Admission & Aid

Applications for the 2019 cycle of the Ph.D. Program in Clinical Psychology will be due December 1st. If you have any questions, please email us. The 2019 interviews for candidates will be scheduled on either Friday or Saturday in late February/early March. Invitations to attend interview weekend will be sent via email in late January.

As a member of the Council of University Directors of Clinical Training (CUDCP), the Clinical Psychology program at Suffolk University adheres to CUDCP’s policies and guidelines for graduate school admissions, offers, and acceptance. For additional information about these policies, please see the Summary of CUDCP Policy for Graduate School Offers and Acceptances. More information about clinical psychology and application tips also can be found at clinicalpsychgradschool.org, offered by CUDCP.

The following is a list of faculty who will be accepting a student for Fall 2019. This list has been updated as of October 17, 2018 and is subject to change. Please note-we will not be accepting any new applications for the Clinical Respecialization Certificate for the Fall 2019 start date.

Admission Requirements

Students are admitted to the Clinical Psychology Program to work toward the PhD degree only; the program does not offer a terminal master's degree. If you have any questions, please email us. Approximately 8-12 full-time students will be admitted to the program each fall. There are no spring semester admissions in this program.

Unlike other graduate programs at Suffolk, the Psychology Department does not host open-house events for prospective applicants.  This year's information session is currently scheduled for November 19th from 11-12:30 PM. Please fill out the registration form if you would like to attend. For more information on this information session, please visit the Graduate Admissions website or email us.

Students wishing to apply for admission must hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university and must complete the Suffolk University Graduate Admission Application Form. Please note that you may now submit your application online. All applicants should use the online application. All PhD applicants will also need to submit the Psychology Ph.D. Supplemental Form. This form is available as a Word document and is accessible via the online application. All transcripts should be sent directly to the Office of Graduate Admissions, 73 Tremont St., 6th Floor, Boston, MA 02108.

Students must submit official scores on the general aptitude (verbal, quantitative, and analytic or analytical writing) sections of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE); the advanced psychology subject test is not required, but is recommended for applicants who do not hold an undergraduate degree in psychology. The Suffolk University GRE code is 3771. There is no separate GRE code for the Psychology Department; please use 3771 to code all scores.

NOTE: Students who score less than the 50th percentile on either the GRE verbal or the GRE quantitative sections have little chance of admission in the absence of compelling compensating factors. In addition, a GRE writing score of 4.0 or higher is typically a prerequisite for admission. In addition, most of our admitted applicants carry a psychology GPA of at least 3.5.

Special attention should be paid to the personal statement, which should include all relevant background experience (in both research and clinical settings), academic interests, professional goals, and potential mentors. Applicants should specifically identify and describe those portions of their experience and professional goals that they believe make them well-suited to this program and the faculty with whom they would like to work. In addition, the program is dedicated to training clinical psychologists who will have competency working with diverse populations. We encourage applicants to address any interest and/or experiences they have with regard to this issue.

Two letters of recommendation are required for all applicants. Recommendations can be submitted electronically through the online application process or directly to the Office of Graduate Admissions at Suffolk University (please see the application for more details). The recommender should use institutional letterhead when available. Recommendation letters will not be accepted from any third-party agencies. Recommenders should include their full name, title, and a phone number where we can contact them if necessary. Applicants' first and last names should be included in the letter.

Applicants must have completed a minimum of five courses in psychology, preferably including courses in both statistics and research methods. Though not required, the program values the additional evidence of maturity, competence, and capacity for responsibility that comes from a broad range of work and life experiences. Thus, many students admitted to the program have engaged, after college, in both supervised psychological research and some type of supervised work in a clinical setting.

Please note that while sealed materials (transcripts, recommendation letters, etc.) will be accepted with application materials, they must remain unopened. This method is strongly encouraged. These materials can certainly be sent directly to Suffolk University; however, it does create the potential for your credentials to be lost in the mail or otherwise not collected into your application package. The occurrence of this is rare, but it does happen, and may delay your application materials from being received by the deadline.

International applicants must submit successful completion of the TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE-Academic.

The Ph.D. program receives approximately 300 applications each year. We thoroughly review these and invite 65-70 candidates to Suffolk University for an interview weekend. Applicants invited to interview weekend are required to interview with two different faculty members.  Applicants are strongly encouraged to attend interview weekend in person.  If circumstances preclude in person attendance at interview weekend, the department will attempt to schedule Skype interviews but this is not guaranteed.

Interview Weekend 2019 will be held Friday, March 1st and Saturday, March 2nd.  Due to the size of the applicant pool, department faculty will not conduct interviews with applicants who have not been invited to interview. However, the department holds one to two information sessions during the fall semester to meet applicants and address questions.

Final admission decisions will be made by April 15th.

Upon acceptance, each student will be assigned a program advisor. This advisor will guide the student over the course of his or her graduate education, helping to plan course work as well as discuss research and clinical opportunities.

For information on transferring credits, please view our Request for Transfer of Graduate Credit [PDF] form.

Applicants interested in further information on the qualifications of admitted students should consult the full disclosure data page [PDF]. This page also details the program's graduation outcomes and student internship application success.

To request additional information and application materials, contact the Office of Graduate Admission via e-mail, or phone 617-573-8302.

The Psychology Department awards up to two fellowships for students committed to serving individuals from culturally diverse and under-served populations through their research and clinical work. Please see the OUTREACH Fellowship page for more information.

Graduate tuition and fees

Funding

Effective Fall 2019, all students who are enrolled full-time in the Clinical Ph.D. program and are in good standing will be eligible for 100% tuition remission until the end of their 6th year in the program. Students who wish to continue their studies past a 6th year will need to petition the program for continued tuition remission (not guaranteed after year 6). This is outlined in the doctoral manual.

The Office of the Bursar is your best resource for getting information about your financial aid award. The material below is provided as a helpful guide specifically for students in the doctoral program in clinical psychology. However, if there are inconsistencies between this information and that provided to you by the Office of the Bursar, the Bursar's Office ruling stands.

Tuition & Program Costs

Tuition

Tuition rates change yearly. Current rates can be found here. All financial aid awards include an automatic grant for Fall and Spring semesters equal to 50% of tuition charges for the first three years of full time study (or 72 credits of required course work, whichever comes first). Students who transfer credit for prior coursework will likely reach the 72 credit limit of the 50% tuition grant prior to the end of the third year of full time study. In this situation, students have two options: 1) registering for less than a full-time course load for one or more semesters (students could still be considered as making satisfactory progress), or 2) maintaining a full-time course load each semester and paying full-tuition for all credit beyond 72 hours during the first three years.  Registering for less than a full-time course load may have consequences outside of the doctoral program (please see the Doctoral Program Manual, section Residency Requirements, for further details).

After the first three years of full time study, students must remain continuously enrolled in the program, paying for at least one credit per semester until they have graduated. The 50% tuition reduction will no longer apply after year three.

Additional Expenses

Other university and program related costs include books, professional liability insurance (required for students on practicum and internship) and health insurance (required by the State of Massachusetts; students without private insurance can purchase insurance through Suffolk University.

Financial Aid

New students normally receive notification from the Office of the Bursar regarding their financial aid package by April of the preceding academic year. Award offers are extended on a “rolling basis” as students are admitted to the program and aid applications become complete. Applicants are strongly encouraged to submit their FAFSA as soon as it’s available on the web (January 1st). The Psychology Department due date for FAFSA filing is April 1st. Graduate aid application information is available here

Employment Opportunities

Some students may be eligible for work-study on the basis of financial need. Eligibility for work-study is determined by the Student Financial Services Office after students complete a financial aid application process. Regardless of the source of funding, no student employed by the university may work more than 20 hours per week during the academic year.

Students may also pursue other university employment opportunities without applying for federal aid. Specifically, students may apply for Administrative Fellowships, Research Assistantship positions within the department and across the university, and Lab Instructor, Lecturer and Course Assistant positions within the Psychology Department.

Administrative Fellowships

Administrative fellowships are highly competitive positions within different departments and university offices across campus. Fellowship responsibilities vary from department to department but might include research, office tasks, data input, customer service initiatives, etc. In the past fellowships have been available in Student Activities, Admissions, Athletics, Office of Institutional Planning and Research, Ballotti Learning Center, Student Financial Services, and Career Planning/Placement among others.

Applicants must be proactive and apply directly to each department/office that has a fellowship for which the student would like to be considered and hiring decisions are made by the department/office holding the fellowship. As a service to students, each April, the Student Financial Services Office compiles a listing of fellowship positions available for the following academic year. Unfortunately, this list is not updated as the positions are filled. Students interested in pursuing these positions are urged to begin applying as soon as the list is available.

Full time administrative fellowships offer recipients a $13,400 award in exchange for up to 20 hours of employment a week during the academic year (30 weeks). $7,200 of the administrative fellowship is credited directly to the recipient’s tuition account; the remainder, $6200 ($3100/semester), is paid to the student bi-weekly as hours are worked.

Administrative fellowships are limited to 1st, 2nd and 3rd year students.

Research Assistantships

The College of Arts and Sciences has a research assistantship program that is aimed at supporting faculty research. Interested faculty members submit a competitively reviewed proposal to obtain an RA to work on a specific research project or projects. Students who are hired through the RA program cannot work on their own masters or dissertation research as part of their RA duties.

1st, 2nd and 3rd year students are responsible for independently pursuing RA positions. The department maintains a list of faculty members within the Psychology Department who have funding to hire an RA. Students can apply to be RAs for their faculty mentor, for another faculty member in the department, or for someone outside of the psychology department. A list of approved RA positions is posted to the financial aid section of the university website in late July.

Unlike fellowships, RA positions do not include grant funds. Students may work up to 10 hours a week during the academic year. The current graduate student hourly rate is $16.00.

For more information on positions available for advanced student, please see the Doctoral Program Manual.

Outreach Fellowship

The Outreach Fellowship in the Clinical Doctoral Program at Suffolk University aims to enhance the field of clinical psychology by supporting students who are committed to serving traditionally under-served populations in mental health throughout their career. The Fellowship will support 1-2 students in each cohort during their first 3 years of in-residence study.

Basic Eligibility & Criteria

  • Fellows must be admitted (and enrolled) as full-time Clinical Ph.D. students.
  • Fellows must meet the minimum requirements for satisfactory academic standing and make timely progress for all training milestones as outlined by the Doctoral Program Manual.
  • Applicants must be U.S. citizens.
  • Applicants must be applying for the Ph.D. program in Clinical Psychology

Procedure

Up to two fellowships are available for incoming Ph.D. students. Candidates should submit a 500-word essay that discusses their eligibility for and interest in the fellowship. Finalists will be interviewed by members of the Psychology Department. If you have questions about applying for an Outreach fellowship, please contact Katie Bolgioni in the Psychology Department by email or by phone at 617-305-1921.

Terms & Responsibilities of Fellows

  • Fellows must demonstrate through a brief written report how their activities through coursework, research, and practicum training have focused on under-served populations. The report will be submitted to the Outreach Committee Chair (currently, Dr. Amy Marks) by May 30 of each year.
  • To support the Fellow’s work, research mentors are expected to mentor students’ independent and collaborative research to focus on underserved populations. The Fellow can also work with the Clinical Training Coordinator to identify clinical training experiences which will complement these goals.

Application Process

Each winter during the admissions cycle, applicants to the Ph.D. program will be invited to apply for the Outreach Fellowship. A brief written essay will be requested in which the applicant will outline their past commitment to and future plans for serving under-served populations. Applicants’ essays will be reviewed by the department’s Outreach Committee, and awards will be offered as part of the general admissions process.

Applying for the OUTREACH Fellowship? Here are the four easy steps to submitting your application:

  1. Download 2019 OUTREACH Fellowship Application [PDF].
  2. File your FAFSA at the start of the new year! Forms are available January 1st, and we ask that you submit yours by January 4, 2019. (We recommend estimating based on your W2 from the previous year if you have not yet received your most recent W2.)
  3. Write a short (500-word) essay detailing your eligibility for and interest in the fellowship. Read the description on the application for suggestions and tips!
  4. Email your application form and your essay by January 4, 2019 to Katie Bolgioni. You can also fax your form and essay to 617-367-2924 or mail to Suffolk University Psychology Department, 73 Tremont Street, Boston, MA 02108.

If you have questions regarding the application process, please contact Katie Bolgioni.

FAQs

All application materials must be submitted online or postmarked to the Office of Graduate Admission by December 1st.

We have many applicants every year, and, unfortunately, we cannot accommodate requests for individual informational interviews. However, we do hold several online information sessions in the fall. For more information please visit the Graduate Admissions website. We also encourage all prospective students to fully explore our website, as we have posted a great deal about our program. 

Our program leads students to a Ph.D. in clinical psychology. Ours is a Boulder-model program that equally emphasizes both research and clinical aspects of psychology to produce competent scientist-practitioners. Most Ph.D. programs incorporate elements of research and clinical training in their curricula. In contrast, Psy.D. programs typically train students in a practitioner model and focus on clinical aspects of training.

Our program involves three years of full-time study, one year of full-time internship, and a dissertation. Full-time students may be able to finish all program requirements within five years. For specific data on time to completion, please see our Student Admissions, Outcomes, and Other Data report.

We do not believe that there is a "typical" Ph.D. student, and so we cannot describe a "typical" successful applicant. However, we have outlined some general guidelines on the Admissions Requirements Page.

As noted in the question above, we cannot describe a "typical" candidate, and this extends to both GRE and GPA scores. These scores are examined in the context of a candidate's entire application. We have found that students with a combined GRE verbal and quantitative score of less than 1200 or a psychology GPA of less than 3.5 are less likely to be admitted, but this is not always the case, especially in the presence of extenuating or compensating factors. Please feel free to discuss any perceived discrepancies between your scores and your abilities in your personal statement. For specific data on GPA and test scores of previous incoming cohorts, please see our Student Admissions, Outcomes, and Other Data report.

A select group of applicants will be contacted in late January to attend an Interview Weekend to be held in late February. The interview is required. In person interviews are strongly preferred, however, if scheduling conflicts or expense will prevent you from making a trip to Suffolk, a Skype interview may be arranged. A Skype interview will not negatively impact an application.

All application paperwork should be submitted directly to the Office of Graduate Admission.

Once a student has been accepted into the program, he or she may file a petition to transfer credit with the Director of Clinical Training. Transfer requests are evaluated on an individual basis and credit is ordinarily given only for courses whose content is similar to those offered within our own program. Please see here for the Request for Transfer of Graduate Credit form.

Suffolk does not provide housing for its graduate students. Any student interested in obtaining assistance in locating housing in the Boston area can contact our Office of Off-Campus Housing at (617) 573-8647. Additionally, graduate students may choose to apply for Resident Assistant (RA) position in one of our undergraduate dorms. RAs fulfill many duties in the areas of student development, programming, and administration, and they receive housing free of charge as compensation.

Our department receives 300+ applications each year. Unfortunately, the large volume of applications keeps us from providing individualized feedback to applicants.

Prospective non-matriculated students interested in taking a graduate level course in the Psychology Department should contact the faculty member teaching the course via email for consent. Course offerings can be found on our Courses page

When permission is obtained, the graduate Continuing and Professional Studies (CAPS) application should be submitted along with the email from the faculty member. The application is posted on the University's website and can be found here.

Three forms of aid are available to Psychology Ph.D. and Respecialization students and include grants, employment, and loans. Details about these forms of aid are listed under the Funding tab on this page.