Emma Eccles Jones College of Education and Human Services
Department of Psychology
The graduate program in Psychology offers students the opportunity to obtain specialty training in behavior analysis. The Behavior Analysis specialization in the Psychology PhD program provides training for students interested in the experimental analysis of behavior and translational research. Students receive extensive classroom and hands-on training in (i) laboratory, (ii) applied research, and (iii) translating contemporary behavioral theories into innovative behavior-analytic practice. For more specific information, see the department's website at psychology.usu.edu/graduate/behavior-analysis.
Brain and Cognition
The Brain and Cognition area of specialization in the Psychology PhD program offers students the opportunity to obtain specialty training in areas related to cognition and neuroscience. The Brain and Cognition specialization provides extensive training for students interested in behavioral, cognitive, molecular, systems, or computational neuroscience. Training opportunities for students include the investigation of basic behavioral, cognitive, and neurological processes; understanding the contribution of basic neurological processes to psychological disorders; neural correlates of behavioral phenomena; and related issues. Students interested in neuroscience may also want to consider the Neuroscience PhD program. For more specific information, see the department's website at psychology.usu.edu/graduate/brain-cognition.
Combined Clinical/Counseling Psychology (APA-accredited)
This program integrates the theory and practice of psychology common to the disciplines traditionally denoted as clinical and counseling psychology. It subscribes to the scientist-practitioner model, and students completing the program will enter professional practice in a variety of settings, including VA hospitals, mental health centers, hospitals, clinics, and academic settings. The program provides an excellent balance of research and practitioner skill training. A research thesis and dissertation are required of all students. The Combined Clinical/Counseling program provides generalized training, with opportunities to engage in experiences according to student interests via elective coursework and practica. These experiences are intended to help students to begin developing a specialty area in line with their future career goals. The program is also affiliated with the American Indian Support Project, one of the nation's most successful programs for training and mentoring American Indian psychologists.
Complete information on accreditation and standards for accreditation are available through the Commission on Accreditation (CoA) at Education Directorate, American Psychological Association, 750 First Street NE, Washington DC 20002-4242, (202) 336-5979, or on the web at www.apa.org/ed/accreditation/.
Undergraduate prerequisites: Applicants admitted to the PhD program in Combined Clinical/Counseling who did not major in psychology or a related field may need to take some undergraduate psychology courses, e.g. elementary statistics, as prerequisites for program requirements. Any prerequisite requirements will be made in consultation with the student and program faculty.
For more specific information about the program, see the department's website at psychology.usu.edu/graduate/combined-clinical-counseling.
The Quantitative Psychology (QP) specialization within the psychology department deals with the development, application, evaluation, and refinement of quantitative methods for measurement, statistics, and data analysis. Current areas of faculty interest within the QP area include: latent state-trait analysis, longitudinal growth and change modeling, multimethod measurement, multilevel modeling, statistical mediation analysis, and structural equation modeling. For more specific information about the program, see the department's website at psychology.usu.edu/graduate/quantitative-psychology.
The School Psychology PhD program trains psychologists with expertise in promoting the academic, social, emotional, behavioral, and mental health of youth in schools and related settings. Training is grounded in the scientist-practitioner model and involves assessment and intervention across multiple levels, including direct services with youth, consultation-based services with parents and teachers, and systems-level services with educational administrators and multidisciplinary teams. The program emphasizes research that advances science-based practice and requires the completion of both original thesis and dissertation projects. Program graduates are prepared to work in a variety of professional settings, including academia, educational/psychological research firms, school systems, and traditional clinical settings. For more information, see the program's website at psychology.usu.edu/graduate/school-psychology.
The specialization in Sociobehavioral Epidemiology (SE) provides collaborative and training opportunities for individuals interested in the intersection of the social and epidemiological sciences. Research in SE is focused on understanding the frequency, distribution, and sociobehavioral determinants of physical, mental, and social health. SE is concerned with research on prevention and intervention efforts that seek to enhance health and well-being or to decrease negative outcomes for individuals and communities. SE blends traditions and methodologies from the social sciences (such as psychology, sociology, and public policy) with those from epidemiology, demography, and biostatistics to address these issues. For more specific information about the program, see the department's website at psychology.usu.edu/graduate/sociobehavioral-epidemiology.
Additional Requirements for Psychology PhD programs
All PhD candidates must meet the following general core requirements, regardless of specialty emphasis: (1) submission of a first authored manuscript for publication in a recognized journal; (2) presentation of research findings (first author) at a regional or national convention or professional meeting; (3) completion of the doctoral dissertation; and (4) completion of all the required coursework. Students in the Combined PhD program must also complete a clinical comprehensive exam and compete nationally for admission to an APA approved, 2,000-hour predoctoral internship. The Behavior and Analysis, Brain and Cognition, Quantitative Psychology, and Sociobehavioral Epidemiology programs have an additional requirement of a grant proposal, a second year research project, and a comprehensive exam.