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Why apply to Clark’s clinical psychology doctoral program?

Clark University’s APA-accredited clinical psychology doctoral program at the Frances L. Hiatt School of Psychology is nationally renowned for its distinguished history and commitment to training socially engaged clinical scholars. The clinical psychology program adheres to the scientist-practitioner model and so emphasizes high-quality research while also providing closely supervised and broad-based clinical training.

Our goal is to train graduate students to be skilled scientists and clinicians who integrate the science of psychology with its professional practice to improve the quality of the world in which we live and the lives of the people in our communities.

We work to help students create a program tailored to their interests while working closely with their mentor and department faculty.  We have a strong commitment to diversity, inclusion and the culturally competent practice of psychology, and we pride ourselves on pursuing scholarship that is diverse both in theory and method.

Our Community

The clinical psychology program seeks independent-minded students who are able, through initiative and intellectual curiosity, to develop and advance their own research interests among our dedicated, collaborative community. Many different methodological approaches are represented and it’s common for graduate students across the three specializations represented in our department (social, developmental , and clinical) to share ideas in the classroom, research groups, and laboratories. Our department is collaborative by design and intentionally structures classes, practicum experiences, and research activities to support collaboration among peers, rather than competition. The clinical program is committed to the inclusion of marginalized populations and to enhancing diversity within the field of clinical psychology as a whole. As such, we create a respectful, supportive learning environment.

Meet our faculty           Meet our graduate students

Our Research in Clinical Psychology

Clark’s setting as a small, urban research university provides a wealth of opportunities to grow as an independent researcher. Using a variety of quantitative and qualitative methods, our clinical psychology graduate program ensures students receive extensive research training that builds cumulatively from foundational and more heavily mentored experiences to more independent activities, including building a research portfolio and completing an independent dissertation study.

As teaching assistants and through lab work, graduate students collaborate with faculty, their cohorts, and undergraduates while managing and mentoring teams. Indeed, much research takes place with and among our partners in the greater Worcester community. Graduate students present their work at external conferences and at Clark’s Graduate Student Multidisciplinary Conference, and publish in leading journals like Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, Child Development, the Journal of Early Adolescence, the Journal of Marriage and Family, the Psychology of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity, and Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology.

The small size of our program allows students to build close mentored relationships with their faculty advisers who are recognized experts in their fields.

Faculty Expertise          Research groups, labs, and forums

Key Details

Clark’s clinical psychology program aims to provide students with experiences that help develop their proficiency with theory, empirical research, and clinical practice with both adults and children. To achieve this, we provide a strong foundation in general psychology, theory, and research, as well as specialist training in clinical psychology through an integrated series of intensive educational experiences in class, laboratory, and practicum clinical settings within the University and in other agencies.

Our expertise

Faculty interests include familial and other factors that place children at risk, men’s mental health, relationship interactions, and disparities in access to mental health care, among other areas.

Our emphasis

We emphasize social and cultural factors and processes within clinical psychology, and strive to support our students in developing their own research focus in a way that allows them to develop independence quickly. As such, we believe the graduate experience should be flexible and tailored to the student’s interests.

Our training

Our program involves 4 years of coursework and practicum experiences. Practicum experiences for students in their second through fourth years of the program include assessment and therapy with adults and children, as well as couple therapy intervention. In addition to learning traditional clinical skills of assessment and therapy, students are encouraged to acquire knowledge suited to a broader range of roles and contexts, such as consultation in schools and other community settings. Most students apply during the fall of the fifth year to go on internship during the sixth year. The fifth year is also typically used to work on and potentially defend the dissertation before going on internship. In the sixth year, students complete their off-campus, APA-approved clinical internship.

Our connections

The program has educational, research, and clinical ties with a number of agencies and institutions in the Worcester and Boston areas, including the University of Massachusetts Medical School, the Worcester Public Schools, and AdCare.

Explore courses in clinical psychology

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Research Facilities

Clark’s Psychology Department has more than 35,000 square feet dedicated to learning, research, and laboratory work. Graduate students have semi-private offices and access to dedicated lab clusters, which include the Bliss Child and Family Study Center and a psychotherapy research lab. The psychological services area contains two therapy suites that allow for observation and recording of clinical sessions.

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Alumni Careers

Clark’s psychology Ph.D. programs train scholars to work in academic and professional fields. Their extensive training and research experience prepares them for positions in academic, research, and clinical settings.

Contact Information

Frances L. Hiatt School of Psychology

Office Location
  • Jonas Clark Hall, 3rd floor
    950 Main Street
    Worcester MA 01610

  • 1-508-793-7274
  • 1-508-793-7265 Fax