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Application Process

Fall 2024 Application Cycle  All interview invites have been extended at this time. Thank you for applying to the Clinical Psychology program!
Please review our FAQ page. If you have additional questions about the program, please email Yelly Gomes or schedule an appointment (preferred) using this link:


To learn how to submit a complete application for the Clinical Psychology program, please read our Departmental application process. Find out which faculty are accepting a student for Fall admission online.

As a member of the Council of University Directors of Clinical Psychology, the Clinical Psychology program adheres to CUDCP’s policies and guidelines for graduate school admission, offers, and acceptance. Read more information about applying to clinical psychology programs.

Admission to the Clinical Psychology Program is extremely competitive. Typically, the program receives over 600 applications for 5-10 positions. Data regarding the academic records of our admitted students are available online. Minimum requirements include a Bachelor’s degree or its international equivalent at an accredited institution. Admissions decisions are based on a number of factors, including academic degrees and record, written statement of purpose, letters of recommendation, and relevant work and experience. Note: We do not offer a Master’s degree here at UNC. 

In addition to measures of academic achievement, successful applicants typically have significant research experience prior to graduate school. Admitted applicants usually have participated in undergraduate research projects, Honors/Senior Theses, and/or additional research experience in post-baccalaureate years. The Statement of Purpose and letters of recommendation are used to assess applicants’ potential to succeed as an independent investigator, to generate novel hypotheses, and to be a productive scholar and consumer of scientific literature in research and/or practice.

Applicants admitted to the Clinical Psychology program usually have majored in Psychology, but other majors are acceptable if students have prior coursework in psychology (especially courses in psychological statistics, biological psychology, personality theory, abnormal behavior, developmental and social psychology). Applicants with Master’s degrees are occasionally accepted. When appropriate, these students may receive exemptions from a few departmental course requirements.

As indicated in the Departmental application process, the statement of purpose consists of four short essay questions, each of 250 words or less. (Specific questions are posted online.) One of these questions focuses on the area of research that interests you and motivates your desire to pursue graduate studies; this is where you would elaborate on your specific areas of research of interest and could indicate which faculty labs would align most closely with these interests. Note that in the application, separate from the statement of purpose, there is the opportunity to list faculty with whom you would like to work. It is important that students list the names of 1 to 2 faculty members they may like as a primary research mentor. If more than 1 faculty member is listed, please rank these faculty in preference (i.e. first choice mentor in the first position).

Applications for admissions to the Psychology Graduate Programs, including letters of recommendation, must be submitted through UNC Graduate School’s website. All application materials must be uploaded through this online application system; we do not accept materials via email or mail. Questions regarding the application or any supporting materials must be directed to UNC Graduate School.

Applicants who are invited to an interview will be notified by mid-January. Faculty may contact applicants informally before this date to ask questions regarding their applications. Being contacted, or not contacted, by faculty member for such an informal discussion does not signal who will be invited for a formal interview. Please note that applicants may hear about interviews at different times during the application process. When all applicants invited for an interview have been notified, this website will be promptly updated to indicate this. Applicants not invited for an interview will be notified by the UNC Graduate School, but this notification will be received towards the end of the application cycle.

Dual-Program Applicants

Applicants are asked to list an area of interest within the graduate school application. Most applicants should select only one area of interest (i.e. Clinical Psychology). Occasionally, applicants may feel an interest in two areas of interest and would prefer to receive training that integrates the curricula from two of our six graduate programs. Each year, we consider a small number of applicants for admission to a dual-area training program.

If interested, select Dual Program within the graduate school application and choose two programs of interest. Be certain to articulate the rationale within your statement of purpose (likely in your response to one of the first 2 questions in the statement of purpose) and identify at least one member of each program’s faculty to serve as potential co-mentors. We strongly recommend you contact both potential co-mentors to discuss the feasibility of your joint training program. Finally, be sure to indicate within your statement of purpose whether you would like to be considered for admission into a single program of study if you are not selected for a dual-program slot.

Please note that selecting more than one area of interest will not increase your chances of admission. Select this option only if you have a specific interest in dual-program training.

Visiting UNC

Future applicants often ask whether they may be able to meet with faculty to learn more about our program and research prior to the interview or application deadline. We are unfortunately not able to meet with current or future applicants for this purpose. We strongly believe that all applicants should have an equal opportunity to gain admission and do not wish to offer any unfair advantage to applicants who have the resources to travel to our campus.

We are very excited to help students learn about our program and research, however, and we strongly encourage applicants to contact us via phone or email with questions.

For More Information

General Questions about Application Submission:

Graduate School Admissions Process or Applications
UNC Graduate School
(919) 966-2611

Clinical Psychology Program Coordinator
Yelly Gomes
(919) 962-5082

Graduate Student Services Manager
Ali Carson
(919) 962-1454

Director of Graduate Studies
Dr. Keith Payne

Campus Tours
UNC Visitor’s Center
(919) 962-1630