Western University PsychologyFaculty of Social Science

Doctoral Degree Requirements

The emphasis is on the training of scientists, with students in applied areas trained on the scientist-practitioner model. The program typically includes graduate seminars and courses, comprehensive examinations in one area of specialization, and a dissertation based on a research project. The minimum residence requirement is six terms of full-time study after a Master's degree, but completion of the degree may require a period extending beyond the minimum residence requirement.

In addition to all of the requirements for the master's degree, a student must take the equivalent of two full substantive graduate courses or four substantive half courses in the PhD I and II years, with at least one full course or two half courses taken in the PhD I year.  Included in this minimum set of course requirement is a requirement for a course in statistics, experimental design, and computational foundations. Students in the PhD program are required to take at least one half course chosen either from the ''Fundamental'' courses or from the list of  ''Advanced'' courses. The following are required within each year.

PhD I
a) Additional course work if required by the field
b) Comprehensive examination as required by the field
c) PhD thesis planning

PhD II
a) Additional course work if required by the field
b) Thesis
Some fields require substantially more course work taken in PhD III and PhD IV.

The emphasis is on the training of scientists with students in the clinical field trained on the scientist-practitioner model. All students enrolled in the PhD program must successfully complete a comprehensive examination or examinations. Field committees are responsible for the content and nature of the comprehensive examination or examinations for students in their field. Fields may have common examinations if such are feasible.