Clinical Psychology

Program Description

The University of Rochester’s clinical psychology doctoral program subscribes to the clinical scientist model which prepares its graduate students for careers in academia, research, as well as professional practice. The faculty's teaching and research interests span several areas of expertise, including developmental psychopathology, adolescence, relationships, and quantitative methods. The core program provides background in theory and research in personality, psychopathology, and diagnostic and psychotherapeutic techniques. Additional discipline-wide training is provided in developmental and social psychology, neuroscience, and affective and cognitive bases of behavior.

The University of Rochester doctoral training program in clinical psychology is patterned after the clinical-scientist model. The program provides students with thorough grounding in both general and clinical psychology and has been continually accredited by the American Psychological Association (Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation, American Psychological Association, 750 First Street, NE, Washington, DC 20002; phone: (202) 336-5979; website: since 1948. In 2018, the program became a member of the Academy of Psychological Clinical Science, which is an alliance of leading, scientifically oriented programs with a strong commitment to clinical science training.

The program is built around a four-year curriculum. The Department of Psychology offers MA to PhD track* training; graduates earn both an MA and PhD, we do not offer a terminal Masters. Students complete 90 credit hours, up to one third of which may be credited for research. To learn more the program’s mission, see the program aims page.

Interested in applying?

See our application page, admission criteria page, Student Admissions, Outcomes, and Other Data (PDF) for more information.


The core clinical faculty is composed of:

In addition, the following affiliated faculty members from other departments/areas also mentor clinical psychology doctoral students:

For a complete list of department faculty, see our directory.

Program Requirements

For a detailed description of all program requirements, see the Psychology Graduate Handbook (PDF).

Department Requirements

All psychology PhD students are required to take quantitative methods, complete one course in the other two disciplines, and act as a teaching assistant for at least one semester. For more details see the Psychology Graduate Handbook (PDF).

Core Courses

Clinical students are required to complete 14 core courses as outlined in the Psychology Graduate Handbook (PDF).

Students may also enroll for additional credit in graduate courses offered by the psychology department or other departments.

Research and Examination Requirements

Clinical students are required to complete a two-year research project in the first two years of residence, culminating in a research report by the end of the second year. Students must also complete a doctoral dissertation, as outlined in the Psychology Graduate Handbook (PDF).

Students are also required to complete the major comprehensive examination as outlined on page 21 of the Psychology Graduate Handbook (PDF).

Pre-Internship and Internship Requirements

In preparation for internship, clinical students are expected to complete an organized, sequential series of practicum experiences. Practicum experiences are defined as supervised training in the use of evidence-based assessments and therapies by clinical psychologists and other qualified professionals. Examples include practicum experiences at Mt. Hope Family Center, the University Counseling Center, and at other faculty-approved sites.

The program’s recommendation for formal internship training is contingent on positive reviews of performance and professional ethics and demeanor in these pre-internship experiences.

Students must complete a clinical internship with a minimum of 1,750 hours in an approved agency. During the internship the student’s training should span a variety of clinical approaches and populations. Students are strongly encouraged to complete their internship training in an APA-accredited agency.

For more information about pre-internship and internship requirements see the Psychology Graduate Handbook (PDF).

State Licensure Eligibility

As an APA Accredited Clinical Training Program, it is our intention to train students in all aspects of health service psychology, such that they are equipped to be both excellent scientists and excellent clinicians. It is our expectation that the vast majority of our graduates will obtain professional licensure as clinical psychologists, and will be able to engage in clinical practice and supervise trainees. However, given that licensure is controlled by individual governmental bodies in all 50 US states (typically State Boards of Psychology under the Division of Occupational Affairs in State Governments) and that every jurisdiction may impose their own unique requirements, we cannot guarantee that the specific training we provide will meet the criteria for licensure in any individual state other than New York. That said, we typically are successful at advocating for our students who request assistance related to licensure in states other than New York. Given that we are not aware of licensure requirements in other states, please refer to this link to access information on out of state licensure requirements that can be provided by licensure Boards in states of interest.

Per U.S. Federal Regulations, 668.43 (2019 Rule), and in compliance with the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (SARA) Manual version 19.2, the University of Rochester provides the following disclosure related to the educational requirements for professional certification and licensure. The University of Rochester has designed the curriculum for professional certification and licensure, that if successfully completed, is sufficient to meet the certification and licensure educational requirements in the state of New York.  For information regarding licensure in another state, enrolled and prospective students are strongly encouraged to contact that State’s licensing body to review all certification and licensure requirements.