University Of Washington Graduate Programs Psychology

Last Updated on December 22, 2022

Our psychology graduate programs bring together all of the resources of the world-class department and its faculty in one location. We provide strong support for diverse students, including those who are underrepresented in psychology, new parents and other caregivers, and veterans. Our emphasis on research fosters advanced learning at the cutting edge of knowledge, while our internship experience provides you with valuable real-world learning opportunities.

Is there anything else you need to learn about University Of Washington Graduate Programs Psychology? If so, you need not be concerned because the following article will provide the information to answer your questions.

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University of Washington Psychology Internship Program

University Of Washington Graduate Programs Psychology

Graduate students working toward the Ph.D. in Psychology at the University of Washington are offered a flexible program, designed to prepare them for careers at the cutting edge of research and scholarship. While many students earn the M.S. in Psychology on the way to their Ph.D., we do not admit students in our Ph.D. program whose goal is a terminal Master’s degree. For students interested in a Master’s only degree, we have a M.A. in Applied Child & Adolescent Psychology: Prevention & Treatment, which you can learn about by clicking here. 

Our graduate program is mentor-based. Students train under the direct guidance of one or more specific faculty members whose scholarly interests parallel their own. Prospective students are expected to identify faculty they view as potential mentors. The department is divided into seven general areas of study. Students apply to a specific area of study and not to the department as a whole. Students collaborate with their mentors and other faculty in their area of study to determine the coursework and training that best meets the student’s career goals.

Psychology is a dynamic field. With its focus on the understanding of behavior of both humans and animals, our field is poised at the juncture between biological and social forces. New discoveries are constantly informing our work and changing the way we go about our business, whether in terms of theory, application, or methods. If you are curious, creative, and energetic, there is no better time for you to be pursuing advanced study in psychology. We welcome your interest.

UW Psychology generates ground-breaking insights into the mind, brain, and behavior through our mission to:

  • Promote social equity
    • By investigating biased attitudes, inequities, and disparities
    • By redesigning organizational practices to increase
    • By solving social justice issues
  • Optimize human potential by increasing one’s resilience
    • In young children and adults
    • To address mental health disparities
    • In vulnerable conditions
    • Through new and innovative research and therapies
  • Understand the mind through behavior and brain science
    • To enhance communication
    • To improve learning, memory, and decision making
    • To improve emotional stability

The School Psychology Program requires the following application materials:

Graduate Programs | Department of Political Science | University of  Washington

1. A personal goal statement/statement of purpose of no more than 750 words (3 pages double-spaced) which addresses:

  • reasons for seeking entry into this program; 
  • postbaccalaureate experiences in teaching, counseling & assessment if any; 
  • your professional aspirations; and 
  • your research interests.

2. Three recent letters of recommendation from professors or first-line supervisors, on their letterhead, which address:

  • your communication skills, both written and oral; 
  • your ability to interact productively with supervisors, peers and children; 
  • your ability to function without supervision; 
  • your teaching, counseling and/or assessment skills; and 
  • other relevant aspects of your academic or professional development.
  • your research competence and experience.

3. Tests

The School Psychology program does not consider the GRE (Graduate Record Exam) for admission.


Applicants whose native language is not English who attended school outside the US, UK, Australia, Bahamas, Canada, Ireland, Jamaica, New Zealand, Singapore, Trinadad, or Tobago are also required to submit TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) scores. More information about minimum scores for admission with the Graduate School can be found here.  Applicants should also review the Graduate School’s COVID 19 Admissions FAQ.

The College will also accept electronic IELTS scores.  If you have taken the IELTS within the last 2 years, we encourage you to contact the Office of Student Services for instructions on how to send these to UW. Duolingo is also accepted for the 2022 cycle.

4. Grade-point average for latest 90 graded quarter credits (or 60 semester credits)

There is a minimum 3.0 grade-point-average (on a 4 point scale) from a regionally accredited college or university in the U.S. or its equivalent from a foreign institution for the last 90 graded quarter credits or 60 graded semester credits from a baccalaureate degree (for a Master’s, doctoral, or professional degree, the total cumulative average may be used).

If you earned additional credits from an accredited institution after your degree, you may include these credits in calculating your GPA

5. Writing Sample

6. Previous research experience along with experience in applied settings is highly recommended.

7. For PhD applicants with Masters or Specialist Degree in School Psychology:  PhD applicants with a previous degree in school psychology are also invited to apply to the program. For consideration at this level, a Masters or Educational Specialist degree in School Psychology, completion of at least two years of coursework in the Educational Specialist Degree program at the University of Washington, or certification as a school psychologist are required.  Applicants not meeting these requirements must first complete the EdS degree course work as part of the PhD program  (including the precertification internship).

8. Preferential considerations is given to applicants who have had employment or volunteer experiences in the schools, Pre-K-12.

9. Preferential consideration is given to applicants who have had research training and experience.

10.  We host an “interview day” during the first or second week of February for finalists who remain competitive after the primary and secondary review of their application.  For those who are unable to attend this event, a web based or phone interview with one or more members of the core faculty in school psychology is required. Interviews are by invitation.

11. Applications for admission will be considered only for admission in Autumn Quarter. Applications must be received by the Graduate School by December 1 (or the Monday after if the 1st falls on a weekend); faculty reviews will commence in January and continue until all vacancies are filled.

The College of Education is committed to recognizing and fostering the values derived from a diverse student population. We are striving to promote increased diversity among practicing school psychologists. Toward this end we apply a variety of criteria when evaluating applicants including special talents, experiences, aptitudes, and abilities. We strongly encourage minority students to apply to this program.

University of Washington Department of Psychology

university of washington psychology phd acceptance rate

Our program requires a minimum of 3 full-time academic years of in-residence study. Typically, students spend 5-6 years in full-time residence prior to the one-year full-time internship (or, in rare cases, 2 years of half-time internship) that completes program requirements. See the Time to Completion table (in the data sheet attached below) for more detailed statistics on program duration. Because of the rich array of clinical and research training opportunities available to our students (plus the attractiveness of Seattle), many students take a bit longer to complete the program.


Acceptance Rate



 50Application Fee – DomesticYesElectronic
applications accepted?

Certificate-and-masters-degrees - University of Washington Department of  Psychology

university of washington clinical psychology

Our mission is to understand how behavioral and mental health problems emerge and develop and to improve well-being at the individual, system, and societal levels through intervention, prevention and resilience-promotion. 

We aim to train the next generation of leaders who are capable of producing innovative, high impact research and who apply a science-informed lens to improve behavioral and mental well-being in diverse settings.  

We aspire to pursue this mission with awareness that the logic, methods and findings of psychological science have often perpetuated and justified systems of oppression and inequity.  Our belief is that a flexible and progressive clinical science, engaged with humility by diverse scientists, and centering those furthest from behavioral and mental health equity and justice, is essential for creating lives worth living for all members of our society.

NOTE: 11/16/2021 – The section below is being revised to be better align with our mission and values statement, please reach out with any questions

Clinical Program Overview

The Clinical Psychology Program at the University of Washington is a Ph.D. program designed to achieve an integration of academic, scientific, and professional training. This program is fully accredited by the American Psychological Association and is a founding member of the Academy of Psychological Clinical Science. The specific goals of the program are the following:

  1. Develop a broad foundation and understanding of the knowledge base in psychology and, more specifically, in the field of clinical psychology, as well as an understanding of current issues in the field.
  2. Create a training environment that fosters the acquisition and application of the knowledge base and skills needed to make significant research contributions, develop grant proposals, and contribute to the empirical and theoretical literatures.
  3. Produce skilled clinicians who understand and can apply empirically supported principles and techniques of assessment, intervention, and dissemination in clinical activities, supervision, consultation, and training.
  4. Promote and provide training experiences in the integration of science and practice.
  5. Foster appreciation for and knowledge of cultural and individual diversity, together with the ability to apply such knowledge in both research and practice.
  6. Provide a grounding in ethical and legal principles that relate to research and practice.

Our program develops competent and creative clinical scientists who are capable of functioning successfully in academic, research, clinical, community, and global dissemination settings. Within this multifaceted training framework, we seek to train students who are interested in research careers. Our training program is primarily an apprenticeship for a career that will encompass making significant contributions to scientific clinical psychology. The program is not appropriate for those interested solely in clinical practice and not in research.

In addition to our strong emphasis on research training, students in our program also receive excellent clinical training because we believe that in order to be a good clinical researcher, one needs to be a good clinician as well. At many levels, therefore, we seek to integrate clinical and research training. The program has its own on-campus training clinic, the Psychological Services and Training Center, and many clinical faculty offer specialized practica in their areas of expertise. For example, a practicum at our Behavioral Research and Therapy Clinics offers an intensive practicum on treatment of adults and adolescents with multidiagnostic disorders comorbid with high risk of suicide. In addition, more than 40 external practicum training sites are available in the Seattle area. The quality of clinical training in the University of Washington Clinical Psychology Program is nationally recognized, and nearly all of our students are successful in obtaining either their first or second choice in the highly competitive APPIC Doctoral Level Internship Match Program.

This training program places a strong emphasis on flexibility so that students can identify and work toward their own specialized clinical and research goals while at the same time attaining the general knowledge and skill competencies required of clinical psychologists today. We have been successful in creating a learning environment that capitalizes on students’ inherent motivation to learn and develop, and one in which students and faculty work closely together in collegial relationships. The program has a strong cognitive-behavioral emphasis that informs both its clinical and research activities.

The Clinical Psychology Program has a long and distinguished history. It has been accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA) since 1948 and is currently accredited through 2027.

Program Outcomes

A small minority (fewer than 10%) of our students enter with a masters degree in clinical or counseling psychology, or in some other discipline. Such students are required to take all required clinical area courses, practica, and training experiences. They may, however, be able to waive a limited number of out-of-area “breadth” courses with the permission of the relevant departmental area Graduate Training Committee representative. Nonetheless, we have found that entering with a masters degree does not shorten program completion time.

Note: Tuition is waived for students on research or teaching assitantships.

Note: All students who failed to match limited their applications to two internship centers in the Seattle area to facilitate completion of their dissertations, then matched the following year when they applied more widely.

Note: Graduates of our program frequently choose research or other career tracks that do not require licensure, and therefore do not apply. We know of no instances in which a graduate of our program applied for and failed to attain licensure.

Duration of the Program

Our program requires a minimum of 3 full-time academic years of in-residence study. Typically, students spend 5-6 years in full-time residence prior to the one-year full-time internship (or, in rare cases, 2 years of half-time internship) that completes program requirements. See the Time to Completion table (in the data sheet attached below) for more detailed statistics on program duration. Because of the rich array of clinical and research training opportunities available to our students (plus the attractiveness of Seattle), many students take a bit longer to complete the program.

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