Graduates of our program are prepared to pursue careers in academic, research, and applied health service provider settings. Consistent with the scientist-practitioner model, our program educates and trains students “to generate and integrate scientific and professional knowledge, attitudes and skills so as to further psychological science, the professional practice of psychology, and human welfare. The graduate of this training model is capable of functioning as an investigator and as a practitioner and may function as either or both, consistent with the highest standards in psychology” (National Conference on the Education and Training of Scientist-Practitioners for the Professional Practice of Psychology, 1990, pp. 7-8). Graduate students also receive specific training in university level classroom instruction/instructional technology and clinical supervision, consistent with the role of clinical psychologists in the 21st century.
The Ph.D. Program in Clinical Psychology is designed to be completed in five years of full-time study (with summer enrollment expected), regardless of whether the student enters with a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree. The program includes a one-year predoctoral internship to be completed off-campus at an APA accredited internship site. There are a total of 84 semester hours of courses, practica, and research requirements as detailed in our handbook (linked below). A Master’s Thesis and a Dissertation, which represent significant contributions to the field, are both required. Successful completion of the Qualifying and Comprehensive Examination is required prior to initiation of dissertation research.View Catalog
Application Deadline is December 1st
The UCF Psychology Department coordinates the admission process with the UCF Graduate Studies office. In order to enroll in graduate classes, students must have obtained a baccalaureate or higher degree in Psychology, prior to the start of the term for which the student is admitted, from a regionally accredited institution or from a recognized foreign institution. Students without a baccalaureate or higher degree from an accredited institution (or equivalent) are not admitted to graduate degree programs, graduate certificate programs, or graduate nondegree status. If the baccalaureate degree does not include a major in Psychology, students must have completed at least 18 credit hours of Psychology courses at the undergraduate level or above. These courses must include Intro/General Psychology, Research Methods/Statistics, Abnormal Psychology, and Personality Theory/Psychology. The following courses are strongly encouraged: Social Psychology, Cognitive Psychology, Biological/Physiological Psychology, and Developmental Psychology.
Note for all applicants: Our program requires that History and Systems of Psychology is completed at the undergraduate level with a grade of at least a “B.” This can either be completed prior to starting our program or as an undergraduate course during our program.
The GRE will NOT be considered for admission to our program for Fall 2022. We will be holding interviews in Spring 2022 (for Fall 2022 start) virtually due to COVID. Only a subset of applicants will be chosen for the interview. Following interviews, those who receive offers to join the program will then have the opportunity for a campus visit.
Successful applicants typically have both strengths and relative weaknesses in their applications, and it is important to view one’s application as a portfolio. The components of the application are as follow:
- Educational history/grades
- Letters of recommendation: Three letters written by people who can speak to your work ethic, range of professional interests, and what it is like to work with you.
- Personal essay: An essay about your research and clinical interests and faculty you may be interested in working with while enrolled in our program.
- Content training: Information about career and research experiences may be highlighted on the CV and personal statement and are often described in an applicant’s letters of recommendation.
At UCF, the applicant’s fit with the goals of the program are a critical component. It is very rare that an application is positively distinguished on all four of the areas described above. The program places an emphasis on having some hands-on research experience outside of a course (e.g., as a research assistant/coordinator). In your essay, you are encouraged to highlight that experience in relation to what you’d like to conduct research on if accepted to our program. Previous experience working in behavioral health settings or with individuals with mental illness is also a helpful, but not required, experience to highlight. In the past 6 years, GPAs have ranged from 3.5 to 3.75.Apply Now Student Admissions, Outcomes, and Other Data
Note Regarding National Program Rankings:
Some applicants to doctoral programs in Clinical Psychology may consider national rankings when deciding where to apply for graduate school. Applicants are encouraged to carefully review the methodology used by any national ranking system. For example, the approach used by the U.S. News and World Report relies simply on rankings of programs by the chairs of psychology departments and directors of clinical training (click here for their methodology). As such, their rankings rely purely on the subjective estimation of the reputation of programs by the individuals completing the survey; no specific metrics or objective data are used in the rankings (see additional critiques of these national ranking systems by Malcolm Gladwell and John Byrne).
Only 18% of chairs and directors completed the last iteration of this reputational survey, the lowest of any health profession. As such, the rankings are not representative of the opinions of chairs and directors. The low rankings are due, in part, to the training council representing scientist practitioner and clinical scientist doctoral programs in clinical psychology, the Council of University Directors of Clinical Psychology (CUDCP), passing a resolution in 1995 encouraging programs not to participate in the survey. Given these concerns, we strongly encourage applicants – and others – to ignore national rankings when considering the quality of a doctoral program in Clinical Psychology.
Even with improved methodology, national rankings are likely to be of little use to applicants in identifying their best programs. Instead, applicants need to consider if a program’s goals and objectives align with their goals and objectives. A national ranking system will never be able to capture the individualized strengths and weakness of programs for unique applicants.
Please note that every clinical psychology program accredited by the American Psychological Association must post data on their program website about admissions and outcomes, including time to completion, program costs, internship placement, attrition, and licensure. CUDCP programs are also encouraged to provide information on their selectivity/yield (e.g., # of applicants, offers, matriculated students) and number of students with funding.
UCF College of Graduate Studies
Millican Hall 230
PO Box 160112
Orlando, FL 32816-0112
ETS PPI: 5233
For more information on the application process, please contact:
Dr. Jeffrey Bedwell
Clinical Psychology Ph.D. Program Director
Director of Clinical Training
Our Program Handbook contains a wealth of information about our program, covering topics such as:
- The Program Overview
- The Scientist-Practitioner Model
- Training Emphasis
- Program Goals
- Curriculum Goals
- Expectations of Doctoral Students
- Development of Competencies
- Practicum Training
The UCF Ph.D. Program in Clinical Psychology has been accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA) Commission on Accreditation since 2003. For information about our accreditation status, you can contact the Commission on Accreditation of the American Psychological Association.
Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation
750 First Street, NE
Washington, DC 20002-4242
While licensure or certification may be available in this field of study, our program does not lead to such licensure or certification upon graduation. The professional preparation you receive in our program may still assist you in such pursuits; however, we are unable to confirm the specific licensure and certification requirements of each state, territory, or foreign entity in which professional credentialing may be possible. If you intend to pursue such credentialing in your state or elsewhere, we advise you to contact the applicable state credentialing authority to familiarize yourself with its specific requirements and determine if our program meets its academic criteria. You are welcome to contact Dr. Jeffrey Bedwell, Jeffrey.Bedwell@ucf.edu, with questions in this regard and we will do our best to assist you in your career planning.
The Clinical Psychology Ph.D. Faculty adhere to the belief that research activities are an integral part of being a Clinical Psychologist. Consistent with this belief, the majority of our graduates seek academic- and research-oriented positions after they complete our program. Even for those who take other types of positions and who work in more applied settings, however, Clinical Psychologists must be able to locate and evaluate research literature relevant to evidence-based interventions and best practice in the field of Clinical Psychology.Training in Clinical Science Training in Clinical Practice
Clinical Psychology Research Laboratories
- Children’s Learning Clinic – IV
- The Health, Emotion, and Psychophysiology Laboratory
- Mood, Personality, and CogniTion (MPACT) Lab
- Psychology Clinic
- Substance Use Research Group
- Health, Expectancies, & Addiction Laboratory (HEAL)
- Risk, Eating, and Addiction Longitudinally Examined Through In situ Momentary Experiences Laboratory (REAL-TIME Lab)
- Designing Research & Education for Addiction Management Laboratory (DREAM Lab)
- UCF RESTORES
- Understanding Children & Family Laboratory
Faculty in Ph.d. Clinical Psychology
Jeffrey S. BedwellProfessor
Director of Clinical Training
Clinical Psychology Ph.D. Program
Deborah C. BeidelTrustee Chair and Pegasus Professor
Michael E. DunnAssociate Professor
Robert DvorakAssociate Professor
Lidia MesheshaAssistant Professor
Amie NewinsAssociate Professor
Daniel PaulsonAssociate Professor
Mark D. RapportProfessor
David RozekAssistant Professor