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Fall 2021 Clinical & Counseling PhD/PsyD


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Too soon??

Sorry, but I need a distraction from my Fall 2020 ~nightmare~. Lol, jk. Buuuut I thought it would be fun to learn who is applying again (or for the first time!) next year and how everyone is planning now!

My list of schools is still a work in progress, as I've found that everyone with my research interest is at top-ranked schools so I'm trying to narrow that down a bit and find others to increase my chances next round, but here is my work-in-progress (all Clinical PhD): Northwestern University-Weinberg, UT Southwestern Medical Center, CU Boulder, University of Maryland- Baltimore County, University of North Carolina- Chapel Hill, Stony Brook University, University of Minnesota, UW- Madison, Temple University, University of North Texas, Michigan State University, Emory University, University of Nebraska- Lincoln, Louisiana State University, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, & IU-PU Indianapolis

I'm currently working as a psychometrist as well as a volunteer in two research labs at my alma mater, but I am hoping to move into a full-time research position this summer. Other than that, I'm going to retake the GRE (booooo!!) and try to get some posters/pubs before re-applying in the fall. Would love to hear other's plans!

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Good luck to everyone! Whatever happens, try to remember your worth isn't wrapped up in the outcome of this process. If you don't manage to land a spot this cycle, it says nothing about your competenc

It's December 1st finally! Just wishing everyone the best of luck! Applications have been a stressful time. I hope you all take time to celebrate being finished this stage of the process. 

In the words of Elle Woods..... WE DID IT!!!!!

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Hi! I'm hoping to apply this fall as well, although I don't feel I can definitely say I will between the economic effects of the pandemic and the current status of my CV. I've been splitting my time between volunteering in a lab at my local university, working at a facility for women offenders, and non-relevant remote work. Definitely not ideal, but I've been applying like crazy to full-time research jobs as I find them! I should redo my GRE, but recent developments have really taken the focus off that for the time being.

I'm also aiming for clinical programs, particularly with a forensic specialty. I have 12-15 schools of interest, from Texas A&M and Nevada-Reno to Penn and Yale (you can only dream...) I'm hoping at the very least to be able to apply to the non-crazy-competitive schools this year. I graduated from a small college with smaller research output, so it's been something of an uphill battle for me.

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It's never too soon 😅 

Honestly, I'm so ready for this next cycle. I feel like I've learned a ton through my experiences so far, and this last round has really highlighted my strengths and weaknesses. It's also been a great reminder that clinical psychology is hella competitive, so even though I am capable and qualified, it doesn't mean it'll all work out. Working to not place too much pressure on myself after the rejections this cycle - sometimes it really is just luck of the draw. Another year means more research experience, clinical opportunities, and personal growth. 

I'll likely be applying to a handful of the same schools, but will be working to find additional opportunities when the time is right. I definitely want to take a few months and focus on myself before jumping back in to grad school prep. I feel very fortunate that my current research assistant position is still funded, and we aren't likely to lose funding as we are a telehealth study which is so needed right now. I'm also excited because a few potential POIs who weren't taking students for this year may be reviewing apps this year. All in all, third time should be a charm for me!

What are everyone's research interests? 

@clinicalpsych.2020 it looks like you had two acceptances - what happened?!

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On 4/13/2020 at 11:26 AM, justacigar said:

It's never too soon 😅 

Honestly, I'm so ready for this next cycle. I feel like I've learned a ton through my experiences so far, and this last round has really highlighted my strengths and weaknesses. It's also been a great reminder that clinical psychology is hella competitive, so even though I am capable and qualified, it doesn't mean it'll all work out. Working to not place too much pressure on myself after the rejections this cycle - sometimes it really is just luck of the draw. Another year means more research experience, clinical opportunities, and personal growth. 

I'll likely be applying to a handful of the same schools, but will be working to find additional opportunities when the time is right. I definitely want to take a few months and focus on myself before jumping back in to grad school prep. I feel very fortunate that my current research assistant position is still funded, and we aren't likely to lose funding as we are a telehealth study which is so needed right now. I'm also excited because a few potential POIs who weren't taking students for this year may be reviewing apps this year. All in all, third time should be a charm for me!

What are everyone's research interests? 

@clinicalpsych.2020 it looks like you had two acceptances - what happened?!

I completely agree, we are all capable and qualified, but it is so so competitive! That's awesome that your position is secure and funded.

As for research interests, I am broadly interested in psychosis and schizophrenia, with specific interests in genetic etiology and early detection/intervention. How about you?!

I applied to 10 PhDs and 3 PsyDs last cycle, and was accepted to 2 PsyD programs, but realized that they weren't for me and my heart is really in research. So I decided to go another round and only apply to the Clinical PhDs!

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Hey y'all!

I'm also planning to apply this fall. I applied for Fall 2019 with no interviews, but had basically no psychology experience (undergrad in engineering, although lots of research/pub/conference presentation experience), so I'm excited to see how the second time around goes after working intensively with my population of interest for a year. I have a list of 17 school right now, though it'll potentially change based on which professors are accepting students. My research interest is the effect of early childhood trauma and mental illness on juvenile offenders.

When are y'all thinking about reaching out to profs? I was originally planning on sending out emails over the summer, but with COVID now I'm not sure if 1) they have more free time than they would otherwise once online classes are set up and 2) if they're less certain about funding/taking students for the upcoming year.

Good luck to all of us!

 

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@clinicalpsych.2020 Ah, got it! Makes perfect sense. Good that you realized where your heart was before enrolling! I'm interested in the maternal-child relationship, specifically how mothers parent after trauma and the intergenerational transmission of trauma & it's consequences. I'm also curious about the impact of timing & type of maternal trauma on parenting and child development. 

@EmpatheticMastermind I think summer might be a bit too early anyways even without a global pandemic, most of them don't know about funding that soon and you might have less luck getting ahold of them. I think I found that the end of September/beginning of October was the sweet spot, though that only leaves you with two months to nail down your application materials. It's gonna be hard to wait that long to reach out! That's a nice, hefty lists of schools!

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Honestly, I'm thinking about applying this fall but I'm not 100% sure. I'm trying to secure a full-time research assistant job, and if I get that job I would commit for at least 2 years (let's hope COVID-19 doesn't prevent it from happening honestly). Currently I'm a volunteer research assistant and working 2 part-time jobs, and I know if I did research full-time that would really help with my applications my next round. But if that falls through, I may end up reapplying (this would be my second cycle). I feel like I learned a lot from applying the first time, and I will have new experiences to add to my CV by then, even if I stay in my current position. 

My current work-in-progress list (all clinical psych Ph.D.): Vanderbilt, Uni of Maryland - College Park, Stony Brook, Temple, Uni of Pittsburgh, Yale, Uni of South Florida, UIUC, CWRU, Miami Uni (OH), Uni of Colorado - Boulder, & Uni of Miami. 

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Hoping to apply too, will be my second cycle (last applied outta undergrad for fall 2019). Midway through my first year at a full time research position; into personality x psychopathology and assessment. Will need to rewrite my GREs because they sucked LMAO. Canadian aiming for some (very) research heavy R1s (dunno who's accepting yet), but who knows what the situation will be like with American schools taking on internationals. 

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@justacigar Thanks for the advice! I didn't have a great idea of when made sense to contact professors other than some random google searching, so it's good to know that it's better to message closer to the deadline. It'll definitely be frustrating waiting and probably working on more applications than I end up submitting (and I likely won't apply to my whole list anyway), but I'd rather give myself the best chance possible with how competitive the process is. Plus I have a week on/week off work schedule, so it gives me a lot of time for projects like this.

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@EmpatheticMastermind I think summer is an okay time to reach out, I reached out to my POIs in late Spring last cycle and all had an idea of how their next year looked. With that said- this year could be somewhat different given many labs will need to look at funding after COVID 19 simmers down and they are back in labs full-time.

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Hey! Applying for the first time for Fall 2021, and I'm extremely stressed about it. Right now I'm working on retaking the GRE, but honestly with all of the pandemic stuff I feel like this season might be particularly brutal. Before I had to leave my undergrad institution for the semester, I was a research assistant at an OCRD clinic (mostly working on OCD and BDD projects) and a research assistant at a psychiatric hospital working on a schizophrenia project. Participant recruitment completely stopped for those, and I have no idea what's going to happen in the fall. I'm also supposed to complete my undergraduate thesis in the fall, which is focused on insight and reward in BDD. Right now, I plan on applying to all Clinical PhDs at Fordham, Hofstra, Queens College, UConn, Yale (lmao), Stony Brook, and then a handful of masters programs just as a back up. I'm still trying to find schools that have faculty who are interested in OCD/BDD, so my school list could def change.

Here's hoping everything works out! No idea how to navigate any of this due to the pandemic so I'm just winging it.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 4/16/2020 at 5:39 PM, expensiveswimmer said:

Hey! Applying for the first time for Fall 2021, and I'm extremely stressed about it. Right now I'm working on retaking the GRE, but honestly with all of the pandemic stuff I feel like this season might be particularly brutal. Before I had to leave my undergrad institution for the semester, I was a research assistant at an OCRD clinic (mostly working on OCD and BDD projects) and a research assistant at a psychiatric hospital working on a schizophrenia project. Participant recruitment completely stopped for those, and I have no idea what's going to happen in the fall. I'm also supposed to complete my undergraduate thesis in the fall, which is focused on insight and reward in BDD. Right now, I plan on applying to all Clinical PhDs at Fordham, Hofstra, Queens College, UConn, Yale (lmao), Stony Brook, and then a handful of masters programs just as a back up. I'm still trying to find schools that have faculty who are interested in OCD/BDD, so my school list could def change.

Here's hoping everything works out! No idea how to navigate any of this due to the pandemic so I'm just winging it.

 

Hi! I know this is a stressful time for all because of everything going on. I'm not sure if that will make next cycle more or less brutal, but every cycle is quite brutal so try not to focus on comparing it to other ones and rather on what you can do to make your app stand out this time! Also, those are all great schools, but my only other advice would be to try not to geographically restrict yourself if possible and apple to programs based on faculty, not just school status and location because those are  the more competitive ones! Obviously, you can apply to the uber competitive ones too, but it helps to have a broad range 🙂

P.S. We are all kind of winging it. Good luck!

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On 4/25/2020 at 1:46 PM, clinicalpsych.2020 said:

Hi! I know this is a stressful time for all because of everything going on. I'm not sure if that will make next cycle more or less brutal, but every cycle is quite brutal so try not to focus on comparing it to other ones and rather on what you can do to make your app stand out this time! Also, those are all great schools, but my only other advice would be to try not to geographically restrict yourself if possible and apple to programs based on faculty, not just school status and location because those are  the more competitive ones! Obviously, you can apply to the uber competitive ones too, but it helps to have a broad range 🙂

P.S. We are all kind of winging it. Good luck!

Hey! Thanks for the advice. Most of this isn't really based on status, it's just what I know that's around me! I know I should broaden geographically but I'm not 100% sure if I want to move across the country... then again a lot of the BDD-forward programs seem to be either on the West Coast or in Australia, so who knows!! It's definitely a confusing time, hopefully everything pans out. Definitely feel unprepared for the circumstances at hand, though!

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I am also planning on applying later on this year for admittance in Fall 2021, I have been lacking on some prep for grad school but I'm realizing that it's time to get serious about it. I also had a change of plans recently where now I'm planning on staying in my city which limits my choices where before I was open and ready to apply to schools all around the country (going from a list of 11 schools to about 3-5). I still need to do a ton of prep for GRE, reach out to faculty at the schools I want to apply to, reach out for letters of recommendations, etc. I have a couple years of clinical based and research experience and am currently in a research focused job, but am still feeling like this won't be enough experience. In a month it'll be a year since I graduated undergrad, because things changed and the plans I had planned out before aren't feasible for me anymore it feels like I'm just winging it too

@clinicalpsych.2020 You had mentioned working on publications, do you know any info or resources on how to publish papers? It seems harder to me now to publish a paper when I'm not actively in school or without the help of professors, etc., but I have no publications and feel like that doesn't help me at all

@justacigarr My interests are aspects of psychology involving race/ethnicity, cultural competence, and assessment

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I’m incredibly excited to be applying to Counseling Psychology PhD programs this fall, with a few clinical programs as well. It’s been a few years since I’ve completed my M.Ed. in Student Affairs, and I’ve been working for Residence Life at a college since then. I’ve been lucky to gain clinical experience providing triage for mental health crises for the campus. I feel relatively confident on my research experience, as I’ve managed a diversity research lab on the side. Through partnerships with faculty at the institution I work at; I’ve gotten a publication and a grant, just got a book chapter accepted for first authorship, and am submitting a manuscript tomorrow for review. I’m relatively engaged with the APA, which I hope will demonstrate my work as an active member of the Counseling Psychology community. 
 

I know my challenge areas are my GRE scores (V158/Q155/W5) and my undergraduate grades (3.44); so I’m pretty nervous because I’m not retaking the GRE since my master’s application four years ago, so oof. My research interests are focused on relationships, coping, resilience, assessments, positive outcomes, and supervision within the framework of identity, intersectionality, and cultural competency. I look forward to connecting with you all! 
 

@psycholonoir I would suggest reaching out to a research lab to offer yourself as a volunteer, and take advantage of any opportunities to contribute significantly. You could also reach out to any post-doctoral researchers who do interesting work and inquire about collaborations. Be sure to really consider what you want to publish on, as you need to be able to contribute some sort of novel perspective or idea regarding something that may be pre-existing or a new concept. 

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I am a recent grad interested in a clinical psychology PhD, and I want to know if I can hear some thoughts on whether I am strong enough to apply this year. I am interested in trauma/sexual assault research, but also find myself interested in neuropsychology, particularly with geriatric populations. I received a 156 Q, 159 V on the GRE and I have two in-progress publications submitted but not accepted at this time. I have presented posters at national conferences twice and was very involved in my undergrad with research. Recently, I received a job as a neuropsychologist assistant where I will be administering/scoring neuropsychological assessments to patients. I am also completing a summer internship that is research based this summer, but is human factors related. I anticipate receiving a future poster/pub out of this internship. Last summer I did another summer research internship that was clinical based. I applied to 11 schools this past cycle and received 5 interviews and one offer that was rescinded due to the virus, but my one offer was for a combined program so that was not a true clinical psych phd. Suffice to say, I am wondering if I am strong enough or not. Since my application, the two new things are this human factors summer internship and my new job as a neuropsych tech. Advice is appreciated, thank you!

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Currently looking for some advice as this is my first cycle applying. I will be applying straight out of undergrad which I know can be difficult. I just took my gre and feel good about it (V:167, Q:164, AW:4.5) and my GPA is strong (3.9 total, 4.0 psych). What I am most worried about is my clinical and research experience. I am supposed to have a clinical placement starting this fall, but corona has put that up in the air. Also, I have been an RA in a lab for the past year and a half and I will be doing my honors thesis in this lab (had to adjust it because of corona but should still work out). Unfortunately, my school doesn't have any clinically focused labs, so I've been working and will be doing my thesis in a social/developmental lab. Basically, with my minimal research and clinical experience, will I have a chance this cycle?

For reference, I am interested in eating disorders and am looking to apply to more "balanced" phd programs. Some on my list right now are Drexel, Hofstra, Louisville, Saint Louis University, Northwestern Feinberg, etc.

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1 minute ago, psychkels said:

Currently looking for some advice as this is my first cycle applying. I will be applying straight out of undergrad which I know can be difficult. I just took my gre and feel good about it (V:167, Q:164, AW:4.5) and my GPA is strong (3.9 total, 4.0 psych). What I am most worried about is my clinical and research experience. I am supposed to have a clinical placement starting this fall, but corona has put that up in the air. Also, I have been an RA in a lab for the past year and a half and I will be doing my honors thesis in this lab (had to adjust it because of corona but should still work out). Unfortunately, my school doesn't have any clinically focused labs, so I've been working and will be doing my thesis in a social/developmental lab. Basically, with my minimal research and clinical experience, will I have a chance this cycle?

For reference, I am interested in eating disorders and am looking to apply to more "balanced" phd programs. Some on my list right now are Drexel, Hofstra, Louisville, Saint Louis University, Northwestern Feinberg, etc.

Do you have any posters/publications. That is one of the biggest factors. Faculty like seeing research products. Clinical experience isn't as important because the opportunities open to undergrads is pretty limited anyway. However, I would really push for trying to submit posters to conferences and see if you can hop on any publications your faculty mentor may be working on. It is also not uncommon for people to take a year or 2 as a paid research assistant/coordinator prior to applying.  

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Third time is (hopefully) the charm?! I applied a few years ago and was only accepted into a MS program (which I accepted and loved). Applied this last round to 12 schools (all PhD), received 6 interviews, 2 waitlists, but sadly no offers.

I will be very curious to see how COVID impacts interviews - think they’ll be held virtually? That would certainly be kinder to our bank accounts..

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On 5/21/2020 at 2:33 PM, psychkels said:

Currently looking for some advice as this is my first cycle applying. I will be applying straight out of undergrad which I know can be difficult. I just took my gre and feel good about it (V:167, Q:164, AW:4.5) and my GPA is strong (3.9 total, 4.0 psych). What I am most worried about is my clinical and research experience. I am supposed to have a clinical placement starting this fall, but corona has put that up in the air. Also, I have been an RA in a lab for the past year and a half and I will be doing my honors thesis in this lab (had to adjust it because of corona but should still work out). Unfortunately, my school doesn't have any clinically focused labs, so I've been working and will be doing my thesis in a social/developmental lab. Basically, with my minimal research and clinical experience, will I have a chance this cycle?

For reference, I am interested in eating disorders and am looking to apply to more "balanced" phd programs. Some on my list right now are Drexel, Hofstra, Louisville, Saint Louis University, Northwestern Feinberg, etc.

You should definitely apply this year. Lack of clinical experience will not hold you back. Clinical versus social/developmental research experience also will not hold you back.

Submitting a poster or a manuscript by the time you apply would be very helpful. As long as you can write a strong personal statement that connects your experience to your current interests, you will be competitive.

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On 5/20/2020 at 10:41 AM, psychster said:

I am a recent grad interested in a clinical psychology PhD, and I want to know if I can hear some thoughts on whether I am strong enough to apply this year. I am interested in trauma/sexual assault research, but also find myself interested in neuropsychology, particularly with geriatric populations. I received a 156 Q, 159 V on the GRE and I have two in-progress publications submitted but not accepted at this time. I have presented posters at national conferences twice and was very involved in my undergrad with research. Recently, I received a job as a neuropsychologist assistant where I will be administering/scoring neuropsychological assessments to patients. I am also completing a summer internship that is research based this summer, but is human factors related. I anticipate receiving a future poster/pub out of this internship. Last summer I did another summer research internship that was clinical based. I applied to 11 schools this past cycle and received 5 interviews and one offer that was rescinded due to the virus, but my one offer was for a combined program so that was not a true clinical psych phd. Suffice to say, I am wondering if I am strong enough or not. Since my application, the two new things are this human factors summer internship and my new job as a neuropsych tech. Advice is appreciated, thank you!

Hi - it sounds like you were a strong enough applicant because you received 5 interviews - that is nothing to scoff at! Getting any amount of interviews is a good sign that you were a competitive applicant. Do you feel like the interviews went well? How could they have gone better? I would focus on being a stellar interviewee, because it seems like thats where the discrepancy was. On paper it seems like you rocked it. 

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6 hours ago, justacigar said:

Hi - it sounds like you were a strong enough applicant because you received 5 interviews - that is nothing to scoff at! Getting any amount of interviews is a good sign that you were a competitive applicant. Do you feel like the interviews went well? How could they have gone better? I would focus on being a stellar interviewee, because it seems like thats where the discrepancy was. On paper it seems like you rocked it. 

I appreciate your comment, thank you! I definitely felt like I was very nervous during my interviews. I believe two of them went very well and my other three just went ok. Do you have any interviewing tips? Is it better to come with a fully fleshed out project idea or is it ok to be unsure? At some of them I pitched research ideas I had and at others I felt I did not know enough to have something relevant so I did not pitch a specific project. I also think I am more introverted which made it difficult at the parties they had. I was still social and spoke with the grad students/professors, but I was not making jokes or the life of the party per se. I also ran into the issue at one school where a girl had a networking connection I did not! That was certainly frustrating, her mentor attended the wedding of the professor we both were interviewing with. 

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Is anyone else concerned about fewer available spots for candidates due to the pandemic? 

I am concerned that students accepted for the 2020 cycle would not be in full swing by the time potential PIs would have decide if they are going to be accepting new students and would skip 2021. 

Anyone else? Just being paranoid? 

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1 hour ago, NeuroMac24 said:

Is anyone else concerned about fewer available spots for candidates due to the pandemic?

I definitely am, I imagine some changes in the process will be inevitable this year. Likewise, I also think some schools will be having a harder time than others. If anything, I believe this situation really underscores the importance of considering a fair number of programs and applying to as many as is reasonably possible. I have about 30 schools that I'll be whittling down over the coming months.

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2 hours ago, NeuroMac24 said:

Is anyone else concerned about fewer available spots for candidates due to the pandemic? 

This is definitely a possibility. Schools have lost a lot of funding, so there may be fewer spots due to less money for stipends. There will also probably be more people applying since the unemployment rate has skyrocketed and not everyone is going to be able to go back to work. When this happen, people often turn back to school. I'm sure most of these people won't have their sights set on a psych PhD, but it's possible that at least a small portion may do so. 

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