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Psychology Graduate School: Frequently Asked Questions professor explaining

1. How should I pick programs to which I should apply?

In this brief video, you can learn about how to choose a psychology graduate program.

2. What's wrong with those for-profit universities that advertise so extensively?

For-profit universities have a reputation for admitting almost everyone who applies (i.e., being non-selective), requiring their students to take on a lot of debt and leaving their students with poor job prospects. These articles provide more information:

Beware Of For-Profit Higher Education
by Sen. Tom Harkin

For-Profit College Grads Also Earn a Life of Debt
By John Hechinger

3. What factors most influence my chances of being admitted to a graduate program?

In a second YouTube video, you can learn about factors that influence your chances of being admitted to a psychology graduate school program.

4. To how many programs should I apply?

That depends on many things, including how carefully you have considered your chances of being admitted at various schools. For most applicants, five programs might be a low number and 15 might be a high number. For extremely competitive programs like clinical psychology doctoral programs, applying to a lot of programs all over the country is essential. Whatever your field of interest, applying only to graduate programs in Missouri and Illinois reduces your chances of admission. Talk to a professor about your plans (and be frank about your qualifications) before you create a list of places where you want to apply.

5. What financial assistance is available to graduate students?

High-quality PhD programs typically provide assistantships for every or almost every year of each doctoral student's education. Graduate teaching and research assistantships typically include tuition remission and a very modest living stipend. Masters and PsyD programs typically do not offer assistantships to every student. However, at SIUE, most psychology graduate students have assistantships.

6. How does the PsyD differ from the PhD?

Dr. Tara Kuther has written an excellent answer to this question in an article titled What Is the Difference Between a PhD in Psychology and a PsyD?

7. What graduate programs does SIUE offer?

Our department offers masters degrees in clinical psychology, industrial/organizational psychology and clinical child and school psychology. We also offer a school specialist degree. In the Department of Applied Health's Exercise and Sport Psychology Program, you can study sport psychology. Some psychology majors go on to SIUE's Master's of Social Work program.

8. What makes the SIUE programs unique?

Several expensive, easy and non-selective psychology and counseling programs are now advertised online and throughout the St. Louis region. In contrast to these programs, our award-winning department offers affordable, rigorous and selective programs in clinical psychology, industrial/organizational psychology and clinical child and school psychology. The awards our students and faculty have earned attest to our commitment to, and history of, excellence.

9. What are the prerequisites for SIUE's psychology graduate programs?

Prerequisites for SIUE's psychology graduate programs are listed on the application information page. Just click on the link for prerequisites.

10. How do the SIUE graduate programs balance the needs of students who are interested in doctoral study and students who want to directly enter the job market?

professor explaining In this video, you can learn about how SIUE's psychology graduate programs prepare students for both doctoral study and professional success. SIUE's psychology graduate students receive strong training in the science of psychology through statistics classes, the thesis experience and classes that focus on up-to-date research. Our psychology graduate students also learn how to use cost-effective, evidence-based practices that provide real help to people in clinical, organizational and school settings.

11. What are some common misconceptions about applying to graduate school?

In another brief video, you can find out about some of the things any prospective applicant to a psychology graduate program should know.

12. Where can I get high-quality, detailed advice to inform my graduate school decisions?

The psychology discussion forum at is full of helpful discussions on such hot topics as which programs have recently made admission decisions (a popular topic each spring) and questions like "Given my experiences, GPA and GRE scores, what are my chances?"

13. If I can't find an answer to one of my graduate school questions on one of the psychology department's web pages, whom should I contact?

If you have a question about one of our department's graduate programs, please contact our Office Support Specialist. Very specific questions concerning a particular program may be forwarded to a graduate program director. Our department's program directors are identified on our faculty and staff page.

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