Graduate Admissions

PhD Program Admissions

Application Submission Deadlines
Ph.D. Program Deadlines: Fall
Priority Deadline
(for full consideration for admission and funding)
December 1
Final University Domestic (US Citizen and Permanent Resident) Deadline
(applications received after December 1 will be considered only as space permits)
February 15
Final University International Deadline February 15

For full consideration of your application for admission and for funding, applications must be completed and submitted with all materials by the department Priority Deadline of December 1. Application review begins as of December 1 and invitations to interview for the program usually are extended in early January. Applications received after December 1, but before the University Deadline, will only be considered if positions in the program remain unfilled. Applications are processed only once each year for entry into the upcoming Fall term (which begins in August).

Applicants may apply to only one of the following program concentrations:

  • Clinical Psychology (CL), or
  • Cognition, Neuroscience, and Social (CNS) Psychology, or
  • Industrial-Organizational (I-O) Psychology.

Students are eligible to apply directly to our Ph.D. program with either a Bachelor’s degree or a Master’s degree. Those entering with a Bachelor's degree can earn a Master of Arts Along the Way as part of the Ph.D. program. Students entering with a Master’s degree can waive previously taken graduate courses that are judged to be equivalent to requirements in our Ph.D. program, and can potentially transfer up to 15 credits toward the Ph.D. Decisions about course waivers and credit transfers can only be made after review once an applicant has been accepted into the program.

Please note that the McKnight Fellowship application is entirely separate from the application for the Ph.D. program. McKnight Fellowship applicants must complete both the Fellowship application and the Ph.D. application to USF as described here. The Ph.D. application must be submitted by the December 1 priority deadline for full consideration for admission.



Please see the USF Graduate Catalog section for instructions regarding Admissions to find University application requirements.


In addition to the University application requirements, applicants must fill out and then upload the bulleted forms below which are required application materials for the Psychology Department. Please use PDF Adobe format within the USF online application; do not email or mail materials to the Psychology Department. Only complete applications, with all materials received prior to the Priority Deadline, will be reviewed by the Admissions Committee. 

  • GPA Worksheet - Please complete the GPA worksheet to calculate your upper-level undergraduate GPA.
  • Unofficial Transcripts - Please upload your unofficial transcripts from each post-secondary institution attended. They are sufficient for departmental application review purposes and expedite the review process.

  • Psychology Interests and Applicant Summary Form - Please fill out and submit the form. You may select only one of the three concentrations, and then the respective concentration faculty will populate in the Prospective Mentors drop down menu. In the Specific Research Interests text box, please insert a few brief phrases that list your specific research interests. Please complete all boxes before submitting the form.
  • Statement of Purpose - Please upload a brief statement (2-3 pages) indicating your past and current interests and activities relevant to a doctoral major in Psychology. List the faculty in our department whose research interests you believe match your own. Also, comment on your career goals. There is no specified format or guidelines for this statement.
  • Unofficial Student GRE Score Report - The GRE is optional (verbal, quantitative, and analytic sections) for 2023-2024 applications. Please see the specific GRE information for each concentration:

Please upload your unofficial Student GRE Score Report that is available on the ETS MyGRE website. The unofficial score report is sufficient for departmental review purposes, and expedites the application review process.

  • Three (3) Letters of Recommendation - At least three (3) letters of recommendation are required with your online application (maximum of 5).
  • Other documents - Applicants may also upload an updated curriculum vita (upload in ‘Resume’) and writing samples. Sample research papers are preferred.

If you have participated in any of the programs listed on the Application Fee Waiver form (available on the Graduate Admissions forms website), you must entirely complete the student information portion, then request the director of one of the programs listed on the form to fill out and sign the bottom section and email it. Once the form is approved you may submit the online application. For information, please contact Graduate Admissions by email or call (813) 974-3350.

Applicants will receive notification of receipt of application sent to the email address listed on their application. Applicants will receive a decision by April 1. If you have any questions about the Ph.D. application requirements, please contact Brittany Vojnovic.

On behalf of the University of South Florida and the Department of Psychology, we welcome you to apply to our doctoral Ph.D. program, and encourage your endeavors in the pursuit of an excellent education and future career.