What is the faculty looking for in applicants to the Program? The Counseling and Counseling Psychology faculty are committed to excellence in the education and training of future counseling psychologists, and admission to the program is highly competitive. Applications are evaluated for quality and diversity of experience and background, past academic achievement, personal statement, letters of recommendation, and Graduate Record Examination scores (Verbal, Quantitative, Analytical Writing; scores only valid within the last five years).
Competitive applicants must be admissible to the Graduate School, provide evidence of having a high level of academic aptitude, provide evidence of the application of the aptitude in the performance of academic endeavors, and demonstrate interest in and commitment to the field and profession of psychology. Consequently, most applicants admitted to the Counseling Psychology Program demonstrate strong academic credentials, an academic background in psychology, and some clinically relevant and/or research experience.
What does the admissions timeline look like? Applications for admission are reviewed once per year, and all materials must be received by December 15 for admission the following fall. Applications are reviewed by the Counseling/ Counseling Psychology faculty in January. Following an admissions meeting, approximately 20 students will be invited to interview in early February, after which admissions decisions will be made. Students are typically informed of their status (accepted, alternate, or not accepted) in early March, and accepted students are given until April 15 to make a decision about accepting our offer. Out of 78 applicants for admission for the fall 2013 academic year, 5 were admitted.
How can I improve my chances of being accepted into the Program?
- In addition to having strong grades and GRE scores, ask individuals to write letters of recommendation who can speak highly of your academic and research capabilities as well as your potential to be a good counselor/ psychotherapist. The best letters will come from people who know you well and will write strong letters. It is important to have letters of recommendation from professors or others in the academic environment who will be able to address your potential for graduate school.
- Your personal statement should give us a picture of who you are, striking a balance between the personal and professional aspects of your life. How did you become interested in becoming a counseling psychologist? What are your career goals? What experiences have you had along the way? You may find it helpful to look at the book Getting In: A Step-by-Step Plan for Gaining Admission to Graduate School in Psychology (2nd ed.) by the American Psychological Association.
- In your personal statement, indicate how you see yourself as a good match to our program as well as to faculty members with whom you would like to work. Be sure you have thoroughly read our website so that you can write knowledgeably about the fit between your research interests and career goals and our program faculty.
- Finally, pay attention to detail in the application process. Follow up with your recommenders to be sure they have posted their recommendation letters, and follow up with the Educational Psychology Department to be sure your materials are all in.