Applicant Qualities Sought

The University of Southern Mississippi's doctoral program in clinical psychology seeks to attract a geographically and culturally diverse student body interested in Boulder Model training, who are committed to spending a minimum of five full-time years in the program (including internship) and who have a high likelihood of making a contribution to the discipline.

Students who are interested only in clinical practice, with little interest in or appreciation of the scientist-practitioner model, should not apply.

The selection process includes a review of the student's credentials, including:

  • the completed application
  • GRE (Verbal, Quantitative, and Writing) scores
  • undergraduate academic performance (and master's program performance, if applicable)
  • a self-statement of training goals and career objectives (stating interest in either the child or adult concentration area)
  • a vita/resume
  • evidence of relevant research experience
  • a minimum of three letters of recommendation

We do not employ any automatic cut-off scores. Rather, we look for an overall record that suggests a good fit with the training program and a likelihood of success.

Qualified students whose undergraduate major is in a discipline other than psychology are invited to apply and are encouraged to elaborate on their preparation and motivation for pursuing graduate training in psychology. Such applicants should have at least some coursework in Psychology, especially:

  • Introductory Psychology
  • Statistics
  • Research Methods
  • Abnormal Psychology

Other qualities:

  • The clinical admissions committee is particularly interested in receiving applications from students with a strong undergraduate background in the liberal arts and sciences.
  • The program values diversity and encourages applications from qualified minority students.
  • The program has no bias regarding applicant’s age of admission, and we have admitted an increasing number of "non-traditional" students.
  • We also admit very promising students who already hold a master's degree from another institution, with the percentage of each class holding master's degrees earned elsewhere averaging about 15-20%.

Process of Selection:

  • From the total pool of applicants, approximately 25 are invited for on-campus interviews during which time they meet with the clinical faculty members and clinical graduate students.
  • The process is designed to provide applicants with an opportunity to learn about our program from the perspectives of the clinical faculty and our current clinical students, as well as to obtain information that may be useful in the selection process. 
  •  If invited, in-person interviews are highly encouraged; however, qualified applicants who are unable to come to campus are given the opportunity to complete telephone interviews.
  • We currently admit 6 to 7 new graduate students per academic year (Fall admissions only).
  • There are approximately 30 clinical psychology graduate students enrolled in the clinical program at any given time, including those on clinical internships.
  • See our page on disclosure information for more detailed information on recent admissions and current students.