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    University of North Texas
    Mar 01, 2024  
2014-2015 Graduate Catalog 
2014-2015 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Department of Psychology

Main Departmental Office
Terrill Hall, Room 316

Mailing address:
1155 Union Circle #311280
Denton, TX 76203-5017
Web site:

Vicki Campbell, Chair



The Department of Psychology affirms the importance of scholarship, research and quality of education for all students, whether they are preparing for careers in basic research, applied research, teaching, or service delivery. This training takes advantage of numerous resources within the department, including the Psychology Clinic and specific laboratories for statistics, psychophysiology, psychosocial health research, neuropsychology, and psychoneuroimmunology. Graduates of the department have gone on to distinguish themselves in research, administrative, teaching and service careers in a range of settings, including universities, medical schools, hospitals, mental health centers, counseling centers, rehabilitation facilities, and private practices in consulting, therapy and assessment.


Faculty in the Department of Psychology are active researchers. Their programs of research offer students a variety of experiences, topics and perspectives, using a number of different methods. Faculty’s expertise include topics and methods traditional to subdisciplines and theories of psychology (e.g., psychotherapy, vocational decisions, psychopathology, cognition, aging, physical and psychological health, physiology). Some faculty conduct purely theory-based research using a variety of perspectives (e.g., moral development, personal construct theory, personality theory, stress theory). Other faculty are expert in applied research, designed to address social problems (e.g., abuse, HIV/AIDS, sexual aggression). Many faculty members have programs on the cutting edge of psychology (e.g., psychoneuroimmunology, sport psychology, cognitive neuroscience, memory). In addition, there are ongoing projects on ethical and professional issues, ethnic diversity, minority and women’s concerns.

From the time that students enter our graduate program they are given many opportunities and are encouraged to be actively involved in conducting research. Students gain competence in research through course work, vertical research teams headed by a faculty member and informal research experiences. This involvement allows students to gain valuable skills from different faculty members while learning the substantive and methodological knowledge necessary for their future careers. A student’s research experience culminates in an independent doctoral dissertation that contributes to the knowledge base of psychology.


Center for Psychosocial Health Research. This center consists of a multidisciplinary group that draws upon the disciplines of anthropology, behavioral medicine, education, psychology, public health and sociology to pioneer research on psychosocial phenomena involved in healthy living. Basic research on wellness within a chronic illness context provides a foundation for the future development of psychosocial and behavioral interventions that encourage health-related behavioral change. As chronic illness can affect anyone—regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation and socioeconomic status—we strive to identify, from a multicultural perspective, psychosocial factors critical to the development of effective interventions.

Center for Sport Psychology and Performance Excellence. The Center for Sport Psychology and Performance Excellence (CSPPE) is a multidisciplinary center devoted to offering sport psychology interventions, research and training. The center combines knowledge, skill and expertise from psychology and exercise science to produce the most comprehensive and state-of-the-art sport psychology services available. In addition, through the center, graduate students are able to pursue specialized training in sport and exercise psychology.

Psychology Clinic. As part of the department’s Applied Training Unit, the Psychology Clinic is a training site for graduate students. Through the clinic, psychological services are offered to the community within the Dallas–Fort Worth region. Services available to the community include psychotherapy, vocational counseling, psychological assessment and biofeedback.

Degree programs

The department offers graduate programs leading to the Doctor of Philosophy with a majors in clinical psychology, counseling psychology, behavioral science and clinical health psychology.

The doctoral programs in counseling psychology, clinical psychology, and clinical health psychology have been accredited by the American Psychological Association (750 First Street NE; Washington, DC 20002-4242; 202-336-5979).

The counseling psychology doctoral program is offered through the Federation of North Texas Area Universities.

The behavioral science curriculum is intended to provide a highly individualized program for the student interested in study and research in one of several specialized areas.

The doctoral curricula in clinical psychology and counseling psychology are designed to serve a variety of purposes that focus on the development of a well-rounded professional psychologist. These purposes include a thorough grounding in scientific methodology and an orientation to the profession, development of competency in psychological assessment and evaluation, and training in various psychotherapeutic and counseling techniques and skills.

The program in clinical health psychology prepares psychologists for service delivery roles in medical and other health care settings as well as roles in program development and evaluation. There is strong emphasis on mind/body interaction as students focus on the matrix of psychological, social, physiological and environmental processes in understanding etiological and diagnostic factors of illness, prevention and recovery. Fundamental skills in clinical assessment, evaluation and psychotherapy are integrated with scientific advances in health psychology/behavioral medicine in order to meet the holistic needs of the individual.

All departmental PhD programs require successful completion of a doctoral dissertation.

Admission requirements

  1. Before being admitted to the doctoral program, the applicant must meet the requirements for admission to the Toulouse Graduate School specified in the Admission section of this catalog.

  2. Admission to graduate degree programs in psychology is competitive, as available facilities do not permit admission of all qualified applicants.

    Applying is a two-part process. First, prospective applicants for graduate degree programs must obtain and file an application for admission to the UNT graduate school from the graduate dean’s office. Second, applicants for graduate psychology degrees must complete the department application process through the department submission portal at The application deadline for all psychology graduate programs is December 1 preceding the fall term/semester for which the student is applying. (See the Academic Calendar at for admissions deadlines.) All academic prerequisites must be completed by the end of the spring term/semester preceding the fall term/semester for which the student is applying.

  3. All applicants must submit competitive scores on the verbal and quantitative sections of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) prior to admission. For standardized admission test requirements, contact the department or the Toulouse Graduate School . Undergraduates who plan to apply for graduate training should arrange to take the GRE during their senior year.

  4. References and recommendations must be submitted by applicants for admission to the doctoral program in psychology. Applicants are required to provide contact information for three satisfactory recommendations via the department submission portal at Instructions on how to submit a recommendation will be emailed to the address you provide for each recommender. Applicants must include one recommendation from their last professional employer (if they have had such previous experience) and one from the last academic institution attended.

In all cases, the Department of Psychology maintains the right to make independent inquiry of the applicant’s employers and the faculties of institutions previously attended, as well as to deny admission to an applicant who in its judgment, or in the judgment of any of the psychology departments of the federated universities (in the case of doctoral applicants), fails to meet personal or academic admission standards.

Academic prerequisites

The minimum criteria for consideration for admission are 24 hours of psychology or other relevant course work (12 advanced) plus the following:

PhD minimum criteria for application requires one of the following six:

  • 3.0 GPA overall on the BA
  • 3.5 GPA on the last 60 hours of the BA
  • 3.5 GPA in undergraduate psychology course work
  • 3.5 GPA on a completed master’s degree (exclusive of practicum and thesis)
  • Completed doctoral degree in another field
  • First or second author on an article in a peer-reviewed scientific or professional journal

Applicants must submit their GRE verbal and quantitative scores.

Applying to more than one program is not encouraged. The student who elects to apply to more than one program must submit a separate application for each program. Applications are submitted electronically. Each applicant must include a completed psychology department application, photocopies of transcripts, photocopies of GRE score reports, personal resume and a statement of goals. Separate letters of recommendation are required for each program to which the student is applying, and letters must have a program specified. We prefer that letters of recommendation are submitted electronically; however, they may be submitted under separate cover directly from the recommender. If they are not submitted electronically, these letters must be sealed and signed across the back flap by the referee. Materials submitted to the Graduate School do not need to be duplicated for each program to which the student applies.

Please refer to the department web site at for questions regarding department application deadlines, etc.

Graduate Record Examination (GRE)

Applicants must have taken the GRE general test prior to the application deadlines. The psychology subject test is not required. Applicants should enclose a copy of the score report with the application, if available. It is the applicant’s responsibility to make sure the department receives a copy of these scores.

Previous college

Applicants should list the names of all colleges attended, even if no degree was received from an institution. When applicable, the name of degree received, date degree was awarded or expected to be awarded, and major should be specified.

Required psychology prerequisites

Applicants should list specific undergraduate prerequisite courses or other relevant course work to be considered as prerequisites. These specific prerequisite courses cannot be waived and must be completed by the end of the spring semester for the application to be considered for the following fall term/semester.

Graduate programs in psychology admit students only to fall terms/semesters.

Statistics plus three of the following broadly named courses are strongly recommended as prerequisites:

  • Experimental Psychology or Research Methods/Design
  • Learning
  • Perception
  • Motivation
  • Cognition
  • Psychological Measurement
  • Physiological Psychology
  • Research Thesis

Applicants must include either a catalog description (Internet printout is acceptable) or syllabus for these specific prerequisite courses. A course in statistics from a department other than psychology could apply to fulfill the prerequisite requirement, and the grade points from this course would be included in the psychology hours GPA. However, such a course is not credited toward the required prerequisite psychology semester hours. To calculate Quality Points, multiply grade (4.0, 3.0, 2.0) by hours of the class (4.0, 3.0, 2.0, 1.0). Example: a grade of A (4.0) in a 3 hour class would equal 12 quality points.

Those doctoral applicants who hold a master’s degree with a major in psychology, but not an undergraduate degree in psychology may elect to use master’s course work to satisfy psychology prerequisites. If admitted to a graduate program, the courses used as prerequisites may not be used toward a degree plan as transfer work.

In addition to the specific courses outlined above, the applicant must also have psychology course work of 24 semester hours (12 hours upper level) to be considered. Those applicants with a bachelor’s or master’s degree with a major in psychology would have completed, in the course of the degree, more than the required 24 semester hours. All of these courses must be taken in a psychology or educational psychology department. Courses listed to fulfill the total number of hours requirements should be converted to semester hours using a four-point system.

Academic record

All GPA’s should be computed on a 4.0 scale (A=4, etc.). The Department of Psychology computes plus- or minus-grades as the straight letter grade. Applicants must meet one of these requirements based on the degrees held.

  1. For doctoral applicants with a completed bachelor’s degree only:
    • a GPA of at least 3.5 on the last 60 semester hours or a GPA of 3.0 for the entire bachelor’s degree.
    • a GPA of 3.5 on all undergraduate major or minor course work in psychology.
  2. For doctoral applicants with a completed master’s degree in psychology:
    • a GPA of 3.5 on all graduate work, exclusive of practicum and thesis.

Applicants with completed bachelor’s or master’s degrees in a field other than psychology must meet the GPA requirements stated above and also have completed the minimum hours of prerequisite psychology courses with the minimum GPA requirements stated above.

Continuation in the degree program

A program committee has been constituted by the department to consider the possible separation from the degree program of any student who in the committee’s judgment appears unlikely to succeed professionally, regardless of grades earned. Students who do not make satisfactory and continuous progress may be dismissed from their program.

Licensing and certification

Students interested in becoming licensed and certified as psychologists or psychological associates in the state of Texas are required to have specified supervised experiences that are approved by the Department of Psychology. Departmental program directors should be consulted for details.