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 Our Program

Our Ph.D. Clinical Psychology program is currently in accordance with the scientist-practitioner model of training and is based on the understanding that doctoral-level psychologists in the future are unlikely to function solely in a service capacity as psychotherapists. Applicants to our program should also be aware of the possibility that our program may transition to the clinical science training model at some point during their program of study with us (to learn more, visit the Academy of Psychological Clinical Science website).  Indeed, our alumni surveys indicate that most of our graduates have some combination of supervisory, teaching, training, administration, program evaluation, basic research, grant-writing, and other non-service roles in addition to, or rather than, direct service responsibilities. The program curriculum provides academically rigorous preparation so that our graduates can excel in these complex roles and responsibilities. This means that all of our students are expected to develop strong research skills, and strong clinical skills, and to form professional identities that integrate science and practice.

Our Ph.D. Clinical Psychology Program was recently named as one of the 50 Great Tuition-Free Doctoral Programs in Clinical and Counseling 2018.

See the tables regarding Time to Completion, Program Costs, Internship Data, and Student Attrition.

Strong Research Environment

Our program has a significant research emphasis and is embedded within a strong research university. The University of Missouri-St. Louis faculty continue to be among the leading researchers in their fields. By using a mentorship model of research training, students who work closely with their research advisor are most successful in gaining the conceptual and methodological skills needed to function as scientists. Thus, our students select research topics that fall within their faculty advisor's program of research, and that also allow for growing independence and personal achievements in professional research activities (conference presentations, publications, involvement in preparation of grant applications).

Excellence in Clinical Training

In addition to providing high-quality clinical training in assessment and intervention in our primary training clinic, our program is also affiliated with two specialty training clinics that provide supplementary experiences: Center for Trauma Recovery and the Children's Advocacy Center. A number of our faculty members are involved in clinical research aimed at the development and evaluation of new interventions. Our campus has been ranked one of the top 15 in the nation for its strong relationship with the local community. Thus, research and clinical experiences are truly integrated in the best of the Scientist-Practitioner tradition.

Our Commitment to Diversity

Our program recognizes the importance of cultural and individual differences and diversity in the training of psychologists. These include, but are not limited to ethnicity, race, sexual orientation, culture, age, disability, gender, gender identity, language, national origin, religion and social economic status. Thus, we are committed to achieving a diverse student body and welcome inquiries about our program from potential applicants. During the selection process, all students receive full consideration and are judged only by criteria required for success in the program. While in the program, all students, including ethnic and sexual minority students, are given ample faculty attention and support to allow them to proceed through the program successfully. In regard to the program curriculum, a diversity course is offered, and components of all core courses are designed to prepare students for work with diverse populations. Students gain extensive clinical experience working with diverse populations our training clinic, program-based practica, and clerkships. A Monday Forum, held throughout the academic year, is dedicated to addressing diversity issues. Students are expected to attain both demographic competency and demonstrate the competency of dynamic worldview inclusivity. Clinical faculty members and a most of our students are members of the UM-St. Louis Safe Zone community.

In addition, our program has formed a specialized Diversity Committee, comprised of volunteer students and faculty members. This committee works each semester to specifically attend to diversity-related matters such as coordinating our annual program climate survey, receiving student feedback, hosting program forums and speakers on diversity-related topics in research/clinical work/teaching, informing the program about St. Louis news and events, linking students to national diversity-related resources, and generally ensuring that inclusion remains a foundation and focus of all aspects of our program. Students are welcome to serve on this committee at some point during their time in the program.

The following resources may be useful for students who are interested in applying to our program and for students in our program.

University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL) Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology:
Commitment to Diversity

UMSL's Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion 

APA Guidebook: Applying to Graduate and Professional Programs

APA Resource Guide for Graduate Students with Disabilities

APAGS Guide for LGBT Students Navigating Graduate Training (Proud and Prepared)

APAGS Resource Guide for Ethnic Minority Students

APA Minority Fellowship Program


The Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (the psychology national licensing exam) is considered one of the most objective criteria for evaluating the quality of clinical psychology training programs. Graduates of the program at the University of Missouri-St. Louis have consistently scored in the top 15% of all training programs in the United States on this exam.

Accreditation Status

The University of Missouri-St. Louis Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology has been continuously approved by the American Psychological Association since 1977. 

Prospective applicants can confirm the program's accreditation status with the American Psychological Association's Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation.

Applicants should carefully review instructions provided on our Admissions page.

Tables regarding Time to Completion, Program Costs, Internship Data, and Student Attrition can be found  here.

For additional questions about the clinical program, email the Director of Clinical Training, Dr. Steven Bruce, at brucese@umsl.edu.

For questions, contact Dr. Steven Bruce, Program Director.