of Advanced Practicum training can be obtained at program-approved placements, including the UNCG Counseling Center, the GPEP Behavioral Health/Primary Care Integration sites or Wake Medical Weight Management Center. Some of these external sites require students to be licensed at MA level (LPA).
After completing most or all of the other Ph.D. requirements, clinical students complete 2,000 hour, block-time internships that are approved by the American Psychological Association. A list of accredited program is available at:
It is expected that students will complete their dissertation data collection and the majority of their dissertation document preparation before leaving for internship.
Since 2002, the program has been awarded a Graduate Psychology Education Program (GPEP) Training grant. This grant provides opportunities for students to gain additional exposure working with underserved populations, including refugee and immigrant populations. The current GPEP training grant continues to focus on reducing barriers to care but in an integrated health setting. Eight students are placed across 7 sites, including: Cone Family Medicine Residency Training Program, Piedmont Pediatrics, Cone Center for Children’s Health, Cone Pediatrics Residency Training Program PACE of the Triad, Triad Adult and Pediatric medicine, and the Durham VA.
The clinical program also sponsors DREAM Camp, a summer day camp for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, and the Depression Treatment and Research Program, a specialized practicum and research program providing empirically-based assessment and treatment approaches for clients with mood disorders.
5. How is research training conducted in the clinical program?
Research training in UNCG’s clinical program is based on a mentorship model. Training begins during the first year through course work in clinical research methodology and in statistics. Students also begin working with their mentor and research lab on research projects. Many students also conduct research as part of a departmental research assistantship responsibility. During the first year, students begin to develop a thesis research project through the clinical research methods course and under the direction of their faculty mentors. All second year students make a presentation at the Graduate Research Conference, scheduled early in the fall term. The thesis is typically completed during the second or third year. An independent doctoral research project, which is often pilot work for the dissertation, is generally completed during the third or fourth years, and the doctoral dissertation during the fourth or fifth years.
Students also have the opportunity to participate in non-required research throughout their training. Students are encouraged to co-author papers for publication and presentation at professional meetings, as well as to have involvement in grant preparation. All students are encouraged to focus on problems of fundamental importance to the field of psychology. To this end, the Department supports students who want to develop research programs with both clinical and nonclinical faculty; many on-going collaborations among faculty exist to support students in this endeavor. All clinical students must demonstrate research competence prior to graduation.
6. What is the attrition rate among clinical students?
Our attrition is listed in the Student Outcome table above. https://psy.uncg.edu/graduate/clinical-psychology/student-admissions-outcomes-and-other-data/
7. What is the student selection process?
Applications for admission to the Clinical program are due December 1st and are reviewed for admission into the program for the following Fall semester. Typically, around 200 applications are received for each admission cycle. We admit between 5-8 students each year. Program faculty reviews applications in December and early January, and in-person interviews are offered to the top 25-30 applicants. We hold two interview days – typically around the second week in February. An in-person interview is required before an offer of admission may be made. Please see the Student Admission Outcomes and Other Data section for more specific information about incoming student credentials and progress through the program.
In addition to the minimum standards for admission outlined in FAQ 8 below, students offered admission have career goals consistent with our program philosophy and training model, and have experience with and continued interest in contributing to the research literature. We have a mentorship model for research training. Therefore, we seek to admit students who are a “good fit” with the research interests of current faculty. Although clinical/applied experience is not a requirement, we seek to admit students who understand and value the importance of evidence-based practice.
8. What background do most successful applicants possess?
Successful candidates typically exceed the following minimum criteria:
• Psychology (or equivalent) major
• Undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or better
• Undergraduate Psychology GPA of 3.0 or better
• GRE verbal and GRE quantitative sub-scores each above the 40th percentile
• For non-native English speakers TOEFL scores above Graduate School minima currently, 79 for internet-based test and 550 for paper-based test
• For students applying with an MA degree, a graduate GPA of 3.3 or better
Applicants who did not major in Psychology should have taken the following Psychology courses: Introductory Psychology, Statistics and Research Methods, Abnormal (or Clinical) Psychology, plus at least one additional course in Psychology. Applicants who did not major in Psychology are also required to submit a score from the Psychology subject GRE.
For the Clinical Program, applications are considered only once per year (during February) for admission in the following fall term. Application deadline: December 1st. Applicants are evaluated in two stages. First, a faculty committee examines the applicant’s previous grade point averages, Graduate Record Examination scores, undergraduate research and preclinical experiences, letters of recommendation, and the statements of purpose and research interests. We are seeking applicants who are bright, well prepared, motivated, socially skilled, and whose interests are compatible with our model of training. Research fit with current faculty is of primary importance in our selection process. Normally, competitive candidates have credentials which exceed the departmental minimum standards, and show evidence of prior research and applied experience, exceptional letters of recommendation, an interest in scientist-practitioner training, research interests that match those of current faculty mentors, and an interest to continue research after graduation. See the Admissions, Outcomes and Other Data section for scores of our current graduate students. https://psy.uncg.edu/graduate/clinical-psychology/student-admissions-outcomes-and-other-data/
Secondly, we interview the top 30 or so candidates (of the several hundred who apply each year), usually in person. We schedule these interviews in mid-February (Applicants should not initiate interviews – if you are in the top group, you will be contacted. In the interviews, we evaluate the candidate’s research interests, career goals, background, and social skills. From all of this input, we select about 10 persons for admission, and construct a short list of alternates, with plans for an incoming class of about six or seven clinical students.
Successful applicants are notified by April 1 of each year. The selection process is usually completed by April 15 of each year. Please review the CUDCP Clinical Psychology Grad School Fact sheet and the CUDCP Policy Statement on Grad School offers and acceptances which are posted at: https://psy.uncg.edu/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Summary-Offers-Acceptances.pdf
We usually take no more than one or two students a year that already have earned a Master’s degree, and these candidates rarely come from allied professions (e.g., Physical Therapy, Nursing). Usually about one year’s worth of prior graduate work will transfer, and students generally must be here at least one year before formal admittance to the Ph.D. program. We do not admit part-time students. Professionals in the Greensboro area wishing to complete a doctoral degree are welcome to apply, but they will be evaluated according to the same rigorous standards as other applicants and must be prepared to do full-time training. Except in extraordinary circumstances, we do not offer clinical retraining of persons with a Ph.D. in another area of psychology. Qualified persons may take specific graduate courses in the department (e.g., Psychological Disorders of Adults or of Children) without admission to the program. Interested students should contact the Graduate School for admission as a non-degree student. The assessment courses are open only to psychology graduate students. The intervention courses and practicum are open only to clinical psychology graduate students.
As a member of the Council of University Directors of Clinical Training (CUDCP), the Clinical Psychology program at UNC Greensboro adheres to CUDCP’s policies and guidelines for graduate school admissions, offers and acceptance. For additional information about these policies, please visit clinicalpsychgradschool.org. You will also find a lot of information about clinical psychology as a field, application tips and a directory of Post Baccalaureate RA positions here.