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Admissions Criteria

Full-Time Admission Requirements

Admission requirements include: application for graduate study; a baccalaureate degree with a liberal arts base (psychology major preferred); academic transcripts; an autobiographical/personal statement of goals; GRE General Test scores are required for the School Psychology degree only, not the School Counseling degree; and a minimum cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0. Personal qualities, professional readiness, and letters of reference are also considered. 

Prerequisite coursework in undergraduate psychology includes: General Psychology, Developmental Psychology, Statistics, and Research Methods/Design. Personality Theory and Psychological Testing are recommended. Prerequisite coursework in the liberal arts includes: Human Biology/Biology (or course with similar rigor), Oral Communication/Speech, and Written Communication/Writing. Coursework in the social sciences and fine arts/humanities (ideally philosophy or ethics) is also recommended.

While a bachelor’s degree in psychology is preferred for admission, students who have at least 18 hours of undergraduate psychology will be considered for admission as long as the following prerequisite coursework has been met:

  1. General Psychology
  2. Developmental Psychology
  3. Statistics
  4. Research Methods/Design
  5. Personality Theory (recommended)

Candidates who have not met all undergraduate psychology course prerequisites or liberal arts courses below, but have met all other admission criteria may request provisional admission and complete as many as three undergraduate courses while enrolled. Provisionally admitted or non-matriculated students may take a maximum of 13 graduate credits prior to matriculation.

Transcripts submitted by applicants will be used to evaluate their completion of the liberal arts perspective. The criteria for admission include the completion at a "B" level of the following liberal arts courses:

  1. 3 semester hours of human biology or a biology course that includes content on human biology
  2. 2-3 semester hours of oral communication
  3. 2-3 semester hours of written communication
  4. 3-6 hours from the social sciences-not including psychology (recommended)
  5. 6 hours in the humanities and/or fine arts, ideally philosophy or ethics (recommended)

If the criteria for academic preparation and the liberal arts perspective are met, the student's autobiographical statement/personal statement of goals will be evaluated for writing skills, personal characteristics, and professional readiness for graduate study and advanced psychological practice. References submitted on behalf of the student will also be used to assess personal characteristics and professional readiness.

All applicants must have General Test GRE scores submitted before acceptance decisions can be completed. Although no specific GRE Verbal and Quantitative Scores criteria are required for admission, these scores will be weighted with grades and references.

The applicant's academic record, application with writing sample autobiography/personal goals, and references will be evaluated on the basis of the following criteria:

  1. Physical health - School counseling and school psychology are demanding and challenging professions, and a measure of good health is a requisite to effective practice. Physically handicapped persons are very capable of meeting such rigid demands, and are encouraged to apply.
  2. Emotional health - Counseling and school psychology are not fields for individuals who desire to solve their own emotional needs or problems by working in a helping role. An individual entering advanced psychological practice needs to maintain emotional stability and be able to cope with emotional stress that is common in this demanding profession.
  3. Self-confidence and assertiveness - These characteristics are necessary in working with client systems, colleagues, professionals from other disciplines, and supervisors.
  4. Ability to accept constructive criticism - As a lifelong learner, students need to accept that there is room for improvement in their personal and professional behavior. Once individuals accept this need for improvement, they can constructively use the insights on their behavior when provided by colleagues, supervisors, administrators, or governing boards, and work towards change.
  5. Interest in and motivation for counseling and school psychology - Students seeking to pursue graduate study need to be motivated both as students and with respect to their chosen specializations. This motivation and interest in these fields should come from a strong desire to serve others in society.
  6. Intellectual ability - Problem-solving and critical analysis are fundamental skills for effective professional practice. Complex individual, group, family, organization, and community problems require advanced practitioners to think clearly and logically in a systematic manner if problems are to be ameliorated or resolved.
  7. Communication skills - Both oral and written communication skills are vital in school counseling and school psychology practice. Fluency in a foreign language is a definite asset in these professions.
  8. Ability to form and maintain positive relationships - Practice is people-oriented, and relationship building is foundational to effective practice. There needs to be the capacity to empathize and establish effective interpersonal relationships with diverse client populations.
  9. Control of prejudices - Practitioners need to be aware of their own prejudices and actively work to address these attitudes and actions using the feedback provided by clients, colleagues, and supervisors. Practitioners need to be able to work with diverse client populations in a non-judgmental manner, accepting individuals' rights to differing perspectives.
  10. Leadership qualities - The ability to work effectively in a leadership role is necessary for the practitioner. Practitioners often assume positions of leadership with client systems as well as roles in agencies/organizations as supervisors, administrators, and consultants.
  11. Moral principles and a sound value system - Practitioners can be very influential upon clients. Therefore, it is essential that the professional be of good moral character. Practitioners should be aware of their own values, yet have respect for others' values which may be different. Their values should have high consistency with the values reflected in the disciplines’ Codes of Ethics.

Once admitted to any of the master programs, continuation of graduate work requires a minimum GPA of 3.0 cumulatively and in each course. The award of the master degree requires a minimum GPA of 3.0 in all courses required in the degree program.


Part-Time Admission Criteria

The admissions criteria for the part-time program are same as for full-time admissions. Students must identify whether they are applying for full-time or part-time status. Moving from one status to another requires a formal application process and is possible as space is available.  Preference will be given to full-time applicants.