Ph.D. in Psychology - Applicant Info

Our department will hold a virtual open house on November 5 (7-8:30pm, CT) During the open house you will have the opportunity to learn more about our program, review the application processes, and talk with current graduate students.  Click this link to register for the Zoom session.

The American Psychological Association has prepared a series of twelve videos--Preparing and Applying for Graduate School in Psychology--that take prospective graduate students step-by-step through the preparation, application, interview and admission processes.  We encourage applicants to review these anxiety-reducing strategies for mastering each step of the application process.

Our application deadline is December 1, 2020 for students who plan to begin graduate training in Fall 2021. 

  • We will not have on-campus interviews for students applying to begin graduate training in Fall 2021.  Interviews may be completed online.
  • The GRE and GRE subject test are not required for students applying to begin graduate training in Fall 2021. Students may choose to include GRE scores in their application.

The University of Missouri s an equal opportunity/ affirmative action employer with a strong commitment to diversity and inclusion. We prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, veteran status, marital status, or any other legally protected status. Applications by members of all underrepresented groups are encouraged

Applicants must submit all application materials through the Graduate School's online application system before the December 1, 2020 application deadline.  


Application Components


Upload unofficial copies of all transcripts. If you are accepted by our academic program, you will be asked to provide official transcripts to the University's Graduate School. Please do not send official transcripts until you have received an official letter of acceptance. 

Test Scores

GRE scores are not required for students applying to begin training in Fall 2021.

Applicants may choose to include GRE scores in their application.  There is no minimum GRE score required for admission.

International applicants are required to show English proficiency to be admitted to the University of Missouri.  Information on English proficiency can be found on the International Students section of our website and from the Mizzou Graduate School's guidelines for international applicants.

Statement of Purpose

A personal statement of 500 words or less includes a description of your career objectives and your specific interests in psychology. You should indicate past research activities and the areas of research activity in which you are particularly interested, as well as indicating what faculty research interests are parallel to your own.


This should list relevant research achievements (e.g., published papers, conference presentations and fellowships).

Writing Sample

Provide a research or academic paper you authored, preferably in your area of interest. These could include a manuscript (in preparation, submitted, or published), conference presentation or grant application.  You could also include a paper from a class that highlights your ability to explain psychological concepts, analyze data, or interpret research findings.

Faculty Interest

Fit with a faculty member's ongoing research program is important for admission to our program.  You can learn more about our faculty members and their research here

In your online application list at least one, but not more than three, faculty members with whom you are interested in working. List your most preferred mentor first. You can find the Faculty Interest Document here and on this page. 

Letters of Recommendation

Request recommendations from three references through the online application system.

Supplemental Information

Supplemental Information is the opportunity for you to enter information or upload a document that does not fit into any preset links in your application. If you need to explain something about your application or clarify information, you can. This is not a required component of your application and you are encouraged to only enter information you feel is necessary or would be helpful to faculty reviewing your application.


Many questions you might have about our program and your application can be answered in our Graduate Program FAQ or by contacting our Director of Graduate Studies, Dennis K. Miller.

Application Review

Your application will be reviewed by faculty members in the training area to which you apply.  Selected graduate students may also review portions of your application. Specifically, graduate students may review your personal statement, letters of recommendation, resume or vita and writing sample. GPA and GRE scores will not be made available to graduate students.

If your application is considered for a university fellowship, it will be reviewed by other faculty in the Psychological Sciences Department and the University Fellowship Committee.


Notice of Nondiscrimination The University of Missouri does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, disability or status as a qualified protected veteran. For more information, contact MU Human Resource Services , the Director of MU Office for Civil Rights and Title IX or the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights.

MU Psych Sci Christal Davis

“Choosing Mizzou for graduate school has been one of my best decisions! The faculty have been so helpful and knowledgeable, and there really is a great spirit of collaboration among both faculty and students. Plus, Columbia is a beautiful city to explore!”  - Clinical Graduate Sudent, Christal Davis

Angela Haeny and Ken Sher

Drs. Angela Haeny and Ken Sher at the Graduate Studies ceremony recognizing Dr. Haeny's recognition with the MU Distinguished Dissertation Award.  While a graduate student in our department, Dr. Haeny received numerous honors and awards related to her research scholarship, including Mizzou’s Rollins Society, our department’s Mark H. Thelen Outstanding Clinical Graduate Student Award, and several merit awards from the Research Society on Alcoholism.

Nanxi Xu

"Graduate school is tough. Classes are harder. Things happen faster, and people expect more. However, I'm blessed to have an amazing mentor and the whole developmental division who supports me through this process." - Developmental Graduate Student Nanxi Xu